On Saturday, August 6, the Edmonton Public Library was offering its latest instalment of “Over the Rainbow Storytime with Drag Queens.”
Protesters were outside, including a transexual woman named Valarie Keefe who is also against the library’s program that sees drag queens reading stories to young children.
“What they’re trying to do is teach little kids that trans women are men in dresses with lots of makeup,” said Keefe.
She also added that she finds the story time offensive. She held a sign that said, “The fake left uses drag to caricature trans women’s lives.”
The organizer of the protest, Brad Chalmers, said he doesn’t think public money should be spent on such programs.
“This is sexualization of our children,” said Chalmers. “We’re not here to protest drag queens. We’re there to protest public officials in charge who have chosen to make this part of the program.”
The anti-drag-queen storytime protest also happen to spawn an even larger protest against it.
Numerous people carrying rainbow flags and signs showed up at the main branch of the Edmonton Public Library and held signs that said, “Hate Speech is not Welcome.”
For their part, the anti-drag queen protesters had signs that read: “Let Kids be Kids” and “Mr. Dressup Would Not Approve.”
Security guards and Edmonton Police Service officers stood by watching the two sides outside the main branch of the Edmonton Public Library.
When Rebel News was on scene there was a brief skirmish where punches and kicks were thrown between two opposing protesters.
As well, organizer Chalmers showed Rebel News a mark on his neck and complained someone in favour of drag queen storytime burned him with a cigarette.
Rebel News made several attempts to get comments from those opposed to the drag queen storytime protest, but people refused to comment. Several times they blocked out a Rebel News camera.