White Supremacists Protest Drag Story Hour for Kids in Wadsworth


Anthony Thompson

Over the weekend, a drag storytelling event for children in Wadsworth's Memorial Park turned into a chaotic scene as dozens of protesters, including white supremacists, showed up to oppose the event. The event, called "Rock-n-Roll Humanist Drag Queen Story Hour," was set up in a fenced-off area for families to watch, but protesters shouted anti-gay slurs as they walked to the area.

White supremacist and white nationalist groups, including at least one participant wearing a Proud Boys hoodie, rallied against the event, shouting racist and homophobic slurs at onlookers and others. Some demonstrators yelled "Nazis, go home" as they carried signs, including "White lives matter" and "Mothers against grooming."

The organizer of the drag show obtained a permit to present the event, but it was controversial from the start, with Council President Bob Thurber stating that it had been promoted in a harmful manner to the city. A Wadsworth resident, Aaron Reed, promoted the event in the public space after a private venue declined to host it.

Although some supported the idea of an event designed for children and parents, others criticized it on Facebook and in media accounts largely because it had been promoted for children. Reed defended the planned attire and music, saying it was appropriate for kids, with profanity edited from some songs.

It remains unclear whether the story hour went ahead as scheduled, but police officers were present at the scene. The chaotic scene is a stark reminder of the ongoing divisions and hate that continue to plague our society.



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