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Recap: State-Sponsored Drag Queen Storytime

Updated: May 3

Recap of the Drag Queen Storytime on Saturday, April 29th, 2023 – and NEXT STEPS. It’s a little long, but WORTH THE READ.

From the moment we arrived to protest the children’s drag event, six things were abundantly clear:

1. The entire “Keiki Community Fair” was centered around the drag performance. Every other aspect of the fair was gearing up for and promoting the drag queens. Speakers made references to the performance, progressive political figures came to support it, and it was the main event that took center stage – over food and services for families in need.

There were VERY FEW families attending the fair and ONLY EIGHT CHILDREN stayed for the drag event! These children were far outnumbered by dozens of event staff and invited political activists who encircled them. It was over the top!

The community soundly rejected their ideology and stayed away. This shows the organizers did more to cater and market to progressive political groups than to the local community they claim to serve!

On left, community members protesting outside of the permit area, while invited progressive political activists encircle the tent where the drag event is held.

2. The “Keiki Community Fair” was highly political – clearly promoting a progressive political message. The organizers – and their invited activists – served as progressive political evangelists.

They held signs with political slogans – and even touted socialism and anti-religious rhetoric at their entry table, facing off with concerned community members.

Members of major nationally-supported progressive organizations were part of their team and invited activists (HAPA, YPDA, Sierra Club were all there). HSTA (Hawaii State Teachers Association) also had activists onsite, with signs and shouting political rhetoric.

The counter-protesters even had their own activities going on within the permit area, which had no part in the fair and did NOT include keiki!

With their backs to concerned community members, invited progressive political activists counter-protest inside the permit area and conduct their own activities.

3. The “drag queen storytime” was hyper sexualized and included much more than book reading. The drag queens walked the stage strutting while club music played and made exaggerated sexual body movements throughout. While sitting in their skirts with legs spread at children’s eye-level, the drag queens engaged the kids with talks before, during, and between books – including on topics outside of the books. That is very unusual for a “book reading.” The drag queen voices also did not align with the books they were reading – as the books were read as part of their drag performance – which made the book readings very confusing.

The drag queens also handed out prizes to different children/families, reading the selected names aloud. One of those selected was “Andres.” However, the drag queen read the name as “UNDRESS,” and said it in a sultry, playful voice, drawing out the “s” sound – then playfully corrected themself and said “Andres.” It was unmistakable what was going on. Something that might be seen as funny by some for a shock factor in an adult audience (who have come for adult entertainment) is totally and always wrong for children. To be blunt, it’s evil.

THERE IS NO JUSTIFICATION FOR SPEAKING SEXUALLY TO CHILDREN. In fact, this is the definition of “grooming.”

4. The organizers (supported by our State agencies) have absolutely no respect for dissenting opinions or the First Amendment. They used their tax dollar-funded platform to support and oppose political viewpoints – including specific references to political candidates. Meanwhile, concerned community members were not allowed to enter the permit area of the park where the event was taking place (being warned repeatedly not to enter), with paid security and police present to keep us out.

However, their invited political activists were allowed inside the permit area – with political signs and slogans, and shouting political rhetoric! They even lined up just inside the permit area with their backs to concerned community members, blocking much of their view. It was coordinated, direct, and suppressive political action.

Progressive Democrat Rep. Adrian Tam, and Honolulu Councilman and former Hawaii Democrat Chair Tyler Dos Santos-Tam, were both introduced with fanfair. They both spoke, actively promoting themselves as defenders and supporters of the event’s progressive political message.

To complete their suppression of community voices, they also had a table and chairs set up in front of the community members protesting outside the permit area, manned by two event staff to monitor us. These staff actively opposed our concerns and pushed their progressive political message. As mentioned above, they advocated for socialism and made many anti-religious comments, among many other political statements.

While we absolutely support their First Amendment Right to promote their political message, they CANNOT do so using our tax dollars AND while suppressing our First Amendment Rights!

I was personally trespassed by one of the organizers, just for asking questions. I had walked over to where the organizers were gathered to inquire whether community protestors were allowed to enter, but the head of the event refused to speak to me (though he continually stopped to speak to the press). I was then approached by another organizer, who informed me that only parents with children could come in. I then asked why the counter-protesters were allowed in, as they didn’t have children with them and were holding signs and shouting slogans (we’d already been told that no signs, flyers, or slogans were allowed in). She told me she didn’t see any counter-protesters, indicating the line of counter-protesters, and said they were only event participants there with their kids. As I was NOT willing to suspend reason, I asked where their kids were and reiterated that they had signs and were clearly counter-protesting. I expressed that this clearly demonstrated how the organizers were showing political preference for one exercise of the First Amendment over another. She refused to respond and immediately trespassed me.

Drag queens mingle with children, while invited counter-protesters attempt to block the community’s view.

5. The event did not have local support. The onsite organizers and their invited political activists (and even most of the representatives of the major partner organizations) were almost exclusively white and/or nonlocal. In fact, this was the biggest gathering of a majority white and/or non-local group I have personally ever seen in Hawaiʻi. This would even be unusual in many places on the Mainland. Meanwhile, concerned community members who came to protest were made up of a diverse group of people, representing the demographics of Hawaiʻi.

It’s also important to note that there was nothing local or Hawaiian about the look and feel of the event. Most notably: No Kūpuna and no Lōkahi. And that’s because it wasn’t a “community” event as it was billed, it was a progressive political rally using our keiki as props.

It would not be inaccurate for a news headline to read, “Motivated by an extreme progressive ideology, non-local political activists gather for a low-turnout children’s drag event, with a diverse group of community protestors blocked.”

Please Note: To be clear, we soundly reject the race-baiting ideology of CRT that seeks to divide the community. We judge people by the content of their character and NOT by the color of their skin – nor do we ever question people about where they’re from. I am myself from the “Mainland” and my ancestry is entirely Northern European. However, I am not going to suspend reality: It was painfully obvious that this event was not run or supported by locals.

6. This is an issue that Conservatives unite around. We have our differences, but we can all agree that indoctrinating and sexualizing keiki is NEVER okay. We set aside our personal disagreements for a bigger cause. Once you put things into perspective, it’s easy for Conservatives to work together!

Special thanks to all of the people and organizations who put in their time and effort to draw attention to what was going on! Hawaiʻi Conservatives was happy to get on the bandwagon!

As Conservatives, we support personal liberty without unjustified government intervention, where citizens can live their lives as they choose. This drag event is an entirely separate topic that involves the use of public funds and property - and the targeting of our keiki! Conflating the two topics is an entirely political move by the extremist left. We must not let them twist the narrative.

We kept our message positive and did our job to draw attention to this crucial issue!

This is by no means over!

Next steps are to:

  1. Protest every future tax-supported children’s drag event (in person – and by calling organizers and posting on social media)!

  2. File complaints regarding the violation of our First Amendment Rights and the abuse of State funds (more on that to come)!

  3. Donate to support robust campaigns to stand up to this madness!

Donate today to help us keep the ball rolling!

Donate to Hawaii Conservatives Today

To help us win Hawaiʻi – and take our country back!

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