Parents Planning Protest Against “Drag Queen Story Hour” at Zoo in Billings
Parents and other concerned citizens are planning an 11 a.m. protest across the street from ZooMontana in Billings on Wednesday morning. They are speaking out against a "Drag Queen Story Hour" event targeting children that is still scheduled to move forward.
Jenna McKinney is with the Montana Parents Rights Alliance. She says the protest isn't about opposition to people who are gay or transgender, it is about protecting kids from sexualized content.
McKinney: I have friends in the homosexual community. I have family members, and I love them. I think they're great people. They're great community members...it wasn't about that at all with this drag queen story. And that's kind of where I am taken aback by the Chamber, and by the Mayor of Billings and their approach to handling this, as well as the zoo, because it was almost like if you were against this, you were against the gay community all together. That was not the conversation. They wanted to make that the conversation.
Montana Congressman Matt Rosendale (R-MT) and Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) have also expressed their opposition to an event like this targeted kids by being held at the zoo.
As I reported June 11, the director of ZooMontana Jeff Ewelt posted a response to the backlash the zoo received after announcing the event:
We have heard from many of you in regard to the 406 Pride Drag Queen Story Hour being held at the Zoo later this month. Let me be clear - ZooMontana prides itself in being inclusive of all living things. 406 Pride is a respected and valued community asset, one we are proud to support and host at ZooMontana. While personal threats and threats of no longer supporting the Zoo are concerning, we will not let unwarranted fear and hate deter our decision to move forward with this harmless and fun reading event that is held throughout the country. At the end of the day, if your personal agenda does not fit this event, we simply ask that you do not come to the Zoo that day. It would be a shame to never allow your children back to the Zoo because of one simple event. Happy Pride month.
This local event is happening not long after the controversial Dallas, Texas gay bar drag queen event, children welcomed. This video from Matt Walsh Show gives us a glimpse into what that was like: