Pride Month, a time to celebrate the remarkable progress made by the LGBTQ community in recent years and decades, stirs mixed emotions among Americans. While millions revel in the advancements of civil rights, there are those who believe that Pride should be more subdued. In the North Hollywood neighborhood of Los Angeles, parents of students at an elementary school have found themselves seething with anger after learning about the school’s plans to host a Pride event called “Rainbow Day,” during which young children would be introduced to a book about LGBTQ families.
Taking a strong stance against their children’s participation in “Rainbow Day” at Saticoy Elementary on June 2, 2023, these parents are choosing to keep their children home from school instead of attending their usual classes. The school district has organized Rainbow Day, providing students as young as five with an opportunity to listen to a teacher read from a book titled “The Great Big Book of Families,” which embraces diversity in family structures, including same-sex parents, interracial couples, and adoptive families. This educational resource also explores various LGBTQ relationships that can form families comprising young children.
Fueling their discontent, furious parents have established an Instagram page to showcase their boycott of Rainbow Day. They have taken their protest a step further by circulating flyers, advocating for parents to “Keep your kids home and innocent.”
Among the disgruntled parents is George Dzhabroyan, who vehemently opposes the Los Angeles elementary school’s decision to host Rainbow Day. He emphasizes, “We respect everyone, but we believe that certain topics are more suitable for children of that age, while others are not.”
In response to the mounting outrage and organized boycott, the Los Angeles Unified School District has informed parents that they can request their child to be exempted from the assembly where the book will be read. This alternative solution allows parents to have their child attend school without exposing them to the complexities surrounding LGBTQ families.
The parents’ anti-Pride Instagram page alleges that aside from the book reading, the school intends to discuss materials mentioning LGBTQ topics. The page asserts, “Videos will be shown to the students, including one stating, ‘some kids have two mommies, some have two daddies.'”
It is worth noting that a significant portion of students at this North Hollywood elementary school come from Armenian and Hispanic families who practice Christianity. Due to the strict teachings of their religion, they do not endorse the LGBTQ community and harbor concerns about their children being exposed to “gay” content.
The concerned parents firmly believe that such material is unsuitable for their children and argue that it should be the prerogative of parents to determine when and how information regarding the LGBTQ community is disseminated to their school-age children.
Dzhabroyan conveys his hopes, stating, “Hopefully, the message gets across, and people understand that parents should be the primary decision-makers when it comes to what their children should and should not be exposed to,” during an interview with KTLA.