As the Christmas season settled in, most of America was enthralled by its festive cheer. However, for those residing in New York City there remained a sense of unrest and unease surrounding an upcoming drag queen event at the city’s Andrew Heiskell Library. On Saturday morning members of the community gathered outside to express their disdain using vulgar language targeted towards LGBTQ individuals only days after one man had physically assaulted an NYPD officer during another similar reading session.

In a stunning show of solidarity, a city council member attended the drag queen event and recorded footage of protestors who had gathered outside to verbally attack the children and their families. The courageous act was met with gratitude from those participating in the storybook reading inside the library.

“Today, I witnessed pure hatred and bigotry outside Drag Queen Story Hour at a public library in Chelsea. Inside, I witnessed a loving and peaceful reading of children’s books to kids,” wrote on Twitter New York City Council Member Erik Bottcher.

Proponents of drag queen storytime affirm that these activities promote inclusivity and diversity among young children. Moreover, through the readings, kids become more familiar with members of the LGBTQ community as they mature into compassionate adults.

Those who oppose these drag queen storytime events purport that the organizers are training children to partake in LGBTQ activities of a sexual nature.

Despite the outcry, protesters showed up outside of the Andrew Heiskell Library in Manhattan to demonstrate against an event that was hosted by the New York Public Library and referred to as “story time with local drag performers adapted to be more accessible to kids with autism and other disabilities.”

The angry vitriol of the protesters echoed through the streets, hurling obscenities and slurs at children and their parents. But despite this hateful display outside of the library, within its walls was a heartening celebration – drag queens were reading stories that taught acceptance and tolerance for all neurodiverse kids. It truly highlighted how powerful an inclusive atmosphere can be in spite of hatred’s presence.

Even in the face of adversity, those advocating for these events remain determined to bring love and understanding through their storytelling readings. Sadly, there are still many who oppose such efforts at acceptance, but advocates continue holding these gatherings across America as a sign of solidarity with all whose stories have been silenced for far too long.

It’s a difficult journey, yet one that is absolutely worthwhile and will eventually lead to an accepting community where everyone can coexist peacefully.

Drag Queen Story Hour is not merely about entertaining children with a fun storytime – it’s about teaching kids to be open-minded and accepting of people from all backgrounds, regardless of their skin color, gender identity, or sexual orientation. This message of acceptance and inclusion must become the norm if we wish for humanity to progress in our society.

Let us join forces and embrace inclusivity, tolerance, and empathy. We must wholeheartedly reject any form of bigotry or hatred.