Combatting anti-gay bullying and celebrating diversity and acceptance — Will a drag queen story hour at Tredyffrin Library help?

June is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month and Friday, June 28th marks the fiftieth anniversary of what many believe was the major turning point in the modern gay civil rights movement.

On June 28, 1969, police raided the Stonewall Inn, a popular gay bar in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City, which led to spontaneous, violent demonstrations by members of the gay (LGBT) community that lasted for days. The Stonewall riots sparked an entire civil rights movement, and the reason to celebrate Pride Month in June.

Fifty years later, anti-gay bullying is still prevalent in schools and workplaces, and anti-LGBT sentiment continues to be combated across the world. With the celebration of Pride Month, many organizations continue to search for ways to teach tolerance, including our public libraries.  Libraries strive to promote openness, acceptance and the opportunity to educate children about people who are different from them.

In celebration of Pride Month, and as a way to encourage diversity and inclusion, a new twist on the traditional story hour is coming to Tredyffrin Library on Friday at 10:30 AM when it hosts a ‘Drag Queen Story Hour’ (DQSH).

Libraries are not only about books. They are continually transforming to meet community needs and provide new platforms, programs, and services. A drag queen story time event at a public library might not be for everyone however the program is staunchly supported by the American Library Association.

The nonprofit group DQSH is described online as “drag queens reading stories to children in libraries, schools, and bookstores” with a stated mission to “capture the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and give kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queen role models.” The nonprofit has 35 chapters in the United States and five overseas.  The Washington Post reports that Drag Queen Story Hour “aims to teach children gender diversity and acceptance.”

The guest drag queen storyteller at Tredyffrin Library on Friday is Matthew Maisano (aka Balena Canto, right) whose Facebook page describes as an “operatic/classical baritone, singing-actor, entertainer, & drag queen!” Further research indicates Maisano has a BA in Music from Temple and a Masters degree in Musical, Vocal Performance from Cleveland Institute of Music. With many musical and acting performances to his credit, Maisano performed over the weekend as part of the Rose Tree Park Summer Concert series. (Click here for an excerpt).

Whether or not you support a drag queen reading to toddlers at our local library is a personal choice.  However, I think we can all agree that the world needs to be more accepting and open to new and different ideas – and that diversity, self-expression and inclusion is to be applauded.

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62 Comments

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  1. I don’t know about the American Library Association but the American College of Pediatricians warns “Conditioning children into believing that a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse.” Not a supporter!

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  2. A bit of background on the American College of Pediatricians:

    The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated the American College of Pediatricians as a Hate Group.

    “The American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds) is a fringe anti-LGBT hate group that masquerades as the premier U.S. association of pediatricians to push anti-LGBT junk science, primarily via far-right conservative media and filing amicus briefs in cases related to gay adoption and marriage equality.​”
    https://www.splcenter.org/fighting-hate/extremist-files/group/american-college-pediatricians

    [Reply]

  3. I do not see how exposing preschoolers to a drag queen is the solution to bullying. When and where is the next library board meeting?

    [Reply]

    Pattye Reply:

    The Library Board of Trustees meets tomorrow (Thursday) at 7:30 PM at the Tredyffrin Library and all meetings are open to the public.

    [Reply]

  4. Thank you Pattye for this blog post. I know what it’s like to be bullied and anything that we can to do help further love and acceptance instead of hate and bigotry is a win-win for the entire community. Sure, this is a small step but its a step in the right direction! Good for the Tredyffrin Library!

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  5. lol. The hate groups are getting marketing tips from Frank Luntz, I suppose (inventor of ‘death taxes’ in lieu of estate taxes and ‘climate change’ in lieu of global warming). “The American College of Pediatricians” sounds normal, but their opinions sure don’t. Thanks Keith, I wouldn’t have known.

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  6. I messaged Matthew Maisano but his upcoming Drag Queen Story Hour event at Tredyffrin Library. He sent a link to a blog post that he had written at the time of this Penn Wynn Library story hour reading. Here’s the link:
    https://www.lmls.org/dragqst/?fbclid=IwAR3LNcVeAPTvh6ipHekizRbeuQ_5qdkoOIGwSSSsfXr7v2Jmp7BnykiVcx8

    In addition, a recent Balena Canto photo of himself from recent reading at Haverford Township Free Library. Thanks Matthew for your response!

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  7. As a professor teaching library science and a T/E resident, I fully support this event. Libraries are for everyone. If someone is not interested in this, while, he/she can do something else. No one is forcing this event onto anyone. The fact that these events are well participated indicates that there is a strong need from the community. PS the authentic organization is American Academy of Pediatrics. It is an advocate for diversity and inclusion of LGBT kids.

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  8. Pattye, Thanks for alerting us to this situation. I’m not sure what the proposed DQ at Tredyffrin Library will “read” but this video is of a recent DQ hour at a library in Washington State that was in the national news this past weekend. Instead of disowning this as an exception a number of national LGQBT spokespersons defended this as appropriate. I think our compassion needs a dose of discernment.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxFKfIGUS34

    [Reply]

    Pattye Reply:

    Oh my goodness, I certainly don’t view this video from the WA library event as appropriate at any level! ugh!

    [Reply]

    Carol Reply:

    Do you have confirmation that this video is actually part of a story hour for children at a library? It looks like someone making up a questionable dance routine in front of a few adults in a partially curtained off area. No kids, no books…
    I trust Tredyffrin Library would step in and stop any inappropriate activity such as this. This looks nothing like any of the examples I’ve seen of DQSH posted elsewhere or on the news where a colorful person is reading books and interacting appropriately with children.

    [Reply]

    Pattye Reply:

    There were several protests in Washington state (specifically Des Moines, WA and Spokane, WA) libraries over drag queen story hour events which made the national news in the last few weeks. As I said, in my comment the behavior in the video cited is inappropriate at any level and certainly not for a toddler story hour. However, thanks to the director of Tredyffrin Libraries Chris Kibler for clarification, residents can be confident that the DQSH event tomorrow has been thoughtfully planned.

    An additional note of clarification for the DQSH event at Tredyffrin Library tomorrow — Children 12 and under need to be accompanied by an adult and NO adults will be permitted to attend without children. This is important — for those adults who may have a problem with the drag queen story hour, please be respectful. You can attend the library board meeting tonight at 7:30 PM or contact the library through their website: http://www.tredyffrinlibraries.org to voice your concerns.

    Carol Reply:

    Update: The questionable video appears to have been taken down and account closed. I found no proof linking it to a Drag Queen Story Hour. (Also, no kids in video.) There is a lot of misinformation circulating about what DQSH’s are – specifically to anger and frighten people about the LGBTQ community.

    Many of the protesters appear to be religious groups and ill-informed people. Science reveals that everyone doesn’t fit perfectly into 1 of 2 gender boxes. Men do wear dresses – kilts, togas, Arab robes, priest vestments. Jesus is frequently depicted as a Caucasian male with long hair and long gown. Our Founding Fathers wore wigs. Women wear pants. Clowns wear red noses, wigs and floppy shoes. Let’s accept and celebrate the diversity of all.

    Bravo to Tredyffrin Library for offering an event encouraging children to be comfortable with and accepted for who they are. What better place to learn: “Don’t judge a book by its cover”? Isn’t an important value of a library (like humanity) its wealth of different (and well loved) stories?

    Protesters – please remain civil or stay away from the event so you don’t unintentionally traumatize children. Do raise your concerns and questions in appropriate forums where adults and experts can discuss these issues calmly.

    Pattye Reply:

    I gave the link to the Drag Queen Story Hour in my original post but here it is again: http://www.dragqueenstoryhour.org — the website contains a lot of information on DQSH and suggest visiting the site for further information.

    Patricia Exley Reply:

    That video was NOT of an actual DQ storytime and was removed from YouTube. Anyone who is trying to create alarm and spread fear by posting videos that are not authentic DQ storytimes taking place in a public Library is doing a disservice to all who want to be informed on this issue.

    [Reply]

  9. The books selected are all books found in the Chester County Library System and were approved by both the Children’s Librarian and myself. Matthew provided the library with the story, song, and craft program outline.

    [Reply]

    Pattye Reply:

    Thank you for clarifying Chris, much appreciated!

    [Reply]

  10. Dear Pattye,
    This is by far one of your greatest moments in educating the public. You will give people the strength to be themselves

    [Reply]

  11. Keith,
    I am not sure of your conclusion that Pediatricians or their association are Anti-LGBTQ.
    Many doctors, teachers, nurses and healthcare providers are LGBTQ themselves.
    As a psychiatric Registered Nurse with a daughter who is a psychiatric resident, I support LGBTQ persons and their families.
    Psychiatry in particular supports LGBTQ.
    What is not normal is hate and fear.
    Please advise.

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  12. This quote requires a more thorough explanation.

    Regardless, of the Association, people should do their own research and soul searching to make their individual choices.

    In this case, the library program is an optional story time with approved books being read.

    No medical treatment provided.

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  13. I went to the link and found this. That tells me all I need to know. Not credible. Thanks for clouding this issue David.

    Video unavailable
    This video is no longer available because the YouTube account associated with this video has been terminated.

    [Reply]

    Pattye Reply:

    I’m glad that the video was removed — personally, I would have preferred to have seen it.

    [Reply]

  14. Thank you for this post ! No one ( including the ALA) is suggesting that a DQ story time is THE answer to bullying. DQ storytime is just one of dozens of program offered by Tredyffrin library. The Librarians are tasked with choosing programming that fills a need for our Library patrons and falls within its resources and mission /vision.
    Anyone who is opposed to DQ storytime or any other program is free to pass on it, but know that it has been well thought out and carefully chosen. Anyone who thinks there is a need not being filled or who has a suggestion or opinion regarding future programming, please put it in the suggestion box or talk directly to a Librarian. Anyone who thinks Tredfyffrin Library should be offering more programs or wants to be part of its direction, please get involved by volunteering and donating!

    [Reply]

    Pattye Reply:

    Yes — please get involved and volunteer (and donate). Our libraries, along with many other local nonprofits can use your help! Thank you.

    [Reply]

  15. BryanH, The video is still up on the internet. It was for a Teens and Tweens program at the Renton King County Library in Washington State. I don’t think putting up an actual video of a event that occurred before minors is “clouding” the issue.Are you willing to say that this behavior in front of tweens and teens is appropriate? This site is pro this sort of activity but at least reports the facts. https://www.mediamatters.org/blog/2019/06/25/fox-guest-says-drag-queens-and-lgbtq-people-are-grooming-youth-their-unhealthy-lifestyle-includes/224033

    [Reply]

  16. Thank You. I find a discussion like this exposes a double standard.
    If you have a healthy sceptiscm about the cause/effect of global warming/climate change,
    you don’t believe in science.
    But if the American College of Pediatricians makes a statement, that is contrary to others,
    they are bullied as a hate group.

    [Reply]

  17. The American College of Pediatricians has been labeled as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Why do you think the ACP or you are being bullied? I don’t see any coercion, force, or threat.

    [Reply]

  18. And may I add? How many people get booted from youtube? Very few compared to the millions who post there. If somebody has been kicked off, that is damning in itself, and really gets to the root of the ever resourceful hate peddlers in our culture.

    [Reply]

  19. I believe that the Drag Queen Story Hour for Children is a piece of social engineering which has NO place in our town Library. It is controversial in several ways – in the audience (under 12 children), in the setting (our public mostly tax-funded library)and in the content (confusing messages about trans-gender practices).

    This is a cram down of an agenda which not all taxpayers and donors want to support. They should not be made to do so by adding it to our programming.

    Are we open to an NRA 2nd Amendment gun rights story hour? Including stories of how guns have helped to keep us safe? Because supporting one kind of controversial agenda without the other is called CENSORSHIP.

    [Reply]

  20. This is exactly the reply I would expect from someone who is uncomfortable with the 5% of the world population that doesn’t fit in binary male/female categories. After all, your quote from above about how drag queen story hour is akin to child abuse is telling:

    “Conditioning children into believing that a lifetime of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex is normal and healthful is child abuse.”

    I think your idea of an NRA story hour is a excellent and you should organize one. Dress up as a militia man and read stories about “good” guns. I’m not sure how many attendees you would have, but I’m all for the NRA having a chance at “social engineering”, too.

    [Reply]

  21. Gay rights and gun rights can’t be compared. Today, Gay rights have been achieved nationally. Gays can serve openly in the military, gays are protected from discrimination, gays can legally marry, they’re running for President etc. Americans clearly view and recognize homosexuality as a legal fundamental civil right to be who they are and to be happy as evidenced by our laws and swiftly changing attitudes over the years.

    Gun rights are different.

    People who favor gun rights can point to a gun owner’s right to bear arms; people who favor gun restrictions can point to Americans’ right not to die and be injured by gun violence.

    There is no evidence that a persons marriage or their choice on how to dress damages another person.

    History shows that matters of civil rights: discrimination, disability rights, gender rights, minority rights will continue to grow.

    Gun rights? Far more murky.

    If transgender story hour bothers you, don’t go. Too bad I can’t choose to go into a public place knowing gun toting strangers arent there. Because if I did know, I wouldn’t go.

    [Reply]

  22. Did you know that books and the ability to read were once the privilege of the elite? The free or public libraries in the early years were a significant contributor to the democratization of knowledge and the advancement of people from all economic strata. What a monumental and controversial concept this must have been in the day. Not that dissimilar to the discussion posted here, thanks to Pattye Benson’s post.

    Many among you recognize the value our beautiful libraries in Tredyffrin provide to the entire community as a warm community center where all are welcome. The libraries provide more than 1,600 children’s’ programs alone! We should be unwavering in our support of an institution that welcomes all members of our community with open arms and provides programs that appeal to a broad spectrum of the community. No one is forced to attend any program, but all are welcome. The Tredyffrin Township Libraries are providing an inclusive, open and welcoming library system. This is exactly what our tax and donation dollars should be used for – to encourage participation in our local libraries by all members of the community. I applaud Chris Kibler and his staff’s efforts and look forward to seeing more innovation like this one program. BTW, this was the second year for this program (not new). And this year’s program was standing room only with parents and children joining in the singing, joy and laughter. Bravo TTPL! To all the readers out there, please donate to our libraries. Our whole community needs your support

    [Reply]

  23. Taxpayer – how does your comment in “There is no evidence that a person’s marriage or their choice on how to dress damages another person.” comport with the NEAR 50% SUICIDE ATTEMPT rates of the teenage trans population?

    Is this all simply chalked up to lack of acceptance? Seems like a weak argument. Are there 50% Suicide attempt rates amongst teens who don’t get into the Ivy League? Or who don’t make the Varsity team at high school? Of course not.

    There is a deep public health problem here that sadly people are papering over.

    Don’t ask me to pay for someone’s radical agenda on trans gender practices for children, Do what you want on your own dime, don’t ask me to pay for it.

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Hi Ben,

    Thanks for your comment.

    Studies on the wellbeing of trans kids who are supported in their identities show that they have the same levels of depression and anxiety as their peers.
    This all leads to the same conclusion: we must support trans children. Trans people are too often bullied, stigmatised, DENIED ACCESS to SERVICES and mistreated by society. Yet so much of the media coverage seems concerned with trans issues only when it’s about the alleged “problems” they cause.

    So Ben, if folks like you starting supporting trans people rather than stigmatizing them, their levels of depression and anxiety would match their Ivy League Varsity candidate peers.

    [Reply]

  24. Taxpayer – “Gun Rights? Far more murky.” Murky, really? What a laugh.

    Here is straight from our Bill of Rights:
    ——
    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
    ——

    That’s the 2nd Amendment of our Bill of Rights. Murky? Really?

    I thank God every day that my rights are not subject to the opinions of people like you about what is “murky”.

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Hi Ben, I don’t see people “up in arms” (no pun or irony intended.) about transgender people or issues. I see plenty of people “up in arms” about the dire and immediate need for gun control. I believe it will happen. That train has pulled out of the station and continues to gain more and more momentum every day. It’s not going to stop. So, you’re right, it isn’t murky. It’s a sure thing gun control will happen and I believe pretty soon.

    Go Deb

    [Reply]

  25. Dear Taxpayer,

    Your opinions like the “left the station” comments on gun control etc. are simply opinions, and stand only in that sense. We are all entitled to one, and you have yours.

    Furthermore, you present no facts to back up your assertions that the negative health effects of gender dysphoria can be solved simply with more sympathy. This has not been proven, and I suspect can never be proven. You desire in this context to “be nice”, is like thinking we can cure Schizophrenia simply by being more accepting and compassionate. It’s a silly wish – however well intended. I would always choose to be compassionate, I just don’t think my compassion is the real help someone needs in this kind of case.

    There are many, many people in this community who feel upset and alienated by this “cram down” of tax-payer funded programming being used to support a radical social agenda. 85% of the Library’s budget is paid by all of us through our taxes. It is inappropriate to bring this controversy to the Library when many tax-payers do not approve of it.

    Why don’t you and others who are passionate about this put up your own dollars to rent a 3rd party facility and have the Drag Queen Story Hour for Children on your own dime? It’s a little more challenging when actual dollars you can touch and feel are involved, isn’t it? But then again, that is the agenda of the left – force everyone else to pay for your grand plans.

    Let’s see if the Library, the Town Manager, and the Board of Supervisors will support the use of our tax dollars for programs on BOTH the right and the left. If they don’t, they are opening up a big can of worms.

    [Reply]

    Support outside funding Reply:

    Although I have nothing against the Drag Queen Story Hour for children, I think you have to be very careful when dealing with taxpayer dollars. I think that it would have been better if an outside organization (third party) had reserved the space at the library and funded the event. I think this event unnecessarily opened Pandora’s box and could make it difficult for the BOS and library staff to say no to others in the future.

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Hi “ support outside funding”

    Jennifer W above says:

    The Tredyffrin Township Libraries are providing an inclusive, open and welcoming library system. This is exactly what our tax and donation dollars should be used for – to encourage participation in our local libraries by all members of the community. I applaud Chris Kibler and his staff’s efforts and look forward to seeing more innovation like this one program. BTW, this was the second year for this program (not new). And this year’s program was standing room only with parents and children joining in the singing, joy and laughter. Bravo TTPL! To all the readers out there, please donate to our libraries. Our whole community needs your support

    I agree with Jennifer!!

    STANDING ROOM ONLY

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Hi Ben,

    Thanks for your comment. You seem angry, and I notice when people get angry they have thought distortion and then say things that aren’t true.

    Your statement:

    “””””Furthermore, you present no facts to back up your assertions that the negative health effects of gender dysphoria can be solved simply with more sympathy.”””””

    I didn’t write anything of the kind and don’t know what you’re talking about.

    Maybe you could take a time out, calm down and get your thoughts in order before commenting again.

    Thanks Ben and have a great day.

    [Reply]

  26. Taxpayer – start being honest. This is from your July 7th at 2:06pm post above:

    “So Ben, if folks like you starting supporting trans people rather than stigmatizing them, their levels of depression and anxiety would match their Ivy League Varsity candidate peers.”

    Glad to hear that I can solve the world’s problems by just “getting on the empathy bandwagon”.

    And feel free to stop telling me how I should feel about you and your friends hijacking our library programming. Provide some facts and principles. Just give it a try.

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Hi Ben,

    I agree with you that you have a right to your opinion just like I have a right to my opinion. I’m so grateful to Pattye for providing this space for all to meet and express our differing perspectives.

    I understand and empathize with you when you say that you don’t want your tax dollars going toward programs that you don’t support.

    I don’t like it that my tax dollars go towards $200,000 + salaries ($275,000 w/ benefits and retirement ) for publicly funded school district employees who lie, cheat, break the law (did Art correct the error yet?) and bully and intimidate students and parents. But that’s exactly what happens and that’s why it’s so important for all of us to fight for good, do the right thing and speak out against injustices that we are required to pay for.

    I see citizens fighting for the rights of trans and gay people. Correct me if I’m wrong, I’ve never heard a citizen fight for the kind of never ending ballooning salaries teachers and Administrators rake in around here except of course around contract time when the teachers fight long and hard and march arm in arm in defiant unity demanding more because “they deserve it” right after many of them stood by and watched while high School students were sexually assaulted by their friends and peers. It was extremely demoralizing when in all their glee and arrogance, they were granted their raises. It’s hard for me to know that my tax dollars go to support that.

    It’s important and it’s our civic duty and tax payer responsibility to keep talking. I look forward to hearing from you Ben.

    [Reply]

  27. I was surprised to read that the Paoli Library had its own Drag Queen Story Hour yesterday, as I had not hear anything about it.They had Drag Queen Balena Canto (the same reader as Tredyffrin Library) but one difference, registration for attendees at Paoli Library specified age 1 mo. – 5 years, whereas Tredyffrin Library was 12 years and younger. Don’t know if that makes a difference. The Drag Queen Story Hour was Tredyffrin Library programming and taxpayer funded. As a resident and taxpayer, I am not sure how I feel about the library’s use of my tax dollars.

    [Reply]

    Paoli Library Patron Reply:

    The story hour at Paoli Library went very well. There were around 25 attendees. There was lots of singing and a fun time was had by all.

    The message was about acceptance and tolerance.

    [Reply]

  28. No horse in this race. If the kids and parents enjoyed the event and it was well attended I’m good with it continuing. Kudos to Chris for offering the event along with their other programming. I’m pretty certain no taxpayer money was used. I read the DQSH was funded by the Friends of the Library from money the raise through their book sales and other fund raisers.

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Hi Brian,

    Thanks for your comment but I agree with Ben that every taxpayer in the District has a horse in race. (Maybe you don’t live in this District) It’s the reason why taxpaying citizens should stand up and let their voices be heard.

    People are afraid to voice their opinion fearing retribution for themselves but worse for their children so they remain silent and the problems grow bigger and the abusers get stronger.

    [Reply]

  29. Thank you Pattye Benson for your work in providing this forum. I note that the title of this article is “Combatting anti-gay bullying and celebrating diversity and acceptance: will a drag queen story hour at Tredyffrin help?” While I imagine we welcome comments from all readers, I am less invested in listening to and understanding the comments of folks who do not reside here, and do not pay taxes to directly support our library. (I believe Keith Knauss is one of these folks who lives outside of Tredyffrin, but has made many several comments here, and also perhaps steered the conversation toward the school budget. Perhaps this is best covered elsewhere?)

    In any case, I offer this poem for readers to consider.

    Thank you.

    Tell Me A Story

    You’re my little brother so I wanted you to know,
    That story time was once a place we went to think and grow.
    Tales of animals, boats and trains, the seasons, sports, and cups of tea.
    Holidays, grandpas, and dinosaur things, and places far across the sea.

    But now before you leave the house to head to our old favorite place,
    You need to peruse the offerings so that you wind up in the proper space.
    Read between the story lines before you plan your trip,
    Sometimes the title doesn’t always suffice, so here’s a little tip.

    The “Awesome Amendments Storyhour” – the NRA provides it –
    Gently reminds us the right to bear arms – Mom needs to make sure this will fit.

    Or there’s “One World Storytime” to instruct you on sanctuary cities.
    No need to present an opposing view, the librarian has your thinking all mapped out for you.

    This all began with DragQueen Stories – tolerance as the rallying cry,
    But kids who got the pronouns wrong were gently reminded to comply.

    So my best advice to you, dear brother, is this:
    Go back to the bookshelves while they still exist.

    Research your idea, the one you’ve long pondered.
    Learn a new language, venture into the yonder.
    Check out a cookbook, view art, and think deep.
    How do planes fly, how do whales go to sleep?
    Learn to play chess and make a new friend.
    Dive into some board books before summer’s at end.

    And remember the library belongs to you, and to me.
    Not to the people who run things, although smart they may be.
    No view should be highlighted, or platform advanced,
    They’ll invite you to march, when instead you should dance.

    Written by:
    Tredyffrin Resident
    2019

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Thank-you Tredyffrin Resident for your thoughtful poem. I note that it must have taken quite a while to design. Have you been working on it since my comment? A flash of inspiration like the one you got can only be born out of a deep feelings of anger, hostility or upset. I hope the hours spent constructing your poem helped you relieve frustration. Are you an Administrator/Teacher who grew angry reading my comment? Clearly you have a lot of time on your hands and your poem is very good, I can tell how proud you with your efforts.

    [Reply]

  30. Correction/Clarification:
    “Taxpayer”, not Keith Knauss, appeared to have steered conversation toward
    school district funding.

    Thanks.

    [Reply]

  31. Good afternoon all,

    “Taxpayer” – thanks for your message to me. I thought this thread was about the drag queen story hour, or am. I mistaken? I wrote that poem to express my view on the library making the decision to host Drag Queen Story Hour. It does not relate in any way to the schools, taxes, or teacher pay.

    Easy there.

    p.s. it took me 30 or 40 minutes I would guess.
    So glad you liked it : )

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Be honest now…..You wrote that poem in response to my comment about teacher pay, taxes and school funding. 3 topics teachers/Administrators identify strongly with and you still can’t let it go. I wrote that comment over a week ago. That’s how long you be been thinking about it and your poem.

    I know that you have a lot of time on your hands so no worries, it’s a great summer time vacation activity.

    I said your poem was thoughtful. I didn’t say I liked it. I never like it when citizens are intolerant and lack compassion for people whose sexual orientation are different from their own.

    [Reply]

  32. Good Morning All,

    Taxpayer, it is interesting to note the tone of your message.

    Instead of engaging in an exchange of ideas regarding the library policy, you have instead chosen:

    1) to steer the conversation to school taxes and teacher/administrator wages.

    2) an ad hominem approach – where genuine discussion of the topic is avoided in favor attacking the character or motive.

    Frankly I’m surprised the moderator is permitting this, but I’ll bite.

    I wrote that poem on June 26, 2019 at 5:15pm. I looked back at my computer to confirm this. It coincides with discussion of said topic at the Library Board meeting which took place on the following day, June 27, 2019.

    Lastly, you have no idea of my sexual orientation, occupation, or how much discretionary time I have. I have not stated any of those things here.

    Back to the goal of the thread. DQSH and the library.

    And remember the library belongs to you and to me,
    Not the people who run things, though smart they may be
    No view should be highlighted, or platform advanced
    They’ll invite you to march when instead you should dance.

    Keep it civil (and relevant) Taxpayer.

    [Reply]

    Pattye Reply:

    I choose to write about matters that are important to me and hopefully others feel likewise. Strongly opinionated, I don’t expect all who read Community Matters to agree with me nor should they — open and honest dialogue is encouraged.

    On the homepage of Community Matters, if you click on ‘Comment Policy’, you will find the following:
    Your voice does matter and I hope that you will join the conversation on Community Matters.

    Comments are welcomed and encouraged on this site, but there are some instances where comments will be edited or deleted as follows:

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    [Reply]

  33. Hi TResident:

    Ben says:

    ——- I just don’t think my compassion is the real help someone needs in this kind of case.

    There are many, many people in this community who feel upset and alienated by this “cram down” of tax-payer funded programming being used to support a radical social agenda. 85% of the Library’s budget is paid by all of us through our taxes. It is inappropriate to bring this controversy to the Library when many tax-payers do not approve of it.———

    Ben steered the conversation to tax payer funded programs that citizens approve or disapprove of, not me. My comments about high teacher tax payer funded pay were in response and support of his comment.

    As far as relevance goes:

    ————The “Awesome Amendments Storyhour” – the NRA provides it –
    Gently reminds us the right to bear arms – Mom needs to make sure this will fit.

    Or there’s “One World Storytime” to instruct you on sanctuary cities.
    No need to present an opposing view, the librarian has your thinking all mapped out for you.

    This all began with DragQueen Stories – tolerance as the rallying cry,
    But kids who got the pronouns wrong were gently reminded to comply.

    So my best advice to you, dear brother, is this:
    Go back to the bookshelves while they still exist.———

    Your poem says it all. Everyone knows exactly who you are.

    [Reply]

  34. Good afternoon all,

    Taxpayer – I believe you and I are in agreement that we should always hard look at how our tax dollars are being used.

    I once again would stress though, that this thread was set up to discuss DQST and the library.

    It’s not for ad hominem attacks.

    Thanks.

    [Reply]

  35. Good afternoon all,

    Taxpayer, let’s get a cup of coffee and we can talk more about this important issue. Or, happy to continue to do that here.

    : )

    [Reply]

    Pattye Reply:

    I think that this is a good discussion. BTW, I have had residents comment to me privately about the pros and cons of the Drag Queen Story House. Interestingly, a number have made the point that they support this special programming but feel that the cost (not clear on the $$ amount) should be underwritten by an outside organization/individual. These same people are not opposed to event being held at the Library either, just feel that public funds should not be used.

    [Reply]

    Taxpayer Reply:

    Oh great, yes let’s get together for coffee. Please give Pattye your name and number and I’ll call or text to set up a time. Thanks Tredyffrin Resident.

    [Reply]

  36. Good afternoon all,

    Pattye thank you for your comment.
    Yes, there is an extremely important distinction to
    be made between library programming vs. folks
    wishing to rent a room for various uses.

    Likewise there is an important distinction between making sure the library gives us all access to a wide variety of books and materials, without advancing any platform or agenda that might be
    associated with a book or books. This is foundational to an open pursuit of learning.

    It is a separate issue as to whether programming of a sexual nature should be introduced to young children, but we need not even debate that. It’s enough to say that unless you allow “traditional marriage” groups to visit our library to host a story hour then you are wading into the waters of
    CENSORSHIP and then we’ve got a big problem.

    Thank you again Pattye for this platform you are working hard to maintain.

    [Reply]

  37. I’d like to see this issue (support or not for taxpayer-funded “Drag Queen Story Hour for Children” at the Tredyffrin Library) put on the ballot this November.

    I wonder if our Town Supervisors, some of whom have presided over this controversy without expressing any public opinion, would feel comfortable having an actual plebiscite to see just how the community really feels?

    If we find that a substantial number of taxpayers vote No, maybe they would feel compelled to once again return the Library to a more apolitical posture.

    There is only one way to know – a vote.

    [Reply]

    Parent Reply:

    This is not a political issue. Drag Queens are not advocating their lifestyle to children by reading a book to them at the library—-especially when their parent/guardian made the decision for them to have this experience.

    I think that population explosion is a real problem. Our resources are limited. When I meet someone and they tell me that they have 2+ kids, my initial automatic thoughts are, “how could you have that many children?” “It is so arrogant and selfish to burden this precious earth with more people than it can handle.” “Don’t you understand that our previous resources are limited?”

    But they’re just thoughts, I let them go and talk to the person realizing that we have more in common than I would have ever imagined and that people make choices that are right for them and that because I strongly disagree doesn’t mean that by her, say reading a story to toddlers at a library, for instance, means that she’s advocating for families to have 2+ kids.

    [Reply]

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