Today in the newsfeed, there was an article in the National Review stating that the GOP State Legislature in Montana actually did something right for a change and passed a comprehensive ban on so-called Drag Queen Story Hours. I realize that it should have been done about ten years ago, but the Legislature's sudden surprising spasm of Manhood deserves some recognition.
The bizarre phenomenon known as 'Drag Queen Story Hours' began in the mid-2010s along with the
Psychological theories which opposed the New Normal (on the grounds of decades of actual scientific and clinical research) were cancelled and blacklisted too. What's now known as the 'LGBTQ Orientation' was found to be a curable mental illness up until Scientism and NGO dollars changed the definition. The illness itself is characterized by antisocial behavior, the inability to form healthy relationships with the opposite sex, and proclivities towards violence, depression, addiction, and suicide.
What's happened during the decade or so since we've embraced the New Normal? Well, among people under 25 (who were brought up under the new attitudes) we have skyrocketing rates of novel STDs, gender dysphoria, violence, depression, addiction, suicides, and a high percentage who have no interest in starting or raising families. The reaction of the Whacko Left Wing has been to double-down and call for more of the same, hoping for a different result.
Whenever the Left is confronted with the uncomfortable truth that their settled science isn't working out so well, their knee-jerk reaction is to blame Religious people---Christians in particular. I have to keep from bursting out laughing whenever that gets mentioned. In the Cultural Wars, American churches are about as intimidating as beachfront sand-castles would be to a modern army. It's been said that all churches have three flags: an American flag, a denominational flag, and a White flag that they keep in case of surrender.
A case in point came from Pastor Stephen Underwood, leader of the flock at Central Christian Church in Great Falls, Montana. Reverend Underwood wrote a furious editorial in the Daily Montanan defending Drag Queen Story Hours (yes you read that correctly). He actually claims that the prophets of the Old Testament would approve of such spectacles if they were alive today.
Let's examine some of Underwood's reasoning on this topic. He says: "When I asked my senator if he had ever attended a drag show, he told me that he had not, which I imagine is true of most of the people backing the bill." Typically, that's about as deep an argument as most on the Left need to hear. It's about like a few knee-jerk types on the Right who claim that one can't criticize the Military unless they've 'served.' Fortunately, he does go into some deeper discussion:
"These bills mischaracterize drag as inherently sexual in nature, 'appealing to prurient interest.'" and then goes on to note that if the Legislators would enlighten themselves by attending Drag events, "
The real reason they want to ban drag performances from the public sphere is because drag, emblematic of queerness itself, is a threat to entrenched systems of power...Drag is dangerous for that very reason. It points out the farce of rigid black-and-white—or rather, pink-and-blue—thinking and imagines a rainbow of possibility for God’s beloveds. We really are all born naked, and the rest—as Mama Ru says—is drag."
Thus, after comparing drag queens to clowns, Underwood asserts that gender really isn't defined by much more than what clothes we wear, and then deduces from that premise that God doesn't worry about such things. While I don't think that God considers dressing in a clown suit---or, for that matter a man wearing an expensive suit or a girl in a sleeveless summer dress---as sin; I do believe that God strongly disapproves of wearing disguises to lure impressionable young people and children away from their responsibilities to the opposite sex. In a more enlightened age, such people were known as 'traps'---and with good reason.
Though I'm not quite sure what Underwood means about "threatening entrenched systems of power" the only logical inference that I can draw from this is that he means the traditional, nuclear family. If so, he shows not only an ignorance of how societies actually function but shows an extremely dangerous train of thought. Threats to the family structure are an uncontroverted threat to society itself. This is why legislators have not only the Right, but the Duty, to suppress threats to the family and to encourage their growth and stability. "Public Safety is the First Law" is the ancient maxim upon which all of our laws---including our Constitution---are premised upon. True, in this century that principle has been abused a lot in the name of 'National Security'---even Montana recently banned TikTok on that pretext---but the idea of 'Free Speech' doesn't apply to the case of Drag Queen Story Hours or Pride Parades. This was decided in 1973, in fact, by the United States Supreme Court:
“Whether the average person, applying contemporary community standards, would find that the work taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest; whether the work depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual conduct specifically defined by the applicable state law; and whether the work, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value...It is neither realistic nor constitutionally sound to read the First Amendment as requiring that the people of Maine or Mississippi accept public depiction of conduct found tolerable in Las Vegas, or New York City.”
Underwood is apparently aware of this difficulty and tries to squirm through it with the sophistry of claiming that drag shows are not only 'works of art' but Biblically-sanctioned as well. "
The same people concerned about the psychological damage a child might experience witnessing a man in a colorful dress read a storybook about being kind to people have no problem telling the same child that unless they pledge their eternal servitude to an invisible being who watches their every moment and knows their every thought, they will be tortured for all eternity—out of love." This kind of stupidity hardly needs comment except to say that the Protestants really need to start evaluating the quality of their Divinity schools. Suffice it to say, if this is coming out of Vanderbilt, your churches have a real leadership problem.
The State of Montana---at least on this issue---has taken the correct approach. Hopefully, other States will follow suit and enact sensible legislation