A group of protesters have been captured on film loudly storming into a children’s story time in Brisbane to confront two drag queens.
The members of the University of Queensland’s Liberal National Club interrupted the “Drag Queen Story Time” being held at the Brisbane Square Library on Sunday, The Courier Mail reports.
Footage shows one of the drag queens confront the crowd of 15 to 20 protesters as they chanted “drag queens are not for kids” repeatedly.
So the UQ Young Liberals decided to interrupt story time at a public library where a drag queen is reading to children only to be abused by homophobic slurs @LiberalAus. What are they doing to support the community? pic.twitter.com/dB7zXeVL7i— CORY (@corydunco) January 12, 2020
Johnny Valkyrie, a LGBTQIA activist who attended the event as her drag queen persona Queeny, said later on Facebook children attending the event were left crying and their parents were distressed by the incident.
“Today, myself, drag queen Diamond, the Brisbane Library staff, the families and their children were aggressively confronted by several individuals from the UQ Liberal National Club who burst into the event space, shouting and making vilifying comments against LGBTQIA+ people,” Mr Valkyrie said.
“This was planned and targeted at me. It hurt and affected so many others. I am sorry.
“Diamond and I were victim to vilification, harassment and nuisance,” he said, adding that he is more “concerned about the children and families who were exposed to their hateful, aggressive rhetoric”.
Police were called to the library and a security guard wrangled the protesters outside.
Taking to social media after the incident, the UQLNC said it had taken a “stand to defend LNP values against a corrosive gender ideology”.
“We believe that the use of ratepayer money on hiring Drag Queens … is deeply inappropriate and does not align with the LNP values the Council should be promoting,” the group said.
Rainbow Families Queensland has held the event four times in conjunction with the Brisbane City Council.
The Liberal National Party disendorsed UQLNC last year for not sharing its values, according to The Courier Mail.
Vicki Howard, a Liberal councillor for the city council, said both drag queens at the story time are registered to work with children and are trained entertainers.
“This is a very successful event that has been held four times in Brisbane over the past two years and staging this event reflects the values of Brisbane City Council, of inclusion, tolerance, diversity and celebration of all members of our Brisbane community,” she said on Facebook.
“The group that staged this protest today has no affiliation with the LNP and the actions of this small group of narrow-minded individuals is appalling.
“The small group of people involved in this completely inappropriate display do not in any way represent how we as a Council and the LNP feels, and it will not and never will be tolerated.”
Video footage of the protesters caused a stir online, with many people outraged with the treatment of the drag queens.
“How traumatising for the kids, parents, teachers and the drag queens performing!” a man said.
“I hope Rainbow Families QLD and BCC libraries still continue to hold the storytime events,” a woman urged.
“What appalling, nasty, rude behaviour by these self-righteous young liberals. I’d rather my grandchildren were read a story by a drag queen than a young liberal any day of the week. Drag queens are smarter, kinder, funnier and way more stylish – and that’s just for starters,” author and Walkley Award winner Jane Caro wrote.
Another man said he didn’t have anything against drag queens but he did not agree with them reading books to children.
Yahoo Australia has contacted the University of Queensland for comment.
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