Thursday, September 29, 2022

Taken out-of-context video fuels ugly lie about drag queens 'grooming' children

The anti-LGBTQ industry used this footage to claim that LGBTQ people are 'grooming kids.' Like so many other times, they got the story wrong.

Pride Week in Chattanooga, Tennessee ended up as a lesson on how the anti-LGBTQ industry are ruthless when it comes to spreading lies about LGBTQ people harming children. Take a look at this tweet below courtesy low-budget clout chaser Andy Ngo and failed Congressional candidate Robby Starbuck, particularly the first 12 second:

This happened during the Chattanooga Pride Youth Day last weekend. As you can see, Starbuck and Ngo said that the woman dressed as the Little Mermaid was actually a drag queen (i.e a man in costume) and encouraged the child to rub his crotch. 

And they weren't the only ones. As those of us who monitor this stuff can guess, the video was filtered through the far-right blogsphere repeatedly as many conservative pundits, groups and provocateurs added their two cents about how children are being 'sexually groomed' by LGBTQ people and our allies.

If you doubt what I say, feel free to read the response thread of the above tweet. But trust me when I say it is ugly. The tweet of course has gone viral with over one million hits and counting. And it has caused a huge controversy in the city about drag shows.

But as they generally always do, Ngo, Starbuck, and the rest got the entire story wrong. 

Republican Robby Starbuck, who was removed from the GOP primary ballot for a Nashville area congressional seat earlier this year under Republican rules about bona fide candidates, posted a video taken Saturday at Chattanooga Pride's Youth Pride Event at WanderLinger Brewing Co. 

 The moment that appears to have attracted the most attention on social media shows a girl running her hand along the front of a performer's sequined costume. The performer was dressed as Ariel from "The Little Mermaid." "It's NOT hard to redirect a kid away from that area if they grab near your crotch," Starbuck wrote. "We have to stop this madness!" 

Some commenters assumed the performer was a man.

"The individual portraying Ariel is not a drag performer but a biological female that does princess parties all over Chattanooga," Chattanooga Pride said in a statement issued Monday. "Her tail was made out of a reversible sequin fabric, which is why the younger child was touching it. What the video did not show was the performer redirecting the child by shifting to the side

. "In addition, some of the clips circulating about one of the performers (she is also a biological female) was from a completely different event, that was not affiliated with Chattanooga Pride. This event was also marketed as 18 and up. Due to this, no minors were present.

Unfortunately, the controversy has caused a lot of problems. The organizers of Chattanooga Pride and the owner of where the event was held, WanderLinger Brewing Co, said that they have been receiving death threats.

In an interview with the Chattanooga Times Free Press, WanderLinger Brewing Co co-owner Chris Dial called out those who spread the video:

"One of the worst parts is, it feels like it's targeted hate in my opinion," he said. "The pictures that they took and the videos that they're using, they're claiming things that aren't even accurate."

 In addition to the actress portraying Ariel, he said, commenters singled out Von Tonic, who is also a biological woman, for a leg kick she performed during a dance set to Dolly Parton's "9 to 5." "The families that were in attendance had no issue with what occurred," Dial said. "They've supported us on social media, defending their choice, their children and Chattanooga Pride."

Naturally the video has caused a lot of controversy in the city and I doubt it will end any time soon.

This is not new scenario for many LGBTQ bloggers and journalists like myself:

1. Anti-LGBTQ industry takes a situation out of context (often times deliberately) and spreads their version of it.

2. Outrage ensues, anti-LGBTQ industry feeds off of it 

3. The so-called normies demand action either from their Congressional or local leaders.

4. The truth comes out but by then folks are either too angry or too exhausted to realize that they have been manipulated.

5. Meanwhile those who instigated the nonsense slink away without any punishment to repeat the cycle again.

What bothers me mostly is that if this had happened at an event other than Pride, we wouldn't be having this ruckus. That little girl would have been able to feel the actress's costume up, down, and sideways and folks watching the video would think it was cute.

But since the event was LGBTQ-oriented, it was easy to fool people and get them alarmed. That  proves a sad but necessary-to-know fact. No matter how easy going and open-minded some people claim to be about us, the truth is they don't look at us like regular human beings. They don't see us as normal. 

They are like that character in the movie The Color Purple - Miss Millie, the mayor's wife. She pretended to like and be concerned about black people, but secretly she feared them because she thought they were going to hurt her the moment she put her guard down.

We have a lot of Miss Millies in the country today. They say they are 'tolerant' (I hate that word) of LGBTQ people and they claim they have no problem with us. Secretly though, they think everything we do and say surrounds having sex. They think our lives are x-rated and unsuitable for children from time we get up in the morning to the time we go to bed.

And that makes it easy for the anti-LGBTQ industry to manipulate them. 

People like Andy Ngo, Starbuck, and sites like Libs of TikTok (because you just know it was knee deep in sharing that mess) created deceptions like this before and they will do it again. That is until people pay more attention to just who is exploiting their fears and anger instead of the latest outrage they're peddling.

Related posts: 

BUSTED! Far right caught spreading false story that a drag queen exposed self to children

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Doxxed Doctors, Library Bomb Threats, and Attacks on Pride Centers: A Week in Escalating Anti-LGBTQ Violence​ - No joke. I have never seen anything like this. 

The LGBTQ-owned bookstore that rallied a community - But as you can see, we are fighting back in our own way. 

GOP Senate candidate Herschel Walker says trans kids won’t go to heaven - Georgia, please don't send this guy to Washington.