ACLU Files Lawsuit Against Louisiana Library for Banning Drag Queen Story Time Events
By Heather Clark on December 26, 2018
LAFAYETTE, La. — The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has filed suit against the LaFayette Public Library in Louisiana after officials decided to ban Drag Queen Story Time events as the library had been sued by two other groups for originally planning to host an event on the premises.
“The defendant’s requirement that individuals seeking to use library space sign a form disavowing affiliation with Drag Queen Story Time as a precondition for use of public space and also under penalty of potential legal liability violates the First Amendment,” the lawsuit asserts.
According to reports, the LaFayette Public Library had planned a “Drag Queen Story Time” event in October, but was soon sued by members of the groups Warriors for Christ and Special Forces of Liberty. The lawsuit states that two of the plaintiffs, who are a part of Special Forces of Liberty, identify as polygamists.
The legal challenge expressed objection to what it called a “government endorsed effort to brainwash and indoctrinate minors to religious (secular humanist) worldviews on sex, faith, truth, gender, morality, and marriage in a manner that excessively entangles the government with the religion of postmodern-western-individualistic-moral relativism.”
“The plaintiffs have no objection to the Drag Queen Story [Time] being held on private property. However, the plaintiffs object to the public library’s endorsement of Drag Queen Story [Time] because the public library is a government actor that is endorsing non-secular activity in an manner that is excessively entangling the government with the religion of secular humanism in a manner that relegates non-observers of the religion of secular humanism to second class citizens,” the complaint read.
Officials with the LaFayette Public Library consequently decided to “stand down” while the legal challenge played out in court, and are reportedly now asking those who wish to host events at the library to sign a form that affirms that “the purpose of [their] use of the Lafayette Public Library’s meeting room does not pertain in any way to ‘Drag Queen Story [Time],’ directly or indirectly.”
However, two LaFayette Parish residents who want to host a drag queen event at the library—Matthew Humphrey and Aimee Robinson—have now entered the legal picture, filing suit with the aid of the ACLU of Louisiana in an effort to force officials to allow the events.
“The defendant’s refusal to allow the public to use library rooms for individuals planning Drag Queen Story Time, holding Drag Queen Story Time or supporting Drag Queen Story Time violates the First Amendment,” the official complaint contends.
“[T]he government ban on speech singles out a particular point of view and content for target—supporters of Drag Queen Story Time,” it states. “This targeted, viewpoint-based discrimination is the most insidious of all government restrictions on speech …”
Humphrey also remarked in a statement released by the ACLU, “Kids who are different have to know it’s okay, and kids who aren’t different have to know it’s okay for other kids to be different. That’s what Drag Queen Story Time is all about.”