The CHURCH Showed UP… The COUNCIL Heard… THE BATTLE Moves Forward
September 21, 2018
Tuesday night at the Lafayette City Parish Council meeting, approximately 300 people showed up, about 100 to speak in favor of a resolution to rebuke Drag Queen Story Hour and denouncing the public library’s promotion of a Drag Queen event for 3-6-year-old children. The meeting room was packed - mostly with opponents of the local Drag Queen Story Time program which is set to take place on October 6.
I am so grateful for the Pastors and others who heard the call and showed up to support Council members Jared Bellard and William Theriot in their effort to have the Council do something to bring some sanity back to this discussion. The Council listened respectfully to almost five hours of public comment. In the end, SIX of the Council members abstained from voting, which was essentially a “NO” vote, a vote against protecting the children of Lafayette Parish from sexual politics at the public library. Only Councilwoman Nanette Cook joined Theriot and Bellard in denouncing this innocence destroying event.
Special thanks to everyone who prayed, called, emailed, or showed up at the Council and the Library Board of Control meeting! Your voice was heard! When asked for comment by a reporter for The Advocate, I said that LFF “will continue to seek corrective action from city-parish officials to stop the event but had not determined a course of action beyond that. I have no interest in attending a sexually oriented event for 3-year-olds,'' Mills said when asked if his group would demonstrate at the event. ''I may have others who have eyes on that event just to make certain that it doesn't go south.'' Mills' comment reflected the gap in thinking among supporters and opponents of the event. Supporters insisted it was not about sex or gender identity but about teaching tolerance to children.
What we witnessed on Tuesday night is the importance of Christian engagement in government and how imperative it is to have authentic relationships with public officials. Otherwise we simply look like any average protest group! Communication and cooperation with every aspect of our mission field is required for effective outcomes. Courage begets courage....and your voice emboldens others!
What we also witnessed was the brokenness and vulnerability in the culture around us. A brokenness for which there is only one solution – Jesus Christ. We must pray for those who struggle with their identity and we must speak in a spirit of love while balancing that love with the truth that sets men and women free rather than offering empathetic bondage.
This battle is far from over. LFF is exploring the possibility of litigation. (Note that LFF is not involved in the pending litigation mentioned Tuesday night at the meeting.)
Meanwhile, please take a moment to thank Council members Bellard, Cook, and Theriot for their stand to protect children. Tell other Council members, especially Council Chairman Kevin Naquin, that you expect more of them. You expect them to find a way to discipline an unaccountable Library Control Board and a rather petulant Library Director. Lafayette children deserve no less.
Indeed, the issue is gaining attention in other areas of our state. Shreveport State Senator John Milkovich released the following statement yesterday:
“Drag Queens reading stories to little kids is not an expression of freedom by the LGBTQ community. It is a cynical assault on the sensibilities of little children; an outrageous attack on the values of families; and a flagrant insult to the integrity of our culture as Louisianans. This is not free speech. This is a brazen onslaught against the beliefs of the youngest and most vulnerable among us. The persons pushing this agenda have overplayed their hand on this issue. The People of Louisiana will not stand for this invasive agenda.” Senator John Milkovich, September 20, 2018
The ball is in the Council’s court but may quickly proceed to a Court of law!
See you at the Gala,
Gene Mills President Louisiana Family Forum
P.S. Obviously, each election is consequential. It is imperative that votes are directed to candidates who are fully committed to faith and family. LFF is producing voter guides for the fall election-so stay tuned.
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