At a place called “Unity Park” in Washington D.C. over the weekend, parents brought their kids to listen to a female drag queen rocking Yoda-like ears and high-top silver boots read politically correct books, lecture on diversity, and flail around.
The event, called “Adams Morgan Drag Queen Storytime” and put together by the Adams Morgan Partnership BID, The Line Hotel, and DC Public Library, took place Sunday mid-morning. Katie Macyshyn, who goes by the stage name “Katie Magician,” was the host. This was the second Drag Queen Story Hour event hosted by the groups involved. Macyshyn performed at the first one on June 13.
According to her website, Macyshyn is a graduate of George Washington University. She calls herself a “performance artist and experiential art practitioner serving collaborative new media art” and “an art instructor and songstress who specializes in the therapeutic benefits of creative play in early childhood.”
One can only hope parents did not have knowledge of the performer’s past while bringing children to the event. Her performances include dancing in stockings with pieces of green cake falling off her costume, singing shirtless with duct tape on her breasts as people touch her forehead, dancing with a black thong around her thighs, and laying down with what appears to be fake sperm across her mouth.
Macyshyn also does a “mixed media performance” in which she “satirizes the common adage that giving birth is like pushing out a watermelon by hiding a watermelon in a swimsuit and using burlesque style shimmying and self-adoration to give birth.” According to her website, during this performance “visitors are invited to eat the ‘placenta’ made of watermelon gelatin.”
In other words, this is one of the last people parents should let influence their kids or parenting.
Drag Queen Story Hour is essentially when creepy adults spend time with children to indoctrinate them on controversial theories about sex and diversity. It began in San Francisco in 2015 and was launched in part by a former prostitute.
Unity Park was characterized by its landscapers as “featur[ing] the historic sculpture/fountain ‘Carry the Rainbow on Your Shoulders’ by Jerome Meadows” and a “tree of life paving pattern …informed by the original park concept of Unity in Diversity, [that] depicts tree roots working together to unify a diverse community and represent world harmony.”
Macyshyn began by fiddling with a ukelele and reciting her pronouns. She stared down at kids through colored contacts. I arrived at about 10:45 a.m., just as parents began to flood in with their kids. Some were wearing gay pride attire.
Only a few attendees wore masks, and everyone waited for a librarian to arrive with a cart full of PC books. The titles included “Sparkle Boy,” which is about a boy who wears a skirt; “It Feels Good to be Yourself: A Book About Gender Identity”; and “Black is a Rainbow Color,” which mentions the Marxist group Black Lives Matter.
Macyshyn opened the story hour with the game “Simon Says.” After saying the name “Simon,” she backpedaled, seemingly discontent with using a male name. She then told the kids they would play “Katie says,” before reading.
The parents appeared to be largely millennials, and a mix of gay and straight couples. One father said he came because his wife found it, and he thought “it was new and different” and “would give [their daughter] a chance to see something.” He denied that anything was political about the books, particularly the BLM reference in the “Black is a Rainbow Color” book.
Halfway through, Macyshyn instructed everyone to stand up for a game. Attendees walked over to the left of the park. The performer would say “pose” and everyone would stop.
The host took off her jacket after a few “poses,” staring at kids and almost reaching out to grasp them.
Brian Barrie, deputy director of Adams Morgan Partnership BID — a nonprofit that puts on neighborhood events such as movie nights and Adams Morgan Day in September — told The Federalist his group and The Line Hotel paid Macyshyn’s salary. The drag queens receive $150 per event.
When asked if he thinks it’s an appropriate event for young children, he said, “This is something that the community embraces.”
“It’s up to the community,” he said. “No one is here against their will. Parents bring their kids out and this is something they feel comfortable with. Parents who don’t feel comfortable don’t bring their kids out.”
Johnna Percell, a librarian at DC Public Library who also works in Outreach + Inclusion Services, said “we train performers” and claimed there is no political bent to the text selection.
“Did you see anything inappropriate today?” she asked, deflecting the idea it might not be reasonable for minors to engage with politicized literature, or listen to it from someone who gets partially nude for a living.
George Williams, the spokesman for DC Public Library, said in a statement to The Federalist, “Our goal is to connect with as many residents as possible in their communities.” He declined to comment on whether the story hour was inappropriate.
“The Library gives storytime readers information on the importance of early literacy, Williams said,” the kinds of behaviors that make books engaging for children as well as the kinds of books that would work for children given their age and attention spans during storytime.”
Macyshyn’s boyfriend stood in the back, recording her performance on a camera. He said it was for her reel. After learning my media affiliation, the man asked me something about the U.S. Capitol, presumably alluding to the Jan. 6 riot. He declined to be interviewed.
Macyshyn wrote in an email to The Federalist that her storytimes are intended for young children and their “caregivers” to enjoy.
“I have made work in the burlesque tradition for events that are 21+,” she wrote. “Considering you looked me up and found some of my previous works, it is easy enough for children’s guardians to do research and make informed choices in this regard.”