Public Backlash After Sesame Street Announces Upcoming Episode Will Feature “Iconic” Drag Queen
Written by Raven Clabough
Sesame Street is under fire for an upcoming guest appearance by actor and cross-dressing LGBT activist, Billy Porter.
Life News reports, “Porter, best known as Pray Tell in the FX’s LGBT ballroom drama Pose and for wearing extravagant dresses, will appear during the 51st season of the beloved children’s show, according to Sesame Street’s official Facebook page.”
Porter has also been an outspoken critic of President Trump. In 2019, Porter prepared his own “LGBT State of the Union” ahead of President Trump’s address, claiming “our rights are under threat and the sanctity of identities is in peril.”
Sesame Street’s Facebook post announcing Porter’s appearance features several photos of Porter in his infamous Oscars gown, a cross between a tuxedo and a dress, posing on Sesame Street in front of the set’s famous brownstones and with some of the puppets. It reads, “Billy Porter bringing those fierce vibes to Sesame Street.”
esame Street also posted, “An iconic day with an iconic person. Thanks for visiting Sesame Street,” featuring additional photos of Porter.
While the post invited positive responses from Sesame Street fans who likely consider themselves “woke,” others underscore concerns from parents who do not appreciate the show’s intrusive agenda on its young audiences.
“Instead of confusing children can’t you just continue to teach them how to read, play and count?” one person wrote. “My children will no longer be watching your show. I will continue to teach my children to be kind and accepting of others but I will in no way teach them to accept this as a new ‘normal.’ Political agendas need to be kept to the family home.”
“Sesame Street is for children. And diversity should be taught at a child appropriate level. A man in a dress is not child appropriate, in fact, it can be confusing,” another argued. “While striving to teach to ‘be yourself’ you’re teaching boys who are masculine that it’s not ok for them to be masculine.”
“As though our children are not confused enough. What is your agenda?” another asked. “Unbelievable. So disappointing.”
A petition by Life Site calling for the show’s producers to axe the episode has received more than 38,000 signatures, surpassing its goal of 35,000.
“Parents are fed up with the hyper-sexualization of their children, and they expect children’s programming to be a neutral zone,” reads the petition.
Arkansas State Senator Jason Rapert has sounded the alarm on Porter’s appearance, and took to Facebook to question whether PBS affiliates should continue to receive public funding if it cannot remain apolitical. “What do you think I should do about this as your state senator? Do you approve of your taxpayer dollars being used to promote the radical LGBTQ agenda?” he posted.
Rapert also expressed interest in targeting funding for the state’s PBS affiliate, AETN, which is headquartered in his district in Conway. Sesame Street episodes air on HBO and become available on PBS affiliates like AETN nine months later, Life News reports.
“I can pass a bill to cutoff all funding for the rebroadcast of PBS programming through AETN and also stop all funding for AETN altogether if necessary,” Rapert wrote on Facebook. “Fiscal Session starts April 8th.”
Rapert elaborated, “I love a lot of the great programming we have on AETN and have been a defender and champion for them. However, if they choose to allow our state taxpayer-funded platform to be politicized in this way, they are going to have to make a decision about who they really serve.”
As noted by Life News, Sesame Street has promoted LGBT themes in the past. In 2017, for example, it tweeted a “rainbow” of multicolored muppets in honor of Pride Month. Later that same year, it featured a song called “Anyone Can Play,” with lyrics like “some boys like to play dolls” and featuring clips of the male character Grover wearing a purple dress.
In 2018, one of Sesame Street’s writers claimed the shows beloved characters Bert and Ernie were written to be homosexual. The writer, Mark Saltzman, is openly gay and claimed he thought of Bert and Ernie as being like him, though he didn’t create the characters.
Saltzman’s claims prompted Sesame Street’s producers to make a public statement on Twitter about the sexuality of the show’s puppets:
As we have always said, Bert and Ernie are best friends. They were created to teach preschoolers that people can be good friends with those who are very different from themselves. Even though they are identified as male characters and possess many human traits and characteristics (as most Sesame Street Muppets do), they remain puppets, and do not have a sexual orientation.
Predictably, this statement offended the easily offended, CBN reported, prompting Sesame Street to delete its Twitter statement and replace it with the following:
Sesame Street has always stood for inclusion and acceptance. It’s a place where people of all cultures and backgrounds are welcome. Bert and Ernie were created to be best friends, and to teach young children that people can get along with those who are very different from themselves.
USA Today pointed out that critics of Sesame Street’s stance on Bert and Ernie being simply friends unfairly (not homosexual) denounced the producers as homophobic, without giving consideration to the fact that Sesame Street airs in countries where homosexuality is punishable by death. Creating homosexual characters could risk the cancellation of the education program in countries that benefit greatly from it.
A small price to pay to advance the agenda?
Meanwhile, children are negatively impacted by the oversexualization of youth directly resulting from the Left’s agenda, which has prompted sexualized characters in children’s programming and pre-adolescent sex education for children as young as five, not to mention the constant presence of overt sexuality in all of media. Even hypersexual performances by female artists are now being praised by the Left as examples of female empowerment. What kind of message does that send to young children?
“We are creating a generation of super-sexualized children,” said Fred Kaeser, the health director for the New York City Department of Education in his Psychology Today blog. “A significant number of children are actually demonstrating sexual interest and/or sexual behavior at earlier ages than ever before in our society. Kids are being exposed to sexual matters that were previously only in the purview of adults and the greater the exposure the greater the consequences can be.”
Courtesy of The New American