Thursday, August 30, 2007

Gay Penguins

Yesterday a children's book, And Tango Makes Three (2006), once again made news when conservative parents in Missouri became concerned that children would have access to this book and its message condoning a queer lifestyle. The book, based on actual events at a NYC zoo, tells the tale of Silo & Roy, 2 male penguins, and their adoption of a fertilized egg and their subsequent raising of the baby penguin chick. Some parents and organizations want to ban the book or at least move it to the "adult" section. Some librarians are not budging on continuing to categorize the book as children's literature, while others have moved it to the "non-fiction" section since it does deal with actual events. For a UK take on the whole "controversy" see this link to a Guardian article.

This kind of stuff makes me crazy. It's a story about 2 penguins who raise a family together--it is a story about adoption, about love, about penguins--don't people like penguins???!!! Isn't this the heart of family values? (sigh)

I could go on and on about the intolerance of the conservative right, about how we need to champion and advocate for alternative family structures, but I think really my posts have been too long lately so I'll just let everyone muse on this and encourage everyone to go out and buy a copy of And Tango Makes Three -- donate it to your local school library or give it to a friend with kids. Maybe that's one way we'll start to teach more tolerance.

1 comment:

Paul said...

Not really related: I just read Brian Leung's new novel Lost Men and it is brilliant and perfect for your research. It has the "return trip to China" narrative and the mixed-race son narrative. And it is beautifully sad.