Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Gay guinea pig wedding--who wouldn't love this!

Have you heard of Uncle Bobby's Wedding? Let me give you the premise: a little guinea pig girl has a favorite guinea pig uncle who is getting married. She's a bit anxious about it all because she has been the apple of his eye and isn't sure she wants to share him with someone else. But all goes well--the wedding goes off without a hitch. And everyone is one big happy family.

Why would anyone object to such a sweet story?

Well, because Uncle Bobby is a gay guinea pig and his partner is another male guinea pig. Yes, this is a children's book featuring a gay guinea pig wedding. But it's not treated as a big deal--the conflict isn't that Uncle Bobby is marrying another man; it's that he's marrying anyone at all and therefore his relationship with his niece will change. The wedding is treated as any other wedding would be, gay or straight, queer or non. (For a great book review and introduction to the author Sarah Brannen click here).

You will recall nearly a year ago I wrote about And Tango Makes Three and the flap (no pun intended) over this gay penguin family story. Apparently one library patron in Douglas County, Colorado also objected to the queer-friendly content of Uncle Bobby's Wedding because she wrote a letter asking the librarian to remove the book from the children's book section. Jamie Larue, director of the Douglas County Library system, provided a thoughtful, nuanced, and thoroughly respectful reply to this patron that should be an inspiration for any of us who are confronted by people whose perspectives and ideologies are in conflict with our own.

To read Jamie Larue's reply and affirmation of the appropriateness of Uncle Bobby's Wedding click here. And if you are in need of a great children's book for your little one (or a friend's little one) or for your local library, consider going out and getting your own copy. And really, who wouldn't love this book--those guinea pigs are SO CUTE!

[Tip of the hat to Gilesbott 9000 and my friend "P" for introducing me to this great book and to Jamie Larue]

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