Queer Story Time for Palestine

Drag Performer Lil Miss Hot Mess
Drag Performer Lil Miss Hot Mess | Image by Santiago Felipe/FilmMagic via Getty Images

A video showing a drag queen in Massachusetts leading a group of kids in chanting “Free Palestine” last week has been met with public backlash.

The event called “Queer Storytime for Palestine” was organized by the Valley Families for Palestine group in Amherst.

“If you’re a drag queen and you know it, and you really want to show it, if you’re a drag queen and you know it, shout ‘Free Palestine,” the drag queen known as Lil Miss Hot Mess was filmed telling kids in a 30-second video clip that went viral, reported the New York Post.

The event reportedly featured dancing, arts and crafts, a celebration of Palestinian culture, and lessons on “queer heroes,” reported the Daily Mail.

Some folks pointed out the purported irony of LGBTQ individuals raising an anti-Israel slogan, especially considering LGBTQ people can face imprisonment and even death over their lifestyles in the Middle East.

“This is insane. And don’t get me started about the irony of you defending your potential attacker (if you were to visit in Gaza),” said Naama Katoa, according to the Daily Mail.

Others also pointed out how LGBTQ people would be treated if they lived in Palestinian-majority areas.

“The harsh reality? Members of the LGBTQ+ community are often murdered in Gaza and other Palestinian areas such as Ramallah,” Stop Antisemitism commented on the video, per the New York Post. “Often times members of the LGBTQ+ community seek refuge in Israel as their lives are endangered and their families excommunicate them. Were these children taught these points?”

The Palestinian terrorist organization Hamas previously detained and tortured one of its own commanders, Mahmoud Ishtiwi, for a year after he was accused of being homosexual. In 2016, Ishtiwi was executed, as reported by The New York Times.

In 2022, Ahmed Abu Marhia, a 25-year-old Palestinian man from Hebron, was murdered for being gay, reported Reason Magazine. His execution was shared on social media, and his severed head was found in the West Bank.

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