On Friday, the far-left Huffington Post pushed out a video of a ten-year-old boy, Desmond, dressed as a drag queen. What would prompt a major publication to celebrate the portrayal of a young boy as a sexualized older woman? The fact that they can use Desmond as a self-described “LGBTQ activist and advocate.”
This is child abuse.
Nothing in the video says that Desmond is actually gay or suffers from gender dysphoria. In fact, he’s obviously pre-pubescent, so it’s unlikely he’s had sexual feelings as of yet. But according to the Huffington Post, he’s proof that the “future is gay,” because he dresses proudly as a woman after being shown RuPaul’s Drag Race at age two. Solid parenting, mom and dad.
Now, to even question whether mom and dad have Desmond’s best interests at heart by trotting him before cameras wearing adult female makeup and clothing is to be seen as intolerant these days. But there’s no question that mom and dad are doing something horrible: they’re not guarding Desmond from the public, they’re pushing him into it. And they’re doing so in order to politicize his childhood — to turn him into an advocate for sexuality he knows nothing about.
But this is the world we now inhabit: if you question Desmond’s parents for humoring his sexually-laced gender-bending publicly, you’re the problem. They’re heroes, of course, for using their child’s innocence as a tool to clobber social norms.
Is Desmond better off because his parents are acting as they are? Of course not. We’re not talking about whether they ought to let him dress like a woman (I’d argue they probably shouldn’t, since celebration of gender confusion in early childhood may not be a great strategy for stronger mental health). We’re talking about whether they ought to parade him in front of cameras before millions of viewers dressed like an adult drag queen. The answer, obviously, is no.
But to Huffington Post, the answer is yes, because children are tools, and the future must be LGBT, even at the cost of protecting a child from sexualization.