23 Aug Queer Arts and Gender-fluidity on the Horizon for Sunshine Coast Festival
Local politician Tony Moore has raised concerns that several Horizon Festival events this weekend feature LGBT agendas and deceptively target preschool age children with gender-fluid ideologies and untested theories.
Queer news site Frooty recently published an article titled “Horizon Festival On The Sunshine Coast Opens Its Doors For Queer Arts” citing “three queer-centric events” ‘Blak Social’, ‘No Dress Code Required’, and ‘TOY’.
‘Blak Social’celebrates indigenous artists and features Chocolatte Boxx a Brisbane based drag performer. ‘No Dress Code Required’is Mexican film about a gay couple Victor and Fernando who pioneered gay marriage in their state of Baja California. ‘TOY’ is a workshop that encourages children to explore their own gender identity by limiting outside parental influence and the dominate structures around traditional gendered roles and responsibilities.
The TOY workshop is being promoted as a family event, but it’s actually anti-family, said Mr Moore.
“A TOY workshop sounds like heaps of fun for kids and their mums and dads, but this is a ‘gender neutral workshop’ which has been designed specifically to challenge the dominant structures of being a boy or girl, male or female, man or woman, a mother or father and what these roles look like in the family, our communities and society.” said Mr Moore
Mr Moore, who is a father of four, said that the reality was that the majority of little girls and boys just want to be little girls and boys and play with toys that little girls and boys are attracted to and play with.
“To suggest that a child should not copy their parents is offensive and ignorant”.
“Why shouldn’t a little boy or girl want to look up to and be like their dad or mum, this is a beautiful positive thing. I realise that not all children have great parents and that not all parental behaviours are worth repeating, regardless, as humans we are inspired by others, we admire and aspire to be like those that we see. To decide that a child identifying with their parent conglomerates us into strict and limited binaries, is a sad view of the beauty of life and of those people that we love and who we choose to influence us.”
The TOY workshop, which was funded by a $58,000 grant from the QASP Arts Ignite – Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts, “frees children” by removing traditional toys, breaking up dolls into body parts and other toys into components, as a metaphorical expression of breaking down gender binaries and rejecting dominant structures and social norms said Mr Moore .
“The notion of removing boys or girls toys from boys and girls is actually absurd and hypocritical as this does not actually “free” children from the limits of outside pressures to play with what they like. But rather the outside pressures of programs such as TOY force children to play with objects that boys and girls naturally and normally have no attraction to.”
“These kinds of programs mean well, and there is a need in the community to challenge extremes, but they are fringe ideas and fringe theories. The majority of parents give birth to boys and girls not genderless humans waiting to work out how they feel about their sexuality.”
“A girl can try all they like to be a boy because they ‘feel like a boy on the inside’, but the biological reality of being female is inescapable and actually binary and the binary nature of your biological sex will fight against every best effort to follow one’s feelings. I’d argue straight up, how would a girl even know what ‘being a boy’ feels like unless it’s constructed by their experiences and influences?”
“For the majority of people, programs such as ‘TOY’ and the so-called ‘Safe Schools’ are extreme and irrelevant. They exist as little more than entertaining themselves and their own constructions of identity and sexuality while exposing and grooming everyday children into their ideas and sometimes their own gender confusion.”
“I applaud the Festival for attempting to be inclusive, diverse and welcoming of all people, but there is a disconnect between their ideas of inclusion and gender and ironically, their stoic attempts to exclude heterosexuality and ignore the reality that most of us love being exactly what we were born, male or female.”
“I have no desire or intention to exclude or make light of those people struggling with their sexuality, biology or birth sex, but rather bring gentle awareness to Sunshine Coast parents about the ‘TOY’ workshop and suggest to the Sunshine Coast Council that a mainstream community Arts festival could have been used in a less gendered way to challenge the community more around a shared identity that brings us together instead of excluding and dividing.”