A church in California was vandalized after its pastor and members protested a library's decision to host a “drag queen story hour.” Police are now investigating the attack as a hate crime.
South Bay Pentecostal Church of Chula Vista has been openly critical of the Chula Vista Public Library for sanctioning an event where drag queens read to children.
Over the weekend, two suspects vandalized the church building, spraying graffiti on the walls, including messages promoting “Lucifer,” “Satan,” and “king of Hell.”
Executive Pastor Amado Huizar told local news outlet KGTV channel 10 that he had “no doubt” his church was targeted for its campaigning against the drag queen event.
“Sure enough, at every corner there were phrases, hateful words, and graffiti on the walls of our church,” said Huizar. “I'm heartbroken, but I am going to continue to speak.”
Huizar reiterated his opposition to the event, telling KGTV that he felt the drag queen event was not age appropriate and should not be held at a taxpayer-supported venue.
“If the people want to make that happen, do it at a private setting, at a bookstore or at a home, but not at the Chula Vista Public Library,” he continued.
“When you do something like a ‘drag queen story hour,’ you are excluding a segment of the populous who are not in favor of this because of what we experienced today.”
The socially conservative advocacy group Mass Resistance denounced the vandalism.
“As we’ve all seen, the rabid and unhinged pro-LGBT activists believe that no laws or rules of decorum prevent them from harassing, intimidating, and destroying anyone who disagrees with their agenda,” the group said on Monday.
Chula Vista Mayor Mary Salas met with critics of the event, but said the drag queen story hour will go on as scheduled. “There’s nothing forcing anyone to bring children here,” she said.
“It’s not any conspiracy to try to change children, to propagandize a lifestyle. This is simply an event to provide a reading option for children,” the mayor said, according to Fox 5 San Diego.
The interfaith coalition DevOUT also supported the event, with Unitarian Universalist member the Rev. Tania Marquez commending the library and government officials.
“Our commitment to our communities is to create inclusive environments that honor the wholeness of all people,” Marquez said in defense of the event.
“I commend the work of the city of Chula Vista library for their commitment to create inclusive and LGBTQ+ affirming programming. All genders and all gender expressions are whole and holy," he said.
Mass Resistance noted that satanic imagery is frequently featured by some drag queen performers, adding: "In our research into the backgrounds of 'drag queen' performers targeting young children in public libraries, we have noticed a very disturbing amount of Satanic imagery and 'Church of Satan' depiction. This is also found in the LGBT movement in general. Thus, it is sadly not surprising that they are attacking a Christian church with such things."
One clinical counselor recently told The Christian Post that Drag Queen Story Hour events constitute "the greatest grooming program ever devised" and predators "are laughing all the way to the bank."
In Texas, two men charged with sexually assaulting a child were allowed to read to children at a library in Houston last year as part of its Drag Queen Story Hour event.