Cancelled Event Amidst LGBTQ+ History Month Celebrations Sparks Controversy
By Dolores Quintana
Pickle, the Drag Queen Laureate of West Hollywood, was prevented from reading at a Drag Queen Story Hour at the San Fernando Library was scheduled for October 25.
Around 50 demonstrators gathered at the San Fernando Library to oppose the event titled ‘Drag Queen Storytime,’ which was organized to commemorate LGBTQ+ History Month. Pickle was supposed to lead this event alongside the 3rd District Supervisor, Lindsey P. Horvath. Unfortunately, due to protestors obstructing Pickle from entering the library, the event had to be abruptly canceled.
Footage of Pickle’s entry denial circulated on social media, showing the drag queen surrounded by police officers as protestors vocally expressed their dissent. The video appears to have been posted by one of the protesters, Siaka Massaquoi. The LA County Library had initially described the event as a ‘fun drag story time’ intended to share stories promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion.
San Fernando Police Lieutenant Pete Aguirre informed The San Fernando Sun that they had prior knowledge of the protest and had dispatched officers, along with County Sheriffs. Their primary objective was to prevent any assaults or injuries.
Aguirre stated, “Their primary objective [was] to ensure no one got assaulted, no one got injured. And in that end, we were successful. Secondary to that was opening the thruway to ensure people could get in and out.” Despite protestors unlawfully obstructing a public space, Aguirre confirmed that no arrests were made, and no violence occurred. The police seemed unwilling to do anything to stop the protesters from blocking the entrance or escorting Pickle through their blockade.
The protest was organized by a group called Glendale Parents School District Voices, which posts videos from a woman, Aneta Krpekyan, who is a candidate for the Glendale School Board Candidate in Area E and encourages their followers to donate to her campaign. It’s not clear who is behind this Instagram account, but the only link on their profile is a donation link for Aneta Krpekyan’s campaign.
Pickle’s Instagram account posted this message yesterday, “I won’t lie. It’s been a tough week, BUT the highlight was working with @bobbakermarionettes and getting to be a part of some puppet magic!”