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632. Standstill (VI)

Those people who defend “drag queen story hour” will often snap back at their critics that they participate in child beauty pageants—so who is the weirdo now, eh? The riposte makes little sense insofar as it admits that there is something unsavoury about “drag queen story hour”—as much as there is something unsavoury about tarting up ten-year-old girls for a beauty pageant. As women often like to say, “What’s normal, anyway?”. I think that is the point: there is no normality, we all have our little quirks—whether drag queens for tots, or glossy lipstick for ten-year-olds—so just call the whole thing off.

However, there is a difference between Miss Cupcake 2022 and drag queen story hour—even though both are perverse in their own way. For a time, there was a vogue for shows that mocked child beauty pageants—you were invited, possibly with Louis Theroux (and his wry smile at the orgy), to gawp at “dumb Americans” (if European) or “dumb flyover people” (if coastal American). The whole scene was given an extra salacious edge in the 1990s when child beauty pageant star JonBenét Ramsey was murdered—so the scene became a melodrama that focused on “that weird mom” and “that weird son”, the murder being unsolved. Notice that our regime conceptualises certain activities as “weird” and “abnormal”, things to pruriently look askance at, whereas other—objectively as-bizarre—activities are seen as “progressive”, laudable, or “it’s about time in this day and age”.

Child beauty pageants are weird; however, they are weird in a particular way—they are transgressively normal. When Bobby-Jo puts on her cotton-candy pink Disney princess dress and plays the flute and is utterly charmin’ she—though ten years old—expresses normal beauty standards and behaviour. Abnormally normal standards, in fact—so normal that she becomes wyrd and uncanny.

This is why, in fact, the left disdains child beauty pageants and made an entire film, Little Miss Sunshine (2006), to mock them—the beauty and behavioural standards in the pageants are normal, too normal; hence they must be destroyed—drag queens, quite contrary to the expectation that they aim at verisimilitude, actually produce bizarre parodies of women (and really express the deep ambivalence homosexual men feel towards women, who they perceive to have illegitimately captured “their” men). Being ugly, they must be good.

As for child molesters, this is a misconception: without a deep delve into the phenomenology of the child molester, child beauty pageants hold little appeal for them. Why? Child beauty pageants are made for the female eye—for babushkas, for grandmas and childless aunts, who want to pinch rosy-cheeked little girls in pigtails; it is an asexual exercise more akin to shmushy pwuppies and kwittens. The aesthetic serves female narcissism and sentimentality, not male sexual desire—even perverted sexual desire. Yes, homosexual men are involved; but they are involved because the beauty pageant is camp—a frivolous thing taken seriously.

What started as “beautiful baby” competitions and talent shows at the county fair has morphed into a multi-million dollar industry worked at diligently over many hours—the frivolous has become serious, hence camp; hence homos like it, but they are after boys—and the girls are surrounded by over-protective moms; this is not Humbert Humbert territory. Indeed, it is drag queen story hour that carries a sexual edge: these are adult men, men have the real sex urge, with a perverted sexual expression who seek extensive contact with children, putatively for ideological reasons of “inclusion”. This is very different to the fey hairdresser who does Cheri-Lee’s hair for pageant. The final difference lies in the fact that the state endorses drag queen story hour—in its libraries—whereas participation in Miss Cupcake 2022 is purely voluntary (although, really, the husbands should put a stop to this madness). No one is forced to participate in child beauty pageants by the state, no taxpayer money is spent to facilitate them—drag queen story hour is, however, compulsory.


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