A religious group has filed a lawsuit against the city of Houston for hosting Drag Queen Storytime for children at the city library. (Image source: Video screenshot)
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A religious group in Texas has filed a lawsuit against the Houston Public Library and the city's mayor over its city-sponsored Drag Queen Storytime that's geared toward children.
The group, which identified itself as "Christ followers," has claimed in the lawsuit that the events are in violation of their freedom of religion, the Houston Chronicle reported. The group rallied outside the federal courthouse to announce the lawsuit on Friday.
The Freed-Montrose Neighborhood branch, which is the city's historic gay neighborhood, began hosting the monthly Drag Queen Storytime last summer, according to The Chronicle.
The library director and Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner are named as defendants in the lawsuit.
Similar events have been hosted at libraries across the U.S.
What's the story?
The group has asked a federal judge to halt the events, claiming that they aren't appropriate for library patrons.
The library's website describes the storytelling events as "appropriate for all ages."
"Break out the dress up chest and let your imagination run wild as you join the Houston Public Library and local Drag Queens for storytime. These vibrant Queens will help to instill a sense of love and acceptance in our children while encouraging them to be true to themselves," the website reads.
The lawsuit claims that the drag queen events should not be funded with taxpayer dollars because the library doesn't host a “man-woman marriage storytelling hour,” according to The Chronicle.
The same group has also publicly opposed same-sex marriage and a city ordinance that would lift gender restrictions on bathrooms.
Plaintiff Tex Christopher said he uses the library for books for his homeschooled children.
Another plaintiff, Chris Sevier, has filed several lawsuits across the U.S., arguing that it should be legal for him to marry his laptop computer if it's legal for same-sex couples to marry.
An evangelical minister and a woman whose husband reportedly left her for a transgender woman are also among the plaintiffs, according to the newspaper.
Two more Drag Queen Storytime events are scheduled for Saturday and Dec. 29, according to the library's website.
In July, the America Library Association endorsed Drag Queen Storytime at its annual conference, according to a blog post by the Association for Library Services to Children, which is a division of the ALA.
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