Salvo 03.31.2023 5 minutes

The Mad Emperor of Ice Cream


In America's grim funhouse reality, the confusion is the message.

Our national clown show grows more and more ridiculous, while at the same time not being at all amusing. I guess that’s what they always say about clowns—they are much more frightening than funny. 

I think of clowns, and the way they invariably cause at least some children to cry, whenever I see pictures of Drag Story Hours. It’s always the same thing—a few heavily made-up drag queens posing as grotesque caricatures of women, looking basically like a gay misogynist’s nightmare fantasy of a devouring, castrating bitch-mother; some librarians or other regime functionaries silently taking attendance; a bunch of downmarket loser parents trying desperately to opt out of their loathed cishet whiteness and score some cool points which they hope to roll over into the coming social credit system; and, finally and most importantly, a handful of children looking confused and bewildered. 

What’s the point of this ritual, other than to own the cons? As an exercise in carnivalesque revelry it falls miserably flat. It’s just forced fun. There is no connection between drag and literacy. The primary argument I’ve heard is that it teaches tolerance—but for what and for whom? Drag is not an identity; it’s a job or a hobby. Drag has been used in university seminars as a metaphor for the performativity of gender, but that’s a little recondite for the 5-year-olds in the average Drag Story Hour. Nobody, not even the most pronoun-forward among us, calls drag a gender. 

Divine, the muse of John Waters, was called the “drag queen of the century” by People Magazine in 1988, on the occasion of the untimely death of Harris Glenn Milstead, “her” portrayer. John Waters famously remarked of his favorite collaborator, “I’ve always said that Divine never wanted to pass as a woman. Divine was not one bit transgender. He wanted to pass as Godzilla.” If drag is anything it’s a lesson in terror, not tolerance.

But if Drag Story Hour is such a great tool to win hearts and minds to the cause of gender diversity, how come they restrict it to little kids? They ought to bring Drag Story Hour into prisons, homeless shelters, and migrant settlement centers. The sort of kids whose parents drag them to Drag Story Hour are probably getting their fill of tolerance lessons and story time—why not save this precious resource for the underserved communities that need it? 

It’s been pointed out repeatedly that drag shows are basically a parody of burlesque and stripping, or maybe an homage. So why not bring in real strippers to read to the children? Real women with real breasts discreetly ornamented by tinsel pasties, wearing thongs demurely covering their real pudenda could certainly read stories aloud, to demonstrate tolerance for this other kind of gender performance artist. Or how about iron workers?  

But we all know why it’s drag queens and why it’s children. It’s not so much that the regime is trying to groom children to become catamites; what they are after is the look of bewilderment on the kids’ faces. They want to scramble the inner compass and inculcate disorientation. The confusion is the message. 

Speaking of confusion, America’s Clown Executive demonstrated a new level of zaniness when he spoke the other day—a few minutes after reports of the massacre at the Christian school in Nashville—to a businesswomen’s group. “My name is Joe Biden,” he said to laughter. “I’m Dr. Jill Biden’s husband.” This is his standard “where’s my better half?” joke—totally cornball self-deprecation of the lamest sort, especially coming from someone who appears to run a crime family with all the moral scruples of James “Whitey” Bulger. 

The President then segued to his favorite topic—ice cream. “I like ice cream, chocolate chip. I came down because I heard there was chocolate chip ice cream. By the way, I have a whole refrigerator full upstairs. Think I’m kidding? I’m not.” 

Biden’s ice cream shtick is also incredibly cornball. Again, maybe this is how the depraved dress up their black souls, by pretending that the whole world is an ice cream social. 

Even the logic of what he said has no internal consistency. He came down because he heard there was chocolate chip ice cream, but he has a whole refrigerator full upstairs. He must really love ice cream if he is willing to leave behind a fridge full of it in pursuit of more! Is it because he didn’t want to dig into his own stash, as long as the stuff downstairs was free? 

To me it’s poignant. Joe Biden leaves a dish of ice cream liquifying on the counter, and a freezer door stands open while pints of ice cream melt to “soup,” and he compulsively heads down to where he imagines there is even better ice cream. It’s like something out of Aesop.

To the addict, one scoop is too many, and a Häagen-Dazs truck is never enough. Well, put a clown in charge and don’t be surprised when the circus never leaves town. Have fun! 

The American Mind presents a range of perspectives. Views are writers’ own and do not necessarily represent those of The Claremont Institute.

The American Mind is a publication of the Claremont Institute, a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to restoring the principles of the American Founding to their rightful, preeminent authority in our national life. Interested in supporting our work? Gifts to the Claremont Institute are tax-deductible.

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