Last year, two groups in southern Maryland--Southern Maryland Area Secular Humanists (SMASH) and PFLAG of Leonardtown--arranged to use a room at a local public library for a drag-queen story hour.
The event, during which drag queens read stories to children and engaged in activities with them, was privately sponsored and not an official library program. SMASH and PFLAG, both of which are based in St. Mary's County, were only doing what plenty of other community groups do: using publicly available space.
Nonetheless, some religious zealots in the area got incensed over the event. They whipped up so much hysteria that a local man, Ashley Morgan, tried to disrupt it. Attendees reported that Morgan sprinted into the room yelling, "Don't believe the lies!" He knocked over several chairs and frightened children before being subdued by the police.
In court recently, Morgan tried to defend his actions.
"Although I didn't anticipate doing what I did, I did it to help those kids and even everybody in that room. The parents. The drag queens. It was for their sakes," he said. "And the community. However, I apologize for scaring those kids. I did not plan on doing...