Attendees of Rhyme-Time, a sing-along session for parents (mostly mothers) and babies at UK libraries, are expressing concerns over the impact of “gender ideology indoctrination” on young children.
A health visitor claiming to be representing Bookbug — a Scottish charity which promotes literacy for young people — said that book charities have been “captured” by Stonewall.
Speaking anonymously to journalist Helen Joyce, the health visitor said to have noticed that “every email coming from Bookbug” was sent by someone who used “preferred pronouns” in their signature.
“Just got this message - sender agreed to my sharing it anonymously,” wrote Joyce on Twitter. “I'm a health visitor and rep for our trusts Bookbug. This amounts to attending a forum quarterly and passing along emails re training and events. I noticed months ago every email coming from Bookbug the sender had pronouns in their signature. They're captured and a mouthpiece for Stonewall now. These orgs appear clueless, appease a small community via a big lobby group at the cost of their reputation.”
According to the NHS, the British Health Service, health visitors are “specialist community public health nurses, registered midwives or nurses,” who specialize in “working with families with a child aged 0 to five to identify health needs as early as possible and improve health and wellbeing by promoting health, preventing ill health and reducing inequalities."
The health visitor’s revelation came after the Times’ report on parents who complained about an alien character using they/them pronouns replacing the traditional “fictional bear.” According to the publication, “The character will front a campaign aimed at preschool children, taking over from Bookstart Bear — the mascot of the BookTrust children’s reading charity — at library events in the county.”
However, several families complained about the replacement and said that “their children were too young to understand the gender-neutral language,” wrote the Times. They also quoted Maya Forstater, who said that one mother, “Kate,” contacted her about it. She was with her baby daughter at Hitchin Library Rhyme Time and attended a Rhyme-Time session. “Bookstart Bear has been retired and replaced with Tala, a “trans” bear, with they/them pronouns. I cannot express how upset I feel. Why do children need this,” she told Ms. Forstater.
“I felt groomed. I felt my daughter was being groomed.”
“Kate,” the mother who spoke in an anonymous capacity to M.s Forstater, told 4W that she was one of the attendees of a Rhyme Time session at Hitchin Library, where a librarian launched the new mascot, “Tala.” Kate says that she felt as if “the whole session was about that launch of Tala.” According to her, the librarian presenting it was a different one from the regular librarian doing the session, and was wearing “colorful clothes with rainbows and unicorns.” After the presentation of the new mascot, the mother of two says that the librarian did the Rhyme Time session “playing out of her skin (an outstanding performance), singing to the children, jumping up and down, commenting on one mother ‘wearing a rainbow’ (striped t-shirt).”
“I felt that she courted the room, ingratiated herself with the children in a way I had never seen before. It was like they (the library staff) needed the launch to go well and used her for it. She acted like she had a personal stake in it.”
According to Kate, the young librarian “ingratiated every person in that room - it went over and above normal ‘friendliness’ for a session like that.” As the mothers were leaving at the end of the session, some of them told Kate that they felt the same way she did. “It was something different,” Kate explained. “I felt groomed. I felt my daughter was being groomed - and even that the young librarian has been groomed. I felt a lovely innocent place like the library where I have taken both my daughters was sullied.”
A spokesperson for Hertfordshire Council, where Kate attended a Rhyme Time session, told the Daily Mail that Tala is not “trans” and the character is not “pushing an ideology.”
But the major children’s charity in the UK, National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC), states in their website that grooming is “when someone builds a relationship, trust and emotional connection with a child or young person so they can manipulate, exploit and abuse them.”
"I want this information out there, but I don't want this young librarian (who Kate thought was in her very early 20’s) to be blamed, she is only a kid," said Kate. I want to hold accountable who is responsible for this inappropriate approach to kid's literacy."
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