Towards a united and proud Rockton, not division

This post expresses the views and opinions of the author(s) and not necessarily that of Rockton-Roscoe News management or staff.

By now most, if not all, of Rockton and the surrounding environs are aware of the controversy surrounding the Drag Q&A event scheduled to take place at the Talcott Free Library on July 14th. 

At a Talcott Board of Trustees Board meeting on June 26th a broad range of citizens offered, during the Public Comment portion of the meeting, their thoughts on this event. Both sides of the issue were well represented. Following that, a motion was made to cancel the event and discussions ensued, in public, among the board members followed by a vote. The motion failed with four members voting against and two in favor. 

In my view there was only one question that needed to be addressed and that is, “Should any cost of an event of a controversial political, moral, philosophical, or religious nature be organized, funded and administered by the taxpayers of the Talcott Free Library district?” Nothing more…..nothing less.

Unfortunately, there are well organized forces, several outside the library district’s borders, that have been successful in changing the narrative to one of an anti-PRIDE anti-LGBQIA+ issue. Nothing can, in this case, be further from the truth. This ‘narrative switch’ has seriously divided our little village and turned friend against friend, neighbor against neighbor and citizen against citizen. This is unconscionable and we cannot accept it.

The issue of the PRIDE and the Drag/LGBQIA+ movement is one that is here and will not go away. Each of us has our own opinion and these opinions should be respected with due decorum by all. If anyone in the private sector desires to promote or demote any of these issues it is, in a free civil society, their right to do so. 

For example, as was mentioned during the 26th meeting, several local Rockton businesses have held Drag related events. Sugar Britches and After The Vine held Drag Bingo events at which Krystal Ball, the person scheduled to appear at the Talcott sponsored event, appeared. The Rockton Inn held a Drag Bingo and Brunch event.

These are private businesses and reasonable people, given our Constitution and the freedom delineated therein, should not have an issue with those entities conducting such events, other than deciding whether or not to carry out a business relationship with them. Any private entity would have been free to hold and fund the planned event at Talcott Free Library, thus eliminating district taxpayer involvement. 

So with that, I hope that we can summon our better angels to guide us toward addressing this matter in a manner that returns us to a united and proud Rockton. 

Please note that the comments above are mine and mine alone and do not represent the opinion of the Talcott Free Library Board of Trustees or any of its members individually. 

Bob Geddeis 

Vice President 

Talcott Free Library Board of Trustees

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