AfterElton, a blog that offers news and information for gay men, has a very nice article on the battle about children’s books with gay themes. The article mentions And Tango Makes Three, King & King, and The Trouble with Babies. As a public librarian, I especially appreciated the following quote from Arthur Levine:
“Ten percent of the children’s book readership, at least, will grow
up to be gay or lesbian,” he said to AfterElton.com. “Wouldn’t it be
nice if their first exposure to the idea that there are gay people in
the world isn’t when they’re teenagers — so when little Johnny falls in
love with that really cute, brainy boy in his computer class, he’s
grown up with the idea that it’s not unusual and there’s nothing wrong
“And an even higher percentage of picture book
readership will grow up to know and love somebody who’s gay or lesbian.
So when you think about it that way, a large percentage of your picture
book audience can really benefit from naturalizing the idea that there
are gay and lesbian people in the world. When you think about it that
way, it’s even more of a mystery why there aren’t more of these books.”
Hurrah! I know that many librarians think they are serving only the straight in their community, but gay families, children who will realize they are gay, or families with gay loved ones all need to have a haven in their public library where their lives are mirrored and acceptable.