As LGBT Pride month winds down, here are 25 LGBT-themed childrenâ€™s books to continue the celebration of our diverse families.
The Williams Institute at UCLA School of LawÂ released research in 2013 showing that an estimated three million LGBT individuals have likely had a child and that 2 percent of Americans (roughly six million people) had an LGBT-identified parent.
As lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender relationships become more accepted, so do our family units, as can be seen with the increasing number of childrenâ€™s books focusing on the topic. As schools across the country are closing for summer vacation, and LGBT Pride month is coming to an end, we’ve created a list of 25 LGBT-themed childrenâ€™s books to continue the celebration our diverse families. Check them out below.
Cedric grew up poor and honest on a pumpkin farm, and dreamt of becoming a knight. One day he showed his courage by tricking a would-be carriage thief, and earned the chance to make his dream come true. After years of training, Cedric set off to find an adventure of his own by battling a fire-breathing dragon to save a prince and a princess. However, it’s after the adventure that Cedric revealed that he’d like to marry the prince, and not the princess.Â The Bravest Knight Who Ever Lived is a modern fairytale which sets out to prove that sometimes the bravest thing you can do is choose for yourself how your fairytale ends!
The story of Rosaline incorporates LGBT themes in a fun, fairytale adventure through the woods. To find her sweetheart, Rosaline must first get by a tricky witch, a hungry wolf, and a well-intentioned fairy godmother! This picture book for children and adults alike emphasizes the value of being true to yourself.Â
Red has a bright red label, but he is, in fact, blue. His teacher tries to help him be red (let’s draw strawberries!), his mother tries to help him be red by sending him out on a playdate with a yellow classmate (go draw a nice orange!), and the scissors try to help him be red by snipping his label so that he has room to breathe. But Red is miserable. He just can’t be red, no matter how hard he tries! Finally, a brand-new friend offers a brand-new perspective, and Red discovers what readers have known all along. He’s blue! This funny, heartwarming, colorful picture book about finding the courage to be true to your inner self can be read on multiple levels, and it offers something for everyone.
The Family Book celebrates the love we feel for our families and all the different varieties they come in. Whether you have two moms or two dads, a big family or a small family, a clean family or a messy one, Todd Parr assures readers that no matter what kind of family you have, every family is special in its own unique way.
When a queen is ready for retirement, she nags her son to get married in order to ascend the throne.Â The prince is presented with numerous eligible princesses, but none of them seem toÂ interest him. Then he meets Princess Madeleine and immediately becomes smitten…with her brother, Prince Lee.
Stella’s class is having a Mother’s Day celebration, but what’s a girl with two daddies to do? It’s not that she doesn’t have someone who helps her with her homework, or tucks her in at night. Stella has her Papa and Daddy who take care of her, and a whole gaggle of other loved ones who make her feel special and supported every day. She just doesn’t have aÂ momÂ to invite to the party. Fortunately, Stella finds a unique solution to her party problem in this sweet story about love, acceptance, and the true meaning of family.
When the rain spoils Zakâ€™s plan for a safari adventure, he invites the reader on a very special tour of his family instead. Zak shows us how his parents met, fell in love, and wanted more than anything to have a babyâ€”so they decided to make one. In the first half of the book, Zak teaches us about his biological origins. Using simple but accurate language, we learn about sperm and egg cells, known-donors, donors from sperm banks, and instructions called genes that make up who we are. Zak’s enthusiasm, combined with his scientific curiosity and gratitude for his inherited “awesome genes” make him the perfect tour guide for this contemporary conception story. The second half of the book celebrates family. Gorgeous illustrations depict Zak and his two moms living the adventure of everyday life: eating meals together, playing at the beach, going for nature hikes and hanging out with friends and family. Zakâ€™s Safari aims to provide a starting place for many future conversations with your kids about their conception story and donor.Â
Moms, dads, sisters, brothers â€” and even Great Aunt Sue â€” appear in dozens of combinations, demonstrating all kinds of nontraditional families! Silly animals are cleverly depicted in framed portraits, and offer a warm celebration of family love.
When celebrating a special Christmas tradition things go awry. Papa, Dad, their amazing kid, and one fabulous grandmother work together and implement a plan to save Christmas for a child they have never met.
Nate loves aliens and he really wants to wear an alien costume for Purim, but his friends are all dressing as superheroes and he wants to fit in. What will he do? With the help of his two dads he makes a surprising decision.
From the time she was two years old, Jazz knew that she had a girl’s brain in a boy’s body. She loved pink andÂ dressing up as a mermaidÂ and didn’t feel like herself in boys’ clothing. This confused her family, until they took her toÂ a doctorÂ who said that Jazz was transgender and that she was born that way. Jazz’s story is based on her real-life experience and she tells it in a simple, clear way that will be appreciated by picture book readers,Â their parents, and teachers.
Square Zair Pair is a children’s picture book about embracing our differences. The story takes place in the magical land of Hanamandoo, a place where square and round Zairs live. Zairs do all things in pairs, one round with one square. But one day when two square Zairs pair for the first time, the others reject them before realizing different pairs of Zairs make their village stronger.
When a worm meets a special worm and they fall in love, you know what happens next: They get married! But their friends want to knowâ€”who will wear the dress? And who will wear the tux? The answer is: It doesn’t matter. Because Worm loves worm.
Having Two Dads is double the fun! A beautifully illustrated, affirming story of life with Two Dads, written from the perspective of their adopted child.
At the penguin house at the Central Park Zoo, two penguins named Roy and Silo were a little bit different from the others. But their desire for a family was the same. And with the help of a kindly zookeeper, Roy and Silo got the chance to welcome a baby penguin of their very own.
Heatherâ€™s favorite number is two. She has two arms, two legs, and two pets. And she also has two mommies. When Heather goes to school for the first time, someone asks her about her daddy, but Heather doesnâ€™t have a daddy. Then something interesting happens. When Heather and her classmates all draw pictures of their families, not one drawing is the same. It doesnâ€™t matter who makes up a family, the teacher says, because “the most important thing about a family is that all the people in it love one another.”
This third book from the Some Families series is based on the true story of the Leffew family, daddy Brian, daddy Jay, Daniel and Selena. We follow them through the story of their adoption and learn how this family was formed.
A Peacock Among Pigeons is an LGBT-themed hardback children’s book that tells the tale of learning how to stand out when you can’t fit in. This children’s story teaches the importance of celebrating our differences and learning to love the feathers you live in.
Peter the peacock doesn’t know how it happened, but he found himself growing up in a flock of pigeons. Surrounded by a world of grey, he found himself feeling less than his peers and was embarrassed by his feathers. After he fails to blend in, he decides that it’s time to learn to fly on his own. Along the way, he meets new bird friends from all different flocks that teach him a lesson he will never forget.
Rhythmic text and illustrations with universal appeal show a toddler spending the day with its mommies. From hide-and-seek to dress-up, then bath time and a kiss goodnight, there’s no limit to what a loving family can do together. Shares the loving bond between same-sex parents and their children.
This is in the same style as Mommy, Mama, and Me, but with two dads. Rhythmic text and illustrations with universal appeal show a toddler spending the day with its daddies. From hide-and-seek to dress-up, then bath time and a kiss goodnight, there’s no limit to what a loving family can do together. Share the loving bond between same-sex parents and their children.
In the magical kingdom of Evergreen, beautiful Princess Elena is suddenly whisked away by an old woman. Undefeated champion Gallant and shy bookworm Earnest go on a quest to find “the greatest treasure in the land” so one of them can save and marry the princess. Â Along the way, Earnest and Gallant realize “the greatest treasure in the land” is not what they expected.Â
Dyson loves pink, sparkly things. Sometimes he wears dresses. Sometimes he wears jeans. He likes to wear his princess tiara, even when climbing trees. He’s a Princess Boy. Inspired by the author’s son, and by her own initial struggles to understand, this is a heart-warming book about unconditional love and one remarkable family. It is also a call for tolerance and an end to bullying and judgments. The world is a brighter place when we accept everyone for who they are.
This is a delightful story of little girl with two moms as she learns how to be nice to her cat. Follow along as Emma gets in trouble trying to play with Meesha Kitty and cheer as she learns to treat him with care.
William wants a doll – to hug, to feed, to tuck in, and kiss goodnight. “Don’t be a creep, ” says his brother. “Sissy, sissy, ” chants the boy next door. His father buys him trains and a basketball – but not the doll that William really wants. Then one day, someone comes along who understands why William should have his doll.
Thereâ€™s so much to do now that Uncle Mike and Steve are getting married. Follow Andy on this enjoyable journey as he talks about his uncle’s wedding, how it affects him, and the things he gets to do in preparation for the ceremony. Youâ€™ll laugh and smile as you read this adorable story about marriage and family. *Full disclosure – This book was written by me.*
Finally, for those of you who are not parents, but are interested in starting a family of your own, check out my book, Journey to Same-Sex Parenthood. It compares adoption, foster care, surrogacy, assisted reproduction, and co-parenting to help people make the best decision thatâ€™s right for them. It includes real-life examples, legal tips from the National Center for Lesbian Rights, advice from other same-sex couples, and much more! Happy reading and Happy Pride!
Authorâ€™s Note: While it is getting a little easier to find LGBT childrenâ€™s books, racial diversity in these book still has some catching up to do, especially when it comes to the inclusion of African American characters. A campaign called #WeNeedDiverseBooks was created a few years ago to address the lack of diversity in literature in regards to race, gender, sexual orientation, physical abilities, religion, etc. To learn more about this campaign, visit weneeddiversebooks.org.
Book descriptions and images via Amazon
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Shady U.S. Department Trump official used his position to get his son-in-law an EPA job
An inspector general report published Friday found that Assistant Interior Secretary Douglas Domenech at the U.S. Department of the Interior used his position to help his son-in-law Eric Frandy get a job at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
According to the report, Domenech reached out to a senior EPA official in person and via email in 2017 to persuade them to hire Frandy. He also encouraged the official to use another family member’s wedding-related business.
When asked about his pressuring the official to hire his son-in-law, Domenech admitted he was “trying to influence the process to move along.”
What’s troubling is that Domenech didn’t technically break the law because the law around this states you can’t use your political influence to benefit yourself, your wife, child or business… but shilling for in-laws is totally okay.
Regardless, Domenech will be forced to undergo ethics training. But House Natural Resources Committee Chairman, Arizona Democrat Raul Grijalva, believes the training will be useless because Domenech already received two rounds of ethics training when first joining the Trump administration.
Instead, Grijalva wants Interior Secretary David Bernhardt to fire Domenech. “Firing Mr. Domenech is the only serious course of action at this point,” another round of ethics training is clearly just a waste of time, since it hasn’t sunk in by now,” Grijalva said.
This is just the Domenech’s second ethical violation that we know about so far.
“Investigators in December found that he broke federal ethics rules by twice meeting with his former employer, a conservative Texas-based policy group, to discuss legal disputes between the group and the agency in early 2017,” the Star Tribune reports.
Trump threatens to use “vicious dogs” and “ominous weapons” on police brutality protestors
A day after President Donald Trump urged people to shoot looters associated with the nationwide protests against police brutality, he threatened racial justice protestors in Washington D.C. with “the most vicious dogs, and most ominous weapons” should they dare try to breach the White House fence.
In a series of tweets published in the early morning hours of May 30, Trump wrote:
The professionally managed so-called “protesters” at the White House had little to do with the memory of George Floyd. They were just there to cause trouble. The @SecretService handled them easily. Tonight, I understand, is MAGA NIGHT AT THE WHITE HOUSE???
Great job last night at the White House by the U.S. @SecretService. They were not only totally professional, but very cool. I was inside, watched every move, and couldn’t have felt more safe. They let the “protesters” scream & rant as much as they wanted, but whenever someone….
….got too frisky or out of line, they would quickly come down on them, hard – didn’t know what hit them. The front line was replaced with fresh agents, like magic. Big crowd, professionally organized, but nobody came close to breaching the fence. If they had they would….
….have been greeted with the most vicious dogs, and most ominous weapons, I have ever seen. That’s when people would have been really badly hurt, at least. Many Secret Service agents just waiting for action. “We put the young ones on the front line, sir, they love it, and….
….good practice.” As you saw last night, they were very cool & very professional. Never let it get out of hand. Thank you! On the bad side, the D.C. Mayor, @MurielBowser, who is always looking for money & help, wouldn’t let the D.C. Police get involved. “Not their job.” Nice!
The tweets are unsurprising considering Trump’s love of “strongman” leaders like Russian President Vladimir Putin, Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte, and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. In 2017, Trump has long stoked racial tensions by referring to white supremacists and neo-Nazis as “very fine people,” calling former NFL-player and police brutality protestor Colin Kaepernick a “son of a bitch,” and also encouraged police to treat criminal suspects roughly.
To his meager credit, “Trump has ordered the FBI and Justice Department to expedite an investigation into Floyd’s death in addition to the local investigation into the incident,” according to The Hill.
Trump also called the family of George Floyd, the Black man whose May 25 death helped inspire the current nationwide protests. However, Floyd’s brother said Trump rushed the call and didn’t sound at all interested in what he had to say.
So now the fact that Trump is gleefully talking about attacking demonstrators who are protesting in Floyd’s name is disquieting to say the least.
Anti-gay bigot Lou Sheldon, founder of Traditional Values Coalition, dead at 85
Reverend Lou Sheldon, founder of the Traditional Values Coalition (TVC), a conservative Christian anti-LGBTQ hate group that lasted from 1984 to 2018, died this week at age 85. Good riddance.
His cause of death hasn’t been revealed.
Sheldon served as the California executive director of Anita Bryant’s 1977 Save Our Children (SOC) campaign, the first-known anti-gay political organization. SOC successfully opposed municipal ordinances protecting gay, lesbian and bisexual citizens from discrimination in cities across America.
The SOC did this largely by painting gay people as godless sluts who wanted to cross-dress and rape children. The group’s public face, singer Anita Bryant, compared LGB people as prostitutes, thieves, murderers, and child molesters.
Gay activists at the time showed how the SOC’s rhetoric was similar to Nazis during the Holocaust — and once, members of the Ku Klux Klan even showed up at one of Bryan’ts public events to protect her. The anti-gay stigma being voiced by supporters of the SOC in print, TV and radio contributed to anti-LGBTQ sentiment, increased harassment and suicides of queer people.
As for the TVC, it opposed gay-straight alliances in schools; disseminated anti-gay “educational” videos to schools, churches and community groups across America; was pro-death penalty; anti-immigrant; anti-pornography; anti-abortion; pro-military; anti-taxes; anti-drug; supported Christians converting all non-Christians; and supported conversion therapy (the debunked form of psychological torture that seeks to change a queer person’s sexual orientation or gender identity).
Here’s just a taste of Sheldon’s anti-LGBTQ quotes, courtesy of the Southern Poverty Law Center:
- “The effort to push adult/child sex … is part of the overall homosexual movement.”
- “As homosexuals continue to make inroads into public schools, more children will be molested and indoctrinated into the world of homosexuality. Many of them will die in that world.”
- “Homosexuality is a behavior, not a fixed identity. It is similar to smoking or drug use, not an immutable characteristic like race or ethnicity. There are no ‘former’ Blacks, but there are ex-homosexuals. The existence of ex-homosexuals is clear evidence that homosexuality is behavior-based, not an unchangeable characteristic.”
- “Americans should understand that their attitudes about homosexuality have been deliberately and deceitfully changed by a masterful propaganda/marketing campaign that rivals that of Adolph [sic] Hitler.”
Sheldon also helped lobby for a congressional hearing to support Senator Jesse Helms’ proposal to deny federal funds to public schools “encouraging or supporting homosexuality.” At the hearing, a speaker said gay activists use federal AIDS funds to host orgies.
When Congress introduced the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) in 2013, the TVC released campaign literature calling transgender people “psychologically unhealthy” and accusing them of wanting to introduce “gender confusion” into public schools.
In June 2014, the TVC released a flier comparing gay and lesbian people to those who have sexual fetishes for amputees and eating feces. Physical disgust, revulsion, and demonizing tactics like this are often used by anti-LGBTQ activists to appeal to fear over logic.
The TVC was also intensely Islamophobic, contributing to anti-Muslim sentiment following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
The only upside to Sheldon’s existence is that it helped unite LGBTQ people in cities across America and gave the press a reason to focus on the day-to-day discrimination and violence queer people experience.
Correction: An earlier version of this story referred to Anita Bryant as SOC’s “pubic face.” We are very sorry for this typo.
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