Traditional Values Coalition Claims Obama Wants Kids "Trapped" And "Indoctrinated" By "Drag Queens"

March 09, 2010 4:56 pm ET — Matt Finkelstein

Traditional Values Coalition

One of the far right's top priorities is opposing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), a bill that "would provide basic protections against workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity."  Last December, the Family Research Council (FRC) sent a fundraising email warning that ENDA would "impose homosexuality and silence Christianity in workplaces." In January, FRC president Tony Perkins sent another anti-ENDA email with the subject line: "Stop Obama's Crossdresser Protection Bill."

Today, the Traditional Values Coalition (TVC) turned the fear-mongering up a notch, launching a new website devoted to convincing parents that ENDA will hurt their children.  The site,, shows young students coloring intently while storm clouds gather in the background.  Above the clouds, TVC asks, "Do you want men dressed as women teaching your kids?"

The group goes on to claim that ENDA would cause kids to be "trapped in classes taught by drag queens," "indoctrinated," and "forced to learn about bizarre sexual fetishes":

President Barack Obama and Congressional Democrats are quietly rushing through legislation (H.R. 3017 & S. 1584) that would actually bring cross-dressing teachers into your child's classroom. Under the so-called, Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), your children will be trapped in classes taught by drag queens and transgender activists. Students will be indoctrinated that "alternative lifestyles" are no different than traditional lifestyles. Young children will be forced to learn about bizarre sexual fetishes - and you will have no say in the matter. It is already happening in some states and concerned parents can't do a thing about it - until now.

However, TVC's allegations have no merit at all.  In fact, while ENDA does prevent discrimination based on gender identity, it specifically dictates that employers can set "reasonable" dress and grooming standards:

(5) DRESS AND GROOMING STANDARDS- Nothing in this Act shall prohibit an employer from requiring an employee, during the employee's hours at work, to adhere to reasonable dress or grooming standards not prohibited by other provisions of Federal, State, or local law, provided that the employer permits any employee who has undergone gender transition prior to the time of employment, and any employee who has notified the employer that the employee has undergone or is undergoing gender transition after the time of employment, to adhere to the same dress or grooming standards for the gender to which the employee has transitioned or is transitioning.

Nowhere in the bill does it say that employers, much less schools, are required to allow "men dressed as women" in the workplace.  But don't expect the far right to let facts interfere with its crusade against gay rights.