A MAGA campaigner stood before her local legislature to make tearful, unsubstantiated claims that a faraway LGBTQ+ community center is teaching kids to use sex toys. The rest of us are in tears for entirely different reasons.
The unhinged video, originally shared by investigative reporter Phil Williams, went viral this week after it was reshared—and it’s not hard to see why. To sum up: first came rainbows and Pride, and then came butt plugs and dildos.
Addressing the Board of Mayor and Aldermen in Franklin, Tennessee, Erin Mazzoni shared a totally-not-made-up cautionary tale from her hometown. Being the hip citizen that she is, she was fine with Pride when it first came to Bucks County, Pennsylvania—until an epidemic of anal toys swept the community.
Watkins was convicted in May, but she wrote on X (formerly Twitter) in August that she’d been sent to a men’s prison.
“It started out as Pride coming in, and I thought everything would be OK,” Mazzoni said. “It ended with a Rainbow Room where 8 to 12-year-old kids were given butt plugs and dildos and trained.”
Mazzoni was referring to the Rainbow Room community center. Sponsored by Planned Parenthood, the Rainbow Room provides education, advocacy, and social groups for LGBTQ+ youth ages 14 to 21. It should probably go without saying that there is no basis for the accusation of giving sex toys to 8 to 12 year olds.
According to Williams, Mazzoni’s name and background matches that of the campaign manager for a MAGA mayoral candidate in Franklin, Gabrielle Hanson.
Mazzoni’s speech represents another exhausting attempt to connect LGBTQ+ identity and advocacy with “grooming.” But the outrageousness of her story—it’s giving Reefer Madness levels of bad 1930s propaganda—did not have quite the impact online she was going for.
One Bucks County resident responded, “I actually work in Bucks County, and this is the first I’m hearing about free butt plugs and dildos. Maybe she’s so upset because she didn’t get in line early enough to claim hers?”
Another pointed out that—far from being cool with Pride at first—Mazzoni was their local book-banning Karen.
While it’s not as unhinged as ‘the kids are using litter boxes’ conspiracy, Mazzoni can claim some points for committing to the bit. The whole thing would be even funnier if there weren’t real people like her who unironically believe these stories.