Rev. Calvin Robinson has won an out of court settlement after being cancelled by the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) for opposing ‘Drag Queen Story Hour’ for children.
After critiquing Drag Queen Story Time on his GB News show and on Twitter, Calvin was terminated from his role on RAD’s education sub-committee.
Supported by the Christian Legal Centre, Calvin made legal claims of harassment, direct and indirect discrimination on the grounds of his Christian beliefs. He was awarded £8,000 after the RAD settled the matter rather than face scrutiny in court.
Opposing the sexualisation of children
In February 2023, Calvin, a former teacher and safeguarding officer, attended a protest organised by Turning Point UK against a Drag Queen storytelling event set to be held at a library in Lewisham, London.
The events, which had been taking place at the library and frequently at a local pub in the area, involved Drag Queen ‘That Girl’ performing age-inappropriate ‘interactive’ kids shows to young children.
Organisers said the aim of the events was to give young children the opportunity to learn about “diversity, inclusivity and a world where they all belong.”
The events in Lewisham are not isolated and are similar events being held in public libraries across the UK aimed at very young children.
The peaceful protest, however, was met by a mob of ‘anti-fascist’ counter-protestors who had to be held back by a police cordon as they aggressively confronted those who opposed the sexualising of children.
Signs from the counter-protestors read: “Queer joy is for all ages.”
When Calvin spoke at the protest, the ‘inclusive’ counter protestors shouted: “Drag queens are welcome, vicars are not. You’re not welcome, go home.”
Coverage on Common Sense Crusade
The following day, Rev. Robinson covered the story on his weekly Calvin’s Common Sense Crusade on GB News.
“Yesterday, I attended an event in South London, protesting against Drag Queen Story Time.
“I find it shocking how commonplace Drag Queen Story Time is becoming.
“Don’t get me wrong, adults reading stories to children is a wonderful thing, it truly is. Having been a school teacher, I can tell you I wish more parents would read to and with their children. However, why does the LGBTQ+ lobby insist on conflating adult entertainment with story time? This baffles me.
“Drag Queens are, after all, adult entertainment. Men dressed as women, often scantily so, in a sexualised manner, performing a strip-club routine, usually for cash. It’s not my cup of tea, but in a liberal society, I appreciate that is how some people want to spend their time. Over 18s, that is.
“In my opinion, for children to be exposed to such behaviour is surely not age-appropriate. As a former safeguarding officer, I can tell you until recently it would most certainly have been considered a safeguarding concern. What has changed?
“I have seen too many videos surfacing of drag queens performing in front of bewildered young children, with adults watching on in amusement – including allegedly in the local area I was protesting at yesterday. Whatever happened to protecting the innocence of children?!
“Turning Point UK organised the protest this weekend and invited me to speak, which I was happy to do. What I was not expecting was the bus-load of rent-a-mob hard-Left LGBTQ+ activists to turn up. They yelled expletives, threw eggs, and held up some really horrendous signs, most of which I cannot repeat on air, but there was one particular suspect sign which read, “Queer joy is for all ages.” which seems to expose their motives. They’re saying the quiet part out loud. The hard-Left and the MSM will label the protests far Right, but since when has protecting children been an issue reserved by the far Right?
“Once again, in a liberal society, adults can live their lives however they see fit, for the most part. What goes on behind closed doors between consenting adults is between them and their God. However, it is when they attempt to bring children into it that I feel as a society, we should stand up and say no.
“I leave you with the question, ask not why your children need to spend time with drag queens. Ask why drag queens are so keen to spend time with your children.”
Rev. Robinson then also posted a tweet on his personal Twitter account, which included a link to the YouTube video of the segment.
Calvin had been invited by the RAD in 2020 to become a member of its education sub-committee. The role was a voluntary position to advise RAD on how to better their engagement with the education sector, as Rev. Robinson was a former teacher.
Correspondence from members of the RAD reveal the gushing warm welcomes Rev. Robinson received after joining the committee. But after Calvin’s critique of Drag Queen Story Hour, everything changed.
On 9 March 2023, he received an email from RAD’s Board of Trustees and CEO, Tim Arthur, terminating his membership of the committee with immediate effect. The letter said:
“We are writing to notify you that, in accordance with our internal processes, the decision has been taken to end your appointment to the Education Sub-Committee of the Board of Trustees, effective immediately.
“The decision has been taken with reference to your commentary on a recent public event in Lewisham. While tolerance of all views (including views that the majority of our members and staff disagree with) is a core value of the RAD, we cannot condone the way in which you have chosen in this instance to express your views, which has a very real impact on the RAD, on members of our staff, and on our members.
“As a direct result, it is our considered view that your continued membership of the Sub-Committee will endanger the RAD’s reputation and standing, and would interfere with the effective functioning of this important sub-committee. We therefore consider your position to be untenable.
“We would ask that you return any confidential materials pertaining to RAD that may be in your possession immediately.”
Shocked and dumbfounded, Rev. Robinson responded:
“Thank you for your email.
“I would like to respond with a couple of questions if you do not mind. Firstly, you claim to tolerate ‘all views’ and that it is not my views , which are an issue but “the way in which I have chosen in this instance to express [my} views. Could you please elaborate on what that means. As a clergyman, I always express my views in a respectful manner. I have never broken the law (be it legal or moral), and I have never so much as used expletives, so your statement will need further clarification.
“At the public event in Lewisham, which you mentioned, I was campaigning against the sexualisation of children. Is it the RAD’s stance that the sexualisation of children is appropriate?
“I have donated my time to the Royal Academy of Dance at no benefit to myself. In good faith at the request of the previous incumbent, especially for this reason. He saw the way the Academy was going and wanted to ensure some semblance of diversity of thought and opinion was maintained.
“It seems you do not share his noble values. In return for my donated time and energy, I would have appreciated a parting thanks; at the very least, I would have expected for you to have the decency to engage in conversation if any concerns had been raised.
“To be dismissed without so much as a conversation, never mind an investigation is highly irregular and, frankly, rude.
“If the primary consideration is RAD’s reputation and standing, I hope the Board and CEO considered the ramifications of the fallout from my making this decision public. Had we had a conversation – which may have resulted in a way to continue to work together or may have resulted in us agreeing to part ways amicably I am sure we could have worked together to avoid media fallout either way.
“I put it to you that you have received a small number of complaints from intolerant individuals, and instead of attempting to engage with my Christian perspective, you have chosen cowardice and intolerance.
“You have until Sunday to respond. Should you choose not to, I will make it clear in my media coverage that you had no further comments. I think: the British public will be keen to know, why RAD approves of the sexualisation of young children.”
RAD bosses refused to answer Calvin’s questions leaving him no alternative but to pursue legal action supported by Christian Legal Centre lawyers.
However, after proceedings were issued, but before the first tribunal hearing, a settlement was reached with lawyers acting for RAD.
‘Cancelled for my Christian beliefs’
Responding to the RAD’s decision to settle the case, Rev. Robinson said:
“I am pleased that the bullies did not win and that they have learnt you cannot push people out for holding traditional views – Christian views. However, the Royal Academy of Dance has made it clear that they are a radical organisation pushing trans theory, queer theory and critical race theory, all of which are harmful and divisive branches of neo-Marxism. The RAD has a new page up on their website with their own version of the trans/racial pride flag, featuring a ballerina, called ‘Celebrating Pride’.
“It is sad to see that, on the one hand, they insist on pushing these toxic ideologies upon young people, and on the other hand, call themselves inclusive whilst excluding anyone with traditionally British views. Say a man can become a woman and invade women’s protected spaces, and you’ll be encouraged; say you are against the sexualisation of children, and you’ll be fired from their organisation. What does that say about the Royal Academy of Dance? I hope questions are being asked about their royal charter.”
Andrea Williams, chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre, said: “This is an important win for Calvin.
“It is a loss to their institution no longer to have Calvin on their board. He brings brilliance, truth and clarity in the midst of cultural confusion.
“Protection of the next generation means having the courage to expose the immoral ideology behind Drag Queen Story Hour and the confusion it heaps upon young children.”
Find out more about Calvin Robinson