‘Pizza Hut has woken up all the way, now we have to completely destroy them’: Restaurant chain sparks outrage and national boycott after children’s book club features story about young boy in DRAG
- Pizza Hut has been promoting books to young readers since 1984, rewarding them with a free pizza when they read the books and redeem their school certificates
- Dozens of books are added to the program every year, and the latest – to celebrate Pride Month – is a book about a boy who dresses up and wears a magical wig.
- According to the publishers, the book celebrates “the universal childhood experience of dressing up and the confidence that comes with putting on a costume.”
- Still, some on social media were baffled by the selection, accusing Pizza Hut of indoctrinating their children
Pizza Hut faces boycott calls after it promoted a children’s book featuring a little boy dressed in cross-dressing.
The pizza chain has been promoting a program called Book It since 1984, which encourages children to read books and is awarded a certificate from their school upon completing the challenges, which can be redeemed for a free pizza.
Dozens of books are regularly added to the list, but one recent addition has especially sparked anger.
Big Wig, by Jonathan Hillman, tells the story of a little boy who likes to dress up and whose wig gives magical powers to those who wear it.
The publishers, Simon and Schuster, said the book, published in February, “celebrates the universal childhood experience of dressing up and the confidence that comes with putting on a costume.”
They added: “And it goes beyond that, by recognizing that sometimes we dress differently than expected, how we become our truest and best selves.”
Published in February, Big Wig tells the story of a boy who dresses in drag, and his magical wig
The book tells the story of a purple wig, which gives the wearer a lot of confidence
The wig floats off the wearer’s head and zooms away towards other people
Hillman was delighted with the selection of his book for Pizza Hut’s challenge on Friday.
‘Hurrah! Thanks @pizzahut for posting BIG WIG (and for the MANY pizzas over the years),’ he tweeted.
‘I grew up with Book It!, so this is very special. #Pride’
Yet the response was immediate.
“Pizza Hut has fully awakened, now we must destroy them completely,” tweeted Brigitte Gabriel, activist and conservative commentator.
Jack Posobiec added, “I warned you about what Pizza Hut had become, but you weren’t ready to hear it.”
Radio host Todd Starnes said: “In recent years, #pizzahut has had to close hundreds of restaurants.
“Maybe they should spend more time perfecting their pizza instead of training preschoolers to be drag queens?”
TikTok’s popular account Libs tweeted: ‘@PizzaHut is sponsoring a program that encourages sixth-grade children to read books. This week, one of their suggested books is “Big Wig.” A book about a child who becomes a drag artist.’
Another said Pizza Hut and the organizers of the reading lists “want your kids to be drag queens.”
One man complained, ‘Can’t we just go back to books like The Magical School Bus? Mrs. Frizzle would never take the kids to a drag show. I miss healthy things..’
Another said: ‘It’s just sad. Children are not allowed to be children these days.’
Still others thought the furor was ridiculous.
“Big Wig, a book about a child who dresses in drag to enter a costume contest.” the horror, it is the collapse of society and the end of general humanity. I just can’t even take it, what should I do?’ joked one.
Another said: ‘These books celebrate acceptance, inclusiveness and self-confidence.’
One shared a photo of George Washington, commenting, “You know who else wore big wigs and makeup? The founders. Don’t worry about what books kids might be reading, and do something about gun control instead.”
And the author seemed to find the drama funny.
‘Just wait until they find out I’m fake Book It! certificates to get free personal pans when I was seven,” he said.