Monkey Mayhem Incident
The Monkey Mayhem Incident refers to an "inappropriate" 2021 UK children's street performance commissioned by London's Redbridge Library, the media fallout surrounding the event, and its implications for the left-leaning Labour Party. It was a precursor to the later transatlantic intensification of "grooming" culture wars, and is still an often-used example of "cultural marxism" run amok in local government.
Over the previous five years, reports had emerged, mainly from America, concerning Drag Queen Story Hours and the dire implications for the “institution of childhood" in English-speaking countries. In the subsequent years, the UK would see numerous controversies centering on the promotion of "inappropriate" sexual themes to children and teens, the promotion of MAPs and the sexualization of children, making this incident a key stress-test for "normalization" of "degeneracy".
On the 10th of July, 2021, Redbridge Library (Redbridge Council, London) were hosting an annual Summer Reading Challenge designed to promote reading among children aged 4-11. As part of the event, they had rehired the Mandinga Arts Carnival group (a "street performance troupe" and regular partner of the library) to perform for the children. Mandinga describes itself and its performances as:
Guaranteed fun for family audiences wherever they pop up. [...] Escaped from the circus, these trio of acrobatic Monkeys are causing havoc across town. They climb, they roll they tumble, but nothing makes them go bananas like being mischievous and having a good laugh [...] They are highly engaging and love audience interaction, Ideal for all kind or family outdoor festivals [...] a distinctive style bringing together live music, carnival, street costume, puppetry and dance, drawing on diverse influences from Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa,
However, when performances spilled out to street level, parents, and bystanders began filming and photographing one of the children's entertainers. The performer was later said by multiple media outlets to be a highly-animated man in a rainbow-colored fursuit, with an erect prosthetic phallus swinging between his legs. It was later revealed that the "inappropriate sexual performance" had started inside the library, offending some religiously inclined parents and leading to complaints. Redbridge Library were said by the Daily Mail to have reacted with "if you've got it, flaunt it" on social media. Despite the attempt at good humor, the controversy soon boiled over into a full-scale media eruption.
Subsequently, the Labour-dominated Redbridge Council released a statement apologizing for the performance, and attempted to blame a charity who were allegedly involved in organizing the "Monkey Mayhem" performance. But the damage was already done, with groups of concerned parents organizing protests with feminist and religious sympathizers, and conspiracy theorists such as Alex Jones seizing upon the event in America. Social media accounts were set to private and the monkey costume was swiftly "retired", as conservative outrage against child "sexualization" snowballed on social media. Mandinga and Redbridge Council/Library were slammed for their celebration of and support for "woke" causes such as Drag Queen Story Hour and BLM. Mandinga were also slated for offering a list of “anti-racist resources” on their website, including the 1619 Project from the New York Times and How To Be An Anti-Racist by Critical Race Theory proponent Ibram X. Kendi.
Summary of comments
By the 13th of July, comments had rained in from all quarters of society, and the UK's Labour Party were scrambling to distance themselves from the stain left behind by Mandinga's "sexual" performance at Redbridge Library:
This is unbelievable. Have we completely lost our moral compass as a society?
Someone needs to lose their job over this.
I have launched a full investigation into the incident and will put stringent measures in place to ensure something like this can’t happen again. [Labour Council Leader]
[How can] anyone involved – including your staff – thought that a costume described by one national journalist – with depressing accuracy – as a ‘Rainbow Dildo Butt Monkey’ was appropriate for family audiences around our libraries and public realm, let alone a festival aimed at promoting literacy amongst children. (Wes Streeting MP - Labour)
The Bow Group [The UK's oldest Conservative Think Tank] has been exposing and opposing Cultural Marxism for over a decade, and it is this root ideology that has birthed the woke movement, the LGBT lobby, BLM. The design of Cultural Marxism is to destroy Judeo-Christian civilisation, it has been very successful so far, and just as successful in convincing people it doesn’t exist. That we now have men in LGBT lobby flagged monkey suits with dildos teaching young children underlines how real it is, and how far our society has fallen as a result.
Can a word capture the spirit of an age? Images certainly can. In future, when we think back on the zeitgeist of 2021, we may remember Rainbow Dildo Butt Monkey, and wonder how on earth we descended to thinking that this was suitable entertainment for children. [Dr Jane Harris]
How many librarian/councillor eyes had to behold the Rainbow Dildo Butt Monkey before he was released into the wild to delight the children of Redbridge?
Jo Bartosch of Spiked opined that the apologies from Mandinga, and Redbridge Library's claims of ignorance were particularly thin, after:
The Mandinga Arts website has disappeared, replaced with a holding page [...] But screenshots taken while the site was still live and shared across social media show photos of smiling performers in giant penis costumes indulging in simulated sex acts.
- "LABOUR DILDO MONKEY FOR KIDS" - Lotuseaters treatment of the cultural controversy.
- One video of the performance
- Mandinga Arts - Collection of work, including at Redbridge Library. Most of the material on the present website appears to be colourful, but benign. Some crossover with furry aesthetics can be seen. Internet Archive has some mainly benign copies of their website going back for many years. They also have a copy of their social media account immediately after the controversial performance.
- Evening Standard on the incident
- RT: London borough apologises for having actor in bare-bottomed monkey costume with mock genitalia encourage kids to read more books
- WATCH: Rainbow Monkey Dildo Story Hour at London Library ‘Reading Challenge’ for Kids
- Indy100: Actor in monkey costume with fake penis and bare bum was invited to library to encourage children to read
- London library apologises for bringing actor dressed in bare-bottom monkey costume to children’s event
- Labour Grovels After ‘Rainbow Monkey Dildo Story Hour’ Sparks Backlash From Muslim Parents
- Daily Mail: Parents' disgust as actor in rainbow coloured monkey costume with fake penis and nipples appears at library event encouraging children to read
- Daily Wire: ‘Rainbow Dildo Butt Monkey’ Library Performance For Kids Sparks Outrage
- The ‘rainbow dildo butt monkey’ is no laughing matter - Spiked
- Safe Schools Alliance, and archive (right-click and open images for full scan)