The popular Canadian charity Free the Children is defending a Toronto-based employee who moonlights as a graphic sex-show performer in a homosexual-themed troupe. The employee in question is one of the leaders at Free the Children’s wildly popular “We Day” events that in Toronto alone drew 20,000 students – many of them Catholic – to the Air Canada Centre in 2012.
Michael David Lorsch, who frequently speaks at Catholic and public schools around Ontario and has led trips for youth overseas, serves as the Manager of Leadership Programs for Free the Children, which was founded by the Kielburger brothers.
The organization has come under criticism in recent years by Catholic parents concerned about the Catholic brothers’ views on abortions, the charity’s involvement in promoting contraceptives, and its collaboration with Catholic schools on the popular “We Day” fundraiser.
The discovery of Lorsch’s part-time job as a stripper is now raising further concerns about the suitability of the organization’s partnership with schools, particularly Catholic schools.
‘Mickey D. Liscious’
“Mickey D is all about love.health.happiness. equality … and heavy petting.”
Lorsch is an active member of Boylesque, which describes itself as an all-male burlesque troupe that wants to put “male nudity and sexuality back center-stage where it belongs.” Lorsch’s moonlighting activities were first reported at the Socialist Studies blog.
Lorsch performs stripteases under the stage name Mickey D. Liscious. Boylesque’s website describes him this way: “The ladies say he's a sweetheart, the gentleman know better. Mickey D is all about love.health.happiness.equality…and heavy petting.”
Since 2010 he has been making presentations as a representative of Boylesque at the Converge conference in the Toronto District School Board, where he speaks about “Bent Boys” and “Bodies, Bellies and Burlesque.”
Lorsch, a homosexual advocate who has a B.A. from York University in theatre and sexuality studies, has made presentations to children in the Toronto Catholic District School Board as a representative of Free the Children. His online LinkedIn profile lists him as facilitating “Me to We” trips to Kenya and Ghana as well as directing summer leadership programming at Me to We’s “Take Action Camp.”
LifeSiteNews contacted Lorsch for comment by email and phone but did not receive a response by press time.
LifeSiteNews also contacted the Toronto Catholic District School Board asking if it was concerned about Lorsch visiting its schools, but did not receive a response by press time.
We do not ‘pass judgment on the private lives of our employees’
However, in comments to LifeSiteNews, Scott Baker, executive director of Free the Children, defended Lorsch’s role at the organization as well as the process by which employees are hired.
“At Free The Children, the safety of the youth who attend our workshops and other programing is our highest possible priority,” he told LifeSiteNews in an email. “As such, all of our employees are vetted through police checks, reference checks and extensive interviews.”
Baker said that Free the Children does not “pass judgment on the private lives of our employees, stakeholders or supporters” and that it is an “apolitical organization that does not discriminate on the basis of gender, race, religion or sexual orientation.”
‘Inappropriate and eye-brow raising’
But Jack Fonseca of Campaign Life Coalition called it a “shocking revelation” that a “sex-show performer has been put in a leadership position over an organization that ministers to children.”
“The fact that this sex-show performer directs a summer camp for the popular Me to We program and facilitates trips overseas (presumably with children), is inappropriate and eye-brow raising to say the least,” he told LifeSiteNews.
One of Boylesque’s performances includes an Adolf Hitler character stripping naked while displaying Nazi swastikas on his nipples. One performance involving Lorsch is titled “The Royal Canadian Mount-Me Police.”
“Are these the kind of people FTC believes to be appropriate liaisons with school children?” Fonseca said.
Criticism from parents
Free the Children was founded in 1995 by Marc and Craig Kielburger, who are Catholic. It aims at activating young people to fight poverty and injustice in developing nations. The charity “believes in a world where all children are free to achieve their fullest potential as agents of change,” the website states.
The Kielburger’s annual “We Day” rallies are attended by thousands of teens from Catholic and public schools across Canada.
The charity has come under fire from Catholic parents and pro-life advocates, however, because it produced documents supporting legalized abortion (later retracted); promoted Planned Parenthood; stocks and provides contraceptives in its overseas health clinics, and often provides a platform for pro-abortion and pro-homosexual politicians and celebrities at “We Day.”
So far, however, none of Ontario’s Catholic school boards have dropped their partnerships with the controversial charity.
‘This raises serious questions about FTC’s judgment’
Fonseca said that parents should be concerned about the “seemingly low standards” that the Kielburgers use when hiring staff to work with children.
“Why are sex-show performers not being screened from the FTC’s list of potential hires? This raises serious questions about FTC’s judgment.”
“The average parent would not be happy to learn that their child was spending time with the performers of a lewd sex show. It’s not the sort of influence parents want around their kids,” he said.
Fonseca said Catholic school boards have every reason to stop partnering with Free the Children.
“There is too much baggage with this group that is incompatible with the Catholic identity that should be central to Christian education,” he said.
“A sex show, despite the nice sounding ‘burlesque label,’ should not be connected in any way with an organization that ostensibly is about helping children.”
Free the Children
233 Carlton Street
Toronto, Ontario M5A 2L2