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The American Civil Liberties Union Has a 'Drag Defense Fund' Starring RuPaul and MTV
Filed under: PRIORITIES
In April, during the Season 15 finale of RuPaul’s Drag Race, winner Sasha Colby (not the man pictured above) called on viewers to support the ‘Drag Defense Fund,’ a new initiative of the American Civil Liberties Union.
“A joint effort with MTV, Drag Race, and production company World of Wonder, the fund was launched to defend the constitutional rights and creative expression of LGBTQ people,” explains page 32 of the fall issue of ACLU Magazine.
Apparently, drag shows are an endangered species. “In 2023, state legislatures have introduced more than 470 anti-LGBTQ bills, some of which restrict drag shows,” the article continues.
Conflating laws against the child-sterilizing puberty blocker cult and the boys and men cheating at sports with ordinances against sexualized public drag performances makes it sound like a veritable epidemic of hate is happening out there, doesn’t it?
In fact, the attacks on drag are not even really about the drag acts at all, the ACLU wants you to know. Those bills against drag performers twerking at libraries and elementary schools are really just a dog whistle against transgender people.
“It’s sort of a catchall that allows them to attack a word or idea — drag — when really what they’re talking about is transgender folks,” ACLU Ambassador for Transgender Justice and former Drag Race contestant Peppermint said on the ACLU’s podcast, At Liberty. “Anything having to do with gender and sexuality, they’re trying to dismantle that.”
The ACLU is committed to drag as a First Amendment right and form of artistic expression. The fund — which has received support from advocates such as Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick — fuels the ACLU’s expansive LGBTQ work, including challenging bans on essential health care for transgender people and LGBTQ censorship in classrooms.
We must have the drag performances for the children, you see, otherwise the kids won’t be able to sterilize themselves. If the ‘trans kids’ can’t force classmates to use their favorite pronouns, do they even exist? If Johnny can’t pee next to Sally and change for gym class right next to Donna, are any of us truly free?
The grasping imperialism of ‘gender identity’ continues with Kendall Ceisemier, host of the podcast episode referenced in the short article, saying that the opponents of drag-for-kids “are upset with the progressive movement towards, you know, a genderless society or an anti-patriarchal society or an anti-racist society.” Why are you against drag shows for kids, you racist?
‘Peppermint,’ the ACLU’s transgender Drag Race ‘ambassador,’ had a great deal to say about his journey as a ‘trans woman of color,’ i.e. an effeminate gay black man. Emphases added:
When I started doing drag, it was several years ago, well before this decade. And so a lot of the things that we associate with drag, drag brunches, drag shows, and some of the things that are pertinent to this conversation did not exist. Culturally, it wasn’t as accessible to everyone as it is today. So when I started doing drag, it felt very underground. It felt very much like a rebellious sort of thing. I mean, I guess my first time really doing drag was as a child dressing up in my mom’s clothing. I think lots of kids, you know, get into their parents’ clothing and try it on. And, you know, that’s like the free make-believe toy chest, right. But my first time really doing drag was at a school, sort of, drag competition, I guess you could call it. It was a thing where everyone would cross-dress and, you know, it had nothing to do with sexuality. These were high school students, the football players, the cheerleaders, and everyone would dress up at homecoming time and whoever looked the best won. … I won. Of course I did, darling. I think something awakened in me and I was hooked. All of a sudden, everyone was like, that’s the one. And it was because of, obviously, not only how I was dressing, but also how I was acting and how I connected with it myself. I felt free. I felt really, in an odd way, sort of protected with this clothing that felt like armor suddenly. Enough to strut my stuff and-and sort of be my swishy self that was not feeling protected when I would still be that same swishy self not in drag. And so, that’s what it provided for me, was that sense of freedom. And a license to, you know, perform my version of femininity and have it be, you know, accepted by many, many people and-and praised and celebrated.
Elsewhere, ‘Peppermint’ talks about being assaulted by a black male student in high school. An effeminate gay black man has found refuge from homophobia through plastic surgery. The ACLU thinks that this is something we should all celebrate.
Also, Peppermint and the ACLU want us to support our local drag queens. We need to show up and pay them lots of money because they are so unsafe, what with the Proud Boys protesting the drag shows for kids.
Furthermore, not all drag queens are created equal. To achieve real equity in America, we all need to focus our support on the correct drag queens. Remember, true oppression is always intersectional: “I want people to really show up for Black trans women the way that they’re showing up for a damn drag show. Let’s line up and, you know, protect those people.”
The best thing you can do is make your family Thanksgiving into a revival: “Let’s-let’s make sure that, you know, when you let us speak really lovingly about trans individuals and queer folks at your next family or company event, you know, let’s do that to sort of move the needle.”
We have to do this, otherwise the terrorists win. “Because again, what they’re really doing is when they’re attacking drag shows and they’re saying, we don’t like drag does that. They’re talking about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender and queer people. That’s the code that they’re trying to send.”
In an essay last week at BROADview, the pseudonymous ‘Unyielding Bicycle’ explained that when the ACLU began representing transgender clients in discrimination suits, they “argued that trans people literally were the opposite sex.” it was, and is, ridiculous, but it has won cases and made careers.
Now the ACLU’s podcast is arguing that trans people are literally the same as lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and black people, and that a medicalized escape from homophobia is desirable. Money has completely twisted this once-hallowed organization into something unrecognizable.
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