A Republican lawmaker wants to prohibit the U.S. Department of Defense from using taxpayer funds for drag queen shows and other adult cabaret performances.
U.S. Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., introduced legislation to stop the department from using taxpayer funds or taxpayer-funded facilities to host such performances. The bill comes after the U.S. Navy said it had one of its sailors, a drag performer and social media influencer, serve as a Digital Ambassador for military recruitment.
On Saturday, a student-led drag show was held at Tucson High School titled the “School is a Drag, Show,” as planned by the school’s Q Space, a club for LGBTQ+ students. In response, Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Horne (R) said these shows should not be held in the schools.
“In my view, adults have first amendment rights to attend drag shows if they choose to, but they don’t belong in school,” Horne said via the phone to The Arizona Sun Times.
Republican culture warriors have devoted considerable energy to subjects like “drag queen story hour” and “protecting women’s sports.” While these battles must be fought, they are oblique ways of addressing the real problem. Drag shows are low-hanging fruit. It doesn’t require much courage to denounce them. What does take some courage is to say, “so-called transgender individuals are mentally ill, and their dangerous delusions must be rejected for the sake of our children, and our personal dignity as rational beings.”
The Arizona Senate Majority Caucus announced Thursday that two Senate Bills (SBs) from Sen. Anthony Kern (R-Glendale) aimed at regulating sexually explicit performances, so minors are not exposed to them passed through the floor despite receiving no Democrat support.
“Senate Democrats don’t seem to have a problem with children being exposed to sexually explicit adult performances. If they did, they would have voted in support of these two bills. Instead, all Senate Democrats voted against protecting our Arizona kids,” the caucus tweeted.
The Arizona State Senate GOP spoke with The Arizona Sun Times via email about planned legislation that aims to prevent children from attending drag shows.
“[State] Senator Vince Leach [R-SaddleBrooke] is spearheading the effort, and he sent his ideas on the subject matter to our legislative council who is in the process right now of researching to help craft a potential bill. They will look at what’s in our constitution, what other states are doing and not doing, et cetera,” the Arizona State Senate GOP spokeswoman said.
A drag queen who said he used to be friends with leading gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake turned on her this month after she posted some concerns about introducing sexualized drag queens to children. However, Lake made it clear that she has no problem with adults engaging in drag shows, or impersonators who aren’t sexualized interacting with children. Rick Stevens, who goes by the stage name Barbara Seville, appeared to blur the distinction. The Arizona Legislature is working on legislation to prohibit children under age 18 from attending drag shows, which Lake supports.
Lake tweeted criticism of a video of a scantily dressed drag queen dancing provocatively for young children in Dallas on June 4, stating “This is grooming. This is child abuse.”