CPA Condemns Tennessee Bill that Bans Drag Performances
The Capital Pride Alliance condemns the recently enacted Tennessee ban on public drag performances that Governor William Lee signed into law on March 2. This unconstitutional legislation violates the First Amendment rights of Tennessee citizens and should be challenged in court.
Public drag performances have been around for thousands of years, from ancient Greece through Shakespeare’s time and continuing to the present day, all without any negative repercussions. Indeed, many children have watched cartoons with characters in drag, again without any discernible injury. The Tennessee legislature’s alleged concern about the welfare of children — protecting them from a harm that the legislators cannot adequately articulate — seems particularly hypocritical. This same legislature has done nothing to enact sensible gun control laws despite the fact that the danger from firearms has recently become the number one cause of death for children and teens in the United States.
Unfortunately, an additional fourteen other states are currently considering similar laws. Moreover, these are only a small fraction of bills targeting the LGBTQ+ community in state legislatures around the country. Presently, the ACLU is tracking 385 anti-LGBTQ+ bills nationwide.
With the increased acts of violence towards members of the LGBTQ+ community and the suggestion calling marriage equality into question in Justice Thomas’s concurring opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the Capital Pride Alliance urges everyone to continue taking actions to thwart efforts to reverse the hard-fought rights that we have achieved. Please take the time to register to vote and encourage others to do so, vote in all elections, contribute financially if you are able, volunteer, organize, and stay engaged. We are stronger together and must never forget that when they come for one of us, they come for all of us.