RuPaul speaks out against Republican "stunt queens" and in support of Drag Defense Fund

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RuPaul Charles
RuPaul Charles

As rampant transphobia continues to plague society and sink its claws into legislation, Drag Race’s RuPaul Charles has spoken out against a slate of bills proposing the banning of drag shows, as well as gender-affirming care.

In a video posted on Instagram, RuPaul calls out Republican lawmakers who have introduced transphobic legislation in the last few months, saying they’ve created issues in avoidance of doing actually beneficial work.

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“Hey, look over there! A classic distraction technique, distracting us away from the real issues that they were voted into office to focus on: Jobs, healthcare, keeping our children safe from harm at their own school,” RuPaul says in the video. “But we know that bullies are incompetent at solving real issues. They look for easy targets so they can give the impression of being effective. They think our love, our light, our laughter and our joy are signs of weakness. But they’re wrong because that is our strength.”

His potent political point then wanes in effectiveness as RuPaul likens drag queens to “the Marines” and then in classic neoliberal fashion, calls for action through voting despite there being no ongoing election.

RuPaul continues, “Drag queens are the Marines of the queer movement. Don’t get it twisted and don’t be distracted. Register to vote so we can get these stunt queens out of office and put some smart people with real solutions into government. And by the way, a social media post has never been as powerful as a registered vote.”

Vote when? Who knows. For who? Good question. Any voting that could result in actionable change has already happened, with nothing on the horizon until later this year. Maybe it’s time for RuPaul to tap into some more radical political organizing, as the problem at hand is a result of our “democratic” voting methods, but the first point really got those “stunt queens!”

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee recently signed a bill into law that places a ban on gender-affirming health care for minors, as well as another that greatly limits drag shows in the state. Other states, including Kentucky, Texas, and Montana, are also looking to place restrictions on drag shows, under the thinly veiled guise of “protecting the children.” As the widespread demonization of queer and trans communities continues, speaking out and organizing against legislation will be required of those not intricately tied to the art of drag like RuPaul, but everyone.

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