Drag Queen Bingo Event Draws Public Backlash

The Lawn Drag Queen Bingo
The Lawn Drag Queen Bingo | Image by The Lawn

An all-ages outdoor drag event in Austin that was slated to feature several performers who have posted explicit images online became the target of public backlash.

The show was scheduled for Saturday, however, it appears it may have been canceled due to the weather.

Drag Queen Brunch Bingo was to be held at The Lawn. It was billed as open to all ages and featured Tiffany Epiphany, a drag personality who hosts the monthly event.

Some of the backlash against the event came from the Texas Family Project, whose president, Brady Gray, told the Texas Scorecard the organization would continue to “expose” such events.

“Every day Senate Bill 12 sits in limbo, more children are being exposed to this debauchery. One of the ‘performers’ at this event is a man who flashed the entire legislature from the House gallery in the 88th session,” Gray said. “Texas Family Project has sent out action alerts on this event, we have asked Texans to call the venue and ask them not to host an ‘all-age’ drag show.”

SB 12 is a bill that was passed that aimed to prevent sexually explicit shows, such as drag events, from being held in the presence of children. Violators would have been fined as much as $10,000, however, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a challenge to the bill immediately after its passage, and a federal court issued an injunction blocking the bill from taking effect.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has filed to have the injunction lifted, but the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has yet to take up the matter.

As previously reported by The Dallas Express, a number of all-ages drag shows prompted protests in Dallas and other cities around North Texas in recent years.

Some proponents of drag shows, however, claim such events are just another form of entertainment that can make LGBTQ children feel accepted.

“We’re just trying to give a safe haven for kids [who] feel that they’re gonna grow up gay, or feel like they are gay, or feel like they’re trans,” Dallas-area drag performer Emeka Bless told The Dallas Express in a previous interview.

Still, Michelle Evans, a candidate for chair of the Republican Party of Williamson County, told The Dallas Express that such performances normalize the objectification of men and women. Evans recently slammed an upcoming drag queen story hour for children that is slated to be held at Cheer Up Charlies — a gay nightclub — in Austin on March 2.

Drag shows also came under fire in Texas last year for allegedly being “derisive, divisive and demoralizing misogyny” when the president of West Texas A&M University canceled a show on campus last March, as previously reported by The Dallas Express.

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