Attacking Drag Queens Will Not Save Your Children

Confronting those who scapegoat the LGBTQ community

Pax Ahimsa Gethen

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Drag queen Sheena Rose performs at a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Compton’s Cafeteria Riot. Photo by Pax Ahimsa Gethen, CC BY-SA 4.0.

Attacks on drag performers in the U.S. are escalating. The LGBTQ community barely had time to mourn the victims of last month’s mass shooting at Club Q when attackers fired on the power grid in Moore County, North Carolina, allegedly (but very likely) to shut down a local drag show. Such sabotage, which plunged over 40,000 people into darkness, is not an act of protest; it is terrorism.

Why are people so afraid of drag queens? These performers — often, but not always, gay men who don hyper-feminine attire — aren’t harming anyone, whether they are lip-syncing to pop tunes at a bar or reading books to children at a library.

But merely by appearing in public spaces, drag queens are accused of “grooming” by those who fear they are corrupting children with their so-called gender ideology. As trans writer Julia Serano explains in her recent blog post, this “stigma-contamination mindset” is not only harmful to the LGBTQ community, but counterproductive:

In addition to defaming the groups in question, these accusations have the unfortunate effect of diluting or weakening legitimate claims of child sexual abuse (CSA). […] While anti-trans/LGBTQ+ campaigners may frame their interventions in terms of…

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Pax Ahimsa Gethen

Queer agender trans male. Black vegan atheist, pacifist. Pronouns: they/them/their. funcrunch.org, patreon.com/funcrunch