Drag Shows

India Mills performs at Chattanooga Pride. Sunday, October 2, 2022.

Drag queens and some burlesque dancers could become criminals for performing publicly in the state of Tennessee. Republican state lawmakers want to ban these performances.

This bill would also ban drag shows in places where children could be present.

Performers would still be allowed to perform in clubs, but would be unable to perform in public places, such as at pride parades and pride festivals.

The bill was ignited by inappropriate public performances, according to State Senator Jack Johnson, but he did not further elaborate on this.

"It is illegal to take your child to a strip club, and yet we’re going to allow a drag show that has blatantly explicit sexual activity taking place in a public park where kids are present — no; we’re going to stop that," stated Johnson.

Drag queens and burlesque dancers could be faced with a Class A misdemeanor charge, punishable by up to a year in jail and a $2,500 fine if found performing in public. A second offense would be a Class E felony, which holds a prison sentence of up to six years and up to $3,000 in fines.

This proposed bill is another step in Republicans’ plan to enforce stricter laws on drag performances, which they deem as dangerous and inappropriate for children.

This will go into effect on July 1st if it becomes law.


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