top of page

Tennessee Becomes the First State to Restrict Drag Shows, Photo Surfaces of Gov. Bill Lee in Drag

News & Opinion

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee | Source: @govbilllee (Instagram)

Tennessee Governor Seems More Eager to Ban Drag Shows than Addressing Other State Legislations.

Governor Bill Lee signed a bill restricting drag performances across the state. Fellow states have presented similar legislation, yet Tennessee is the first to officiate the motion. The new law prohibits drag shows from taking place on public property or venues accessible to minors, deeming them harmful.

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was one of many major political faces to express their disdain for the Tennessee Governor's new bill. She called the legislation unacceptable and unfortunate, asserting Gov. Lee should be putting his time and signature on more pressing matters.

"The American people are concerned about the economy, safe communities and schools," Jean-Pierre said at a recent press hearing. "What sense does that make to go after drag shows? How is that going to help people's lives who are thinking about the economy, who are thinking about making sure their kids are going to be safe when they go to school? But that's what he wants to focus on."

Henry Seaton of Tennessee's American Civil Liberties Union feels the bill gives the impression of protecting minors but rather an attack to aimed to limit the freedoms of the all members of the LGBT community. "Its...this subtle and sinister way to further criminalize just being trans," Seaton told NPR.

Gov. Lee also signed a bill banning gender-affirming care for Tennessee youth. The co-occurrence of these laws arrives not long after a leaked photo of the Governor dressed in women's clothing alongside classmates surfaced on Reddit.

Source: Reddit

During a press conference this past Monday, Lee, was questioned about the alleged photo, wielding an angered response toward reporters. "What a ridiculous question that is," Lee said.

"Conflating something like that to sexualized entertainment in front of children, which is a very serious question." The Governor, nor is secretary confirmed or denied the photo.

On an episode with 90.3's "This Is Nashville" drag performer Hella Skeleton feels the law extremely biased. "Apparently when straight men dress up badly in drag, that's okay. But when gay and queer and trans people do it, that's not okay."

Drag comprises a big part of Tennessee bar life, parties, and music festivities; specifically the "Big Drag Bus".

The new bill was amended to take affect on April 1st, just ahead of June, or better known as pride month.

Source: Trip Advisor


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page