Kentucky lawmakers are tryin to pass a law that will require drag shows to be held at least 1000 ft from areas that “cater to minors,” including schools, churches, parks, homes, and walking trails.
The proposed law, S.B. 115, not only targets drag shows, but adult movie theatres, strip clubs, and adult cabarets. Kentucky state Sen. Lindsey Tichenor, one of the sponsors on the bill, comments that “These are adult-oriented performances; no child needs to be exposed to that.”
Uma Jewels, a drag queen based in Lexington, disagrees with Tichenor. “Drag is just about the most unsexy thing I can think of doing and if you are wanting to sexualize drag, I think that is on you and not on the performer,” Jewels told WLEX, an NBC affiliate based in Lexington.
Jewels points out that kids can also be exposed to adult-oriented content at a variety of venues, outside of establishments that host drag performances, WLEX reported.
“It feels specifically aimed at diminishing the visibility of our community,” says Rebecca Richter. Richter is the co-owner of Crossings, a gay bar in Lexington, KY. They also note that bars like theirs already don’t allow entry to people under the age of 21.
Kentucky is one of at least 13 states where lawmakers have introduced bills restricting drag performances.