Start paying attention!
We need to pay attention to what is currently happening in the US. One just has to look at history and can realise how scary things can become. What is being used to ban drag shows in certain states within the US, can easily be weaponised against the rights of transgender and gender non-confirming people.
I assure you the ban on dressing drag in public spaces is a distraction to what these conservatives are working towards. While drag is performance art. What about those who identify differently to the gender assigned at birth and choose to dress in such a way? These laws will make living their authentic selves harder than it already is.
We are already seeing this happening with bills being put forward that will refuse gender-affirming healthcare to transgender youth and adults. Not to mention, some bills are even going so far as to classify those dressing in drag and burlesque at PRIDE events a crime. If this isn’t screaming culture war with the conservatives, I don’t know what will.
Like any type of performer, drag performers are also self-aware and know how to both censor and adjust their performances to suit certain demographics. After all, they have been doing this for decades. Not all theatre, music, film and television is suitable for children. But we don’t ban entertainment as a whole, so why ban drag? Yes, let’s “protect the children” but also remember queer children are children as well. This blatantly attacks the queer community, and I will not have anyone say otherwise.
It’s so easy to sit back and go, “but this is America.” The protest in Victoria yesterday shows that this dangerous rhetoric and way of thinking is already reaching our shores. We’ve already seen the publicised attacks on several local drag performers and the transgender community. These people are using the same salutes as those who committed one of the biggest genocides against several marginalised groups in history. That in itself should show how dangerous this can become.
Now is not the time to be idle!!!
Support your local drag events, especially those that cater for all ages. Speak out against the dangerous rhetoric attacking the queer community and, specifically, the transgender community. REMEMBER TRANSGENDER RIGHTS ARE HUMAN RIGHTS!
Reach out to your local government representatives. Tell them we stand in solidarity with those whose rights are being taken away. Ask what they will do to prevent what is happening in the US from happening here. Use your power to vote to show the world that Australia, despite its faults can still be a progressive country that accepts all.
From my own experience with activism, there is a time coming when once more we will need to take this battle to the streets. Get ready to STEP UP!