While the State of Texas has remained officially silent regarding “all-ages” drag shows, the liquor license of an Orlando venue was revoked at the behest of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for hosting a graphic and sexually explicit drag show for children.
“A Drag Queen Christmas,” the sexually explicit drag show that caused DeSantis to revoke The Plaza Live’s liquor license, also toured through Texas, yet Abbott has refused to take action.
Remember this show in Austin that children attended?@RonDeSantisFL just revoked the liquor license of a venue in Florida that hosted the same exact show.
— Texas Family Project (@FamilyProjectTX) February 3, 2023
While this was not the only “all-ages” drag show in either state, it gained mass attention from media and citizens to the point that state governments are now being called upon to act.
The sexually explicit “all-ages” show titled “A Drag Queen Christmas” toured through the United States in November and December. According to Tayler Hansen, an independent journalist who reported on the event, this show was “blatantly sexualized” to “groom children.”
“A Drag Queen Christmas” featured men dressed in lingerie and BDSM harnesses as they were twerking, grinding on each other, and simulating sex while children were present in the audience.
“That was the most sexual and inappropriate ‘family friendly’ drag show I have ever attended,” Hansen said following publication of his reports on the event.
In Texas, some shows in the tour drew protestors from across the state. These protestors urged the shows to be halted since children were present and tried to show lawmakers that citizens and activists want children’s innocence to be protected.
So far, protests and complaints have done nothing to convince Abbott or other state officials to deal with the rising problem of drag shows for kids.
While Texas refuses to act, DeSantis responded to Floridians’ outcries.
DeSantis’ complaint against The Plaza Live was filed by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation.
The Florida DBPR claimed that the foundation that oversees the venue that hosted the event, The Orlando Philharmonic Plaza Foundation, had a “responsibility to make sure no minors were in attendance at the Dec. 28 show, but failed and violated Florida statute in the process.”
DeSantis had previously warned the venue that children should not be allowed on the premises during “A Drag Queen Christmas,” and if a child were to be found on grounds, penalties would be enacted.
Despite DeSantis’ warning, pictures of the show revealed children present in the audience.
The DBPR’s complaint alleges that the venue said, “While we are not restricting access to anyone under 18, please be advised some may think the context is not appropriate for under 18.”
Since the venue “violated Florida statutes, the Department is revoking the venue’s license for the sale and consumption of alcoholic beverages,” said Bryan Griffith, DeSantis’ press secretary, in a statement.
Currently, no criminal charges have been filed against the plaza, but they are facing six civil counts of statute violations, including, according to the complaint, “admitting children onto a licensed premises where performers conduct simulations of sexual activity constituting lewdness, unlawful exposure of sexual organs, engaging or permitting disorderly conduct and maintaining a nuisance on the licensed premises.”
DeSantis’ recent actions have gained much praise from conservatives across the nation. In contrast, activists are calling Abbott out for failing to take any action, with one citizen even saying that he’s “weak when it comes to protecting children from deviants and … groomers.”
“How refreshing that Governor DeSantis is willing to act on behalf of families and children in the great state of Florida,” said Chris Hopper, president of Texas Family Project. “Texas is seeing this filth come from all angles, with very little pushback from our elected officials. It would be nice if Governor Abbott would stop pandering and would in turn fight against this chaos. For far too long, Texas has failed to lead in this culture war threatening the family. Texans are fed up and watching.”
Some Texas lawmakers have been ramping up their offensive stances in the fight to ban “all-ages” drag shows in the state. Legislation has been filed in the State House that would prevent children from attending “all-ages” drag shows.
Concerned citizens may use Texas Scorecard’s Elected Officials Directory to ask their elected representative how they plan to vote on such legislation.