Urgent Conversations

Modern Drag Bans: Dangerously Impersonating History

Monday, March 20, 12:15-1:20pm, College of Law room 135

Thank you for your interest in this Urgent Conversation! Please review the pre-readings we will be discussing and familiarize yourself with the guidelines we follow to ensure a respectful discussion.

Modern drag bans reflect the historical criminalization of people who did not dress according to their sex assigned at birth. These modern bans criminally penalize anyone who does not conform to their sex assigned at birth and conflates gender non-conformity with “prurient” (sexual) conduct. Drag performers, transgender people, and gender non-conforming people are all likely to be affected by these bans. We can also infer these bans will disproportionately harm non-conforming people and performers of color.

Join the Jones Center in exploring how historical criminalization and current anti-transgender rhetoric should inform our understanding of modern drag bans. 

Refreshments will be provided (email Jones Center Program Manager, Alex Brogaard if you have dietary restrictions)

Recommended Readings

https://www.lgbtqnation.com/2023/02/drag-bans-could-result-in-arrests-at-pride-parades/ (good general overview, longest article)

https://www.history.com/news/stonewall-riots-lgbtq-drag-three-article-rule (history)

https://time.com/6260421/tennessee-limiting-drag-shows-status-of-anti-drag-bills-u-s/ (list of states with proposed drag bans)

https://www.wlwt.com/article/ohio-house-speaker-requests-ban-on-drag-story-time-at-public-libraries-writing-it-turns-teenage-boys-into-drag-queens/27958131 (Cincy reporting – video, 2 min 26 sec)

https://www.cleveland.com/crime/2023/03/two-arrests-made-after-white-supremacists-protest-drag-queen-event-in-wadsworth.html (OH drag reading event and white supremacy)

Optional Resources

https://www.forbes.com/sites/traversjohnson/2023/03/03/why-the-tennessee-drag-ban-is-bad-for-business/?sh=b2f8cbb729f7 (business view, audio available)

https://www.theguardian.com/culture/commentisfree/2023/mar/10/drag-show-bans-tennessee-lgbtq-rights (First Amendment view)

CRT Forward: https://crtforward.law.ucla.edu/

ACLU Bill Tracker: https://www.aclu.org/legislative-attacks-on-lgbtq-rights

FL HB 999: https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2023/999https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2023/999/BillText/c1/PDF

Treehouse Cincy: https://treehousecinci.org/about-us 

Black Pride Cincy: https://www.cincinnatiblackpride.com/

Caracole: https://caracole.org/

Trans Ohio: https://transohio.squarespace.com/

Equality Ohio: https://equalityohio.org/ (HB 208/SB 119 Fairness Act, adding sexual orientation and gender identity to anti-discrimination laws to make it illegal to discriminate for either of these two reasons)