The sea levels are rising to the point that when it rains heavily on Miami Beach, the streets become canals. Florida’s hurricane insurer is in deep trouble, and towns lives damaged by Hurricane Ian last fall are still digging out. Public school teachers can’t make a living wage, and the elderly in need of health insurance can’t get Medicaid. But people in drag and the books they read are the REAL threat.
The Republican-led Senate on Tuesday approved legislation that would bar children from attending drag shows with “lewd” performances, a proposed restriction that follows a national theme in GOP states and that comes a day after a Republican Florida lawmaker called members of the LGBTQ community “mutants” and “demons.”
Supporters of the measure, titled “Protection of Children,” argue the state government needs to intervene in certain cases to ensure children are not witnessing sexual content, even in cases when parents approve. Democrats and LGBTQ advocates, however, say the broad language and stiff penalties are designed to stifle drag shows and pride parades, events that organizers say are meant to be joyous community celebrations.
The push to target these performances comes as Gov. Ron DeSantis seeks to punish venues that have hosted drag shows with children present, even in cases when state regulators found no “lewd acts.” DeSantis, who is expected to launch a bid for president in the coming months, has said “sexualized” drag shows are dangerous for kids.
So far, the DeSantis administration has gone after private venues’ liquor licenses and all cases remain open. The proposed legislation would broaden the state’s enforcement powers. It would allow the state to pursue any person who admits a child into a private or public live performance that “depicts or simulates nudity” or engages in the “lewd exposure of prosthetic or imitation genitals or breasts.”
The penalties — up to a year in prison or up to $10,000 in fines — could be levied against employees, such as ticket-takers and lobby attendants, and permitted performers at public events, under the proposal. The sanctions would not be waived in cases where a child is accompanied by a parent.
The bill also includes criminal penalties for performers who obtain a public permit for an event, and then violate provisions related to “lewd” performances. Equality Florida advocates and LGBTQ community members fear that provision, added on a week before the Senate vote, is an attempt to stifle pride parades, and to dissuade cities from issuing permits for the events.
You want to see a “lewd” performance? Watch Ron DeSantis and his panty-sniffing mutants and demons rail against George Soros and using thinly-disguised anti-Semitic and racist language to try to ram — heh, he said “ram” — this garbage through the legislature.
“Protection of Children” my ass. If they gave a flying rat’s ass about the children of this state, they’d take the money they’re going to throw away on defending these cases in court or spending on the state Gestapo force they’re putting out to stop non-existent voter fraud and deal with the things the vast majority of Floridians care about, like the climate, the schools, and the Everglades.
Keep it up, Ron. You’re making Tennessee look good by comparison.