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Dec 29, 22

Orlando Community Defends Event Targeted With Far-Right Threats

Action report on recent community defense of a popular drag tour. Originally posted to Iron Snowflake.

Despite an explicit threat by Florida’s Christian Nationalist governor, Ron DeSantis to take legal action against the venue if anyone under 18 was seen inside, a drag show scheduled on December 28th went forward without any problems.

According to the Orlando Sentinel:

“A Drag Queen Christmas,” a show on tour throughout the nation featuring performers from the reality show “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” has sparked a backlash in Florida, landing in the crosshairs of a fiery culture war.

The popular drag show stopped in Fort Lauderdale on Monday night, triggering an investigation in Florida the very next day after state officials fielded complaints that the “sexually explicit” performance was marketed to children. The news, announced via tweet Tuesday by a spokesman for Gov. Ron DeSantis, was met with glee from conservatives and dread from the LGBTQ community and its allies.

Before the Orlando show, the state Department of Business and Professional Licensing sent the Plaza Live a letter warning it that the venue in the Colonial Plaza on Bumby Avenue could lose its license if minors were allowed in.

As The Hill wrote:

…[A]dmission to “A Drag Queen Christmas” on Dec. 26 was limited to patrons 18 years or older, unless accompanied by a parent.

As the press hype grew, a protective pro-LGBTQ+ crowd grew in front of the venue. Two groups of Christian nationalists ineffectually protested the show. A firetruck and ambulance showed up halfway through, as apparently an opponent of the show had called in a bomb threat.

The delay was short and the show went on! Proud Boys in uniform were nowhere to be seen; the same as in Miami the previous night.

This article has been slightly edited and expanded for readability and context.

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