Shocker: TN Drag Performer To Ban Drag Performances

Every Accusation is a confession:

By the time Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee confirmed Monday that he would sign a recently passed bill criminalizing drag performances in public and in front of children, a photo that appears to show him dressed in drag as a high school student had already started to circulate on Reddit and Twitter.

Just before midnight Saturday, a Reddit user shared an image that appears to show Lee as a high school student wearing a short-skirted cheerleader’s uniform, a pearl necklace and a wig, posing on a school sports field next to two girls in men’s suits. The caption says, “Governor Bill Lee in drag (1977 high school yearbook).”

Gov. Bill Lee is believed to be the person standing in the middle, 2nd-left, in this 1977 yearbook image. (Franklin High School via

Gov. Bill Lee is believed to be the person standing in the middle, 2nd-left, in this 1977 yearbook image. (Franklin High School via© Franklin High School via


It’s not a career-ending bombshell, but it shows that drag itself is pretty common and deeply embedded in the culture (and has been FOREVER), and the moral panic around it is nothing more than performative hysteria.

To wit:

Answering reporters’ questions Monday, Lee, a Republican, said he would sign the drag bill in addition to a separate piece of legislation that would prohibit gender-affirming care for the state’s minors. He was then asked whether he remembers “dressing in drag in 1977” and appeared to have been shown a copy of the image. He neither confirmed nor denied whether it was him in the image.

“What a ridiculous, ridiculous question that is,” Lee responded in an exchange that was recorded and shared on Twitter by The Tennessee Holler, a local news site. “Conflating something like that to sexualized entertainment in front of children, which is a very serious subject.”

The wedge-issue style of politics of Ron Fournier / Karl Rove is making a repeat a generation later, with exactly the same goal of hurting the same people as subjects and objects.

This entry was posted in Crazeee States, Homophobia, Ron Fournier, Tennessee, Transphobia, Turdblossom. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Shocker: TN Drag Performer To Ban Drag Performances

  1. Jimmy T says:

    Oh governor (in my sweetest Betty White voice), don’t let life drag you down…

    Liked by 3 people

  2. and the moral panic around it is nothing more than performative hysteria. deliberate dehumanizing and demonizing in furtherance of a fascist theocracy.

    FTFY, TG.

    Ain’t nothing ‘nothing more than’ in this.

    This is the fascism 101 playbook, by the numbers.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Kent Fossgreen says:

    There will be mass arrests on Halloween in Tennessee.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. roket says:

    Now all he has to do is define sexualized entertainment.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. gruaud says:

    It’s just a jump to the left
    And then a step to the right
    With your hands on your hips
    You bring your knees in tight
    But it’s the pelvic thrust
    That really drives you insane
    Let’s do the Time Warp again

    Liked by 1 person

  6. w3ski4me says:

    “Performative hysteria”. Thanks for that, I hope to use it often.
    So many things in this vast world that should get their protective interests involved and they pick Drag Queens for their anger. They must be one of the most ridiculous things to protest over. Why don’t they get huffy about child hunger or child welfare? No, they want something flashy to protest and Drag Queens fit their bill. You’d think George (who am I this week) Santos might bring them around.

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is a consequence of the GOP going all in for fascists like Orban and Putin (and other RW authoritarians around the world.)

      They know thy’ve lost the hearts and minds of the general population so they’re doing their best to gin up fear and loathing of the ‘others’

      People consumed by fear are physiologically unable to make calm decisions and easier to be lead, and constant stimulation of the flight-or-fight response makes it worse.

      They have to break down our resistance before the general population will be ok stuffing people in boxcars headed for the extermination camps…and trust me, that is where this rhetoric is heading.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. MDavis says:

    Saw this on the twitter. Saw an apologist say “With a couple of girls dressed like men you should have got the joke”. Which I don’t get, btw, why does that make it a joke?
    Reminds me of the anecdotal story of the seminar about all of us being essentially the same, where a couple of business-type men were pacing around angrily. When confronted, they said “It’s awful! I can’t believe that. If we are all the same then I’m just a piece of sh**, just like you women.” Could that by “the joke”?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. K. Harsha Krishnan says:

    ““Conflating something like that to sexualized entertainment in front of children” … it was at a high school, so it was in front of children; just because he doesn’t have a money maker to shake doesn’t change his intention!

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.