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LOL! Ron DeSantis's Anti-Drag Ban Blocked Thanks To Hamburger Mary's

LOL! Ron DeSantis's Anti-Drag Ban Blocked Thanks To Hamburger Mary's

Hamburger Mary's, Ron DeSantis
The Image Party/Shutterstock, Leonard Zhukovsky/Shutterstock

It's a temporary measure, but the judge's ruling is a blow to conservatives.

rachelkiley

Ron DeSantis just keeps on losing.

In the middle of waging a war on Disney that is turning out to be more difficult than he likely initially expected, Florida’s governor has been dealt another blow this week, this one regarding his new anti-drag law.

Hamburger Mary’s filed suit over the law, which seeks to penalize venues for allowing children to be present during drag shows, in May, suggesting that it’s an attempt to violate free speech. And last week, US District Judge Gregory Presnel agreed.

“Florida already has statutes that provide such protection,” he ruled, referring to proponents’ claims that it would protect children from sexually explicit performances. “Rather, this statute is specifically designed to suppress the speech of drag queen performers.”

The judge agreed with critics of the law who suggested it was too broad, and could be interpreted in ways that directly and disproportionately target the LGBTQ+ community. While the text doesn’t specifically name drag shows, it prohibits “lewd conduct” in “live performances” around children, declining to adequately define either term. On top of that, sponsor Rep. Randy Fine already admitted to wanting to use it to end Drag Queen Story Time.

Presnell also pointed out that prohibiting minors from attending drag events even with the permission of their parents directly contradicts DeSantis’s 2021 Parents’ Bill of Rights, which grants parents the “right to direct the upbringing and the moral or religious training of his or her minor child,” as well as another law that allows children to attend R-rated movies with their parents.

The injunction ultimately only hits pause on enforcement of the law while the lawsuit moves forward, and can be appealed. However, it also marks the third time in a month that anti-LGBTQ+ laws in Florida backed by DeSantis have been halted for potential violation of constitutional rights.

If this particular law is ultimately allowed to stand, any business found in violation will be subjected to thousands of dollars in fines and the suspension of their operating and/or liquor license, and individuals can be charged with a misdemeanor.

30 Years of Out100Out / Advocate Magazine - Jonathan Groff and Wayne Brady

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Rachel Kiley

Rachel Kiley is presumably a writer and definitely not a terminator. She can usually be found crying over queerbaiting in the Pitch Perfect franchise or on Twitter, if not both.

Rachel Kiley is presumably a writer and definitely not a terminator. She can usually be found crying over queerbaiting in the Pitch Perfect franchise or on Twitter, if not both.