Do All Drag Queens Think The Same?

Do All Drag Queens Think The Same?


There’s a difference between being a drag queen and being transgender. 3, 2, 1… Girl, I can’t twirl over here fast enough. They are two completely separate things, you know? One’s, like, uh… artistic expression and one’s an actual like gender identity. Yeah, like the easiest way I had someone explain it to me was like: “Drag is what you do; trans is who you are.” (YES!) Very well done, well said. Well, I will say this… Oh, no. I know, I know, I know, I know. No, no, no, no, no, I agree with y’all! I agree with y’all! I’m clarifying for the people out there because me in the type of drag that I do– maybe not with my rainbow hair right now, y’all, but when I have my blond hair and my cleavage out and I look like a woman, whether that is a transgender woman or a cisgender woman– I get hit up by men in the public who don’t know drag, and they do think I’m a woman or they don’t understand the difference even when I tell them. So I do think it is important to know that there are people out there who don’t know the difference, and, for them, I would just really say: this is an illusion, a pretend, a performance. That is an identity. And there are people who like to walk the line between both, and that’s fine, too. My family is supportive of my career. 3, 2, 1… Um…I will just say it didn’t start off that way. I started drag a year and some change ago, and I didn’t post anything on Facebook or anything like that until about three months in because I was afraid of it, and then my brother, who is the one that I kind of argue with a lot was the first person that actually shared my pictures and was like, “Keep it going, I’m proud of you” and everything. And then, from there, all of my family followed suit probably because they think I’m going to get rich from it, and they want money, but… Well, at the age of 17, I got thrown out of my house by my mother on my birthday when they found out I was gay, and ever since then they haven’t supported me up to this day. Yeah, it’s very hurtful. I’m going to change my answer to “somewhat disagree” after hearing your story. I remember when I first moved to LA and started getting gigs that like seemed really impressive to me, I was like, “Dad, do you know what drag is? I do drag.” And he was like, “No, no.” And he was like, “Well, don’t tell your mom” because my mom was really sick, and then my mom passed away, and I never told her, and so that’s something that I think about a lot. Women can do drag. 3, 2, 1… You don’t have to come here just because we did. Live your truth. This is an issue. I’ve always been very divided on, and I have to be very careful with how I say this. I do stand divided on what my definition of drag is and where a biological, cisgender woman fits into that because obviously, yes, women can do drag because we have a drag king here, you know, and we have femme Queens and hyper Queens. So yes, they can and they do. Do I personally agree with that? I know too many girls who have come up to me and asked me to “teach them drag,” and I get them on at a show at my home bar, or whatever, and they show up in just, like, their regular club makeup and their club outfit. And I’m like girl that is not… Well, I can’t tell her that’s not drag. I have to jump off of that really quick. My belief is that drag is the art form of gender. It is the performing of gender, and we are all negatively impacted by societal expectations of gender. How we should or shouldn’t sound like, what we should or shouldn’t wear, what we should or shouldn’t be into… And so we all have something to share through drag, so to tell anyone that their drag is not valid is really frustrating because we all have struggles with gender. And the thing I will say, as a cis woman, is that like, as women, we are taught our entire life, you know, to listen to what men tell us about how we’re supposed to look. And the whole point of drag is to throw all of that in the garbage. I was very feminized as a child, and getting really personal here, but I’m actually a cancer survivor. And I lost my hair and was bald when I was a 7 year old girl, and so everyone around me, in the name of supporting and loving me–which is beautiful– tried to make sure to emphasize everything that was feminine about me. And, for me, my drag persona and discovering drag and doing drag has been all about reclaiming who I am and my identity. It’s your opinion–and honey, I don’t argue with opinions. That’s your… live your fantasy. But, in my head, that’s telling someone, “I’m gonna impersonate you, and I’m gonna live out what I think you are, but you can’t.” To me, that just seems a little off. And that’s what I’m saying. I’m not on the disagree side. I’m on the “somewhat agree” side because I’m saying, if you’re going to do it–and that goes for everybody– really do it. Don’t be in there, half assing it. Sometimes people don’t know how to do it. Everyone has a right to look the way they want to. And I have a right to stand on this line. No, you’re good. Stay over there, but we’re still going to disagree with it. You can stay on that side all you want to. Drag reinforces negative stereotypes about women. 3, 2, 1… I chose “strongly disagree” because it said “drag,” and I don’t think all drag is female impersonation. I fully agree with that. The only reason I’m here at “somewhat disagree” and not over there is because there are a lot of drag standards that reinforce female stereotypes, such as nails, lashes, wigs… And there are some amazing, super queer performance entertainers that are somewhere in this room that are just amazing and do whatever the fuck they want, but there are queens who will go to the club, and they’ll read you because they’re like, “Girl, you’re not wearing nails. Girl, your heel is not above five inches.” And by reinforcing those stereotypes for a drag queen impersonating a woman, you’re reinforcing those stereotypes on the women that you think should look like that. I think a lot of the really unreasonable expectations from drag queens about the nails and the hair and the hips and the that is because, suddenly, drag queens are on television. And one of the unfortunate parts about breaking drag to straight people or straight audiences is making it, to some degree, palatable, and the reason someone like RuPaul shot to fame was because she was stunning. She was beautiful. She was a supermodel. I think we’re definitely seeing the effects of stunningly beautiful drag queens on television because now a lot of us are expected to look that way. But, in fairness, you could wear whatever you want. You know, I’m here because I love the beauty of a woman, the way she looks– whether if she’s skinny, big girls, or any of color. It’s the beauty; it’s the homage that you’re giving. The problem is not that the Queens and the performers who want to look like a beautiful woman. It’s the Queens who will judge other Queens for not doing that, for not following these female beauty standards. The drag community is diverse and inclusive. 3, 2, 1… Dang, y’all. I mean… I’m going to have– Oh, oh, make your shift, make your shift. Thank you. I’m really gonna have to say “somewhat disagree,” even from my own stance on an opinion question earlier where I didn’t believe that necessarily all cisgender women should do drag. Drag is not 100% inclusive because I have been told I’m not this enough or I’m not that enough. I had a girl touch my stomach and go, “Mm girl, don’t you want to wear a girdle?” And I said, “No, I don’t.” So I mean… I can’t say that we’re totally inclusive. I think we’re going towards that, and we should be, but we’re not right now. And drag, at large, is still such a boys club. I know, as a King, there’s either people don’t book Kings at all, or there’s like a quota, where they’re like, “Aww, we’re going book a King.” And it’s like, “No, bitch. I’m talented. It is in your best interest to book me. And if you don’t book me, I’m going to produce my own show,” which is what I did. Yeah, I feel like there are definitely pockets of inclusivity, and while I do love West Hollywood, I will say I didn’t start getting booked in West Hollywood until I was on a TV show (Right, right.) ’cause they wouldn’t have me there. And it still feels weird sometimes going into that environment. It’s weird for for me, too. And then that’s a place where I also thought: I need to wear nails, I need to pad, and all of these things. But then I think I felt so much love going to places in downtown, saying, “What you’re doing is valid,” that that’s why I’m comfortable enough to walk around in any venue. And it’s divided in sections. Absolutely. I will not say it’s not, but I think there’s a spot for everybody in all these areas. I I like the way I look outside of drag. 3, 2, 1… Bitch, I’m hot out of drag. You got to love yourself first, then you love the craft. I feel very thankful to be happy with the way I look outside of drag because I think there are a lot of people that don’t. I know a couple of friends who have told me that they do drag because it makes them feel more confident with their appearances because, outside of drag, they feel ugly, and they feel like a nobody. I used to really fucking hate the way I looked. I was a short, skinny kid, and I was femme. I was the worst of everything you could possibly be growing up Catholic and Mexican in the South, you know? Through drag, I was able to find the things I loved about myself and kind of feed that until I got to a point where I really don’t give a shit anymore. I love the way I look. I fucking love it. I don’t know if I would have gotten there without the drag. I mean, I love the way I look out of drag. I’m a big guy, which is harder to be a gay man who is larger. I can go to West Hollywood and drag and sit VIP at Pomp or Sir. If I go as a boy, I got to check my ID, pay maybe double the cover, you know? No one’s gonna buy me a drink. I got to buy the doorman a drink. It’s like that. So I love myself out of drag. I just need y’all to love me up out a drag. You can find me. Hello! Thank you! I’ve seen all of you outside of drag. It’s a very distinct look. And I like y’all outside of drag! I don’t know if that counts for anything ’cause it’s your opinion, but, listen, I live for y’all outside of drag. I’m glad for y’all to live for yourselves. Thank you so much. Hey, guys, thank you so much for watching this episode. Tell us your favorite moment from this video. Who do you relate to the most? And what expectations were shattered, and what judgements were thrown out the window? Follow us on Instagram. We have some more content for you there, and thank you as always for letting us make things that explore the spectrum of humanity in all types of ways. We’ll see you next time. Bye! (Bye.)

100 comments

  1. QUEEN! 👑 It's a word that takes multiple meanings from the actual meaning of royalty to someone that does’t take disrespect from nobody! In today’s episode of Spectrum, we wanted to learn about queens…DRAG QUEENS (& KING). From learning about the art of expressing gender to debating if drag reinforces gender stereotypes, we learned a lot from this episode & hope you do as well!
    What prompts from this episode changed your perspective or challenged your thoughts?

  2. you should do one for social anxiety , it would probably be hard to do since yanno , SOCIAL ANXIETY lmao . but i would love to see it

  3. 0:53 says 1) drag performers are not working with their gender identity 2) drag is an artistic representation of a gender …….. to me, that is no different than blackface. It is rude to others to say “this is how I see your gender, which is not mine AND I find this difference entertaining, so I am going to amplify it”. That is not okay. Call it dress up. Don’t say pronouns must be different because guess what, that is insulting to me. You don’t get to pretend to be a woman for anyone’s entertainment. Womanhood is not a costume or a source of entertainment. It is my identity.

  4. how come the this wuestipn wasn't asked:
    do you feel that, in the drag fashion, does it make real women feel as though they are being mocked…? no "REAL WOMAN" ever dresses up like that, wear that hideous make-up, so where does this style of gaudyness (real word????) actually come from…? also, the "KING" isn't a gaudy male…? why not…? a latina wearing a quasi zoot suit or Pretty In Pink 80's fashion… thats not anywhere close to being "DRAG". why the differences in the male & female performers…?

  5. When they said "drag is what you do, trans is who you are" I kinda wanna disagree? There's a lot of nb folks who do drag and that's an extension of who they are! Ofc they perform a show but it's not like they're acting.
    It would had been interesting for the video to show the opinion of a non binary person too 💖💖💖

  6. I'm gay and i'm sick of people in the community being so apprehensive about other lgbt people having even the slight different opinion. They so love to gang on the minority…. now that's familiar.

  7. Men do not tell womyn how they are suppose to look. That expecations come from media controlled almost exclusively by other womyn. Check the mastheads of every major womyn’s lifestyle/fashion magazine and you will see womyn at the helm. So, It}s womyn, not men dictating to other womyn.

  8. If people are gonna hate you because what you do don't even bring them into your life because just because you are different and beautiful does not mean that you don't need rude and haters in your life because they don't disserve you.

  9. Me: Drag Kings exist right…I mean they have to right?
    Video: *hands me an amazing group of Drag Stars*
    Me: who’s that?
    Me: Drag King….a very talented Drag King….
    (Sorry I rarely see Drag Kings and I find them extremely talented. I find all individuals that do Drag talented though)

  10. Not to draw away from the importance of this conversation, but like Mercury Minx is killing the outfit, hair, etc. 👏

  11. Lgbt community is not inclusive AT ALL just for a certain type of opinions. Im gay and conservative and gosh ive reveived so much hatred for that. Its worst with the new generation who seem to be offended by everything but really didn't really had to live with real segragation. If you are disagree wirh them they want to shut you out for good. Crazy

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