Nebraska state senator proposes banning minors from attending drag shows
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – A Nebraska state senator is hoping to ban minors from going to drag shows.
State Sen. Dave Murman, who represents south-central Nebraska, proposed LB 371 on Thursday.
“It’s not appropriate to expose children to a sexualized dancing or overly enhanced genitals,” Murman said.
If passed, the law would prohibit anyone under 19 from attending a drag show. Anyone under 21 would also be barred if alcohol is served at the show.
The bill would make it a misdemeanor to knowingly bring a minor to a drag show.
Business or nonprofit owners who host drag shows could also face a misdemeanor charge if someone underage attends the show.
The establishments would also face fines of $10,000 for each violation.
“It’s not about being against certain people or anything; it’s only to protect children,” Murman said.
Several state senators are co-sponsoring the bill, including Joni Albrecht, Tom Brewer and Steve Erdman.
But State Sen. Megan Hunt of Omaha has already filed a motion to indefinitely postpone the bill.
Senator Murman just introduced a bill to put age limits on drag shows, and I just filed a motion to indefinitely postpone it which would kill the bill. We will fight this bill every step of the way. #NELeg https://t.co/CWHVnf8CfA
— Senator Megan Hunt (@NebraskaMegan) January 12, 2023
The ACLU of Nebraska said the bill is an unconstitutional censorship attempt.
Natalie Weiss, with the organization’s trans rights advisory team, said this bill criminalizes LGBTQ people.
“It says that … being true to ourselves should be illegal,” Weiss said. ” It says that if you’re a child who wants to express themselves, an adolescent that wants to express themselves in that way and perform in a speech or debate tournament in your high school, then that’s illegal.”
Weiss said bills like this promotes hate toward the LGBTQ community.
“They’re trying to make trans people seem inherently sexual so that they can say that we are like pornography, and we shouldn’t be allowed in society.”
Drag shows across the country have faced opposition from conservatives, with some being canceled due to threats.
A drag show in Lincoln was canceled in December because of threats after backlash from the Nebraska Freedom Coalition, a conservative political action committee.