Protecting Children or Censorship? Debate Over Florida Bill Continues
A proposed law in Florida is causing concern among some members of the LGBTQ+ community. The law, called Senate Bill 1438, aims to protect children from being exposed to live public shows that are deemed too lewd. While some believe the bill is written to rein in drag shows, others, such as professional drag performer James Davis, believe that the bill is necessary to protect children from inappropriate exposure.
Davis, who performs as Elaine Lancaster, believes that the streets belong to all of us and that children should be protected from adult live performances. In an interview with CBS News Miami, Davis expressed support for the proposed law, stating that it is necessary to protect people who don’t want to see lewd shows. He went on to describe an incident where he witnessed a drag queen doing cartwheels in a thong, landing in the lap of a child with the child’s face directly in the drag queen’s buttocks. Davis noted that such behavior is not appropriate and should be prevented from happening in public.
Senate Bill 1438 seeks to punish any group or person who produces adult live performances that are seen by children. An amendment filed on Tuesday also prohibits any governmental entity from issuing permits or authorizing people to conduct performances that violate the proposed law. The bill’s author, Senator Clay Yarborough, explained that the bill does not ban any business or public entity from hosting events or performances, including public parades. However, businesses that admit children to live events that include nudity, sexual conduct, or lewd exposure will face penalties.
While some people are worried that the proposed law may impact pride parades, Senator Yarborough assured the public that the bill is designed to protect children from lewd conduct and that it will not limit any individual or group’s rights. Miami Beach Pride released a statement expressing concern over the proposed law, calling it a playbook to weaponize the government against disenfranchised communities. The statement also promised support for young people who may feel afraid in a state where they cannot be themselves.
In conclusion, the proposed Florida law, Senate Bill 1438, has sparked debate and concern among members of the LGBTQ+ community. While some people believe that the bill may limit their rights, others believe that it is necessary to protect children from inappropriate exposure to lewd adult live performances. Regardless of the bill’s outcome, it is important to remember that all individuals, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity, have the right to live in a safe and accepting society.