“Drag is not a crime!” declared placards carried by protesters at the ‘Drag Up! Fight Back!’ rally in San Francisco last Saturday. In response to the tsunami of anti-trans and anti-drag legislation cresting over the nation, thousands of Bay Area LGBTQ+ activists and allies took to the streets in one of the largest rallies of its kind in US history.
“They’re saying drag queens and trans people are grooming children. None of that is true,” Sister Roma from Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence tells ABC News.
From Tennessee banning drag performances to Kansas requiring “genital inspections” for school athletics programs, it seems like conservative leadership in this country will do anything and everything in their power to outlaw public displays of queerness.
“The transgender laws and bills are just really hideous,” Juanita More, co-organizer of the event, tells SFGate at the march Saturday. “So we all came together. I knew we had to do something.”
This protest comes on the heels of a tragic loss for San Francisco’s drag community. In an unfortunate turn of events, the artist known as Heklina, a “trailblazer, legend, and champion of weird drag art,” was found dead in London while on tour for her show Mommie Queerest. A long-time supporter of San Francisco’s drag community and beyond, Heklina would have been proud to see such a large turnout at this weekend’s rally.
In support of these fierce freedom fighters, we’ve rallied together some memorable moments from the ‘Drag Up! Fight Back!’ protest.
All photos courtesy of Fred Rowe Foto