The truth is sometimes a… drag

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Boy oh boy has Tennessee governor Bill Lee just about had it with all those child-corrupting drag queens, by golly! Let me tell you, he’s gonna sign one doozy of a bill that’s going to make it illegal for anyone, and he does mean anyone!, to dress up in women’s clothing and parade or sashay or otherwise gallivant around! Well, almost everyone. Except women, of course. But then, that goes without saying.

That was the word old Billy handed down on Monday. Nobody loves to punish people more than a Republican does, so old Bill Lee positively relished saying it! So if you’re a guy and you dress up like a woman then watch out! Y’all are going to jail!

And then something terribly, terribly embarrassing happened. Somebody found an old picture — wait for it, wait for it — of old Billy wearing — wait for it just a little bit longer — women’s clothing! I mean can you believe it? A Republican actually being a hypocrite? Who would’ve thunk it?

That’s right, and there’s absolutely no doubt about it that the picture is of Billy, either. There he in his 1977 Franklin High School yearbook. Page 65. Bill Lee, dressed in a mini-skirt and pearls, with the words “Hard Luck Woman” printed immediately below.

Funny thing about Billy. He doesn’t have a lot of luck with yearbooks. There’s also a picture of Bill wearing a Confederate uniform in a 1980 yearbook photo from Auburn University, Bill’s alma mater.

Tennessee Democrat Christopher Hale wrote on Twitter: “Tennessee Governor Bill Lee is set to sign a bill that bans and criminalizes drag across the Volunteer State. Under this law, Governor Lee himself would face prosecution and jail time for his decision to dress up as a ‘hard luck woman’ in high school. Nice legs though!”

Anyway, the governor wasn’t available for comment. Instead he sent out a lackey with a press-chastising statement excoriating anyone who would mock a “bill [that] specifically protects children from obscene, sexualized entertainment, and any attempt to conflate this serious issue with lighthearted school traditions is dishonest and disrespectful to Tennessee families.” That’s telling them.

I think there was an element of truth in that statement, however. Drag shows are indeed entertainment that’s “lighthearted.” There’s nothing at all wrong with them, unless of course you’re an anally repressed, sexually screwed up Republican with a self-loathing dread of inadequacy. But then, that goes without saying.

What does this new law say? It says anybody caught in drag would be guilty of a Class A misdemeanour with a maximum sentence of 11 months and 29 days in prison in addition to a possible fine of as much as $2,500. So you’d better watch out. It’s not too early in the year to say that, is it?

There are eight million stories in the naked city of Republican hypocrisy and performative outrage. This has been one of them. And, as ever, ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters, comrades and friends, stay safe.

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