US governor to ‘ban’ drag-dressing | US News

A photo has emerged showing Tennessee Governor Bill Lee dressed as a woman, even as he prepares to approve a law that would criminalize some cross-dressing.

When he visited a school on Monday, he was asked if he remembered the photo that surfaced on Reddit.

“What a ridiculous, ridiculous question,” he replied.

“Conflating something like that with sexual entertainment in front of kids is a very serious topic.”

Mr. Lee did not confirm or deny that it was him in the photo — which appeared to show a cheerleader getting dressed in a wig and necklace — apparently from a 1977 high school yearbook.

The Republican governor said he intends to approve a law passed by state lawmakers last week that would make it a crime to perform drag in public and in front of children.

It limits “adult cabaret” – defined as “topless dancers, rave dancers, exotic dancers, strippers, male or female impersonators who provide entertainment that attracts an obscene interest, or similar artist…”

Critics say it unfairly targets LGBTQ+ people and culture and suggests that all cross-dressing is obscene and sexy.

They also thought it was unnecessary since Tennessee already bans swearing in front of minors.

The state would be the first to pass such a law, but opponents fear other states will follow.

“The ultimate goal is to publicly eliminate LGBTQ people,” said Stella Yarbrough, legal director for the ACLU of Tennessee.

However, supporters say the legislation is necessary to protect children from sexual entertainment.

After he spoke to reporters, Mr Lee’s office issued a statement.

“The Act specifically protects children from lewd, sexually explicit entertainment, and any attempt to confuse this serious issue with light-hearted school traditions is dishonest and disrespectful to Tennessee families,” it said.

The governor will also sign another law that would ban transgender minors from receiving treatments such as puberty blockers, hormone therapy and surgery.

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