– Following several PA events where drag performances appealing to children have been held, Rep. Aaron Bernstine (R-Lawrence/Butler) has proposed legislation in the state House to reclassify drag performances as “adult-oriented business.”
The legislation intends to protect children by banning drag shows on public property or in areas that can be seen by minors.
“Parents should have peace of mind that their children won’t be exposed to minor-marketed or sexually suggestive drag shows without their consent,” Bernstine said. “In no world should we be allowing these types of shows to occur in public libraries, schools or other public property where minors could see it.”
In April 2022, parents at a school district in Lancaster were shocked to learn about after-school X-rated drag shows occurring on school property. In October 2022, a sexually charged drag show for audience members as young as 13 was performed at the Rainbow Room in Bucks County.
Bernstine noted that as an adult-oriented business, commonsense limits would be required to protect minors, including location of performance and age of the intended audience, among other considerations.
“It’s long been considered rational to protect minors from sexually explicit entertainment — it’s why we require warning labels and ratings on music and movies,” Bernstine said. “Parents would be outraged if schools were playing X-rated movies in the classroom. Banning drag shows from public property is a commonsense safeguard for our kids and parental rights.”
Representative Aaron Bernstine
8th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Rick Leiner
717.260.6437 (office), 717.497.8478 (cell)