Drag Race star Trixie Mattel points out blisteringly obvious over anti-LGBTQ+ ‘groomer’ narrative

Trixie Mattel, judge on drag queen singing contest Queen of the Universe.

Drag Race legend Trixie Mattel has slammed the homophobic “grooming” narrative used by right-wing politicians to smear LGBTQ+ people and drag queens.

As bills in various states across American ban drag performances, and anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric intensifies, the vitriolic culture war concerning the place that the LGBTQ+ community holds in society has put drag queens squarely on the front lines.

One of the most common narratives peddled against the LGBTQ+ community, and particularly drag queens, by conservative politicians and pundits is the age-old homophobic accusation that LGBTQ+ people and their allies are groomers who pose a sexual threat to children.

Mattel, who won the third season of the RuPaul’s Drag Race spin-off All Stars, has been a vocal opponent of the rising tide of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation, even posting a video on the subject on her YouTube channel.

But she hasn’t stopped there. While appearing on an episode of The Leah McSweeney Show, the makeup mogul took time to address the malicious grooming narrative.

After former Real Housewives of New York City star McSweeney noted that she doesn’t “understand what the scary part of a drag queen is”, the conversation turned to Drag Story Hour, parental autonomy over events their children attend and the censorship of queer people’s freedom to perform.

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McSweeney’s producer then asked: “As an outsider looking in, what is the problem?”

Mattel explained that drag is varied, and, that while some drag performances are age-appropriate for children, some distinctly are not. Nevertheless, she noted that all drag queens are targeted by the same pernicious slurs.

“It’s interesting how much time is spent focused on ‘drag queens want our children”, Mattel said.

“We don’t think about your children. We think about: ‘I hope my wig stays on. I hope I know my words. I hope the drunk people in the audience are sober enough to clap and not be asleep’. We’re more worried about the behaviour of drunk adults, those are our children.”

Mattel then explained that, contrary to the much-quoted lies that LGBTQ+ people want to influence a child’s sexuality, drag queens simply hope to provide positivity, affirming representation.

“We don’t think about your kids,” she continued. “We don’t hope they’re gay. We don’t hope they turn out trans. We don’t hope they become drag queens.

“What we hope is that, if they are trans or are gay, they find a community faster than many of us did.”

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