Legislators debate bill that would “require permit for drag shows”

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A bill is moving forward that one legislator says would “require a permit to hold a drag show.”

Justin Jones

Monday, legislators discussed House Bill 0030. Rep. Clay Doggett’s bill “requires a person to obtain a valid entertainer permit from the adult-oriented establishment board, in those jurisdictions with a board, prior to performing adult cabaret entertainment for compensation.”

“All we are doing is stating that a permit will be required for adult cabaret performance, which is defined as being harmful to minors,” Doggett said. “A permit will be required if compensation is received.”

“So we need a permit to have a drag show, but don’t need a permit to carry a firearm,” Rep. Justin Jones said. “I mean we talk about about how the Constitution is our permit, in this case, would the Constitution not be our permit of these drag performers who are exercising their Constitutional right to express themselves as they please?”

Doggett replied, “All we’re doing is stating that if you are performing in a manor that is harmful to minors and receiving compensation, you will need a permit.”

This legislation comes after a bill was passed last week to prevent adult cabaret performances in publicly-owned areas or in areas that can be seen by minors.

The bill passed the 113th Tennessee General Assembly 74 to 23. It will now go to the Senate State and Local Government Committee for March 14.

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You can find more news from across the state here.


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