DeSantis says he wants CPS to probe parents taking kids to drag shows
‘We have laws against child endangerment’: Gov. DeSantis says he could order Florida’s CPS to INVESTIGATE parents who take their children to drag shows
- Ron DeSantis says he wants CPS to look into parents taking their children to drag shows, after video of kids attending a Dallas gay Saturday surfaced online
- The Florida governor’s comments were prompted by now viral clips that showed elementary school-aged children dancing alongside men dressed in drag
- The event, titled ‘Drag The Kids To Pride,’ saw organizers urge parents to bring their kids to the bar to watch the queens – sparking outrage across the country
- ‘We have child protective statutes on the books,’ DeSantis, 43, told onlookers in Fort Myers Beach Wednesday, addressing public outcry over the footage
- ‘It used to be kids would be off-limits – used to be everybody agreed with that.’
- ‘Now it just seems like there’s a concerted effort to be exposing kids more and more to things that are not age appropriate,’ he said
Governor Ron DeSantis has threatened to deploy Florida’s child protective services on parents who take their children to drag queen shows.
The Republican warned ‘we have child protective statutes on the books’ and ‘laws against child endangerment’ as he condemned footage of youngsters dancing with acts at a gay bar in Texas last weekend.
He said there appeared to be a ‘concerted effort to be exposing kids more and more to things that are not age appropriate’ and blasted the clip that showed a child in front of a sign that read ‘it’s not gonna lick itself’.
His comments follow others slamming a viral video of children at a ‘drag your kids to Pride’ event at Mr Misster gay nightclub in Dallas.
The elementary-aged youngsters were recorded dancing with drag queens wearing skimpy thongs as well as handing over cash to them during the performance.
DeSantis’ latest anti-woke offensive comes as he has continued to crackdown on progressives over issues surrounding ‘sexual orientation’ and ‘gender identity’.
He signed a parental rights bill into law earlier this year banning teaching gender ideology for children at elementary schools – which the Left dubbed the ‘Don’t Say Gay Bill.’
It drew a backlash from some and pitted him in a heated battle against Disney when the company opposed the change, with the governor later stripping it of its special tax status in Florida.
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Speaking at a news conference in Fort Myers Beach Wednesday, Ron DeSantis revealed that he has asked his state to deploy its child protective services to look into the recent phenomenon of parents taking their children to drag shows, after video of kids attending a performance at a Dallas gay surfaced online over the weekend
The Florida governor’s comments were prompted by now viral clips that showed elementary school-aged children dancing alongside men dressed in drag at the Mr. Misster gay club Saturday, beneath a neon sign reading ‘It’s not gonna lick itself’
‘We have child protective statutes on the books,’ DeSantis, 43, told onlookers during a conference in Fort Myers Beach Wednesday. ‘We have laws against child endangerment.’
He continued: ‘It used to be kids would be off-limits – used to be everybody agreed with that. Now it just seems like there’s a concerted effort to be exposing kids more and more to things that are not age appropriate.’
The governor’s comments came in response to a reporter’s inquiry about the state’s stance on the Dallas drag queen event.
Earlier aspiring Florida congressman Anthony Sabatini called for an ’emergency’ session of the Florida Legislature that would discuss charging parents with a felony if a child is brought to a drag show in the state.
In Sabatini’s online plea, which came in the form of an email to state officials, the congressman cited a similar drag event being advertised in West Palm Beach last Sunday, called ‘Pride on the Block: Drag Show for Kids.’
The email included a proposal to terminate the parental rights of a parent and charge them with a felony if they take a child to such a show.
‘I have full confidence that governor DeSantis will support his bill,’ Sabatini wrote. ‘Any adult who forces children into these drag sex shows should be charged with a felony.’
The right-wing rep added: ‘What happened in Texas was criminal.’ He also asked in a tweet: ‘When will the sexualization of children stop?’
During his address Wednesday, DeSantis hinted the state may already be on track to implement such a guidance, cryptically telling onlookers: ‘I’ve asked my folks to look.’
He went on to assert he wanted kids in his state in a ‘normal environment’ and let ‘kids be kids’ – without having political agendas ‘shoved down their throats’ by various groups.
The conservative governor went on to point out some of the ‘inappropriate’ activity seen in footage of the show that kids had been exposed to at the Dallas bar – such as being encouraged to put money in the underwear of the drag performers.
‘You had these very young kids, and they must have been like 9, 10 years old, at a quote, ‘drag show,’ where they were putting money in the underwear of this’ an irate DeSantis said before eventually trailing off. ‘That is totally inappropriate. That is not something that children should be exposed to.’
He added: ‘We probably… we may have the ability to deal with that if something like that happens,’ suggesting his state was working on ways to prevent Florida parents for exposing their young to similar activities.
DeSantis’ comments came on the heels of those of fellow Republicans Lauren Boebert of Colorado and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia. They were in agreement drag shows should be ‘illegal’ for minors.
‘It should be illegal to take children into Drag Queen shows and strip clubs,’ Greene wrote in a post to Twitter Sunday, shortly after video of the event emerged, spurring debate over gender politics and child abuse online.
She added: ‘There should be no federal funding for any school that intentionally confuses children about gender/sexuality. Any teacher or school employee caught doing so should be fired and lose all benefits.’
Boebert, meanwhile, said: ‘Take your children to CHURCH, not drag bars.’
The controversial event has sparked newfound debate across the country about issues surrounding gender identity and children.
Photos and footage from the Saturday show showed adults sitting on stools surrounding a long narrow runway stage in the middle of the room.
As parents sipped on drinks with kids seated at their side, drag queens in dresses and glittered leotards danced along the stage, at times inviting the children to walk down the runway with them.
The drag queens snatched dollar bills from children’s outstretched hands, all beneath the glow of a pink neon sign reading, ‘It’s not gonna lick itself.’
DeSantis’ comments came on the heels of those of fellow Republicans Lauren Boebert of Colorado and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, both reps for their respective states. They were in agreement that drag shows should be ‘illegal’ for minors
Protesters outside of Mr. Misster on Saturday. The demonstrators accused the parents in line of enabling democrats to endorse pedophilia
Kids danced alongside drag queens beneath this large neon sign at the event at Mr. Misster on Saturday. ‘It’s not gonna lick itself!’ the sign reads in large pink letters
A drag queen can be seen accepting dollar bills from audience members. Children can be seen handing over cash to the performers too
A kid handing over dollar bills to drag performers at the Mr. Misster gay nightclub at a family drag show on Saturday, June 4
An online brochure for the event that urged parents to bring their kids to the event – despite suggestive undertones and the dubious venue.
‘Mr. Misster’s Drag The Kids To Pride Drag Show provides the ultimate family friendly pride experience,’ the ad read.
It continued: ‘Do you want to hit the stage with the queens? We have FIVE limited spots for young performers to take the stage solo, or with a queen of their choosing! Come hangout with the Queens and enjoy this unique pride experience, fit for guests of all ages!’
The event was met with vitriol by Texans, who came out in full force to protest the show outside the bar Saturday, before its start.
The demonstration saw protesters criticize parents lining up with their children to see the event, accusing them of ‘grooming’ and endangering the kids.
‘I only have one question, why do you want to put an axe-wound in between your son’s legs?’ one protester was filmed telling the parents through a megaphone, to which a mother responds, ‘We’ve got kids here, please go away.’ ‘That’s the point,’ the man answers back in the footage.
A drag queen performing at the ‘Drag Your Kids to Pride’ event at a Dallas gay night club on Saturday, June 4. Children can be seen sitting on stools lining the runway
A drag queen performing at Mr. Misster on Saturday as children in the audience look on. Kids could be seen handing dollar bills to the performers
The banner for the event’s online brochure. Organizers characterized it as an opportunity for people to share joy about who they are. It has since sparked outrage across the country, with many questioning the legality of bringing kids to such a show
That interaction quickly devolved into the protestor accusing the parents in line of enabling democrats to endorse pedophilia, and a woman screaming ‘You’re scaring children, shut the f**k up! Shut the f**k up! Shame on you! Shame on you!’ as children in line cower and hold hands over their ears.
One woman protesting says she saw a poster for the event and was emboldened to come out and protest.
‘I live in this community,’ the woman told ABC 8, ‘I have for several years. I don’t believe that I should be seeing signs advertising for children to be dancing on stage with men in thongs and in inappropriate clothing and makeup.
‘I do not in any way condone the behavior that these people are engaging in, but what drags me out here is it’s kids now.’
A representative for the bar however said that the event provided a safe and family friendly space to celebrate people being who they are.
A protester confronts people waiting outside of the Mr. Misster gay bar on Saturday after the ‘Drag Your Kids to Pride’ event at the nightclub. Police arrived to maintain order
Supporters of the event unfurl a pride flag in front of a protester outside of Mr. Misster. The event took place on June 4, just as pride month kicked off across the country
What is the Parental Rights in Education law?
HB 1557 was introduced by two Republican members of the Florida Legislature – Representative Joe Harding and Senator Dennis Baxley.
They say the bill’s aim is to ’empower parents’ in their children’s education, and make teachers recognize the distinction between ‘instruction’ and ‘discussion.’
‘What we’re prohibiting is instructing them in a specific direction,’ Baxley said about how teachers lead students in a classroom.
‘Students can talk about whatever they want to bring up, but sometimes the right answer is, ”You really ought to talk to your parents about that.”’
It states that ‘classroom instruction by school personnel or third parties on sexual orientation or gender identity may not occur.’
Part of it applies to kids in kindergarten through third grade, while a vague portion bans all discussion of ‘sexual orientation or gender identity’ in a ‘manner that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate.’
It also requires districts to ‘adopt procedures for notifying a student’s parent if there is a change in the student’s services or monitoring related to the student’s mental, emotional, or physical health or well-being,’ something LGBTQ advocates argue could lead to students being outed to their parents without the student’s knowledge or consent.
The state House approved the bill in February. It was passed in the state Senate on March 8 in a 22-17 vote. DeSantis signed it into law on March 28 and it will come into effect on July 1.
‘We are more than happy to open our doors to celebrate Pride in a family friendly, safe environment, separate from our normal operations of 2 pm – 2 am on Saturdays because we believe that everyone should have a space to be able to celebrate who they are. Mr. Misster is a place where everyone is welcome to feel accepted, safe and included,’ staffers said in a statement.
‘We had a group of protestors outside yelling homophobic threats, transphobic remarks and vile accusations at these children and parents. It is so sad to see that in 2022, there are people that still want to protests others celebrating who they are, but our staff and wonderful officers helped keep us safe and kept the protestors at bay.’
The representative for the bar also noted that the raised money for a youth LGBTQ+ organization in the community.
Controversy around the event comes as Pride Month kicks off in the US, amid debates over the role of gender-identity exposure and education to children.
In March, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed into effect a parental rights bill that bans teachers from giving classroom instruction on ‘sexual orientation’ or ‘gender identity’ in kindergarten through third grade – popularly panned by the left as the ‘Don’t Say Gay Bill.’
The guidance, officially titled The Parental Rights in Education bill, will become law from July 1, and teachers who breach its regulations can be sued by parents.
DeSantis Wednesday praised Florida lawmakers’ for helping him pass the bill.
‘Part of the reason why we fought the fight with parents’ rights in education is because there’s a movement to inject these things like gender ideology in elementary schools, even,’ he said.
‘My view is our schools need to be teaching these kids to read and write and add and subtract and do the things (that are) supposed to be done in school. Injecting these agendas into it is wrong.’
DeSantis went on to add: ‘I think our state, in Florida, we need to be a family-friendly state. We need to be a good state for people to be able to raise a family, get a high-quality education, have a lot of opportunities without having some political agenda shoved down their throats.’
After the bill was signed by the governor in March, Disney issued a statement condemning the bill.
It read: ‘Florida’s HB 1557, also known as the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill, should never have passed and should never have been signed into law.’
‘Our goal as a company is for this law to be repealed by the legislature or struck down in the courts, and we remain committed to supporting the national and state organizations working to achieve that.
DeSantis signed into law the parental rights bill – tabbed by progessives as the Don’t Say Gay Bill – in March, It bans teachers from giving classroom instruction on ‘sexual orientation’ or ‘ gender identity’ in kindergarten through third grade
Disney also issued a statement condemning DeSantis’ signing of the bill, weeks after it faced backlash from customers and employees for not immediately opposing the bill when it was first passed
Democrats have condemned the bill since its inception. After DeSantis signed the measure into law, many took to Twitter to voice their concerns over how the legislation will affect LGBTQ youth
‘We are dedicated to standing up for the rights and safety of LGBTQ+ members of the Disney family, as well as the LGBTQ+ community in Florida and across the country.’
The signing of the bill also saw DeSantis become the target of ire of Hollywood, with comedians Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes telling the Oscars audience shortly after the bill was passed that they could expect not only a great night, but also ‘a gay night’ – mockingly repeating the word ‘gay’ during the national broadcast.
President Biden also branded the guidance as ‘hateful’ earlier this year.
At the time, DeSantis hit back at the critics, saying: ‘They don’t want to admit that they support a lot of the things that we’re providing protections against.’
The politician went on to accuse the left and liberal elite of ‘sexualizing’ school-aged kids to serve a political agenda.
‘For example, they support sexualizing kids in kindergarten,’ DeSantis said of the scrutiny the bill was facing as it pushed it’s way through congress.
‘They support injecting woke gender ideology into second grade classrooms,’ he went on, adding, ‘what they’re doing with these slogans and these narratives is they are trying to camouflage their true intentions.’
That month, Disney staffers at multiple of the company’s locations across the country – along with employees at subsidiaries including Marvel, Pixar, and Lucasfilm – staged walkouts to protest CEO Bob Chapek’s ‘slow response’ to publicly criticizing the law.
Staffers gathered outside the Disney headquarters in Burbank, California. Footage posted to social media showed dozens of employees marching outside the office chanting, ‘Say gay! Say gay!’
Another 60 employees gathered at Griffith Park in Glendale with pro LGBTQ signs, some of which read, ‘#DisneySayTrans’ and ‘Disney oppose Florida’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill.’
Near Walt Disney World’s property near Orlando, Disney employee Nicholas Maldonado was a lone protester Tuesday, wearing a rainbow flag and holding a sign reading, ‘Trans rights are human rights’ and ‘#DisneyDoBetter.’
Some Disney workers say the company has ‘fostered an environment of fear that any employee who does not toe the line will be exposed and dismissed.’ Above, Disney workers protest in Burbank on Tuesday
Disney employee Nicholas Maldonado holds a sign while protesting outside of Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida on Tuesday
The bill, which will go into effect July 1, has been panned by progressives, but polls have shown that the majority of Americans in both parties believe sexual orientation and gender identity should not be taught to kids under 10
Walt Disney’s ‘Magic Kingdom’: How 1967 law allowed the company to govern its vast Florida domain
The Reedy Creek Improvement District, a semi-private, special-purpose government, is controlled by Disney and spans 39 square miles.
It was created in 1967 when then-Florida Gov. Claude Kirk, a Republican, signed into law the Reedy Creek Improvement Act authorizing it to regulate land use, enforce building codes, treat wastewater, control drainage, maintain utilities and provide fire protection at Disney World.
The district is governed a Board of Supervisors that is selected by its 19 landowners, the biggest and most influential of them being Disney World.
The district has the authority to tax the land, and use the revenue to provide essential public services and operate and maintain all public roads and bridges.
Such private governments aren’t uncommon in Florida, which has more than 600 community development districts that manage and pay for infrastructure in new communities.
Amid the walkouts, the company finally expressed support for the protesters in a Facebook post Tuesday morning – a day after Chapek, 61, said he regretted not taking a stance against the bill earlier.
In a memo to staff, Chapek reiterated the park’s policies: ‘I want to be crystal clear: I and the entire leadership team unequivocally stand in support of our LGBTQ+ employees, their families, and their communities.’
Chapek replaced longtime head exec Bob Iger – who has spoken out forcefully against the bill – and angered many of Disney’s thousands of Orlando-based staffers by not taking a firm stance against the bill, despite polls showing that the bill itself is supported by a majority of Americans.
Chapek had since been condemned by staff for refusing to take his own vehement stance against the guidance immediately after it was passed.
‘We are committed to creating a more inclusive company, and world,’ wrote Chapek, who has emphasized ‘inclusion’ as one of his focuses as CEO – bowing to the left-wing backlash.
The protests by Disney staffers followed a week of smaller-scale walkouts during employees’ 15-minute afternoon breaks.
DeSantis has since stripped the company of its 55-year-old special privileges that effectively allowed it to self-govern in his state.
The newly-passed bill rips up the 55-year-old deal that allowed Disney to regulate land, enforce building codes and treat wastewater – and could cost the company millions in lost local taxes.
The move from DeSantis came in direct response to assertions from the company in March that it would suspend political donations in the state in opposition to the Parental Rights in Education bill.
But DeSantis and his fellow Republicans hit back out at the Orlando resort – defending the law – before moving to strip it of its special privileges.
At the time, DeSantis said Disney lied to supporters about the content of the education bill, and that he viewed the company’s vow to fight the law as unacceptable.
He said: ‘You’re a corporation based in Burbank, California, and you’re gonna marshal your economic might to attack the parents of my state. We view that as a provocation, and we’re going to fight back against that,’ declaring war on the company, delivering the knockout punch in April after convincing lawmakers to to strip Disney of its special status as a self-governing entity, put into effect in 1967.
The governor has previously issued support for the measure, saying during a fundraising pitch Wednesday: ‘Disney and other woke corporations won’t get away with peddling their unchecked pressure campaigns any longer.
‘If we want to keep the Democrat machine and their corporate lapdogs accountable, we have to stand together now.’
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