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‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ Queens Address Racism Within Fandom in PSA

Former contestants from “RuPaul’s Drag Race” got here collectively in a PSA video to handle the longstanding problems with racism throughout the “Drag Race” fandom. 

Within the black-and-white video, six former “Drag Race” contestants seem sans make-up, wigs and costumes, stressing the truth that they’re actual individuals beneath the glamor and “eleganza” of their drag personas. After introducing themselves with their non-drag names — Trevien (aka Heidi N Closet), Tim (aka Latrice Royale), Dequan (aka Mayhem Miller), Ray (aka Widow Von’Du) and Tony (aka The Vixen) — they discuss their lives exterior of drag as husbands and aunties, hair stylists and individuals who take pleasure in pineapple on their pizzas and getting tattoos. (Former contestant Mariah Paris Balenciaga additionally seems in the video, however the video doesn’t embrace her non-drag title, Elijah.)

Following the introductions, the previous contestants element their experiences of racism exterior and throughout the drag fandom, emphasizing a name to motion for love, unity, compassion and making the present an instance of methods to be higher allies. 

“We have to collectively cease the threats, cease the racism that has effects on this group,” says Von’Du.

The announcement was launched by means of the lens of The Trevor Challenge, a nonprofit group targeted on suicide prevention for LGBTQ youth, and emphasised the intersectionality of race and queerness throughout the drag group. 

That is removed from the primary time the problem of racism and “Drag Race” has come up. In July, Season 11 contestant Honey Davenport launched a video on Instagram made in collaboration with fellow contestants of coloration who shared their tales of racism from the drag fandom, and white allies expressing their help for marginalized communities in drag. Queens of coloration on the present have acquired dying threats and racial slurs from followers whereas on the present.

“It’s very evident throughout the fandom that there’s this hierarchy of queens, and, after all, Caucasians are on the prime of that checklist,” Season 11 contestant Kahanna Montrese stated in Davenport’s video. “Queens of coloration come proper on the backside.”

The queens confused that the present is solely for leisure functions and that the hate speech leveled at contestants of coloration is unacceptable and damaging, interfering with their performances and making them concern for his or her livelihoods. Additionally they urged future contestants of coloration to like themselves and stay resilient in the face of discriminatory feedback from followers. 

“I simply say to my Black sisters who’re on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ and future ladies who’re going to be on ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ to remain in the struggle and proceed to be your genuine self and proceed to like your self so when this destructive stuff comes about, we’ll be capable of channel it and struggle it with love,” former drag race contestant Kennedy Davenport stated. 

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