A ban on public drag performances in the state of Texas has temporarily been blocked by a federal judge, right before it was set to take effect.
Senate Bill 12, which was first passed back in April, would outlaw lewd or sexualised performances in public spaces or in the presence of minors that involved the use of “accessories or prosthetics that exaggerate male or female sexual characteristics”, according to Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.
A Texas judge has put a block on the state’s ban on drag shows. (Getty)
The law, which was heavily protested by LGBTQ+ groups and allies, had been scheduled to go into effect on Friday (1 September).
Sharing the encouraging news to X (formerly Twitter), the ACLU of Texas stated: “Drag performers and LGBTQIA+ allied businesses belong in our state — and Texas politicians have no right to censor our free expression.”
The ACLU of Texas had represented the plaintiffs in a lawsuit against Texas officials hoping to enforce the ban.
“This law was obviously unconstitutional from the day it was first proposed, and we are grateful that the court has temporarily blocked it,” said Brian Klosterboer, an attorney at the ACLU of Texas, in a statement following the injunction.
“This law flies in the face of the First Amendment. No performer should ever be thrown in jail because the government disfavors their speech, and we are asking the Court to block this affront to every Texan’s constitutional rights.”