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RuPaul hits back after Mary Cheney compares drag to blackface

Nick Duffy February 1, 2015
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Reality star RuPaul has issued a defence of drag – after Mary Cheney compared it to blackface.

The daughter of the former US Vice President Dick Cheney is married to partner Heather Poe, and is a strong proponent of gay rights and same-sex marriage.

However, the campaigner recently complained about drag in a post on Facebook, after seeing a promo for RuPaul’s Drag Race.

She wrote: “Why is it socially acceptable – as a form of entertainment – for men to put on dresses, make up and high heels and act out every offensive stereotype of women (bitchy, catty, dumb, slutty, etc.) – but it is not socially acceptable – as a form of entertainment – for a white person to put on blackface and act out offensive stereotypes of African Americans?”

“Shouldn’t both be OK or neither? Why does society treat these activities so differently?”

RuPaul took to YouTube ahead of the launch of the latest season of the TV show, with “A Message to Mary Cheney”.

It says: “After seeing a promo for RuPaul’s Drag Race (Premiering March 2 on Logo TV) Mary Cheney (daughter of Dick) likened drag to black face. Ooo, Mary. We see this as a teachable moment. Time for a Drag Herstory lesson. Learn it, and learn it well.”

In the clip – re-purposed from the end of the previous season – RuPaul says: “What is drag? Drag is underground, and over the top. Drag is political, and politically incorrect. Drag is camp, and cotoure. Drag is punk, and mainstream.

“Drag is a laugh riot, and it can start a revolution. Drag is never having to say you’re sorry, because drag is all about being whoever the hell you want to be.”

Watch the clip below:

Related topics: blackface, drag, Gay, Mary Cheney, Rights, rupaul, US

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