A Minnesota lawmaker admitted to calling 911 to report drag shows, even though drag isn’t illegal in the state.
The Minnesota Senate was debating a possible amendment to a finance omnibus bill, H.F. 1999, that would prohibit the funds in the bill from being used for “the occult, divination, necromancy, soothsaying, Satanism, demonology, or pedophilia.”
“I had talked to my sheriff and other sheriffs about some of the drag shows that have been going on and they said that- and when I showed them the videos of the ones that happened in Duluth and Minneapolis, there were drag queens accepting money from minors,” said state Sen. Nathan Wesenberg (R).
“Now I have called 911 and I have reported this as child abuse,” he continued. “And if that were to happen in my county, they would go and do that, so we cannot be accepting- Drag queens cannot be accepting money from minors. It’s on video. That’s disgusting and wrong and immoral and we could go down the list.”
He did not explain why he thought it was immoral for people under 18 to tip workers.
H.F. 1999 was passed yesterday by the state senate on a 40-27 vote. The amendment to ban funds from being used to support demonology and necromancy was not adopted.
Wesenberg just started his term in the Minnesota Senate this year. Several days into his term, he stirred controversy by calling the COVID-19 vaccines “a death shot” and suggested that Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz (D) should be arrested for imposing measures to fight the pandemic.
Substack writer Jessica Valenti noted Wesenberg’s beard, something that he has already brought up in state senate debates to attempt to derail a discussion about racism and misogyny. The chamber was debating a bill in February to add hairstyles to the state’s anti-discrimination law because people of color often face discrimination due to hairstyles that are associated with certain races.
“Black women are 1.5 times more likely to be sent home from a workplace because of their hair,” said Sen. Bobby Joe Champion (D), a cosponsor of the bill.
Wesenberg claimed that he faced discrimination because of his beard.
“In the three weeks that I have been here I’ve gotten emails, I’m guessing from the opposite party, saying I look ugly and I should shave my face. That I should go back to Hicksville,” Wesenberg said.
“I have a beard. It’s my natural hair,” he continued. “We should let people of all colors and all races know that we shouldn’t be racist against hair.”
When told that the bill that was being debated was about hair and not beards and that Champion hadn’t heard from constituents about beard-discrimination, another Republican lawmaker brought up Duck Dynasty and the Amish to argue that wearing a beard does, in fact, belong to people of “a certain culture.”
Wesenberg voted in favor of adding an amendment to the bill to include beards. The amendment did not pass, and Wesenberg proceeded to vote against the bill.
The bill passed anyway, and Champion said that he would be open to looking at a separate bill about beards if someone wanted to present such a bill.