Tuesday, September 26, 2023
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Pentagon Orders Air Force Base to Cancel Drag Show

The Pentagon ordered Nellis Air Force Base in Nebraska to cancel a drag show that had been scheduled on Thursday, the beginning of Pride Month, after similar shows had been there before, according to officials.

The canceled drag show would have been the third such annual event, with promoters saying the performances recognized the importance of LGBTQ+ service members and civilian personnel, reports CNN.  

Nellis is known as “The Home of the Fighter Pilot” and is used as the center for advanced fighter training.  

Two defense officials said the base was not allowed to move forward with the show after the Pentagon intervened Wednesday and forced the show to be either canceled or moved elsewhere. 

Although Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has supported the observation of Pride Month in the military, commenting two years ago that “LGBTQ+ citizens have fought to defend our rights and freedoms from the founding of our nation to the Civil War” and beyond, he has made it clear that defense funds can’t be appropriated for drag events or shows at military bases. 

Pentagon spokeswoman Sabrina Singh said, referring to Austin, that the “DOD will not host drag events at U.S. military installations or facilities.”

“Hosting these types of events in federally funded facilities is not a suitable use of DOD resources,” she added, but pointed out that service members “are diverse and are allowed to have personal outlets.”

Austin in March also testified during a House Armed Services Committee hearing that “drag shows are not something the Defense Department supports or funds.”

Also during that hearing, Joint Chiefs of Staff Chair Gen. Mark Milley said he wanted to look into drag shows being held at military bases, as he thinks “those things shouldn’t be happening.”


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