Mazzie Boyd  District 2 Capitol Report June 22, 2023

To the Great Constituents of District 2,


At the heart of conservative values is the belief that our culture and societal norms should be preserved and protected for the wellbeing of future generations. One significant area of concern that has arisen is the attendance of minors at drag shows. A group of Missouri House Representatives, Senators, and I have proposed legislation to safeguard our children from these adult-oriented performances. The proposed bills have drawn criticism, but the foundation of our argument is solid – these performances are fundamentally not suitable for the impressionable minds of our youth.

Drag shows, inherently, contain sexual elements and as such, fall into the category of sexually oriented businesses. If we have legislation that restricts minors from establishments like strip clubs, why should drag shows be an exception? Such environments potentially expose children to sexual content before they are emotionally mature enough to understand it. This is not about suppressing sexuality; rather, it’s about shielding children from adult themes until they are emotionally ready.

A case in point is a Columbia school that took students to a drag show without the knowledge or consent of their parents. The school district apologized, but it raises the question – can a child truly understand and consent to being exposed to such adult content? The age of consent in Missouri is 17, an age at which a teenager is presumably mature enough to make such decisions. But what about the 8 or 9-year-olds? Those arguing that this proposed legislation is government overreach need to be reminded of the fundamental role of government – protecting its citizens. Children, due to their age and innocence, are the most vulnerable among us and require the utmost protection. The government is duty-bound to step in when the welfare of these young minds is at stake.

Claims that this legislation infringes on First Amendment rights are misdirected. As State Representative Darin Chappell rightly points out, “No government should ever be associated with an event that has a proven history of exploiting kids.” Our primary concern here is the well-being of our children and not curtailing free speech.

The contention that our proposals unfairly target the LGBTQIA community is unfounded. This isn’t about who is performing; it’s about who is watching. It’s about creating safe spaces for our children, a principle that is not exclusive to any group or community. Chris Barrett, representing Missouri Chapter of Gays Against Groomers, himself acknowledged, “This adult entertainment should be for adults only.”

Regarding parental rights, they indeed exist, but they come with the duty to protect and provide for the child. Parents cannot take their children to establishments that are deemed harmful to minors, and the same should hold for drag shows.

Missouri isn’t the only state looking to protect its children. Last month, the Texas House advanced a significant bill – Senate Bill 12 – aimed at regulating sexually oriented performances in front of minors. The move, which has had its fair share of controversy, underscores a fundamental truth: such adult-themed performances are unsuitable for our young ones’ developing minds. The recent ruling against Tennessee’s similar bill on the grounds of being too broad does not deter our efforts. Our legislation in Missouri is precisely worded and has significant enforcement measures in place to deter violations.

Our society is evolving, but this doesn’t mean that we should discard the values that form our cultural backbone. Safeguarding our children from adult-themed entertainment is not a matter of controversy; it’s a moral responsibility. As legislators, we must ensure that the innocence and well-being of our youth are fiercely guarded, setting them on a path to a balanced and healthy adulthood. It’s not merely a matter of importance; it’s an urgent necessity.

It’s a pleasure to serve and as always if you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to

my office at (573) 751-4285 or email me at [email protected].

All my Best,

Mazzie Boyd, State Representative for District 2