Albertville experienced its first-ever Christmas Drag Show on Friday.

It likely won’t be the last. When it comes to the LGBTQ community’s push to normalize drag queens, there is always an agenda afoot. Smaller Alabama communities should take note and prepare.

1819 News’ Daniel Taylor reported last week on the planned event and the community’s reactions to it:

"With a population of just over 22,000, the small city in Marshall County sits about an hour from Huntsville, where the event’s planner, Jessica Turner, said the area’s drag queens would typically have to go if they wanted to perform in a welcoming setting.

Turner’s catering business, Baked and Boozy, is hosting the event on December 8 at Legends, a local restaurant in Albertville. She planned the Holly Jolly Drag Show event to support the area’s LGBTQ+ community, which she said is larger than people might expect.

‘I just wanted to bring it to Albertville because we have so many people who are drag queens and support the LGBT community in Albertville, and they all have to go to Huntsville, or they have to go to Birmingham to support their friends and family,’ Turner said. ‘I just wanted the queens that are from here to be able to have the support from their community that they’re supposed to have.’" [Emphasis added.]

I have so many questions, both for the contingent mounting this effort as well as those who disagreed with it.

I’ll start by directing some toward Jessica Turner, the owner of Baked and Boozy.

Why does an alternative, marginal lifestyle require support from the people of Albertville? There appears to be strong support for LGBTQ and drag queens in Birmingham and Huntsville. Why do you feel the need to push it? Are blacks in Albertville demanding special treatment for Kwanza? What about Muslims for Ramadan? What makes the LGBTQ community any more unique than a race or a religious group?

The 1819 News article continues:

"The event was initially planned with one two-hour performance, but Turner added a second show after selling out of the venue’s original 100 tickets, which are $30 each, according to the event’s webpage.

A portion of the night’s proceeds will go to the Magic City Acceptance Academy, a charter school in Homewood catering to students who identify with the LGBTQ+ lifestyle." [Emphasis added.]

One thing I learned from 35 years of living in Southern California is that the LGBTQ community shows up for its own, so Friday’s Drag Queen event was likely well attended. The rest of society, and frankly the Church of Jesus Christ, could learn from that.

However, if the Albertville community connection is so important, why not find an LGBTQ cause in Albertville to support? Perhaps Turner should set up a suicide hotline network since this seems to concern her. If she wants to help community members feel supported and connected in order to avoid loneliness, depression, and suicide, why are proceeds being poured into the Birmingham area?

Former Pastor David Kirby and his brother Wesley Kirby were major detractors of the drag queen event, 1819 News reported, and planned to protest it:

"‘My point of view, and I feel like it’s a whole lot of other people’s point of view, that it’s pure perversion, and we don’t want it in our community,’ David Kirby said. ‘... As decent citizens, we just don’t want it.’

The Kirbys applied for a permit to protest, but the City of Albertville could not give them one since it had no authority over private property." 

Pastor Justin Childers of Antioch Baptist Church was also a detractor and encouraged “cross[ing] denominational lines” to protest the event.

What is Pastor Childers’ and Antioch Baptist Church’s stance on crossing denominational lines when there is no controversy animating them, I wonder? How unified is the Body of Christ in Albertville? If they are typically not unified, why does it take a controversy like this for them to coalesce?

I also wonder if Baked and Boozy’s Turner has been welcomed to anyone’s church. Has someone from a local congregation reached out to her or others in Albertville who “go home and think that nobody cares or that you’re gonna have to end your life because you can’t come out to your parents”?

The gospel being preached to young people about drag queens is:

  • You must be an exhibitionist to be yourself and be seen

  • You must embrace another persona in order to be loved – who you are is never enough

And the biggest lie:

  • No one will accept you if you reveal your secret life

If there are people in the community of Albertville living a life of fear, hiding in their secrets, then I would think the goal on both sides would be to offer a place of safety and openness, but most of all freedom to reveal those problems and get help. Despite the bill of goods the LGBTQ community sells, pretending to be someone or something else is not normal, and it will not make you free.

The story of Christmas is about how love came down to redeem a fallen world – to set the captives free. The prophecy in Isaiah 9:3 about the coming Messiah promises, “The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.”

My final question to the local church in Albertville: How can you present that message to the LGBTQ community this Christmas season? The Holly Jolly Drag Show with its manufactured happiness and revelry is over. Now is your time – the perfect time – to do the work of real evangelism. How are the churches of Albertville reaching out, not in protest, but with truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ?

‘Tis the Season.

Jennifer Oliver O'Connell, As the Girl Turns, is an investigative journalist, author, opinion analyst, and contributor to 1819 News, Redstate, and other publications. Jennifer writes on Politics and Pop Culture, with occasional detours into Reinvention, Yoga, and Food. You can read more about Jennifer's world at her As the Girl Turns website. You can also follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Telegram.

The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to [email protected]

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