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Future of drag shows in Corpus Christi threatened by proposal in Texas Legislature

Republican State Rep. Jared Patterson said the bills are an effort to protect children.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Local businesses in Corpus Christi could feel the impacts of multiple bills that have been filed in the Texas Legislature that aim to outlaw bars or restaurants from hosting drag shows unless they're classified as a "sexually oriented business." 

Republican State Rep. Jared Patterson is just one of three lawmakers who's filed these bills. HB 643 was filed by Patterson, HB 708 by State Rep. Matt Shaheen (R-Plano/Dallas) and HB 1266 by Nate Schatzline (R-Fort Worth).


Patterson said the bills are an effort to protect children.

"Trying to tailor a bill to say that the sexually suggestive drag shows where grown men wear women's underwear and seek children to stuff dollar bills into their underwear, we don't want that to occur in the state of Texas," he said.  

House of Rock owner Casey Lain said that in situations like these, businesses should use proper discretion.

"I think it's really the responsibility of the business owner to conduct good business. Anything that could be offensive, inappropriate needs to be an 18 and up show," he said. 

Lain added that House of Rock has not had any incidents with minors trying to attend drag shows. 

"We've never had an issue or even many minors attempting to come in or even having interest in these shows," he said. "So typically our demographic is middle aged women for most of these shows that we produce. So it is a little bit, unusual circumstance I think for somebody to come at it this way."

Brittany Andrews is the owner and operator of Brittany's Diva Brunch. She told 3NEWS in a statement that she feels that the bills are unfair. 

"I don't understand why I should be terrorized or legislated out of a 30 year career," she said. 

Corpus Christi police told 3NEWS that sexually oriented business licenses are no longer issued by the city and such existing businesses have been grandfathered in. 

Our sister station KVUE in Austin contributed to this report.

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