« Gallery | Gloria and Emilio Estefan attend Miami Beach Gay Pride VIP gala; Cindy Brown is honored | Main | Video | Gloria Estefan on why she supports marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples »

Drag queens Courtney Act, Elaine Lancaster, Lady Bunny put Miami Beach Gay Pride on parade

BY STEVE ROTHAUS
srothaus@MiamiHerald.com

Miami drag diva Elaine Lancaster is not just a pretty face.

Having recently launched a line of lip lacquer, Lancaster will be mistress of ceremonies Sunday at Miami Beach Gay Pride’s post-parade spectacular at 11 Street and Ocean Drive.

“It’s going to be a day of celebration and hopefully jubilation. We’re not asking for special rights, we're asking for equal rights,” Lancaster says. “People used to say, ‘Elaine, why do we need gay pride and a parade?’ Because people out there are trying to silence us, push us back in the closet and make us feel ashamed. It’s a constant battle. Gay people, the more visibility there is, the more people get to see us, the more acceptance there is.”

Lancaster — AKA James Davis — takes center stage with two other famous female impersonators, Lady Bunny (Jon Marc Ingle) and Courtney Act (Shane Jenek).

“Elaine is lovely and talented, just never on the same night,” says Bunny, a New York DJ who has long performed in South Beach, home of “the sexiest guys on the planet.”

“That really helps, not that I wouldn’t mix doing business with pleasure,” Bunny says.

Some drag queens these days are taking lots of heat, much from within the LGBT community. Many trans activists have recently protested drag star RuPaul for using the words “tranny” and “she-male” on the hit Logo TV show, RuPaul’s Drag Race.

“When did political correctness become thought police?” says Bunny, defending RuPaul’s right to use the words onstage. “It may offend you but put your big girl panties on and don’t patronize [the show].”

Act, an Australian-born star of RuPaul’s Drag Race, is a bit more sensitive.

“If there's a section of my community that's offended by words, I have no issue not using it. What is taking a word out of my vocabulary going to affect my life? Instead of using tranny, just say trans. trans man, trans woman, trans person,” Act says. “It’s so easy.”

Act is the star act at Pride this year.

“I love gay pride festivals because the need for identity in the gay community has decreased over the years. We’ve become more accepted and it’s become more acceptable,” Act says. “Some people say, ‘Is there a need for gay pride parades anymore?’ They’ve expanded beyond the core gay and lesbian values. Bisexual and transgender. Queer. Now it’s a celebration of everything that's not hetero normative. A celebration of diversity.”

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

The comments to this entry are closed.