Professor Paula Johnson Speaks with CBS News About Anti-LGBTQ Laws

Professor Paula Johnson was interviewed on CBS News about the proliferation of anti-LGBTQ laws in states across the country.

She noted that “While many of them have passed state legislatures, they are still being challenged and making their way through state and federal courts.”

When asked why these laws are being introduced at this time, Johnson says “A particularly vulnerable population is now in some ways being scapegoated for ills that are affecting the country. A vulnerable population but also a resilient one. We are seeing this taking hold as part of the stratification of the country on these social issues.”

When discussing specific laws, she said that expressive performances, such as drag shows, do not just pertain to the LGBTQ community. “Think of comedians who have performed in what we would broadly say was drag. There have been men or male comedians who would dress as female characters. Think of Shakespearean plays, of Greek plays. These things have long histories of being represented as cross-gender representations. There’s no way we can say these things have been problematic aspects within our society and have had wide acceptance in the community and society.”