A Drag Queen Christmas took place at the Aztec Theater in San Antonio, Texas, drawing more than just ticket holders. Protesters and counterprotesters can be seen in video footage on opposite sidewalks, donning signs and, in some cases, weapons.
One group that promoted a demonstration against the show, This is Texas Freedom Force, said they would not have an issue if it were restricted to those 18 and older. “This could all have been avoided,” it tweeted. “Even the opposition claims the show isn’t geared towards kids, so why allow them in?”
An armed pro-LGBT counterprotester said, “I know that they use guns to try to intimidate people on the Left, and they can’t do that if we’re also armed.” A member of the group Veterans for Equality said, “I’m not here to try to shoot anybody or anything like that but if they want to try to intimidate, well, we can stand up to it, and to me, this is an expression of that.”
The show began at 8 p.m., and an hour before, the surrounding sidewalks were crowded by nearly 100 demonstrators.
The contentious opposing groups drew a large police presence to the theater as well.
City council members also reportedly joined the pro-LGBT side at one point.
The Log Cabin Republicans of San Antonio, a group representing LGBT Republicans, was among the organizations protesting the event. “Still, the left thinks this is about hating gays. It’s about minors going to a strip show of drag queens,” the group posted on Facebook after the protest.
The show went on as planned and finished up around 10:30 p.m., with the demonstrations ending soon thereafter.