We’re on track to see a record-breakingly bad year for anti-LGBTQ+ bills. This Pride month, one of the biggest targets for Republicans appears to be drag performers. Just in the past week, Gov. Ron DeSantis (R–FL.) announced he’s considering investigating parents who bring their children to drag shows; a Texas state legislator said he’s planning to file a bill that bans minors from attending drag shows. Over the weekend, thirty-one members of Patriot Front, a group out of Texas identified by the Anti-Defamation League as white supremacist, were arrested in Idaho and charged with conspiracy to riot for their alleged plans to riot at a local Pride event.

And in the Bay Area, a children’s story time event hosted by Kyle Chu, whose drag name is Panda Dulce, was interrupted by a group of eight to 10 people believed to be from the reactionary extreme right-wing Proud Boys.

Teen Vogue caught up with Kyle, 33, to hear what happened and what she hopes people understand about drag. This interview has been condensed and lightly edited for clarity.

Teen Vogue: Do you want to share what happened in your own words?

KC: I was sitting with the two librarians, singing a welcome song, when eight to ten Proud Boys marched in with their cameras outstretched. They took seats in the second row behind children and parents. One man had an AK-47 shirt that said “kill your local pedophile” on it. We stopped the song and the Proud Boys yelled “who brought the tranny” and started hurling insults, calling me a pedophile and a groomer. The librarian asked them politely to leave, and security came in. I realized that I wasn’t helping the situation by still being present so I was taken to a safe room and the sheriff was called. They continued to terrorize the librarians and flashed white power hand gestures.

TV: How were you feeling while this was all happening?

KC: I kind of broke down. It all swarmed me so fast. Reading about the spike in gun violence and reading about far-right extremism, you have a buffer – not only of passively consuming news, but using your phone screen as a buffer. So to be confronted with bigots that are deeply misinformed about who you are and what you stand for, it’s terrifying.

TV: What did you do next?

KC: We agreed to continue the program and finish the reading. The moral of the story: you can come and have a tantrum, be escorted out to the principals’ office for detention, and we will continue doing what we’re doing peacefully. The security guard, who was amazing, escorted me back out and held my hand and covered the windows.

I read a story, Families, Families, Families!, about different permutations of family structures featuring zoo animals. My partner came over with makeup wipes and boy clothes so I de-dragged and we made some stops on the way home to make sure we weren’t followed.



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