Students embrace drag culture during LGBTQ+ History Month


Peter Morgan | The TickerDrag queens Tsunami New and Chanel NO 5 entertained students and faculty alike while exposing them to drag culture at “Life’s a Drag.” Students were also able to participate in dancing, games and competitions.

Geraldine Taveras

However, many people don’t understand what drag is all about.

“People think if you’re drag, you’re a man and you want to be a woman. No! That’s not it,” Tsunami New said.

Drag queens are men who dress up in exaggerated women’s attire. They typically wear long shiny garments that are critically provocative.

Chanel NO 5 rocked a cheetah print two-piece with black cat ears and Tsunami New was draped in diamonds with a long silver dress that followed her. Together, they danced and lip synced to Celine Dion, Cardi B and Tyra Bank’s sassy interview quotes.

While Baruch has been celebrating LGBTQ+ History Month for years, the drag community wasn’t always welcomed in New York City.

During the event, there was an educational portion in which it was explained that drag culture
originated in theater in the late 1800’s.

Men dressed up in women’s garments and let their coats drag onto the floor.

In the 1920’s the LGBTQ+ community adopted the term. Thus, a more modern idea of drag was born. Drag serves to entertain and decompress from the daily boredom of life.

The two queens took a more serious stance while teaching students about the 1969 Stone Wall Riots, in which a gay club in Greenwich Village was brutally targeted by the New York City Police Department.

Police raided the Stonewall Inn causing an uprising in the city’s LGBTQ+ community over police mistreatment of employees and patrons.

The protest lasted six days, in which violent outbursts between law enforcement and protesters persisted, causing injuries to some. 

In the 1960’s, same-sex relations were illegal in New York at that time, resulting in the LGBTQ+
community flocking to underground gay clubs in Greenwich Village.

The Village was seen as a safe haven for the outcasts of society where people could come and express themselves openly without the fear of judgment.

“Opportunities are being opened up for us now,” Chanel NO 5 said. Now, drag queens can live comfortably in New York, the queens explained, but not in other cities. “Now that people like us are more accepted in society we want to put ourselves out there,” Dominic Maciejaszek, G.L.A.S.S. secretary, said.

Confident and shy students of all backgrounds and majors put on a fierce competition which ended in a head-to-head tie where splits were busted and boa feathers and dollar bills were left scattered.

“I wish they would have more drag events,” Erica Parker, a sophomore attendee, said.

Overall, the event succeeded in bringing people together for laughs, sync, dance and a little bit of history on the origin of drag.

Tiffany Bois of G.L.A.S.S., who was also the main event planner shared her insight on the culture.

“Drag culture, we do it because we love life, and life can be a drag but you can also make it fun,” she said.