SU bans drag socials because they’re used to ridicule trans people

Aberystwyth SU said most people who have drag socials are just trying to be ‘as funny as possible’

An SU has banned drag socials because students use them instead to mock trans people and try and be “as funny as possible”.

Aberystwyth SU made the move after consulting the uni’s LGBTQ+ society, who say drag socials on campus are used as “an opportunity to ridicule trans people”.

The socials are “usually about members of random groups dressing up as the opposite gender in a general way that has the intention of being as funny as possible,” says the SU.

The ban will even stop the society, AberPride, holding drag socials themselves, although the society say they have no plans to hold any, as they make members uncomfortable.

“The decision was made with input from AberPride members, especially members of the trans community, because we feel that most societies who have drag socials do so in a mockery of trans women and the trans femme experience,” AberPride told The Tab.

“Often cisgender (and frequently heterosexual) males will take drag socials as an opportunity to ridicule trans people, and AberPride will not stand by and accept that.

“We are unlikely to want to have a drag social at this time, due to the fact that it would make a large proportion of our members uncomfortable.

“The SU has said that they are happy to discuss the situation and make an exception based on a case by case basis, to ensure that any drag socials will not become hugely offensive.”

Aberystwyth SU told The Tab: “Including ‘Drag socials’ as an example of a banned theme is because they are usually about members of random groups dressing up as the opposite gender in a general way that has the intention of being as funny as possible and not as a celebration of LGBTQ+ pride or sexual liberation in the same way that drag is.

“If a society or club wanted to organise a drag social to celebrate drag and LGBT pride then the SU would be supportive of that and would put students in touch with relevant people who could help make that event a success. We would also consult with our relevant Liberation Officers and societies to make sure that it considered a range of angles and factors to ensure maximum inclusivity.

“These rules aren’t about banning fun but have been put in place to protect our LGBTQ+ students and drag community, and brings us in line with the rest of the sector and follow a range of complaints received from those communities throughout previous years. We encourage all clubs and societies to contact us directly if they have any queries about a social theme and as ever we’ll be as helpful as possible.”