Bob The Drag Queen, a current contestant on the eighth season of RuPaul’s Drag Race, is not afraid of getting arrested for the things she believes in. Queerty was given an exclusive opportunity to talk to Bob about the her personal fight for marriage equality and to learn about the time she was thrown in jail in full drag.
The following is a transcription of Bob’s words from our conversation.
“I used to be part of a group called Drag Queen Wedding for Equality. We would do drag queen mock weddings in Times Square every Saturday from noon to four, about 12 to 20 weddings a day. We’d hand out information about the inequality that queer people faced. We did the weddings for almost exactly a year. I did it all the way through the winter, which was crazy, and all the way through the summer. Then that next year we got marriage equality in New York.”
“I got in touch with a group called Queer Rising before New York got equality. We used to do some really extreme activism together. I got arrested with them six years ago. They were like ‘Hey, we’re doing something pretty radical. How do you feel about getting arrested for your rights?’ I said I was terrified but I wanted in.”
“We got arrested in Bryant Park, which is a block away from Times Square. We went out there and walked out in the middle of traffic with a big sign that said ‘New York Demands Marriage Equality Now.’ The cops were there waiting for us because the point is to get press attention, so we had tipped off the press beforehand. They didn’t force us down and spray us down with water hoses or anything like that. They used zip ties, threw us in the back of the police wagon and took us down to the station.”
“They took our mug shots with a Polaroid out in the street before we got to the police station. They arrested us, 10 or 12 of us, three of which were drag queens: me, my friends Frosted Flakes and Honey LaBronx. All three of us were arrested in full drag.”
“We actually weren’t in jail very long, but it was interesting because I had never been arrested in full drag before. They put us in a cell by ourselves. All the guys were in one cell, all the girls were in one cell. I remember that they didn’t know if one of the drag queens was a guy or a girl until she removed her clothes, then they put her in the men’s cell.”
“We prepared for the worst because we didn’t know how long we’d be there, so we actually snuck in food [laughs]. I had a bagel under my wig and my boobs were made of cashews [laughs]. I had prepared to be in there all night long because I had heard horror stories.”
“When you work in activism, they recommend you only get arrested once every six months, and the next group that got arrested had it a lot worse than we did. They spent the weekend in jail, and we only spent, what, an hour? If that.”
“We got some national exposure. It was during a time when there was no marriage equality in New York and it was a really hot, pressing issue.”
“These days, I do a lot of charity work, but my activism has leaned more toward fundraising. At each of my gigs I sell Charity4ThePeople bracelets and all the proceeds go to benefit a local charity. I also auction off memorabilia from RuPaul’s Drag Race, including my outfits and outfits from some of the other girls as well. If someone’s interested in purchasing something, they can go to Charity4ThePeople.com. All the proceeds go to the True Colors Fund.”
Bob talks about his activism in the seventh episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race, which airs on Logo every Monday at 9/8c. Queerty was provided with an exclusive, early-access sneak peak, which you can enjoy below.