Denver Gay Bar Found Guilty Of Not Allowing Entry To Drag Queens
The Denver Wrangler, a popular gay bar that attracts a large "bear" clientele, has a long sordid history with populating its club with a myopic view of masculinity while discriminating against men in drag at the door by barring them from entry.
Bouncers and Wrangler owners enforced this policy of discriminating against drag queens by claiming that they don't have to let people in who appear different than the picture on their I.D.'s -- a trope horrifically borrowed from anti-trans bigots and applied to a gay bar setting.
This was the bile spewed to Vito John Marzano, a drag activist who spent a few years of his life fighting the gay-on-gay discrimination at the Wrangler. Not only did the Wrangler make its policy clear with an image that appeared for a short time on its website (above) before being taken down once the heat was applied, but the bouncers also aren't exactly subtle while denying Marzano entry in this now-infamous video:
Marzano took the discrimination case to Colorado's civil rights officials, who this week ruled that the Wrangler is guilty of discrimination. The state's Department of Regulatory Agencies found that the Wrangler granted entry to hyper-masculine gay men while consistently denying men in drag. Investigators also discovered a bar policy banning "wigs, high heels and strong perfumes."
“In other words, a female with a masculine gender presentation would be permitted to enter, whereas, a male presenting as a female would be denied entry,” DRA civil rights division Director Steven Chavez wrote in the report.
Unfortunately, the DRA has only demanded that the Wrangler and Marzano settle this dispute themselves, which is what Marzano's been attempting to do for a year now. So, in other words, though the Wrangler is guilty in the state's eyes of barring entry to drag queens, don't hold your breath, Colorado.