University of Dayton officials legitimized men dressing as women and performing on stage as “an artistic expression in our culture” in comments to The Cardinal Newman Society about an event held Easter Wednesday at the Catholic college that brought in an “educational drag troupe” to teach students about “drag culture.”
The event, “Rubi Girls: Transformation, An Interactive Experience,” featured the Dayton, Ohio,-based “comedic, charitable, and educational drag troupe” known as the Rubi Girls. The Rubi Girls are a “group of gay men in their 30’s, 40’s and 50’s” who perform “charity-driven, comedic drag performances.” The group is comprised of “elementary school teachers, a clinical counselor, a filmmaker and business owners” who don women’s clothing and makeup for performances.
A flyer for the event provided the following description: “Want to know more about drag culture? Take a behind the scenes look at the transformative process of a drag queen. Get up close and personal with members of the Rubi Girls in an interactive event as you watch them transform before you.” The advertisement featured images of men dressed as women.
According to the flyer, the event was sponsored by the University of Dayton, the University’s Institute for Arts Nexus, the Universityof Dayton LGBTQ+ Support Services and Spectrum, the University of Dayton’s gay-straight alliance.
The event wasn’t the first time the University has promoted the Rubi Girls on campus. A documentary about the group was screened on campus in 2012, and a workshop featuring the troupe was held in 2014.
The Newman Society asked the program organizer for more information about the purpose of this event and its value for students, especially in terms of the Catholic mission of the University. The organizer was also asked if the event would challenge Church teaching on gender and human sexuality, and if any speakers would be there to explain and defend Church teaching.
“This was an educational program — not a show — with learning outcomes that included an educational discussion,” University officials responded. “The program did not challenge Church teaching; it examined an artistic expression in our culture and conveyed a strong message about appreciation for and respecting of human dignity.”
The University also stated that the event “allowed students to explore experiences of those who may differ from them, and reflect on what it means to treat each human with dignity and respect.” Many other Catholic, and even non-Catholic, colleges have found ways to teach students that all people should be treated with dignity and respect without having them watch men explain and undergo the “transformative process of a drag queen.”- read more at: http://www.cardinalnewmansociety.org/CatholicEducationDaily/DetailsPage/tabid/102/ArticleID/4807/Catholic-College-Teaches-Students-About-%e2%80%98Drag-Culture-%e2%80%99-an-%e2%80%98Artistic-Expression%e2%80%99.aspx#sthash.cLXv1erq.dpuf