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Hyatt Regency Miami's liquor license was revoked by Gov. DeSantis

Hyatt Regency Miami's liquor license gets revoked by Gov. DeSantis after hosting a holiday-themed drag show

The administration of Gov. DeSantis has revoked Hyatt Regency Miami's liquor license after it hosted a drag queen Christmas show because a minor was present in the audience.

The Department of Business and Professional Regulation filed a complaint comprising 17 pages against the venue of the show, Knight Center, which is Hyatt-affiliated. The show's advertisement welcomed people of all ages, including minors, if an adult accompanied them.

Continue reading for more details on the liquor license revocation:

Miami venue charged for violating several legislations

"A Drag Queen Christmas" is a show themed around Holidays. It tours in 36 cities featuring RuPaul's Drag Race reality show stars.

The business department of Florida accused Knight Center of violating several legislations, including a lewd exhibition in front of those aged 16 or younger. According to the state's business department, the drag performers were stimulating masturbation and wore sexually suggesting clothes that displayed female genitalia.

Hyatt has 21 days to request a hearing, and it can continue selling liquor until the final decision is made.


Gov. DeSantis supports liquor license revocation

The Gov. has supported the business department's decision to revoke Hyatt's liquor license. His secretary stated that displaying sexually explicit content before children is a violation of Florida law. He further said that the governor is committed to protecting the innocence of children in Florida.

DeSantis also signed legislation last year banning in-classroom discussions on sexual and gender orientation up to 3rd grade. This legislation, called Parental Rights in Education Act, has been widely and severely criticized by LGBTQ advocates.

An LGBTQ organization, Equality Florida, also panned his new business revocation move stating that he is pitting state agencies against local businesses hosting drag performances. They emphasized that he needs to stop forcing families to co-parent and leave these decisions to parents.

Business regulators are warning drag performance hosts to change their marketing strategies. However, Hyatt Regency isn't the only business that has lost its business license. A Miami bar also lost its liquor license in 2022 for hosting a drag show with a minor present. A similar complaint was filed against Philharmonic Plaza.

The US free expression programs director Kate Raune said that the decision to revoke the business license is a violation of free speech as the 1st Amendment protects drag shows. The government shouldn't punish businesses or people for their free speech, which the government doesn't approve of. She said such decisions will continue to harm businesses in Florida.

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