Metro Weekly

LGBTQ community protests Texas bar for refusing entry to gay man wearing makeup

The man was forced to remove his makeup before entering the establishment

Bobby Rodriguez — Photo: Facebook

The LGBTQ community of Corpus Christi is protesting a local nightclub after it wouldn’t allow a man inside while he was wearing makeup.

Last week, Bobby Rodriguez joined some friends at Whiskey River for some drinks and dancing, but when he tried to enter, he told KRIS-TV that they would not allow him inside.

“The doorman was just like, ‘unfortunately, you can’t go in because you’re wearing makeup, and we have a rule, a dress code that states, men need to dress like men,'” Rodriguez said, adding, “At first I was just like in shock, like, are you being for real? And he was like, yeah.”

The 21-year-old gay man said he wiped off his lipstick and removed his lashes so that he would be allowed into the club, but doubts that he will ever go back.

“For me, I feel like it was discriminatory,” Rodriguez said. “I get it that we have to look like our driver’s license, it could be a safety issue. But like, I don’t look all that different with makeup on. I think just the issue was that I was a male wearing makeup and not a female.”

The local LGBTQ community of Corpus Christi is joining Rodriguez in his boycott of the nightclub and is even organizing a protest outside of Whiskey River this Thursday. 

Transgender activist Kathy Huff, who is organizing the protest, said that she wants the bar to understand that “this is 2018.”

“We don’t have ‘whites only’ bars anymore, we don’t have ‘whites only’ restaurants, and we don’t have straight anything,” Huff said. “We need to be more inclusive and welcoming to everybody. I mean Corpus is a tourist town, and that’s something that we don’t need a spot on us for, that it’s a tourist for everybody but the LGBT community.”

Rodriguez said that though gay people have come a long way, there is always small interactions that make him realize LGBTQ people still need to fight for tolerance.

“We thought we came a long way, but yet we still have to fight for little things,” Rodriguez said. “We shouldn’t have to be forced to a gay bar because we’re different and we wear makeup. I feel like we should be able to walk into any bar and feel accepted.”

Neither federal law or Texas state law provides protections for LGBTQ customers from discrimination.

In another instance of LGBTQ discrimination in the state, a Texas teacher is suing a San Antonio school district after she was placed on suspension for discussing her wife with her class.