Anything RuPaul says is full of quaint wisdom and snappy sage. He truly is a populist queer philosopher.
Stepping down from his pink palace—likely to promote the dual roles as upcoming Drag Race All Stars host and Emmy nominee—the queen of all queens spoke with Vulture about myriad hot topics. He talked about what it means for him to be nominated for a major award (“I’ve lived my life and worked my career outside of the system.”), the state of the Republican party (“When a butterfly makes a metamorphosis from being a caterpillar, there’s a violent exchange between caterpillar and butterfly.”), and post-Pulse gay USA (“It was a hurtful situation, and even more hurtful that I don’t believe that we as a people, as a culture, have really learned from it and how to deal with it.”). There is a lot of goodness to take away, as expected.
The most delicious segment is his chatting about the Democrats and his fondness for the party. “I fucking love them,” he starts. “I have always loved them.” This thought leads into a very good capturing of what the Democratic party means right now, especially in the context of both candidates and “the system”: we’re in a unique position with a very unique candidate—and he loves her. Hillary is RuPaul’s homegirl and his capturing of her as both a politician and pop cultural figure is quite brilliant.
Any female executive, anybody who has been put to the side — women, blacks, gays — for them to succeed in a white-male-dominated culture is an act of brilliance. Of resilience, of grit, of everything you can imagine. So, what do I think of Hillary? I think she’s fucking awesome. Is she in bed with Wall Street? Goddammit, I should hope so! You’ve got to dance with the devil. So which of the horrible people do you want? That’s more of the question. Do you want a pompous braggart who doesn’t know anything about diplomacy? Or do you want a badass bitch who knows how to get shit done? That’s really the question.
That’s exactly it but, more than that, he captures something that seems to be really missing in this conversation: how minority persons have to go above and beyond, selling a part of themselves, to truly be accepted as the norm, as a “straight white male.” Hillary’s being in bed with Wall Street, as he says, is something she has to do to be upwardly mobile. When you are seen as an other, when you are viewed by much of the world as bad, you have to touch all the goodness and badness in the world, becoming everything through osmosis because you need acceptance from all directions in order to succeed. Does that make you a better person? Not really. But you have to play on every field before you can try to change the game.
Like he goes on to say, evoking a political performance theorist, “Everybody’s playing a role.” Hillary has one, Trump has one, Ru has one, you have one: we all have roles in politics as we do in life. Whether the play has a happy ending or not is entirely up to the playwrights which, funny enough, is also us. Let’s construct the best possible ending, no?