The owner of a club where New Orleans hip-hop artist Big Freedia was supposed to perform said an agent from Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) threatened to shut down the concert, and possibly the entire venue for the year, if she was allowed to perform.
The agent's concern apparently revolved around Big Freedia's on-stage performance, which includes 'twerking' and the ABC agent considered a potential violation of rules against simulating a sex act.
"You can't wear a thong. You must keep the cleft of your buttocks covered. And you cannot simulate a sex act," Rusty Hanna, the state ABC chief of enforcement, explained to The Guardian. "Sexually orientated adult entertainment is not permitted in a place that sells alcoholic beverages."
Big Freedia's manager said he didn't want to cancel the show, except that the venue faced a fine, not the performer. The Guardina reports:
After learning of the threats to shut down the show, Freedia's manager, Reid Martin, contacted the alcohol agency. He says he was told that the agent had "seen things on YouTube that might be against Mississippi code" and that agents would supervise the show if it went forward so that they could shut it down if it exceeded the terms of the town code.
"I would happily have us take a stand for twerking," Martin said. "The fact of the matter is that the way that [agent Miles] spelled it out was, we wouldn't be fined. It's the venue owner that would have his license revoked, that would get fined. But it wasn't certain what the punishment would be. The terms of the clause are broadly defined and there's no defined punishment so they could just make something up."
Big Freedia told The Guardian she didn't understand Mississippi's decision. "Even though we do ass shaking, it's the culture of bounce music," she told the newspaper, referring to the sub-genre of hip-hop that she performs and out of which twerking emerged. "I didn't know twerking violated anybody's amendments. Our right is to be who we want to be and dance in a manner that we want to."
Wait until she learns about all the other bullshit laws that don't violate anyone's rights.
Decide for yourself on twerking.