The legacy of Sasha Colby


This past Friday, the grand finale of season 15 of “RuPaul’s Drag Race” aired on MTV. For longtime viewers of the show, the winner this season was clear from the very beginning. As soon as this season’s cast was revealed, all that fans of the series could talk about was Sasha Colby, who is arguably one of the most experienced and well-known drag queens ever.

The reason that fans were so shocked about Sasha Colby being on the show is because of her track record. In 2012, she won the title of Miss Continental, the biggest drag pageant in the world. Another reason the drag community loves Sasha Colby is her activism for the trans community. Since she herself is a trans woman, she has never been silent about the endless oppression that the community faces. Not only is she an amazing representative of the trans community, but she is also the first native Hawaiian to take the Drag Race crown.

Of course, this did not come without controversy. With the current political climate in the United States, a trans woman winning Drag Race was incredibly upsetting to some people. Not only are certain states desperately trying to ban drag queens, but some are also trying to ban gender-affirming medical care for trans individuals. In an interview with Vogue Magazine, Sasha Colby stated, “I am the embodiment of what they want to eradicate.”

The season 15 winner isn’t the only queen speaking out on these bans. Her drag daughter, Kerri Colby, another trans woman who placed ninth on season 14 of the show, has been more than vocal on the issue. When speaking with Them, a queer online news outlet, Kerri Colby said, “Drag saved my life and has done so for countless other people.”

Even outside of the episodes, dozens of queens who have competed in previous seasons spoke out on social media. RuPaul himself even posted a video to his Instagram, where he shared his thoughts on the matter. In the video, he says, “They look for easy targets so they can give the impression of being effective.” RuPaul then goes on to say, “Don’t get it twisted, and don’t be distracted. Register to vote so we can get this stunt queens out of office and put some smart people with real solutions into government.”

With the rights of both trans people and drag performers under attack, Sasha Colby taking the crown and giving the acceptance speech that she did was, in a way, a slap in the face to lawmakers trying to silence the trans community.