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Pivot's 'Drag Out Your Friends' Prompts Discussion Amongst Readers

Complaints made in response to Surrey Now-Leader's front page spark online support

On Thursday, August 25th, the Surrey Now-Leader put a photo of one of the performers at Pivot Theatre's Drag Out Your Friends brunch on their front page .

Abeiya Miraj on the front page of the Surrey Now-Leader

After receiving some calls and emails saying that the image of this talented drag performer was inappropriate, the paper's editorial team decided to put the cover on their Facebook page, and asked followers whether they agreed. With over 300 comments, readers were overwhelmingly in support of Abeiya's image.

The highly-discussed subject also prompted the editor of the Surrey Now-Leader, Beau Simpson, to issue a statement that said (edited here for length):

  • “We understand many of our carriers are children and we regularly discuss that as an editorial team when making decisions about what appears on our front page. However, this particular photo did not raise any red flags with us at all. As a matter of fact, I am proud that we published it on our front page. The Now-Leader is here to reflect the voices of all of our city’s communities, and our LGBTQ2S+ community is one of the most vibrant around.”

  • “Abieya looks, as one reader put it, like a beautiful superhero. I think it’s an outstanding photo.”

  • “This was a family event at family restaurant, for a good cause. It was filled with singing, dancing and laughing – something we all need more of these days.”

(He also addressed concerns that had been made about the person in the background of the picture, clarifying that they were in fact checking out the performer's shoes.)

This story was even picked up by Daily Hive Vancouver, complete with more images and video supplied by @sparklejenergy's Instagram post.

The Pivot team had a blast at this event, and we're looking forward to hosting another one next year. Keep an eye on our events page for details!



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