This past Thursday, UC Santa Barbara had a very exciting guest speaker, a real gem within the drilling community. After leasing mineral rights to oil companies on his ranch,  RuPaul became a notable celebrity figure within the fracking community, and was widely praised for his ability to normalize fracking in a world where it is not very widely accepted. 

Students came thrilled to see him speak to this experience and share what it was like to overcome the stereotypes surrounding people who are interested in drilling for natural gas and oils. Many even came with their own rocks that had natural gasses trapped in them, hoping to get them signed by RuPaul. Much to the disappointment of these students, RuPaul did not once mention fracking, oil, natural gasses or any kind of fossil fuel. 

“When he said drag, I thought it would be about dragging out negotiations in Congress to free up people’s ability to harvest the Earth’s natural resources,” said economics major Kiki Bootsenhaus. “Is RuPaul very fast? I don’t get why he hosts a race.”

Most students who attended the event were completely unaware of RuPaul’s history of working with drag queens, and were only aware of his prominent role in the fracking community. Even more so, most students were under the assumption that “drag race” referred to a type of sport involving racing cars. 

“Lightning McQueen over here talking about sewing. Who the fuck sews in drag race?” asked mechanical engineering major Sashay Dethdraup. 

It’s important to do your research in advance of attending these speaker events, Gauchos. In the future, knowing all the things that any given speaker is involved in will allow you to fully enjoy these events without the risk of learning about something that you did not want to learn about. 

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