Councilman Patrick Dowd pecked the cheek of 30-year-old Aaron Coady, best known as Sharon Needles, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Wednesday.
"She forces us to reconsider questions around young people and bullying and ask what can we do to be a more open and inviting city," Dowd said as council declared Tuesday "Sharon Needles Day." The council proclamation recognized Needles for winning the RuPaul show and for using "her performance and her art to push the envelope, intending to spark discussion that breaks down barriers created by discrimination."
"Beneath the 30 pounds of makeup and corsets and gowns are real beating hearts of real people and they usually come from a place of pain," Needles said. "A win for Sharon Needles is a win for every single kid in this city who's still being bullied."
Needles went on to speak in favor of same-sex marriage and to criticize those who disagreed with the drag lifestyle.
Needles has drawn some criticism, even among the drag community, for her Haus of Haunt drag troupe in Pittsburgh, which the newspaper describes as "an outsider art collective with a blood-drenching, money-blending, cake throwing act."
Needles said she believed the audience for RuPaul's show voted her as its most recent winner because, "They see the flaw in my beauty and I think the most beautiful thing in the world is flaw."
Information from: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, http://www.post-gazette.com