Everyone, even fans, are appalled with Rupaul’s ‘shemale’ contest

Everyone, except GLAAD that is
By Kelli Anne Busey
@kellibusey

 

Image: RuPaul's Drag Race, Season 6 Episode 4 screenshot of four of the reality show's contestants holding up signs saying 'She-Male' and 'He-Male' for a show segment RuPaul introduced

Rupauls contestants yucking it up after being told they will be using a transphobic slur in determining whether a person is a ‘real’ woman or a psycho case

Rupaul, the clown in pancake makeup has figured out a way to be even more obnoxious. 
Perhaps he feels that he should fill the vacuum left by the passing of Fred Philps and become the country’s next most hated man? Maybe, but hardly anyone is enjoying his last promotional transphobic stunt, save TERFs, who are undoubtedly laughing up their sleeves right alongside other bigots, if they have heard of him that is.

Rafi D’Angelo from Slate said “This week’s mini-challenge left a particularly bad taste in my mouth, and now that I’ve slept on the episode, I’m just going to say it: Ru, girl, it’s time for the transphobia to sashay away.”

Another fan Gregory Rosebrugh wrote on Indie wire it’s never too late to Rupologize for his transphobia before doing his weekly recap of the show.

Smriti Sinha observes on PolicyMic that “RuPaul Is Finally Being Taken to Task for Transphobia as Backlash Grows”

Given the cultural legacy of the terms “tranny” and “shemale,” it would seem neither should have any place in a show ostensibly celebrating drag culture. At best they would seem to be in bad taste, but at worst joking about “shemales” may encourage damaging stereotypes about the trans community and signal that it’s fun and acceptable to call out women for “masculine” looks.
The trans community deserves better, RuPaul.

Parker Marie Molloy, noted transgender journalist with the Advocate wrote about how“RuPaul Stokes Anger With Use of Transphobic Slur” and wondered what GLAAD had to say about it given they pimp Drag Race weekly in ‘what to watch’.

“When asked for comment on last night’s episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race, GLAAD vice president of communications Rich Ferraro responded, “While some drag queens may use the term to refer to themselves, ‘she-male’ is too often used by others as an offensive term to denigrate and hypersexualize transgender women. Unfortunately, most Americans are still unaware that there is a difference between gay men who perform in drag and transgender women. That’s why GLAAD will continue to tell the stories of trans women like CeCe McDonald, Carmen Carrera, and CrossFit athlete Chloie Jonsson.”

GLAAD’s list of transphobic utterances which begins with less offensive “problematic” terms and progresses to “Defamatory”

Defamatory: “she-male,” “he-she,” “it,” “trannie,” “tranny,” “shim,” “gender-bender”
These words only serve to dehumanize transgender people and should not be used.

Ferraro, where does your definition say “except Rupaul”?  You sure did take Mike and Molly to task offering no quarter telling CBS:

Not only is the term “shemale” incredibly offensive, the clear implication of the scene is that being with a person who is trans is both traumatic and disgusting. Humor at the direct expense of a group of people, especially one so targeted for discrimination and violence, is not humor at all.

GLAAD has reached out to CBS, a network that has struggled to depict LGBT people fairly and that often uses trans people as the punchline for “jokes”:
This morning, GLAAD spoke with CBS’s Vice President of Diversity and Communications who is discussing the issues directly with the show. CBS has also committed to meeting with GLAAD staff to discuss the offensive scene, as well as a number of other incidents on CBS comedies and dramas in the past year that increasingly add up to a disturbing trend.

GLAAD is calling on CBS to put an end to anti-trans content for the sake of a laugh and to treat trans issues with greater sensitivity.

Rich Ferraro, this isn’t the first time I’ve called you out for you’re organizations duplicity. WE get it you have individuals to play anti transphobic champions with but that has NOTHING to do with Rupaul. It does not matter who says “shemale” to defame, cisgender or trans, its all the same. You don’t see that? Everyone else does. Don’t you see how you have not only lost the respect of the trans community but are/have become a laughing stock?  Borrowing Mr Rosebrugh’s headline for a second I’d just like to say:

GlAAD its never to late to Transpologize and act like the organization that your portend to be.


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83 Comments

  1. Rah Kog March 26, 2014
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  3. Emily Crosbie March 26, 2014
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