DNA Magazine - - OPINION -

In their me­dia ref­er­ence guide, GLAAD [Gay and Les­bian Al­liance Against Defama­tion] lists “of­fen­sive terms to avoid” that in­clude ho­mo­sex­ual, gay

lifestyle and transvesti­te. Their glos­sary of defam­a­tory terms (“these words only serve to de­hu­man­ise gay and trans­gen­der peo­ple and should not be used”) in­cludes fag, faggot, dyke, homo, sodomite, she

male, tranny, it, shim and gen­der-ben­der. But what about those within the com­mu­nity who use these words to self­i­den­tify, or do not find them de­hu­man­is­ing or of­fen­sive when used in cul­tural con­text? RuPaul’s drag queen re­al­ity pro­gram has of­ten used the term “tranny” and when the con­tro­versy sur­round­ing its use of “she-mail” first erupted, GLAAD’s VP of com­mu­ni­ca­tions, Rich Fer­raro, wrote, “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 hy­per­sex­u­alise trans­gen­der women. Un­for­tu­nately, most Amer­i­cans are still un­aware that there is a dif­fer­ence be­tween gay men who per­form in drag and trans­gen­der women.”

Af­ter ex­pung­ing the term from fu­ture episodes, the pro­duc­ers of RuPaul’s Drag

Race re­leased a joint state­ment that read, “We de­light in cel­e­brat­ing ev­ery color in the LGBT rainbow. When it comes to the move­ment of our trans sis­ters and trans broth­ers, we are newly sen­si­tised and more com­mit­ted than ever to help spread love, ac­cep­tance and un­der­stand­ing.”

Rupaul, who has been ac­cused of trans­pho­bia along­side other LGBT al­lies in­clud­ing, re­cently, Ellen Degeneres and Jared Leto, has not is­sued a for­mal apol­ogy. Shortly af­ter the net­work pulled the of­fend­ing pun from the air, he had this to say on Twit­ter: “Or­well’s book AN­I­MAL FARM: The rebels even­tu­ally for­got the pur­pose of the rev­o­lu­tion #Li­braryIsOpe­n.” -– Jesse Archer

Con­tes­tants from Sea­son 5 of RuPaul’s Drag Race play a con­tro­ver­sial, now cen­sored mini-chal­lenge.

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