• Entertainment

GLAAD Chides “Jersey Shore” For Using The Word “Tranny.” But What About “Glee”?

MTV’s “Jersey Shore” had a bit of a situation with the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) for airing what they deemed to be “one of the most blatantly transphobic scenes aired anywhere on television in the last few years.” During this season of the show, The Situation was out at a club, chatting up a person he presumed to be a woman but turned out to be transgendered. Afterward, he and other members of the crew threw around the word “tranny.” MTV has issued an apology and vowed to remove the footage from future broadcasts of the show. “The segment in question was certainly not meant to be insensitive, but in retrospect we realize that it was offensive to some viewers,” the network wrote in a statement. “We sincerely apologize.”

Well, props to MTV for the apology. But that’s not the real issue here. In last week’s “Rocky Horror Picture Show” episode of “Glee,” the word “transexual” was taken out of the song “Sweet Transvestite” (which appears in the original “Rocky Horror”) and replaced with “sensational,” so clearly Fox was wary of how the language would go over with the show’s audience. Yet, interestingly, the slang word “tranny” was used multiple times in scenes written for the show and not in the original “Rocky” material. In one scene, Mike Chang dropped out of the role of Frank-N-Furter saying his parents didn’t want him “dressing like a tranny.” And this got an entirely different sort of response from GLAAD. GLAAD issued the following statement in response to “Glee”:

“The casual manner in which the word was used is jarring, even if he may have been repeating what his parents said. Unfortunately the larger problem here is that the word ‘tranny’ has become an easy punch line in popular culture, and many still don’t realize that using the term is hurtful, dehumanizing, and associated with violence, hatred, and derision against transgender people—a community that is nearly invisible in media today.”

A slap on the wrist for “Glee” and a public flogging for “Jersey Shore”? Seems like a double standard. Yes, the word was used in a different context, but does the intention behind a word change its appropriateness? I personally thought Mike Chang’s comment could be construed as offensive. Shouldn’t the punishment for insensitivity be equal? Share your thoughts in the comments.

[Huffington Post]
[New York Times]
[Examiner]

Posted Under: , , , , ,
  • Zergnet: Simply Irresistible

  • HowAboutWe

  • Popular