Heavy Sigh

There is a lot of television I do not watch.

Don’t get me wrong.  I watch too much television, but it’s often cooking shows or men at work, like This Old House, or travel shows like Rick Steves.  And I’m a sucker for a good mystery.  Elementary currently has my attention.

But I try mightily to avoid being exposed to today’s culture.  So I don’t watch Jimmy Kimmel or Mike & Molly.  And apparently that’s a good thing.

GLAAD has called out CBS for an transphobic scene in Mike & Molly.  It’s just not cool, dudes — By dudes, I refer to the actor, the producer, the director, and the writers…any of whom could have stood up and said, loudly,


The offensive scene came within the first few minutes of the February 11 episode entitled “The Princess and the Troll.” In the scene, the show’s main character Mike is talking with his police partner and best friend Carl about Carl’s checkered romantic past of picking up downtrodden women off the street:

Carl: It’s been a long time since I’ve trolled for bus pass ass.

Mike: (Laughing) Not since the shemale incident of ’08.  You spent the whole night crying and gargling!

Carl: Learned a lot of lessons that night.

The use of the derogatory term “shemale” is offensive in and of itself, but Mike goes on to categorize what happened as a traumatic experience which left Carl disgusted and weeping with regret.  The joke relies on the assumption that transgender people (and the thought of being with one) are revolting, and invites the audience to laugh right along.  And last night that audience was 10.4 million people.

I know.  “It’s just a joke.”

Right.  We transpeople are all just jokes, you know.  And we have no senses of humor.

Like we might even get offended by this obviously hilarious bit on KImmel:

That’s just too cute, Jimmy.  What a gift for Valentine’s Day.  It almost ranks up there with the time you joked about violence against transwomen (hitting trannies with axes video since removed).  Or your skit about the transgender question at Miss USA…oh, darn, that’s been scrubbed as well.

I don’t watch American Idol either.  But during research for this diary, I ran into Kez Ban’s audition for the show.

It is not surprising that Ban said this before performing:

Before we get started, can I ask you one question?  If you think I am destined to the bloopers reel in a way the would embarrass my mother, let me know right now and I will leave.

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.


  1. Robyn

    Crazy, Stupid Love

    Reports include

    Transgender Sweethearts:  Eighteen-year-old Katie Hill and her 17-year-old boyfriend Arin Andrews are crazy in love.  They are like any other teenage couple except for one thing – they were each born the opposite sex. Deborah Roberts reports.

  2. TMC

    One of the sub-plots was about a transgender teen couple who were very much in love with each other and the problem of dealing with the young man, who was undergoing transitional surgery, and his father’s reaction. I felt it was a bit unrealistic at the end but then this is “drama.” Overall, I thought, while the topic was handled fairly well, there was not really enough depth.

    I actually remember an episode of “Dr. Kildare” from the mid 60’s where actor Robert Reed, who late came out, played a doctor who was in transition. It was quite a controversial topic back then.

    You can go ahead, laugh that I watch “Grey’s Anatomy” but I need to so I can straighten out the ER residents who somehow think it’s on the level. And it’s a break from the constant barrage of news, politics, etc that I seem to be immersed.

  3. Robyn

    …but don’t usually watch medical shows.

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