American tabloid newspaper the New York Post has been condemned by gay activists for using the term “she-male” to refer to a trans person.

The Rupert Murdoch-owned title has long been hostile to the sensibilites of the LGBT community.

The Gay Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) today condemned parent company News Corporation for latest in the paper’s “series of dehumanising insults directed at the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.”

The Post’s edition yesterday contained a Page Six item about an upcoming dating show on Fox Reality Channel (also owned by News Corporation) called There’s Something About Miriam.

The item referred to Miriam, a transgender woman from Mexico, using the slur “she-male.”

The programme was condemned in the UK when it was revealed that none of the six male contestants knew that Miriam is trans.

The Post has been heavily criticised for using the term “toe tapper” (a reference to the alleged bathroom activities of Senator Larry Craig) as a demeaning way to describe gay men.

GLAAD contacted Page Six editor Richard Johnson this morning to discuss the description of Miriam. His e-mailed response read, “You’re kidding me, aren’t you? I would have used ‘chick with a dick’but we’re as [sic] family newspaper.”

The tabloid paper has made a point of inflaming gay opinion, publishing cartoons showing gay men getting married to sheep.

“‘She-male’ is a dehumanising slur, and its use by the New York Post – not to mention the even more vulgar slur that one of its editors claims he would have used – is only the latest confirmation of the tabloid’s disreputable practices,” said GLAAD senior director of media programmes Rashad Robinson.

“News Corporation’s tacit endorsement of the Post’s defamatory content stands in stark contrast to, and should raise concerns about, what readers should expect to see in the company’s legitimate news outlets, such as The Wall Street Journal.