Enter your email address to receive our daily LGBT news roundup

You're free to unsubscribe at any time.

Susan Sarandon says GLAAD is ‘out of control’

Post your comment

Comments on this article are now closed.

Reader comments

  1. Dandelion 9 Nov 2010, 5:02pm

    GLAAD is so overly PC that they might as well be like PETA now.

  2. I don’t actually give a flying f**k about this story.

  3. Do you even know what you are talking about? PETA are PC? Are they? In what way? Go and look ‘politically correct’ up in the dictionary and get back to us eh.

  4. Dandelion 9 Nov 2010, 6:02pm

    But I didn’t say PETA was PC – I said GLAAD was ;)
    There is a difference. Your argument is Non sequitur.

    When your organization seethes at the mention of “tranny” or gay jokes in a stupid movie – yeah, you’re PC and blowing your own horn for the publicity.

    WHICH IS comparable to how PETA blows their horn about poor baby chickens (that taste delicious) or saying that fur coats from un-endangeed animals are teh evil (never mind the meat and more gets used).

    See? PETA isn’t PC, but GLAAD is. I was comparing GLAADs new SCREAM IT tactics to PETAs likewise. I never said PETA was PC.

  5. Dandelion 9 Nov 2010, 6:04pm

    AKA your mind made its own connection that I was implying PETA was PC, when I was not.

    I was saying that GLAAD is so PC that it screams about anything – like PETA does.

  6. Apropos to none-of-the-above…surely it is the trans* community’s place to say whether they feel GLAAD was being over-protective or not? I’m not sure what relevance Susan Sarandon feels she has to this debate.

  7. de Villiers 9 Nov 2010, 6:51pm

    > I’m not sure what relevance Susan Sarandon feels she has to this debate.

    The same relevance that any person in a democracy has to make any comment on any element of current affairs.

  8. Andrew Godfrey 9 Nov 2010, 7:18pm

    Susan Sarandon should keep her ill-informed opinions to herself. GLAAD and others are right to criticise the way in which Glee has (once again) hypocritically undermined its own message of tolerance.

  9. I completely agree with Susan Sarandon. For goodness sake, what GLAAD are promoting is censorship. I despair for the medium of television (and all of fiction in general) if writers are forbidden from shining a light where issues of prejudice exist. GLAAD really are doing us no favours; Glee is at least promoting discussion of the subject.

  10. Hodge Podge 9 Nov 2010, 7:57pm

    Sorry, it’s not censorship unless someone was trying to use force to stop you saying stuff. What GLAAD did was ‘criticism’. I’m against banning the BNP, I still think they’re bat s**t idiots, and I am allowed to say that.

    Now I’ve never watched more then ten minutes of Glee, but I watched (on YouTube) the dad telling someone off for saying ‘fag’. Kicking someone out of your house for using the f word seems like a strong reaction, but Glee made out that the dad was the good guy. You can’t go nuts over someone calling someone a fag, then call trans people over-sensitive for the T word. It’s the same thing. Plus I don’t believe Glee has ever done a positive story about trans people, in the way it does about LGB people- the first time the issue is mentioned is in a Rocky Horror episode, about how someone’s dad doesn’t want them to be a ‘tranny’. You can see why trans people would be annoyed.

    The only justification is if transphobia is more acceptable then homophobia- an opinion a lot of LGB people hold. I think that’s crap though.

  11. Martin Lawrence 9 Nov 2010, 8:44pm

    Danny, are you by any chance Danny the Tranny, that I used to know?

    Hodge Podge, you say allowed say s**t. I’ve tried, but simply can’t get it to work. Any advice?

  12. I have to agree…. GLAAD is going a bit too far – the use of certain words all have to do with the context in which they are used and considering that GLEE is a very gay friendly show and that the co-creator Ryan Murphy is a gay man I feel that GLEE has always done a good job of portraying all sides of a story and I saw no bad intentions with their use of the word ‘tranny’ in the Rocky Horror episode.
    GLAAD need to figure out who its allies are and whom they should really call out when necessary, but in this instance they seem to have overstepped their bounds.

  13. Hodge Podge 9 Nov 2010, 9:07pm

    Sorry Martin, I’m not following.

  14. Catherine 9 Nov 2010, 9:26pm

    I am still not sure why cisgendered people are qualified to say whether or not tranny is offensive it is offensive in the same way as fag is…

  15. Tranny is offensive, like fag.

    I don’t have a problem with them using the word in a dramatic context, but I feel it should have been challenged within the scipt.

    I think it’s good of GLAAD to criticise this (it’s also curious how Glee couldn’t even air the word transsexual). Having looked at the GLAAD site, I am certain they did not “condemn the show”.

    http://glaadblog.org/2010/10/29/glee-episode-hits-the-wrong-note/

    I admire the support Susan Sarandon gives the community but she is misinformed about this. It’s true, some people do use the word to articulate a part of their identity, just as “fag” is sometimes used, but that was neither the context of the scene, nor is it the common use.

  16. PC = POLITICALLY CORRUPTED

  17. Real trannies don’t care about the use of the word. And are the first to have a good sense of humor.

  18. Sarandon is right, and GLAAD is a corrupt organisation trying to control speech. Glee is a fiction, for goodness sake.

    15: “I don’t have a problem with them using the word in a dramatic context, but I feel it should have been challenged within the scipt.”

    Seeing as the script does everything it can to portray the character who says the line in a negative light, it would take an absolute moron to come away from the show with the idea that it’s okay for the character to have the views he expresses about “trannies”. GLAAD are suggesting that every script have a message so underlined that even a chimpanzee would understand.

    GLAAD are taking a step towards making themselves as odious as the ADL.

  19. hotmessjess 10 Nov 2010, 12:36am

    “You can’t go nuts over someone calling someone a fag, then call trans people over-sensitive for the T word. It’s the same thing.”

    This, I’m trans and personally havent had a problem with “tranny” in the past – just don’t use it in hate, that is all. I first heard the term in the drag scene. But “tranny” is considered a slur by many trans people. It’s not for cisgender people to decide what’s offensive to trans people or not. And generally, they shouldn’t use it. Tranny is also a partially reclaimed word, like “fag”. I know plenty of gay men who say “fag”but straight people usually can’t.

  20. “I admire the support Susan Sarandon gives the community but she is misinformed about this”

    Btw, “misinformed”??!! She has an opinion that is different to yours. Get over it.

  21. friday jones 10 Nov 2010, 1:20am

    “Tranny” is like a lot of other slurs, it becomes a slur instead of just a slightly naughty word mainly when uttered from the mouth of a person who isn’t a member of the group the word is intended to describe. So yeah, black guys can use the N word, gay guys can use the three-letter F word, and trans people can use “tranny,” but Heaven help the non-trans person who uses that term, because it can be, in context, as offensive as “he-she” or “shemale” or “ladyboy.”

  22. Sorry Ms Sarandon you do NOT speak for me or my friends. “Tranny” is a part of a car and not a person. I identity is FEMALE not “tranny”.

  23. I thought tranny was just as offensive as the stupid gay joke in that pathetic movie
    On other threads people admit that tranny offends them so GLAAD is right

  24. The Lizzie 12 10 Nov 2010, 12:01pm

    I’ve been a committed gay ‘activist’ for years and I have sat on many committees, but I have always been appalled at the way some LGBT people use bullying tactics to get what they want. Thank goodness they are in a minority, but they don’t do themselves or the rest of us any favours.

  25. The Halcyon 10 Nov 2010, 12:01pm

    I’m with Susan Sarandon here – GLAAD has become a reactionary group, prone to making knee-jerk remarks which are often appear off the cuff rather than at least measured and considered. I understand gay groups have to punch above their weight in order to make their point but the point could have been made in a more constructive way. Speak softly and carry a big stick and all that.

  26. “GLAAD are taking a step towards making themselves as odious as the ADL.”

    They are the US version of Stonewall, no less. PC-ed (politically corrupted) to the core! I had been invited along to their gala LA awards ceremony in April, but thank God the Icelandic volcano put paid to that. Knowing what I know now I would not have know how to contain myself when faced with all of that insincere, PC gushing. Bleeeuuuurrrrggghh!

  27. PS: Rather wonderful to see more and more people on these “thought-crime” threads who are not playing into the over-reactionary hysterics and short-sightedness of the likes of GLADD and Stonewall and who are seeing through their efforts to police and PC-ize the world!

  28. OrtharRrith 10 Nov 2010, 1:27pm

    Can I ask a question here? Why do you not accept the word of the majority of transpeople who have posted here and on other comment sections when they – we – state that we find the word offensive? Yes there are some who do not, same as there are some gay people who do not find the use of fag as offensive, but many do.
    Transpeople tell you one thing and instead of accepting that you argue about it being “PC bull” and state that those who do believe us, “have over-stepped the mark” and are being over sensative reactionaries.
    Okay, in the grand scheme of things what Glee did was not as offensive as the likes of the Armstrong and Miller show, and other such examples of transphobic bile; but it does set precident for other shows to use and if not pointed out to viewers that it is wrong and hurtful to some people, then some of those viewers will go on to use it. So why NOT point that out to the producers of Glee? Remember your audience is only as smart as it’s least intellegent viewer, so someone somewhere will have gone away thinking “oh, it’s fine to call transpeople tranny’s – after all Glee did”.
    Earlier this year Stonewall UK made and released a video that went out to schools and however well intentioned it was it included the term tranny in reference to transgender people. Transpeople were and are rightly upset by this, yet do you think we are simply over-reacting? It was made by gay people, so are the transgender community simply being too thinned skinned? If the program makers have the decencey to point out that Fag or any other gay slur is offensive, to educate the viewer by educating the characters, then why not do the same regarding transpeople? And if they can’t (or don’t want to) then leave trans-issues the hell alone!
    The Rocky-Horror Picture show isn’t offensive to transpeople, but if you do a program that in some way covers it and use what many consider a slur, then you WILL upset people.
    GLAAD have done something that Stonewall never has, they’ve stepped up to point out to the producers and the public that some words hurt transpeople, and yet instead of saying “oh, sorry; we didn’t realise/think”, most people here are going “Rubbish!! Tranny never hurt anyone! This is Political Correctness gone mad!” Oddly, those are the exact same arguements used by various people in regards to the thought of protecting Gay Rights.

  29. Awesome comment, OrtharRrith – thank you for saying it :)

    And – for those commenters throwing around the “Political Correctness” cliche (*sigh*) – here’s the usual link:

    http://web.archive.org/web/20080429124539/http://www.kaichang.net/2006/11/the_sloppy_prop.html

  30. <>

    Exactly! I am not a trans person, but I really just don’t understand why people are so determined to defend their so-called ‘right’ to call someone ‘tranny’ if it is offensive? Why do you get out of it? How does it make your life better, more enriched, easier? Is it such an offense to your sensibilities that a trans person says, “Hey this word offends us as much as fag or queer offends you” — why are they being oversensitive or too PC? And why on earth would anyone hear how offensive it is, be asked to stop using it, and then go out of their way to defend the use…. again, what good does it add to your life to be free & unencumbered to call someone a ‘tranny’?

  31. Phoenix0879 10 Nov 2010, 6:05pm

    Sigh, more knee-jerk reactions from GLAAD – they’re getting as bad as Stonewall. A word is only as bad as it’s context and intent. As others have said, since the scene portrayed the character using the phrase in a negative light, the show DID condemn the use of the word. Sometimes condemnation can be represented in ways other than having someone scream “OMG THAT’S SOOOOO WRONG”. GLAAD need to engage their brains and use more than their ears. I bet they just heard ‘tranny’ and started typing their pointless comment without even paying attention to the scene in question. What a bunch of losers. GLAAD reputation -5000

  32. I don’t dispute that the word tranny can be used with intent to cause offense- that’s not the issue. The issue is whether its use on Glee was acceptable given the context. Of course it was acceptable!!! Someone had to give up a part because of the stupid attitudes of their parents. It totally reflects badly on them. No lame plot device of another person criticising the use of the word was needed. GLAAD have gone too far with their comments. God forbid they ever get as extreme as PETA- I have looked into their activities and my reation as an animal lover was shock and disgust.

  33. This politically-correct notion that nobody should be offended, ever, by anything, is in itself a form of t(y)ranny.

  34. Um… nobody’s actually suggested that, though….

  35. PumpkinPie 12 Nov 2010, 3:54pm

    The only tyrants out for censorship are those who want GLAAD silenced for its perfectly reasonable and measured criticism. And there unfortunately seems to be a whole bunch of such whingers on this comment thread…

    I’d also like to send a big “**** you” Sarandon’s way. I don’t care what she does for the trans community. GLAAD almost certainly does more, and now she’s just used her “celeb” clout to harm their reputation, all because she was feeling a bit bitchy. PETA are regarded as notorious not because they are “hysterical” (typical tabloid slur used to shut down debate). It is because they rely on misinformation and manipulation to achieve their goals. GLAAD is always open and honest. And they are much ballsier than Stonewall, so those of you proffering that particular comparison can likewise shut it.

    Third, it sounds like the use of this word was in fact not justified. Was it not the boy who used the term, in reference to what his parents had said? Unless he used “air quotes”, I’m pretty sure this comes across as his own choice of words. That’s precisely what GLAAD didn’t like.

    Hodge Podge:-
    Sorry, it’s not censorship unless someone was trying to use force to stop you saying stuff. What GLAAD did was ‘criticism’.

    OrtharRith:-
    “Rubbish!! Tranny never hurt anyone! This is Political Correctness gone mad!”

    :D

  36. OrtharRrith 12 Nov 2010, 4:47pm

    Hopefully that’s just quoting me quoting everyone who’s claiming it’s all over the top reactions and PC gone to far.
    I think Susan Sarandon, whilst probably well meaning; has failed to realise the upset the word causes to transpeople. She is reacting to what she persives as an over-reaction to a word she see no harm in being used, and there in lies the problem.
    Education is needed. Joe Public, the Press, TV and Film Producers, Writers, even gay people – as is clearly evident here – don’t understand transpeople. Hell!! Many don’t even know the difference between someone who is transsexual, someone who is transgender and transvestites! If people can be educated then there will slowly become less and less incidents like this – in theory…

  37. I find this all so silly. Why does concatenating a word suddenly make it offensive? ‘Transexual’is such a long, ugly and scientific word for something that should just be similar to “gay”. I do nt see anything offensive in the term ‘tranny’, and I know many TS people that think the same.

    That said, on a similar matter, I had an almighty row on here over the fact that a British person has no problem having their name shortened to ‘Brit’, yet a Pakistani having the same thing done to their name is a ‘Paki’ which is then deemed offensive.
    You go figure.

  38. Leona Helen 13 Nov 2010, 6:37pm

    I think Susan sarandon is out of control. She is not transsexual. Her “ground breaking” portrayal of a character in the original version of a somewhat stupid B Movie gives her no leg-up to call me a tranny. I take sincere offense at the term, just as she would if I called her a “b*tch” Get real, Susan. This HAS to stop. Bigotry starts with permission, and grows with indifference.

  39. PumpkinPie 14 Nov 2010, 1:11am

    Hopefully that’s just quoting me quoting everyone who’s claiming it’s all over the top reactions and PC gone to far.

    It is indeed! I thought it was a good impression. :)

  40. Spanner:
    > I find this all so silly. Why does concatenating a word
    > suddenly make it offensive? ‘Transexual’is such a long, ugly and
    > scientific word for something that should just be similar to
    > “gay”. I do nt see anything offensive in the term ‘tranny’, and
    > I know many TS people that think the same.

    But transsexual is a medical term, defined by the endocrinologist who pioneered prescribing hormones as part of our treatment, that’s why it sounds scientific.

    Its nothing like being gay, but if you mean there needs to be a short form, why not use “trans”, or “T”? “Tranny” means transvestite, and not even cross-dressers like that term anymore; to call a transsexual person “transvestite” is extremely ignorant and insulting, so it is unusable. So I really doubt you know any TS people who don’t mind others using it about them. Maybe they are drag queens who just think it part of mocking gender?

    > That said, on a similar matter, I had an almighty row on here
    > over the fact that a British person has no problem having their
    > name shortened to ‘Brit’, yet a Pakistani having the same thing
    > done to their name is a ‘Paki’ which is then deemed offensive.
    > You go figure.

    How difficult is that? Its for the victims to say if they are hurt by it. If any say they are, don’t do it.

  41. Michael Anthony 15 Nov 2010, 3:01pm

    As a resident of the USA, GLAAD is a sorry excuse for a media organization. There have been multiple news reports and blogger commenting on them for the last few years. They are self focused on hollywood and the celebrities and could care less about media matters that don’t involve the stars or that involve them getting their name in the press. Pumpkin Pie says its the tyrants that want GLAAD silenced, which is not true. If they truly spoke for the gay community and cared for the gay community, they would get off their hollywood celebrity high horse and focus on what the media around the country is reporting.

  42. OrtharRrith 15 Nov 2010, 5:37pm

    Perhaps they should, but why have a go when they are steping up to the mark and defending an already much abused section of society? Is it not better to applaud them for taking action, for saying to telvision producers that many transpeople find tranny offensive and to encourage them to take action against the use of language and the protrayal of people and groups that does hurt and offend?
    Maybe that way they’ll start to tackle the likes of transphobic and homophobic news reports, and the many other shows that seem to think attacking transsexual people and gays is a fun and entertaining thing to do.

  43. As a gay man I don’t name I’m called offensive. I’m offended when people discriminate against me; I’m offended when they say substantive and untrue things about me as a gay man; but I’m not offended by name-calling; I gave up being offended by that when I was a child. On the occasions when I have been discriminated against, none of the so-called offensive words for gay men has been used and it wouldn’t have made the discrimination better or worse if they had been.

  44. My first sentence should have read: “As a gay man I don’t find any name I’m called offensive.”

  45. OrtharRrith 16 Nov 2010, 5:40pm

    That’s good Peter – seriously it is, but there are many who ARE hurt by the use of offensive names; and this is one of the names that offends and upsets many transpeople.

  46. Sally Outen 17 Nov 2010, 2:23pm

    Also, it’s not *just* about people getting offended, although that’s definitely something that ought to be taken seriously. There’s another important issue, which ties into the whole culture-of-acceptable-bigotry thing.

    Words play an important role in shaping our perceptions and attitudes towards marginalised societal groups. A slur isn’t just an upsetting expression; it’s an inherently reductive categorisation that elides people’s individual experiences and identities in favour of lazy stereotyping and misrepresentation, through all of the (negative) associations attached to the word in question. Such constructs allow us to avoid thinking of members of marginalised groups as *people*. A tranny is just a tranny. Nobody cares what happens to a tranny, right?

    Language influences thought; thought influences action. The tendency to fall back on slurs and stereotypes can have profound effects that go beyond offending people. Words can support prejudice; words can drown out the voices of the underprivileged; indirectly, words can even kill.

    This is all very heavy stuff, and I’m not trying to suggest that Glee has now implicated itself in the murder of trans people, or even that the usage of the term was horribly, horribly problematic in its context in the show. I’d just like to provide another perspective on why this stuff is important – hopefully, those who are currently adopting “Sticks and stones”-style arguments will give it due consideration.

  47. Yes, yes, we are becoming gay fascists…

  48. David Myers 20 Jan 2011, 11:29pm

    It was clearly implied that the word “tranny” was what the boy’s parent’s disparagingly called it, not what the boy who was willing to play the Frank’nfurter role but was forbidden to do so, was calling it. Thus it was a complaint by the boy about his parent’s uptightness and was thus a criticism of the parent’s attitude as well as “their” use of the word “tranny”. In other words, Glee was calling attention to the parent’s bigotry, not supporting the use of the word. Get a life people.

  49. SteveDenver 13 Apr 2011, 6:45am

    Can’t groups like PETA and GLAAD choose their battles carefully? They waste their energy on pitiful outcries of useless outrage.

These comments are un-moderated and do not necessarily represent the views of PinkNews. If you believe that a comment is inappropriate or libellous, please contact us.

Top commenters this week

Latest stories

See all