Australian TV host makes heartfelt apology for his ignorant trans jokes
An Australian TV host who cracked jokes about trans people has apologised – after getting some education on the subject.
Today host Karl Stefanovic had made the comment during a segment on the Rio Olympics after the Channel 9 crew were victims of an attempted mugging by two trans women.
Stefanovic had quipped about “a murder of transvestite muggers”, before suggesting the cameraman had “fought off tougher trannies” in the past.
On Friday’s edition of the show, the TV host made a lengthy apology after discovering his comments had caused offence.
— The Today Show (@TheTodayShow) July 28, 2016
He said “As we all know I can be a complete tool, right?
“Well yesterday I was worse, I was an ignorant tool. And when I say ‘ignorant’, I truly mean it.
“I often laugh at things I shouldn’t and sometimes say them – but yesterday I got it very wrong.
“I used the word, which I will now say for the last time ever, and the only reason I’m saying it is so all of you who didn’t see the segment yesterday can learn from my mistake if you choose too.
“By using the word ‘tranny’, I offended an awful lot of beautiful, sensitive people.”
He said: “I honestly didn’t know the negative and deeply hurtful impact that word has, not only on members of the LGBTQI community, but on their family and on their friends.”
“Therein lies part of the problem… I never bothered to ask. I assumed trans people might laugh along with me, but I assumed wrong.
“Like so many words we used in the past, it’s time to throw that one in the bin.”
He added: “I spoke after the show with a friend of mine who said what so many others have told me since: I crossed a line.
“I didn’t know that line even existed, but I do now. I take this very seriously, because I don’t know what it’s like to feel apart from the rest of mainstream society.
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“I have no understanding of what it’s like to feel you were born in the wrong body, to feel uncomfortable in your own skin, or the extreme courage it takes to accept yourself and live the life you always wanted to live.
I used a word, a word I will never use again.
He added: “I am an ignorant fool at times. I get it wrong sometimes, I probably always will, but as a result of yesterday I have learned a lesson.
“People have told me to educate myself, and I’ve started to, and I encourage all you at home to do the same. It would be a great if everyone took a leaf out of the LGBTQI community’s book and is open to talking about why they feel a certain way.”