The Sun’s ‘Tran and wife’ front page labelled ‘vile, bigoted and shameful’
The Sun has sparked a backlash with its “disgusting” front page about Hannah Winterbourne and Jake Graf’s wedding.
The headline, “Tran and wife,” has caused outrage, along with the accompanying heading: “Jake who used to be a woman weds Hannah who was a man”.
The Sun wasn’t the only news outlet accused of anti-trans sentiment, with the Evening Standard, Mirror, Mail Online all publishing headlines which stated that Graf either “used to be a woman” or “was born a woman”.
The newlyweds tied the knot on Friday after getting engaged last year, in a gorgeous wedding at Chelsea’s Town Hall in London.
Winterbourne, 31 – who came out publicly in 2015 – told The Sun that the day was “like a Disney movie”.
But today, Graf, 40, made his feelings about The Sun’s choices clear, telling PinkNews that the headline was “offensive and garish”.
“We felt that the article itself in The Sun was very positive, sympathetic and hopeful,” he said.
“Hannah and I have always had huge support from the LGBT Press and of course wanted to share our story with them and as widely as possible, but we also strongly felt that getting our story out to a mainstream audience was important.
“Whilst The Sun has a less than positive history when it comes to reporting on LGBT issues, it did feel that there had been a real turn around in the last year or so, with some very sympathetic and supportive reporting on trans issues.
“We were assured that the story would be positive, which we feel it was, and were obviously very disappointed when it was let down by such an offensive and garish headline and front page.”
Speaking about the reaction online, Graf said: “Naturally the community is upset, as are myself and Hannah, but we have to remember that their readers will know little to nothing about trans people, so once they get past the front page perhaps they will learn a little more about us and see that we are just like any other couple on our wedding day.”
PinkNews asked The Sun about Graf calling the headline offensive, to which The Sun chose not to give a comment.
The responses online were less charitable than Graf’s.
One person wrote: “1. In 2015 The Sun call Hannah courageous for discussing being transgender in the army.
“2. Jake found her beautiful and they get married”.
“3. The Sun celebrate this with the headline ‘TRAN AND WIFE'”, they added, before writing: “Moronic, offensive, gutter scraping, brainless s**t once again from them.”
Another wrote: “I wish I hadn’t, but I just came across tomorrow’s @TheSun front page… Disgusting, vile, bigoted, hateful, shameful.”
They added the hashtags “#TransRightsAreHumanRights” and “#DontBuyTheSun”.
One person said: “have i really just seen a newspaper with the headline “tran and wife” like are you f**king serious”.
And another said: “as if @TheSun’s headline this morning is ‘Tran And Wife’ with a picture of a transgender couple’s wedding. so beyond disgusted”.
One person wrote that the front page showed that The Sun was still behind the times.
“If ever proof were needed that the Sun is a long way from becoming reconstructed when it comes to an awareness of gender diversty and fluidity,” they said.
“Tran and wife… SMH”.
Another person said: “Wtf Tran and wife … what a pile o shite.. the day we let people just be.. this isn’t news”.
And yet another wrote: “Imagine studying journalism for YEARS just to produce uneducated/bigoted/disgusting headlines like ‘Tran and Wife’ – The Sun truly is the scum of our country.”
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A spokesperson for The Sun told PinkNews: “We’d urge people to read the story rather than jump to conclusions about what they imagine a tabloid might write about these matters – the story is intended very much as a celebration of a modern love story.
“We of course wish Hannah and Jake the very best.”
When asked about the backlash, the spokesperson said: “We of course have no intention to disappoint or offend, and we’re pleased to have put on our front page what we certainly regard as a celebration of a brilliant modern romance.
“As Jake has said, it’s a very positive piece, and we wish Jake and Hannah the best for a very happy life together.”
PinkNews asked The Sun whether it spoke to any trans people ahead of publication, a question it was not able to answer before publication of this story.