Boy George slammed as ‘transphobic’ after mocking pronouns as a ‘modern form of attention seeking’
Singer Boy George has barrelled back into relevancy after saying that use of pronouns is a “modern form of attention seeking”.
The Culture Club singer’s tweets quickly became a lightning rod for criticism from LGBT+ circles, with countless trans and gender-diverse folk slamming the star while his words attracted support from gender-critical groups.
Simply specifying your pronouns, whether on a social media bio or to in an email signature, is a small act that helps encourage inclusivity and building solidarity with the trans community.
But George has kicked off the new decade with a take on pronouns labelled ‘transphobic’ by activists, coming after singer-songwriter Marc Almond faced similar accusations last year. George decried the claims the artist was transphobic as well as ripping into “all this PC stuff”.
Boy George: ‘Leave your pronoun’s at the door!’
On January 6, George for some reason tweeted: “Leave your [pronouns] at the door.”
The tweet proved provocative, with users clashing over its intended meaning as confusion turned to outrage with detractors denouncing the song-writer for targeting the trans community.
Leave your pronoun's at the door!
— Boy George (@BoyGeorge) January 6, 2020
But he later responded to a critic’s since deleted tweet who asked the singer “Do you not know what the f**k pronouns are?” according to screenshots.
“A modern form of attention seeking?” George responded.
Um @BoyGeorge. Shitty transphobic attempts at jokes like this are attention seeking. Trans people just want to be left alone mostly.
Could you not? pic.twitter.com/XdRbnnZP5t
— dead kids news account (@notCursedE) January 8, 2020
Backlash quickly bubbled, but before he responded, George criticised why vegans would purchase the meat-free burger from fast-food chain KFC and said he hopes he’s “an alien”.
In response to one fan who tersely tweeted “disappointing” at George’s take, the ‘Don’t Cry’ singer hit back: “Most things are! But being disappointed is the most disappointing.”
Most things are! But being disappointed is the most disappointing! https://t.co/aKlb6swqf2
— Boy George (@BoyGeorge) January 7, 2020
Moreover, another user asked George: “What does it take to show others respect by using their preferred pronouns?”
To which George responded: Thanks for that, but I have eyes and can mostly describe what I see!”
Thanks for that but I have eyes and can mostly describe what I see! https://t.co/VKB6dcAI2Z
— Boy George (@BoyGeorge) January 7, 2020
But trans folk and allies used their own eyes to describe what they could see: “Transphobia.”
this disappoints me to no end. thought you'd give more respect to trans people tbh https://t.co/qmLCJnAZuu
— gian ? (@mayiero) January 8, 2020
— Rosy Rejoiner (née Remainer) FPBE ? (@RRejoiner) January 7, 2020
Attention seeking? Really?
Making controversial, idiotic statments so you monetarily "trend" when you've slipped into irrelevance seems more "attention seeking" that asking someone to respect one's identity. https://t.co/wi1JhBwNRE
— Faye Fatale (@LadyYStories) January 8, 2020
Amid some users lobbying for the musician to be cancelled, some noted that the artist’s intention have been muddied, chalking up his wording to the singer’s sense of humour.
I'm going to give Boy George — who was a formative influence for me as a child and teen — the benefit of the doubt and assume that he doesn't consider "attention seeking" to be a bad thing? Because it isn't a bad thing. And he knows that. And he knows why. https://t.co/MWIU5iNt7z
— Vague Panda (@vaguepanda) January 7, 2020
While the LGB Alliance, a controversial organisation regularly skewered for being anti-trans, backed George.
As lesbians, gays and bisexuals we applaud @BoyGeorge for saying what many people think and few say. At the #lgballiance we don’t “have” pronouns. Telling people “your pronouns” is telling them how they have to see you. https://t.co/8YudKbYa8a
— LGB Alliance (@AllianceLGB) January 7, 2020
PinkNews reached out to Boy George’s management, who replied: “The concept of […] asking whether Boy George is transphobic is so stupid it doesn’t warrant a response.”