Laverne Cox condemns ‘fundamentally dehumanising’ anti-trans 60 Minutes segment
Laverne Cox has condemned CBS’ 60 Minutes for a “dehumanising” segment that platformed people who think trans-affirming healthcare is “unethical”.
The current affairs programme has faced resounding backlash from LGBT+ people after Lesley Stahl interviewed four people who later regretted their decision to transition.
60 Minutes also interviewed psychologist Laura Edwards-Leeper, who said she is “greatly concerned” about where trans healthcare is going.
“I feel like what is happening is unethical and irresponsible in some places,” she said.
Dr Lee Savio Beers, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics, also appeared on the programme to reiterate that trans healthcare is not experimental and is based in science.
“They’re really based in scientific literature, they’re based in decades and decades of expert experience, and they’re backed by a number of major medical organisations,” Beers said.
Laverne Cox eviscerated 60 Minutes for its tired focus on medical transition
CBS has been heavily criticised by LGBT+ activists, including Laverne Cox, who said she had “a lot of thoughts” after watching the segment.
In a lengthy video posted to Instagram, Cox asked: “Where’s the love for trans people?”
She pointed out that most medical professionals agree that gender affirming care for trans people is “very successful” and has “been around for decades”.
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Ultimately, Cox summed up 60 Minutes as being about “transition, transition, transition, transition.”
The actress referenced an interview she did with Katie Couric in 2014 where she famously told the host that focusing on surgery and transition is objectifying and dehumanising.
Not much has changed since then, Laverne Cox said, explaining that conversations about trans identities in the media continue to fixate on physical transition.
“I find that fundamentally dehumanising, and I think that what I witnessed in the 60 Minutes segment last night is [exactly] that,” Cox said.
She went on to note that Human Rights Campaign president Alphonso David appeared on the programme too, where he suggested that the conversation should also focus on people who have successfully transitioned.
“All of this conversation is fundamentally dehumanising and we’re ultimately medicalising trans existence and pathologising trans existence when we talk about it merely in the context of healthcare,” Cox said.
“Our humanity should not be up for public debate, and what I felt watching that 60 Minutes segment last night is again we have trans identity up for debate.”
Laverne Cox went on to say she believes in “uplifting” everyone’s stories, including those who detransition, but questioned why the focus of 60 Minutes was so skewed.
GLAAD also condemned the programme for its “shameful segment”, saying it engaged in baseless “fearmongering about trans youth.”
The organisation wrote on Twitter: “Parents of trans youth could walk away with the false belief that young people are being rushed into medical transition. That is simply untrue.
“As the piece noted, every major medical association supports affirming, age-appropriate care for trans youth and the guidelines for that care are safe and well-established.
“And yet, the majority of the story was devoted to ‘raising concerns’ about youth accessing that care.”
GLAAD also hit out at 60 Minutes for “wrongfully” implying that trans YouTubers are “somehow brainwashing kids and turning them trans.”
The charity said such myths are “dangerous’ and “ridiculous”, asking: “Aren’t we past arguing that media can turn people gay or trans?”
“60 Minutes heard concerns from several trans leaders and, after spending months on the segment, they delivered a piece which still promulgates the same anti-trans dog whistles that we hear from anti-LGBTQ activists and in state legislatures like Arkansas.”
Chase Strangio of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) also criticised the segment, saying those behind the show “knew exactly the harm they were causing with last night’s segment.”
.@60Minutes, Lesley Stahl, Alexandra Poolos, and Collette Richards knew exactly the harm they were causing with last night’s segment. They knew it was the wrong moment and a dangerous, unaccountable and limited angle. But they did it anyway. That’s on all of you.
— Chase Strangio (@chasestrangio) May 24, 2021
“They knew it was the wrong moment and a dangerous, unaccountable and limited angle. But they did it anyway. That’s on all of you,” Strangio tweeted.
He added: “I hope everyone involved sits with themselves and asks why and how they chose to use their platform to contribute to untold harms in a moment of deep pain and crisis.”
PinkNews contacted CBS for comment.
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