No. What happened to being pro-choice?
From BBC: A reality television programme kicked off a debate about whether it’s discriminatory or transphobic to refuse to date a transsexual person.
The argument started on UK reality television show Celebrity Big Brother, where minor celebrities are locked into a studio made to look like a house, then filmed 24/7.
As might be expected in such a situation, tensions run high and conversations can be fractious. One of the housemates is India Willoughby, a TV journalist who had an established career as a man before transitioning to become a woman.
Willoughby asked her housemates about their dating preferences, and the resulting conversation kicked off a social media storm.
“Would you go out with a transsexual woman?” she queried. “I believe it’s your choice… I would choose not to,” replied the R’n’B singer Ginuwine. “That doesn’t make me scared.”
“You would go out with a woman?” Willoughby asked. “Yes.”
“But you wouldn’t go out with a transsexual woman?”
The conversation rumbled on. When Willoughby suggested “Let’s have a kiss,” Ginuwine replied “no” and leaned away from her.
India was later seen telling another guest that “all this superficial stuff that you are a woman and all that sounds great and is the right thing to say. But it makes no difference if people don’t believe it – that’s the problem.”
While some housemates defended Ginuwine’s refusal to date a transsexual woman as a “preference”, the issue divided the audience on Twitter.
The debate has continued to reverberate inside the house. Viewers of the programme vote off guests one at a time until a winner is selected, and on Friday India Willoughby is one of two celebrities facing a vote and possible eviction.
Some viewers claimed Ginuwine rebuffing the notion of dating a trans woman was discrimination or transphobia – dislike or fear of transgender people.
But others backed the “preference” argument and said the singer was entitled to state his dating choices without being criticised.
The debate reverberated on other social networks and outside the UK as well. A video from New York radio DJ Charlamagne Tha God defending Ginuwine’s stance as a preference has since been viewed more than 350,000 times on YouTube.
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