Damn, Pride Month ended less than a week ago and we’re already back on our anti-trans bullshit? Over the weekend, a clip of Macy Gray making some wildly transphobic comments in an interview with Piers Morgan went viral. In it, she said trans women who receive gender-affirming surgery aren’t really women. And on Tuesday, she claimed she was “grossly misunderstood.”
Baited by certified transphobe Piers Morgan, who asked Gray for her definition of a “woman,” the “Sweet Baby” singer said she believed women to be “a human being with boobs… and a vagina.” She also later agreed with the interviewer that trans women have no place in women’s sports.
“I will say this and everyone’s gonna hate me, but as a woman, just because you go change your parts, doesn’t make you a woman, sorry… I know that for a fact,” the singer said. “Like if you want me to call you a ‘her,’ I will, ‘cause that’s what you want, but that doesn’t make you a woman just ‘cause I call you a ‘her.’ “
In the interview, the singer explained that a trans person “finding [themself]” doesn’t make trans women, women, but that “you could call yourself whatever you want.”
Let’s be clear: trans people’s gender identities are not defined by their genitals. Whatever body part people have between their legs is no one’s business. But isn’t Gray contradicting her own “boobs and a vagina” narrow-minded definition of womanhood here?
“Being a little girl is a whole epic book and you can’t have that just because you want to be a woman,” she added.
It seems that Gray doesn’t understand that trans women — regardless of the sex they were assigned at birth — are simply women. GLAAD defines gender identity as “a person’s internal, deeply held knowledge of their own gender.” Trans people’s gender identities are not built on anatomical differences, but on their own sense of identity and expression — and unlike, Gray’s definition, it’s not something you can simply “see.”
GLAAD Accountability Project, we’re gonna need your help explaining this one to Ms. Gray.
During the televised conversation, Morgan brought up his fellow British transphobe J.K. Rowling, who has become infamous for her think-pieces and tweet threads invalidating trans experiences.
Gray defended her. “But it’s the truth,” Gray said. “And I don’t think you should be called transphobic just because you don’t agree… there’s a lot of judgment and throwing stones at people for just saying what it is.”
(The Harry Potter writer tweeted on Tuesday that “today feels like a good day to ensure I’ve bought @MacyGraysLife’s entire back catalog.”)
Fast-forward to Tuesday, after Gray received all this backlash, she tried to find a way to backtrack her comments and pretend like she was simply “misunderstood.” In a statement to Rolling Stone, she said, “I have nothing but love for the LGBTQ+ and transgender community and have been a supporter since Day One.”
She added, “My statement on Piers Morgan was grossly misunderstood. I don’t hate anyone. I respect everyone’s right to feel comfortable in their bodies and live their own truth.”
She also went on a “reply” tirade on Twitter telling one guy there was “no bigger admirer of the LGBT community” than herself, adding that, actually, for her, “‘women’ is a title that you earn and become… there are plenty of females who aren’t women yet.”
Looking at the facts, 2021 alone was the “deadliest year” for transgender and gender non-conforming folks. Three hundred seventy-five people were murdered worldwide last year alone, according to Transrespect versus Transphobia.
One thing’s for sure: Gray’s antiquated, misguided, and hateful rhetoric surrounding trans people is the type of sentiment that has had deadly consequences. The violent killings of trans Black women Brazil Johnson and Kitty Monroe last week are just the most recent examples.
Like her forthcoming LP’s name, maybe it’s time for Macy Gray to Reset her beliefs surrounding transness.
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