[Trigger warning for transphobia]
Unfunny comedian and walking Halloween decoration [update: See in comments where I regret writing that part] Joan Rivers took a completely random opportunity this week to throw transphobic slurs at Michelle Obama.
In an on-the-street interview, a reporter asked her about her recent book signing, at which she officiated an impromptu gay wedding. When he then asked, for some reason, whether we’ll ever see a gay president, she replied, “We already have it with Obama, so let’s calm down.” This was, she elaborated without prompting, because “You know Michelle is a [transphobic slur redacted]. A transgender. We all know.” (The Huffington Post links to a 2012 Advocate piece detailing why calling a cis woman trans furthers the marginalization of women and of trans people.)
In a later statement to CNN, Rivers clarified through a representative that of course she meant the slur as a compliment.
I think it’s a compliment. She’s so attractive, tall, with a beautiful body, great face, does great makeup. Take a look and go back to La Cage Au Follies (sic). The most gorgeous women are transgender. Stop it already.
Rivers went on to assert that people are only attacking her for being “politically incorrect” because she’s “old, Jewish, a woman, and a ‘hetty’ — a heterosexual.”
There are currently nearly 9.5 million people unemployed in the U.S., and Joan Rivers is not one of them.