On Monday, Jan 6, Katie Couric had Laverne Cox and Carmen Carrera on her self-titled talk show to chat about trans issues in America (watch the interview). At least, that’s what was supposed to happen, and then it all sort of veered in a weird direction and shit got awkward.
[Image credit: KatieCouric.com]
In all fairness, most of the interview went really well. Cox and Carrera both discussed their work and their positions as trans icons within the LGBT community, and Cox even pointed out that she’d rather be called a “possibility model” rather than a role model, which is a fantastic term.
But there was one glaring point where things went south: when Couric started asking both of her interviewees about transitioning. Specifically about their genitalia. (*Insert cringe here*) Couric first tried asking Carrera whether her “private parts are different,” prompting Carrera to literally shush her and remind her that it’s a personal issue.
So of course, Couric asked Cox the same question, prefacing it by remarking on Carrera’s visible discomfort over being asked about her physiology. And yet she still asked . . .
Thankfully, Cox turned the question down with as much poise as one could be expected to show. Cox talked about how trans women of colour face levels of violence and abuse disproportionate to the rest of the LGBT community, saying, “If we focus on transition, we don’t actually get to talk about those things."
I get that Couric was curious and lacking information, but come on. Seriously. You don’t ask someone about their personal affairs on TV, even if you are just looking to be educated. Google it on your own time, but maybe don’t go around asking people about their genitals, especially if there’s a studio audience watching.