LGBT Perspectives editor
QUEBEC — Need some publicity to boost your sagging career as a celebrity?
Well, you know just what to do: Make some less-than-politically correct comments about transgender people. That’s a surefire way to stir up a social media hornet’s nest of trans fury, which every publication in the universe will report on . . . and your name is on everyone’s lips.
And it won’t cost you and your handlers a penny. It’s free, free, free!!!
Sigh . . .
We’ve seen Dame Edna do it recently. We saw Ricky Gervais do it at the Golden Globes Awards.
And, yes, we’ve seen Germaine Greer do it periodically, among many others . . .
Now, the latest fading celebrity to beat the transphobic drum is former Top Gear co-host Jeremy Clarkson, who has made some rather reckless comments about transgender people in his column in the Sunday Times, many people are saying.
Personally, I can’t offer objective comment about his column because I can’t read the whole thing: you need to buy a subscription to the paper to read it all. Without the subscription, I can only read the first few paragraphs. And I won’t rely on the interpretations of other media outlets — that’s not the way we do it in the world of objective journalism.
But I can say this about Jeremy Clarkson: He leads a reckless life when he is in the driver’s seat. It has always come with the blacktop turf in Top Gear and, no doubt, things will be the same in his new series as he drives all manner of vehicles at all manner of speeds.
Does it surprise me that he might sideswipe trans people in his column? Well, no, since his column is not only about those magnificent men and women in their driving machines.
And what better way to revv up the publicity for himself?
Maybe he makes some valid points in his column in his own way. I dunno. I’m not taking anyone’s word for it — either way.
Whatever the case, transgender people have taken the click bait again — and the media are capitalizing on it again.
— Jillian Page