New York comedian Chrissie Mayr upset some audience members in Dallas, and the video of the walk-out and the comedian’s reaction has gone viral. Mayr was telling jokes regarding the recent controversy surrounding transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney being part of a recent ad campaign for Bud Light.
During part of the routine in question, Mayr made a joke about how Mulvaney was supposed to be a woman, but had not “tits”. When an audience member shouted out, “Because he’s a man!”, the comedian agreed with the audience member. This prompted an audience member to yell back, “No, she’s a woman.” Mayr responded by initially saying, “Oh, we have one of those…” and then said a few sentences saying that it was ok to have different opinions, although, “…some of us live in reality.” This prompted some women to walk out, and one of the objectors shouted, “F**k you, transphobe.”
After the incident went viral, the comedian was unrepentant for her remarks, and stated , “If you believe in true equality then there’s no such thing as ‘punching down.’ No group should be ‘safe’ from being made fun of.”
I have to disagree with her on the subject of punching down, but perhaps not to the degree that she seems to think that all progressives do. It wasn’t the joke about Dylan Mulvaney apparently not having breasts that was objectionable. It was actually kind of funny, if not very kind. What I found objectionable was when she chose to double-down on the comment from the audience that Mulvaney is a man.
There are certainly plenty of people who believe that there is “no such thing” as being transgender, so since a large portion of the audience was with her, they all felt that they were “right”, and the people upset were “wrong”. But I tend to think that the people who negate the existence and humanity of transgender people need to get with the program. There are approximately 500 species of animals, mostly fish, that can and do change gender. Native American tribes acknowledges five genders, and now science is finding ways to allow people whose bodies don’t line up with their self-perception to alter their bodies to fit their true selves. Transgender people have always existed, and they are here now, and to deny their existence is to be ignorant and afraid of what one doesn’t understand. Transphobe = afraid of transgender.
It isn’t that there aren’t funny jokes about all different groups of people, including transgender people. When it becomes punching down is when you deny their existence and their reality. When someone tells you they are a woman, no matter what their body looks like at that moment, accept what they are telling you. It’s not that they are a class that is exempt from jokes, but there are jokes and there is cruelty. Commenting that any person doesn’t have noticeable boobs is not exactly high comedy, but hardy-har away. Saying that a transgender person is the gender they are desperately trying to climb out of is just nasty and ignorant.
Guess what? Those transphobic jokes are not going to age well. You’re on the wrong side of history, Ms. Mayr.