By Parker Marie Molloy
Originally published on Advocate.com April 01 2014 3:32 PM ET
RuPaul's Drag Race alum Carmen Carrera has chimed in on the "Female or Shemale" controversy sparked by a recent episode of the popular Logo TV reality series.
In a Facebook post Tuesday, Carerra ripped the show for its use of the term "shemale," referring to a recent mini-game during the episode that aired March 17.
"Although I am certain RuPaul's Drag Race didn't mean to be offensive, let this be a learning experience," Carrera began. "I think the show has opened up and educated the minds of many people who were ignorant to the world of drag, and has made equality and respect a possibility for those involved, not only as equal beings, but as phenomenal artists. There has always been a huge presence of trans artists in the drag scene."
"'Shemale' is an incredibly offensive term, and this whole business about if you can tell whether a woman is biological or not is getting kind of old," Carrera continued. "We live in a new world where understanding and acceptance are on the rise. Drag Race should be a little smarter about the terms they use and comprehend the fight for respect trans people are facing every minute of today. They should use their platform to educate their viewers truthfully on all facets of drag performance art."
Carrera ended her post with the hashtag "#SheHasSpoken."
Carrera received numerous messages of support as well as a number of transphobic comments on her post. Responding to one particularly harsh comment telling Carrera that she needed to "accept what [she is]," suggesting that she needed to "accept" that's she is a "shemale," Carrera responded, "I am what I am???? I'M NOT A SHEMALE YOU STUPID FUCKS. I'm a transwoman #bitches."
Last week Drag Race producers and Logo TV released statements saying they've been "newly sensitized" to the issue of transphobic slurs being used on the show. However, when Tony Merevick of BuzzFeed reached out to Logo executives, they would not commit to abolishing transphobic slurs, and last night's episode ran as planned, with the "You've Got She-Mail" segment intact, incorporating a long-running wordplay on the slur used to deliver messages to participants.