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Chicago DJ Responds to Critics of Transphobic Slur Referring to Laverne Cox

Chicago DJ Responds to Critics of Transphobic Slur Referring to Laverne Cox


After repeatedly using a transphobic slur to refer to Laverne Cox's appearance in a new John Legend music video on Twitter, a Chicago DJ has apologized -- after claiming that he was being 'bullied' by those who found the word offensive.


Thursday afternoon, Chicago hip-hop and R&B radio station WGCI twice tweeted out a link to John Legend's new video for his latest single, "You & I (Nobody in the World)," which features Orange is the New Black star Laverne Cox.

The tweet -- which was initially deleted, later reposted, then deleted again -- referred to Cox using a transphobic slur, and read, "Looks like John Legend has a tranny in his new video."

The same text was tweeted out by WGCI disc jockey UB Rodriguez, the host of the station's Rodriguez Report, which airs between 2 and 7 p.m. Rodriguez's profile on the station page contends that he is "very active in the community, and gives much of his time to non-profits, charities, and LGBT organizations."

After initially engaging with The Advocate's reporters on Twitter but declining to give a statement, Rodriguez retweeted his inital message, adding "Ha!" Shortly thereafter, the same message appeared on WGCI's Twitter account, before it was again deleted.

Rodriguez engaged a number of his critics on Twitter, who pointed out that many transgender people consider the word to be a slur. Rodriguez continued to tweet the original message referring to Cox as a "tranny," and claimed he was "being bullied," before issuing an apology Friday afternoon. The original tweets discussing Laverne Cox have now been deleted.


Cox, who Thursday morning became the first out transgender individual to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy award, recently spoke out about some of the negativity she's received in the wake of her Time magazine cover.

WGCI is owned by radio magnate Clear Channel, and is the same station that hosted an interview with R. Kelly in which the singer publicly addressed the revelation that his son is transgender for the first time.

As for Legend's video, it features a wide range of women, and contains body-affirming messages that highlight the beauty all women possess. In addition to Cox, the video features Legend's wife Chrissy Teigen, out comedian Tig Notaro, and a number of everyday people, ranging from a pregnant woman, to a cancer patient, to a girl with Down syndrome.

"You & I (Nobody in the World)" is the fourth single off of Legend's 2013 album Love in the Future.

Watch the video for "You & I (Nobody in the World)" below:

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