Oprah: “You Seem Gayer”

Oprah Winfrey is busy, busy, busy. Her farewell 25th anniversary year from broadcast TV and the launch of her OWN cable channel have her in hyperdrive.

To feed the programming beast at OWN, she’s doing a behind-the-scenes show of her farewell 25th anniversary year from broadcast TV. Meta, anyone?

Anywho, Oprah has stumbled on her behind-the-scenes show into a minor LGBT media moment. AfterElton and Queerty have weighed in on Oprah’s comments to her guest Jonathan Plummer.

Plummer is author Terry McMillan’s gay ex-husband, who was the inspiration for her novel, How Stella Got Her Groove Back.

Oprah prefaces her comment with not wanting to be offensive and not knowing how to say this but: “You seem gayer.” There, she said it. Plummer, and the audience, laughed.

Oprah’s publicist suggests editing that out of the broadcast TV show—and it is edited out. However, the behind-the-scenes show goes into some detail about the decision-making process.

Oprah calls in LGBT staffers and an insightful discussion ensues:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Although Oprah is self-admittedly pro-LGBT, that fact doesn’t diminish the credit she deserves for airing an LGBT fairness and accuracy debate.

The argument that swayed me the most is the “Would you say…?” comparison. For instance, would you say “you seem blacker”? No? Then perhaps “you seem gayer” isn’t appropriate.

We would all benefit from using that comparison more often, in our own lives and certainly in the media.