Last Thursday, on an episode of his podcast The Adam Carolla Show, Adam Carolla, who previously hosted the "macho is might" program The Man Show, blasted the LGBT community.
Carolla was responding to the "news of the day," which included information about the Change.org petition to have PBS "allow" Bert and Ernie get married on Sesame Street. We've already broken down why the petition was silly, and that's fine to think it unnecessary, but Carolla used the opportunity to go off on a tirade about the LGBT community. You can listen to the NSFW, explicit, and offensive conversation here.
First, he responded to his co-host's use of the term "LGBT":
When did everyone get fucking lumped in with the gays? Really, what percentage is "transgendered"? Do you know what I mean? Let's just say I was a politician, and I was like, "Hey, transgendered folks, I don't need your vote." You don't think I could get elected? What do they make up - 30 percent of the population? Sure, I used to go to school with a bunch of transgender guys and now I work with a bunch of 'em? Like, what the fuck, when did we start giving a shit about these people?
... Now there's all these variations - like "I'm a pre-op transgender, transneutral, trans fat," shut the fuck up. [Or] "I'm having hormone replacement therapy, but I still have my penis, but I'm not gay, but I'm attracted to men." Like, what the fuck - I can't do the math.
He also took issue with gay people approaching children's television with an eye for "teachable moments" that could encourage greater tolerance and acceptance of kids struggling with their sexual orientation or gender identity. He said:
Oh shut up. Gays, shut up. Just get married, and please shut up - you're ruining my life. ... Like they're gonna save a lot of lives. Yeah, Bert & Ernie, butt fucking, are gonna save a lot of lives.
He concluded the segment by trashing the LGBT acronym again and suggesting, "Shouldn't it be something that spells something? Like 'YUCK'?"
Carolla's truly offensive comments smack of a real lack of understanding about the LGBT community, and in his podcast, which consistently ranks as one of the biggest comedy podcasts available on iTunes, he passed on this lack of understanding to his listeners.
GLAAD spoke out about Carolla's statements in the podcast today, writing:
A few minutes of education might hopefully counteract a few minutes of Carolla's ignorance.
Rather than simply condemn Carolla's remarks, we're going to be reaching out to our network and studio partners, as well as the development executives we've worked with, to let them know that this incident needs to be taken seriously when considering him for future projects.
What Carolla doesn't understand is that ignorance does not give his act an "edge." In fact, ignorance is about as far from an "edge" as you can get - it's unchallenging, it's flat, and it's dull. There's nothing funny about saying we shouldn't teach that transgender people deserve respect. But Carolla's decision to use one of the country's most marginalized communities as a target is not just lazy comedy. It reinforces the idea that transgender people shouldn't be treated with the same respect as everyone else - an attitude that leads to discrimination, harassment, and violence.
Carolla's rant comes just two months after a similar explosion by Tracy Morgan, which launched a week of outrage from LGBT advocates and allies.
Update: This evening Adam Carolla issued an apology to TMZ - "I'm sorry my comments were hurtful. I'm a comedian, not a politician."
GLAAD subsequently responded, in a release:
"Adam Carolla has a history of making anti-LGBT and racist statements," said Herndon Graddick, Senior Director of Programs at GLAAD. "Networks and advertisers should remember that attacking people who are different from him, and following it with empty apologies, is just a regular part of Carolla's routine."