News | Oprah | Thomas Beatie | Transgender

Morning Joe Hosts Disgusted by 'Pregnant Dude' Thomas Beatie


I thought Oprah handled the story of pregnant transgender man Thomas Beatie with respect yesterday. Not everybody's so accepting of Beatie, however, and plenty of people are openly threatened by him.

Like David Letterman, who called Beatie an "androgynous freak show" in his Top Ten the other night, the hosts of MSNBC's Morning Joe spent a few minutes expressing their nausea. Take a look at how Willie Geist, Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough air their disgust about Oprah "legitimizing this" in this morning's 'News You Can't Use':

Says Scarborough: "I'm not gonna look at this. Tell me when it's over. I'm not looking. We don't want the facts. I can't handle the facts."

Says Brzezinski: "I don't want to know the deal. I don't want to hear. I'm gonna be sick. I'm gonna be sick. I am upset. That was not only stupid and useless, but quite frankly, disgusting."

Brzezinski asked who the father is, and Scarborough responds: "The parrot at the pet shop...A former aide of Jim McGreevey. Are the McGreevey's involved in this in any way?"

Watch the clip, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Thanks, MATTHEW. This issue always wears the shit out of me on this blog and others.

    Bill: The "T" in LGBT doesn't always mean someone who is transsexual. It may also include gay men who are feminine, and gay women who are masculine.

    The idiotic behavior of the 3 "newsmen" proves that transgendered folks will always be part of the gay world(unless they don't want/feel to be). There always have been transgendered GAY people--longer than you "normal" acting homosexuals. We are all a "freakshow" to bigoted, ignorant straight motha' fuckas.

    Nobody is asking you "normal" acting homosexuals to associate with, or even speak to trans gay folk. Just don't open up your mouths and sound like disgustingly arrogant, hypocritical faggots.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Apr 4, 2008 11:33:54 AM

  2. Yeah when you see something out of your experience attack it.

    I stopped watching TV news long back. Thank you Google News.

    Posted by: SJ | Apr 4, 2008 11:48:32 AM


    I agree 100%!

    If we can't support our own community, why should we expect the straight world to?

    Posted by: Bobby | Apr 4, 2008 11:49:41 AM

  4. I agree with Matthew R.

    This is why even those of us who are gay and neither trans nor pregnant should be angry about the "freakshow" remark:

    For sexists and heterosexists a man is defined as someone who doesn't get fucked and someone who doesn't have babies. Male bodies are always whole and intact, they don't have penises coming into them and don't have babies coming out of them.

    This is what horrifies most homophobes about gay men, and it's what horrifies these assholes about Beatie's situation.

    The two phenomena are absolutely related, no matter if some people can't see the connection.

    Posted by: Kevinvt | Apr 4, 2008 11:57:05 AM

  5. As a gay man - I do NOT pretend to Understand transgendered people...but I for one believe in "Live and Let Live"..."Treat others as you yourself wish to be treated"..period! Whatever makes someone happy....Be a decent person on the planet earth while you're alive!

    Posted by: Rex | Apr 4, 2008 12:13:35 PM

  6. I think it's totally fair to ask whether this publicity helps or hurts the desire of the LGBT community to achieve more equal rights. Clearly millions of people--and legislators--are going to be freaked out about this. I'm one of those gay guys who worries that the outlandish stuff in gay pride parades that ends up on the evening news is of little help to the cause. This strikes me as similar. Thomas has the right to do whatever he wants, and Oprah's audience can applaud politely, but I think equal rights for LGBTs just suffered a setback.

    Posted by: Don | Apr 4, 2008 12:28:53 PM

  7. I sent an angry e-mail and will not tune in again. Also, vomit-meister Mika Brzezinski sports a small penis.

    Posted by: chelseapal | Apr 4, 2008 12:31:42 PM

  8. Scarborough says, " We don't want the facts. I can't handle the facts."

    So how is this different from ANYTHING that Scarborough covers on any of his shows. He has NEVER let the facts get in the way of his opinions.

    This freaks people out because it is the ULTIMATE manifestation of a person, and more importantly, of a MAN breaking gender roles. When they see this all they can imagine is how their heterocentric and heterosexist apple cart will be turned completely upside down. When science finds a way for men to carry a baby it will be the last nail in the coffin of biologically forced sex roles. Science is already well on the way to producing viable sperm from eggs and eggs from sperm. There would then only be one step needed to produce a world where males and females weren't absolutely dependent on each other for reproduction. Just think about how this realization would change the current debate on marriage.

    That scares the SH*T out of a whole lot of people, most especially the social conservatives and fundamentalists.

    Posted by: Zeke | Apr 4, 2008 12:50:24 PM

  9. All the contact information here. I blogged about this this morning when it first happened. I alerted Towleroad to this story. I am so glad it was posted. I sent this story in to CNN, FOX News, and the Huffington Post. I even alerted GLAAD to this. I want to see them fired, suspended, or forced to give an on air apology. I am sick of Anti-LBGT comments allowed to go unnoticed on the airwaves.

    Posted by: Scandalous Candice | Apr 4, 2008 1:23:06 PM

  10. Bobby, I'm with Bill.

    I support my own community, but am one of those gay people who do not view transgender persons as part of my community. My gayness has nothing to do with transgenderism at all. I simply like men.

    As part of the larger, human community, I do support the same rights and privileges for transgender persons as I do for gay people. I do not, however believe that other than being oppressed, I have anything more in common with trans people than straight people do. Possibly less.

    Posted by: Dan B | Apr 4, 2008 2:40:21 PM

  11. Our local news (Denver) ran the story last night and after the taped broadcast the anchor said "That's going to be one messed up kid."

    They also reported on a mother who confused her meth with baby formula and fed it to her three month old.

    Yet society will say Meth Mommy is more deserving of a child than this couple.

    This world is changing, maybe too fast for most folks but this world is changing.

    I welcome the change.

    Posted by: abden | Apr 4, 2008 2:43:46 PM

  12. DAN B,

    have you ever of Quentin Crisp. He wore make-up and feminized himself. He did this from the 1920s till the end of the last century. He was a feminine gay man with a physical appearance that could be described today as transgendered. Many transgendered people are not transsexual. Many transgendered people do not dress 100% in the clothing of the BIOLOGICALLY opposite sex(as perscribed by whatever culture they live in). Some transgendered gay women have given birth to children, yet they still dress as men. They do not want to change their sex organs. They call themselves "gay".

    Historically, transgendered gay people such as Quentin Crisp may have layed the foundations for the modern gay subculture. Maybe you do not want to associate yourself with them. The feeling may be mutual. But you, and your kind will never decide who is gay, and who is something else.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Apr 4, 2008 2:56:12 PM

  13. Funny how Scarbarough can exclaim that he's weirded out by a pregnant transgender, yet he's not weirded out by a dead intern in his congressional office. Strange how that works, no?

    Posted by: Tread | Apr 4, 2008 3:17:12 PM

  14. Morning Joe and Letterman are going to get away with these comments for a major reason - this WOMAN is playing everyone and the LGBT movement for FOOLS - any person Gay, Bi or Straight who actual calls a pregnant person a MAN if a fool - and that is what this manipulative young lady is trying to make of all of us.

    I do not care if chop off your breasts and take hormones to grow a lil facial hair - I do not even care if she had been born with an oversized clitoris and was intersexed. The fact is SHE chose to not really become a man and SHE chose to remain a HER by keeping her FEMALE reproductive organs. Any comment by HER after that claiming SHE wanted to be considered a man is a SCAM.

    SHE is an attention seeking media whore that will bring respect and acceptance of the Transgender community - because people dont ike when people play games and try to F with their heads. This is a pregnant WOMAN.... who is demanding that people ignore that FACT to meet the rules of the little game SHE has set up.

    I believe we should jettison the T in the LGBT name after this INTENTIONAL fiasco she has dropped in the public arena ... and anyone demanding "respect" for this game player or refers to this WOMAN as a he is playing a game I despise.

    Posted by: RJP3 | Apr 4, 2008 3:36:13 PM

  15. When regular Joe was on Imus, Imus joked about Joe making love to his intern and then having to kill her. Joe laughed and said essentially "well yeah, that's the way it goes". Strange Joe's dead intern (her head was bashed in if I remember correctly) was never covered by the main stream media to the extent that Gary Condit's missing intern was. And of course we all know the coverage Hillary gets at the mention of Vince Foster's (suicide/murder?), but regular Joe and his dead intern gets a free pass. Why is that I wonder? Joe really shouldn't be making moral judgments when there are so many unanswered questions about the dead female intern in Joe's Florida office. How about handling some of those facts for us Joe? Did you screw the intern, bash her brains in and then get the press and an incompetent medical examiner to cover your tracks? What's more repulsive, the questionable death of a Congressman's young female intern or the pregnancy of a transgendered female?

    Posted by: Bob R | Apr 4, 2008 3:36:58 PM

  16. Morning Joe and Letterman are going to get away with these comments for a major reason - this WOMAN is playing everyone and the LGBT movement for FOOLS.

    Any person Gay, Bi or Straight who actual goes along and calls a pregnant person a MAN if a fool and allowing that person too much power to control and dominate the situation.

    That desire to control reality at HER whim is exaclty what is wrong with what this manipulative young LADY is trying to make of all of us.

    I do not care SHE or anyone chops off breasts and takes hormones to grow a lil facial hair - I do not even care if she had been born with an oversized clitoris and was intersexed. The fact is SHE chose to not really become a man and SHE chose to remain a HER by keeping her FEMALE reproductive organs.

    Any comment by HER after that choice and a choice to continue with a pregnancy, and going public with it - all goes against claiming SHE wants to be considered a man - the entire thing is a SCAM.

    That back and forth - and the "fluidity" at whim of some members of the transgender community is only hurting true trangendered individuals - and this is an example of the game players in the T community that WILL bring down the entire movement.

    Nobody wants to get played this way. It is an insult to common sense for a pregnant WOMAN to demand EVERYONE else ignore reality to meet HER whim to be considered a he.

    On top of that HER biggest sin is SHE is an attention seeking media whore that will do nothing but damage the respect and acceptance of the Transgender community - because people do not like when people play games with them and try to F with their heads.

    This is a pregnant WOMAN.... who is demanding that people ignore that FACT to meet the rules of the little game SHE has set up.

    I believe we should jettison the T in the LGBT name after this INTENTIONAL fiasco she has dropped in the public arena ... and anyone demanding "respect" for this game player or refers to this WOMAN as a he is playing a game I despise.

    Posted by: rjp3 | Apr 4, 2008 3:46:38 PM

  17. A few random thoughts:

    1) Scarborough and his ilk are beneath contempt, but unfortunately LOTS of people who haven't made up their minds about issues that really very directly affect the LGBT community which these types.

    2) I'll be honest. The whole story--not-quite-all-the-way FTM transsexual reverses hormone therapy in order to conceive and bear child--is squirm-inducing for me. BUT, I think the only legitimate grounds on which to oppose it is the health and welfare of the child. (And on that issue I think the medical community is still out.)

    But that it discomfits some people is NO reason to oppose it because--let's face it--homosexuality still sits uneasily with LOTS of people, and I think/hope that most of us who frequent Towleroad agree that's no grounds on which to bar OUR full and fair participation in society.

    3) A lot of "LGB" people have mixed feelings about adding the "T" to the end of our cause. I have been conflicted about it. But I've felt that way solely out of fear that making our cause and agenda too big and, I'll admit, too "out there" makes progress on the core agenda harder (for example, the ENDA debate). That's a wildly self-interested reason, but it IS a reason. And it has nothing to do with disliking or opposing or desiring to discriminate against transsexuals.

    4) "T" is a pretty all-encompassing term. And personally I'm not sure what precisely it's meant to stand for. I assume "transgender," and I believe that is the right answer. But the dialogue on this issue (here and elsewhere) betrays a lot of confusion and inspecificity as to what exactly we're speaking about when we say "T". Peoples comments seem to reflect varying assumptions that it stands for transsexual, transgendered, maybe just the looser "trans," and even transvestite!

    Likewise, very often people seem to associate all trans people with transsexualism and gender identity disorder. I, like many in the LGB community, feel that the subset of trans people who are in fact seeking medical reassignment to the other gender are the hardest to square with our sense of ourselves and our community, in large (but not exclusive) part due to the fact that their condition is still considered a medical one which requires "fixing." Of course, so too once was homosexuality, but I think there is a reasonably clear line between those of us who want society's norms to change to accommodate the morally-neutral ways in which we want to live and those who want a surgeon and endocrinologist to physically alter their bodies so they can live as a person of the other sex. That does NOT make them bad, weird or lesser. Just different.

    All that said, my bottom line is this: I think the LGB community and its cause CANNOT turn its back on those who seek to advance the larger trans (and I am very specifically using the broadly encompassing and non-exclusive term "trans") cause. Because to do so would be to forget where WE have come from. It would lose sight of the fact that WE (us relatively "normal" run-of-the-mill LGBs) were once the outcasts. It would be to forget the moral rightness of the argument that people needn't fit neatly into one or the other of two sexes and their strictly-defined associated gender identities. Ultimately, it would be to make ourselves lesser.

    So back to Thomas Beatie, by the grace of God the child will be physically healthy. And that's all that matters. And the haters and obscurantists like Scarborough can mind their own business and go to hell. And the rest of us can make sure they leave the Beaties and their child alone.

    Posted by: Hermes in DC | Apr 4, 2008 4:06:26 PM

  18. I posted my response on another site and thought I would share it here. I'm a quiet guy (most of the time)and mainly tend to feel more bleak about the future of mankind in general, and my Queer community specifically, so,I am NOT surprised that these fools said this stuff on their show. I am NOT surprised that the information about this televised ridiculousness is passing around the US Queer community. What WOULD surprise me is if the Queer community actually did anything aside from talk amongst themselves. There are roughly 300,000,000 people in the US, leaving one to conclude that there are roughly 30,000,000 Queers here. The problem with the Queer US is not intolerance toward us, it’s apathy from us. Don’t think about forming a protest. FORM A PROTEST! Don’t consider contacting Queer groups around the nation. DO IT! For Fucks’ SAKE!!! Fewer people have changed larger countries. Until WE do something to stop it, actively, this crap will continue. And we will just sit there and allow it. As we do. Having marched in America and abroad in Pride parades (sometimes there were only five of us and a whistle and banner) I fully condone; acts of civil disobedience, the right to protect myself and loved ones (violently if necessary) and the right of every individual born in the US having the exact same rights as every OTHER individual born in the US. Rant over.

    Posted by: Garrison Edward | Apr 4, 2008 4:16:40 PM

  19. GARRISON, you make some important points. Thanks.

    HERMES, you just made my weekend! There is tolerance in the gay world. There are those who reject exclusionary bigotry towards "non-conforming" people who've called themselves gay for decades. I thought it was obligatory to feel that way if one is gay. NAIVE.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Apr 4, 2008 4:40:17 PM

  20. American, which has always claimed to enjoy freedom, is such a bigot! All these educated (or not) hosts talking shit on TV! Such disrespectful to the 3 people (including the baby girl).

    And that lady host who said that she was confused but she didn't wanna know the details?

    I would call Letterman a fashion freak as those double-breasted suits look ridiculous on him!

    Thomas and his wife seem like a very nice and normal couple. Even though the child may be confused about her originality and her parents, I'm sure their love will make up for it.

    Posted by: Alfred | Apr 4, 2008 6:15:32 PM

  21. Have you all watched the Oprah interview? It was wonderful. Their discussion was open and very informative. As a gay guy with many trans friends I thought I had a good idea of what it's all about but it really opened my mind even further. I can only imagine how much good it did introducing the topic to others outside the gay community.

    Oprah was really amazing - she even talked about the clitoris enlarging. She was very genuine and respectful.

    Even though so many people here find it revolting/wrong/weird, I think that Beatie's public story (does it really matter that they are making some money? I mean, do you have any idea how expensive it is to raise a child nowadays??) is educational and inspirational. How many of you have gone out on a limb and made a stand for those of us who are different in some way? I remember challenging someone in grad school for using the words 'fag' and 'dyke' as insults all the time in class and got shouted down by others, including closeted gays. But I kept politely asking him to stop and within a year that guy apologised to and volunteered at a free medical programme for transgendered youth.

    Even if you all continue to kick Beatie and his family to the kerb, his story will make real and positive differences to YOUR lives some day.

    Posted by: Unbeliever | Apr 4, 2008 7:40:59 PM

  22. This story and the gender confusion that goes with it takes us no where. Those who think this story expands the limits of societal normalcy are delusional. To call the story inspirational is ludicrous. I am at a loss defending the behavior, and I am at a loss trying to defend the choices made as "human rights."

    Face the real facts: these are two lesbians, in a committed relationship, who decided to have a baby together through artificial insemination. On "Oprah" the partner described, with giggles, performing the insemination of her partner. Very edgy, very titillating. The pregnant partner happens to be happier without breasts and prefers to be gender identified as a man. But, make no mistake about it: this is not a man having a baby --- this is a woman with a uterus and ovaries who wants to look like a man while having a baby.

    I think we run the risk of deluding ourselves here, in the spirit of political correctness. I think we should be clear, and the public should be clear about this story. It does nothing to advance the cause of "gay" rights, and this is the only fight that I have chosen. The rest of this gender charade bears no relevance to my life, and, frankly, I won't go down that path. In fact, I fear that the circus like attention to this story will be damaging to more important, central gay issues that bear the support of society at large. It is a fringe psychological dilemma; let's not make it a codependent drama.

    Posted by: Richard | Apr 5, 2008 1:16:23 AM

  23. RICHARD,

    i agree with you. but the reality transcends your rationality. is this situation an aberration? yes. does it present a new way of looking at things? i think so.

    at first, i thought it was weird. and, frankly, i do not blame our friends in the straight world for thinking as much. if we (as the "others") find this hard to deal with, why should we fault them?

    there is no excuse, however, for the dismissive and derisive attitude exhibited by the subhumans who earn their pay through ridicule and rank exploitation. there is no greater case for evolution than this exemplar.

    most of us evolved from a dominant ape species. some of us, sadly, evolved from a shriveling branch of that tree of life. how else can we explain the proto-simian performance of these dolts? to call them chimpanzees would be paying them a complement. but i would not want to disparage the apes. there is more humanity reflected in their eyes than could ever be found in the empty stares of those bobble-heads.

    i have to confess. i have often seen two beautiful men together, and wondered, if they could combine their genes, wouldn't their progeny be astounding? frankly, if i could have had a child with either of my last two lovers, i would have done it, irrespective of who carried the baby to term.

    the human mind can expand beyond expectaion. the human heart has no boundries

    Posted by: nic | Apr 5, 2008 5:54:14 AM

  24. Dan B. here's the deal.
    I'm a gay man. I love my dick. I would never have it cut off unless it was medically warranted.

    That doesn't mean I have nothing in common with transgendered people or that I can't sympathize with them and their plight.

    The homosexual community should be a little more accepting than the heterosexual community. We've been persecuted. We're being discriminated against daily with laws that keep us from marrying and visiting our partners in the hospital.

    Isn't there enough divide without you adding to it by disowning the transgendered community?

    Shouldn't we be just a little more evolved than that?

    Posted by: Bobby | Apr 5, 2008 1:58:53 PM

  25. What's the mystery?
    "IT" is not a man having a baby. IT is a dyke with a hair cut wearing a man's clothes.

    Men do not have babies. Stop calling "IT" a man , "IT" is a woman wearing blue jeans and a flannel shirt.

    Posted by: Clyde Neal | May 30, 2009 11:36:13 AM

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