Chaz Bono Casting on ‘DWTS’ Attacked on ABC Website

Tim Molloy at The Wrap notes that of all the announced contestants on Dancing with the Stars, Chaz Bono was by far the most talked-about on ABC's website, noting that "If Americans quickly vote Bono off the show — or keep him on despite a middling performance, as they did with Palin — it could reveal plenty about attitudes toward transgendered people."

Chaz_bono Writes Molloy:

"HUGE HUGE fan of this show since season two and eagerly await each season to get my dancing/entertainment 'fix'!! But when I heard that Chaz Bono was going to be on, I was sick. Not that I have anything personally again her/him, I just don't want that lifestyle choice continually flaunted in the media esp ABC," went one typical anti-Bono comment.

But for everyone who vented disgust — or questioned whether Bono would dance with a man or woman — there were many who defended Bono and accused his critics of bigotry.

Chaz is getting criticism from another corner as well. Thomas "pregnant man" Beatie, complained to TMZ that he was shut out of the running after Chaz expressed interest:

Beatie tells TMZ … he reached out to casting in the hopes of landing a spot a few months ago — but never got a call back. But after DWTS announced that Chaz would be on the show, Thomas says he thinks he knows why he was rejected — the transgender quota had already been filled.

Thomas says he understands why producers wouldn't cast two famous transgender people on the show — but he's still pretty bummed out … telling us, "I wanted to try my new body out. I’m an athlete and I know I would have excelled."


  1. me says

    Thomas Beatie is a bigger fame whore than octomom. I feel bad for the kids being raised by both of them.

  2. walter says

    unfortunately even chaz dances like fred astaire the christian right wing will have him off by the second week.just another show of christian love and charity. chaz better be prepared for all the nasty bigoted comments heaved in his direction.

  3. Farley says

    Why should they be upset? Chaz has stated that he is now a normal heterosexual and formerly identified as lesbian. Isn’t that what the haters want?

  4. jason says

    I would have loved to have seen two men dance together as a couple on the show. However, it appears that Dancing With The Stars producers are quite homophobic.

    As for Chaz Bono, I don’t consider him gay in the slightest. He didn’t want to be gay, hence hís transition to male-like external characteristics.

  5. Bruce says

    Proud of ABC to pick Chaz Bono, and very proud that he would go on the show. Yes there is going to be alot of backlash from the right, but we need to support the show and Chaz gay or not.

  6. Stewart says

    So it would appear that this dance contest is really about the support of issues/personalities rather then dance ability…..sometimes it’s not about homo/trans phobia, sometimes it’s just because you suck.

  7. Rob says

    While I still am bemused by who ABC considers a “star”, at least this time it will bring a face to a group a lot of us (me to) have trouble understanding. I admit I’m still working on getting there on the whole transgender issue. Chaz does seem like a nice, unthreatening poster-child for this. Maybe Cher could be in the audience to whip up some support for her boy. I plan to vote for him, just to try to counter the rightwing vote.

  8. jason says

    I’m not transphobic in the slightest. But I do think we need to define our terms properly and not fall for this all-encompassing notion of gay rights that stretches far beyond what is actually gay.

    I think Chaz is a great person and deserves all the love in the world.

  9. Poison says

    Dancing With the Stars is the most popular show among people 50 and older, and I don’t see them liking this too well…


    “So it would appear that this dance contest is really about the support of issues/personalities rather then dance ability”

    of course! Just like American Idol is about pretty people with interesting stories, not talented ones. Being the best at the object of the show has never been necessary or even important. There are other components of your presentation that are much more crucial to winning over the public.

  10. cadence says

    How can anyone vote Chaz off the show, since people vote for, not against, the contestants. DWTS also has a voting limit, so it is harder to cast mass votes.

  11. Christopher says

    Good for them for putting a transgendered person on the show?. . .oh, what you mean it’s not Nancy Grace????

  12. TJ says

    Some posters here were deriding Don Lemon for his “insensitive” personal questions he asked of Bono. The thing about personal questions, though (about someone who has deliberately made his transition public), is that they expose a person as, well, a person; a fellow human being who has feelings as well as reasons for doing what most people have difficulty comprehending. Bono is a brave man, and maybe this is too soon for heads susceptible to exploding when confronted by something that for them is incomprehensible.

  13. ohplease says

    Somebody tell those readers on the ABC site that if they want to bash Bono, nobody does it better than some of the commenters right here.

    “I think Chaz is a great person and deserves all the love in the world.”

    Which explains why you insist on ignorantly insulting him. I’m willing to believe that your malice is simply ignorance, but now it’s your job to stop being so ignorant. It’s not like you have no control over that.

    It’s lovely that you don’t consider Chaz Bono “gay in the slightest”, since he’s a heterosexual man. That’s very… I don’t know, sane of you?

    Now lose the grudge against trans people, catch up with the decades of political acceptance and progress that you’re not going to reverse, and get over the fact that we are LGBT, whether you like it or not. If you don’t understand why we’re LGBT, then educate yourself on it. It’s the smartest thing for all of us and much, much, much smarter people than you believe so for a reason.

    Chaz Bono is absolutely my brother and his fight is absolutely my fight. That doesn’t weaken either of us and it strengthens us both. It’s not at all hard to understand.

  14. ohplease says

    And TJ, when it comes to trans issues, Don Lemon has been justly criticized everywhere, not just by “some” here, because he is an absolute ass who wants to do no less than pretend that nobody’s even heard of them before and maybe they don’t really exist now.

    His questions weren’t “insensitive”, they were extraordinarily stupid. His questions weren’t “personal”, they were sophomoric. “Personal” questions are getting at the core of who a person is, how their lives are going now, what it all means to them.

    Don Lemon’s questions never rose above, “Wow, you used to be a chick and now you have a beard, how weird is that?” It was disgraceful and inexplicable and he’s another one who has to cure his own ignorance yesterday.

  15. walter says

    the possibility of the right working to get chaz off quickly is great. look how long they managed to keep the no talent bristol palin on it.

  16. Rin says

    Say what you want this season’s Dancing with the Stars is neither about dancing nor about casting “stars”. In Australia they do a better job with acquiring stars to be on the show.

    Chaz Bono would not be famous if his mother were not a star. He seems VERY nice but there are a lot of nice people out there.

    My problems with all of the attention he receives is the same with Willow Smith, Zoe Kravitz and other kids of celebrities who feel that they are celebrities without having to actually do anything people feel should be celebrated.

    This was for the purpose of creating controversy, not because people thought he was a “star” or because he could dance.

    This is the left equivalent of Bristol Palin being on which I thought was crap, too.

    All this said, I don’t think that people should be mean to either of them. Meanness is just unnecessary though everyone does it.

  17. says

    Both Chaz Bono and Thomas Beattie are fame whores. I think both of them should be ashamed of themselves. The way they let their Transsexual status be exploited for sensationalistic value is, in my opinion, totally disgusting.

  18. TJ says

    OHPLEASE – to you, the questions may have seemed sophomoric; to those who have had no exposure and have no clue, they are areas of basic curiosity.

    I remember watching “Philedelphia” when it first came out. I thought it was lame; I thought it was “AIDS 101″ and that the director tried way too hard to make people care (hated the home movies at the end). When I talked (ranted actually) about this with some close, straight friends, they gently reminded me that my perspective might be different from that of they average (and ignorant) straight person.

    Chaz put himself out there for questions to be asked. I was fortunate, a
    few years back, in grad school, to have a trans man do a seminar for fellow interns. No question, per the presenter, was off limits. Same happened at another university where I was a Resident; not only was that presenter preemptive with information, but no question was deemed too silly. Ignorance needs enlightenment, not shame, shined on it.

  19. says

    When you put yourself out there as a conversation piece, as Chaz Bono has done, then you get what you’re asking for. Here’s a question I’d like to ask him: How in the world could you confuse being Transsexual with being Gay? Those identities are hardly the same thing. Or were you just lying all along about being a Lesbian?

  20. TJ says

    STUFFED ANIMAL: ignorance comes in all shapes and sizes, and to all people in many ways. Have you made any attempts to do something about yours by listening to any of his story? Bono talks about his own ignorance in his journey; because he knew what a lesbian was, and felt his attraction to women, being phenotypically female must mean same-sex sexual orientation. He was ignorant of gender.

  21. MikeyDallas says

    I agree with TJ here. A journalists job is to ask the questions the audience would most likely want the answers to.

  22. Cognitive Dissonance says

    Miss Stuffed Animal said: “Chaz Bono and Thomas Beattie are fame whores. The way they let their Transsexual status be exploited for sensationalistic value is, in my opinion, totally disgusting.”

    You tell ’em Miss Black Gay Kansas City 1993 Second Runner Up!

    When a Transsexual woman is transphobic, it sure ain’t pretty! Wearing fishnet stockings, a women’s wig and makeup in a profile pic but bashing trans women is a tragic case of passive aggressive self hatred!

    Stop attempting erasure of our own self identified trans narratives! Stop bashing trans sisters such as Ashley Love and Autumn Sandeen! Stop leaving idiotic, obscene and sexist comments for Taylor, Pam, Autumn and Ashley, sugah!

    Avoid shame-based self-sabotage. Acknowledge your own plushie/furry transgender identity. The revolution begins at home, sugah!

  23. Kate says

    Wishing Chaz all the best. He has courage and determination. People need to get over themselves!

  24. Kevin_BGFH says

    To Jason, and others who don’t accept trans people as part of the LGBT community, my own two cents.

    Sure, there are things I won’t be able to fully understand about what it’s like to be trans, just as I’ll never fully understand what it’s like to be a woman or a person of color. But much of the rest of the world doesn’t see those differences. To them, we are all gender outlaws. We “betray” (in their eyes) our gender by sleeping with people of the same sex (whether or not we also sleep with people of the opposite sex, which in many ways is considered even more taboo). Cross-dressers who are nevertheless heterosexual are gender outlaws for dressing outside of gender conventions. In some (much more limited) ways, early feminists were considered to be betraying their gender by defying gender conventions and choosing work outside of what was expected of them. And transgendered people are considered the biggest gender outlaws of them all.

    You might accept Chaz as being a straight man now, but to the rest of the world he is still considered a gender outlaw, and for that reason is deserving of being a true member of our community.

  25. T.J. says

    The only reason I will be watching DWTS is because of a few people on there that I like. So if this is the way this show is going to go by putting on transgender she/he’s or what ever he is on then I’ll stop watching the show. This started out as a family show. But sadly this show made a choice to go this route by putting on transgender. DWTS has now joined ranks with the other programs by turning into trash tv…

  26. Scot says

    I don’t watch this show and don’t really care who’s featured or who’s not. I do have an honest question though: Do heavy set people do well on this show? That seem to be the elephant in the room that everybody seems to be ignoring – pun intended.

  27. Julie says

    What is wrong with these people?! I support you Chaz along with millions of others!! Good luck & can’t wait to see you rock!

  28. Diana says

    I have been so worried about the economy, jobs, social security, medical coverage,starving people and animals, etc., I completely forgot what is really important! Chaz Bono on DWTS! I am also so relieved to find out there are so many PERFECT people in the world that can stand in judgement of others. God help all of them!

  29. Bonju Patten says

    STUFFED ANIMAL – a brilliant question one I am sure Chaz Bono the freak will not be able to answer…

  30. karen says

    I am an AVID DWTS watcher. I NEVER miss an episole. While I am a married women of 33 years and have 3 hetero sexual children. I applaud Chaz Bono. Every time I see this man speak he is kinder then the time before. Maybe all the haters should take a lesson from him and just be kind. LET HIM BE…..