Why RuPaul's Drag Race Stars & Fans Want Wendy Williams' Viewing Party Cancelled

Photo: Marion Curtis/StarPix/REX/Shutterstock.
Last week, Season 9 of RuPaul's Drag Race premiered on VH1. Also making its debut a new viewing party/pre-show hosted by Wendy Williams, who has a history of making transphobic remarks. Unsurprisingly, fans and stars of Drag Race, as well as allies of the trans community, are calling out the Wendy Williams Show host — and demanding she be fired from her new gig.
New York City-based drag performer Stephanie Stone wrote on Facebook, "all I remember is when Wendy Williams had Erick Atoure Aviance removed from her studio audience for being in she's doing the pre-show for drag race, when are folks gonna realize not everyone's your 'friend of the community.'" Stone is talking about how in 2009, Williams used the show's "no costume policy" to kick drag performer Aviance out of her audience on The Wendy Williams Show. (Show execs later apologized.)
Drag Race: All Stars runner-up Detox shared Stone's post on Instagram with this caption: "THIS IS IMPORTANT!!!! This is why I say @wendywilliamsxo @wendyshow should NOT be hosting the @rupaulsdragrace viewing party on @vh1. She is NOT an ally. She is transphobic. If anything, she is an ENEMY. An enemy profiting off of our community. Fuck. That. #ImpeachWendyWilliams ok fine. Just #FireWendyWilliams."
Fans are equally upset. "It's a disgrace that @WendyWilliams is hosting the @RuPaulsDragRace viewing show on @VH1 #FireWendyWilliams @RuPaul," one tweeted. "Im shocked that VH1 has Wendy Williams hosting the Drag Race preshow. I CANT STAND HER honestly. Im sorry but she is not an LGBTQ ally," wrote another.
Meanwhile, Season 5 star (and All Stars champ) Alaska Thunderfuck 5000 issued a statement echoing a similar take on the issue with Unicorn Booty, a blog for LGBTQ news. "Frankly, I think the decision to make Wendy Williams one of the hosts of the weekly spots framing commercial breaks for RuPaul’s Drag Race’s weekly broadcast is tone deaf, untimely and incorrect," Alaska writes. "I used to watch Wendy’s 'Hot Topics' daily, and some of the things she said during Caitlyn Jenner’s very public transition were beyond questionable...Wendy repeatedly spouted ignorance and transphobic rhetoric to a daily audience of millions." She continued, "I certainly don’t [Williams] is the right person to be hosting our community’s flagship television program."
One of the instances of transphobic rhetoric Alaska is referring to happened in 2015 during a discussion of the Cosmopolitan cover starring the Kardashian-Jenners. Williams stated that Caitlyn Jenner wasn't included on the cover because she still had a "member." She said, "I mean, until you don't, aren't you caught in limbo?"
In 2014, Williams got into hot water for misgendering Chaz Bono and making ignorant and transphobic comments about trans athlete Chloie Jönsson, who sued after she was barred from competing in the women's division of the CrossFit Games because she was assigned male at birth. "This is an unfair advantage," Williams reasoned. "You can take away female or male parts or whatever — it's like Chaz Bono! You know, Chaz is a man now, but I bet she still fights like a girl like the rest of us, and she's not as strong as a man who was born a man." Williams later apologized.
There may be those who defend Williams, arguing she's changed. But as Drag Race alum Detox points out on Twitter, "if people wanna say @WendyWilliams has changed I wanna see the receipts." Sounds like a fair expectation to us. Otherwise, the backlash is likely to only grow louder — and Williams or VH1 will be forced to respond, either defending themselves or cancelling the viewing show.
In the meantime, read up on the controversy, below.


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