After it was announced that Chaz Bono—the son of Cher and Sonny Bono who legally changed his name and sex last year—has joined the season 13 cast of Dancing with the Stars, fans of the show took to ABC.com's message boards to express their disapproval and "disgust" at this "perversion" and ABC's participation in this "homosexual lust fest" that's being "flaunted in our faces." And won't someone think of the children!? A lot of bible verses were also dropped, you know, because Jesus died on the cross so that we could watch B-list celebrities attempt the paso doble.
While it's no surprise that a viewing audience that's made up of a very strong contingent of Tea Partiers would express intolerance and ignorance about Bono (many of the commenters didn't really have a grasp on the difference between gay and transgendered), it's totally weird that these super conservative people haven't noticed that the previous 12 seasons have provided one of the campiest shows on television. And do they not get that Bruno Tonioli is gay? Have they never seen him in Elton John's "I'm Still Standing" video?
Beyond that, though, are the comments that proclaim that the inclusion of Bono means that DWTS is no longer a "family" show.
"Chaz Bono How low can this show sink. Well you have certainly addressed the gay commuity. Guess this will not be a family show any longer!!!! Lost my family!"
"No way. We have always looked forward to DWTS but this year it will be banned from all televisions in the house. How do I explain Chaz Bono to my 7 year old daughter? Um well she says she's a he but he looks like a he only he has she parts. Ridiculous. Way to ruin a good family show."
"having bono on the show shows how far americas morals have dropped. gay is in and now transgendering. whats next? people who have married their animals? or how about dancing with hookers, that would really be popular."
Something tells me that if hookers (like perhaps Ashley Dupree) were cast on the show, these same people wouldn't complain nearly as much. In fact, did they protest and claim they were no longer tuning in when women with sex tapes for sale (Kim Kardashian, Kendra Wilkinson) danced on previous seasons? And what is so "family" about a bunch of nearly naked people grind dancing anyway? The male dancers wouldn't even be allowed to shop in most convenient stores with some of the costumes they wear.
Here is a small sampling of some of the hateful comments from ABC.com's message board:
"1. Chastity Bono is not a star; she is the child of two stars. 2. ABC is giving its seal of approval to body mutilation for those with gender identity disorder. 3. It is not bigoted to state facts. 4. It is very Christian and loving to show a person her error, so that she may either correct it or at least not wallow in her sin. Chastity Bono should live a chaste life. 5. Not accepting social anarchy does not make one hateful. 6. The word "hate" has been co-opted by those who wish to paint others who simply disagree with them in a bad light. It is no longer used in its proper sense, as in "despise.""
"Dancing with the stars in desperate! Chaz is nothing more than a woman dressed up like a man! So much for a family show! The good thing is she/he will not be on the show long due to the size of she/him! Disgusting!"
"Well I was all ready miffed at the for their day time TV getting rid of old soaps, but this to out there for my family and I. To throw something in the face of people who don't agree with it is nuts. We all have questions where will she dress, how will the girls feel dancing with another girl? For those of you who will bash this post go on. God created HER man changed her. Yes, she deserves respect, but the life style is 100% wrong you can find it in any bible and it clearly says before the end of time right will be wrong and wrong will be right. Go on and keep saying we are just scared and showing fear, you may be right, but is not fear of those people, it is fear of Gods Judgement on the world. We were all created as we were to be no change's needed. As far as this show I will take it off my DVR and it will not be watched in my home. I have children and have taught them tollerance for same sex folks, but that it was wrong in the eyes of God, and that he will judge them, it is not for us to judge, but to make sure our children know Gods laws. Shame on you DWTS for promoting this. I will obey my God and keep my home clean of such vile behaviior. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 - "Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God." (NIV). 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 - "Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God." (NIV)."
"The morals of this country are tilting more and more into the dark hole of destruction. Today's populations cannot even the wrong with this. Even if you don't believe in the one true God you must admit that "mother nature" doesn't make these types of mistakes. It is so apparent to me that people in Hollywood are drinking from the same cup. Every show has a "Progressive" character in an effort to make the absurd normal. And since the producers and deciders all come from the same cut of cloth they actively promote this train of thought to be "good"; it is not. Promoting a Transgender is the next step in normalizing the LG&T life style. If you disagree you are a bigot; another falsehood. Chaz is a very confused person due to their celebrity parents who spent no time in the kids life. This is a common life path for celebrity kids who are adversely impacted while they were young. The fact that ABC has selected Chaz confirms in my mind that the producers probably had the same experience. Misery Loves Company."
"A person who would allow his children to view perversion, to teach them that perversion is normal and acceptable, that is a person who hates his children. Do you always call people who disagree with your that stupid term—hater? Wait until you grow up and get a career. Will you tell your colleague in the business meeting that points out the flaws in your plan a "hater." One who loves teaches what is good and right and Christian. One who hates couldn't care less if his neighbor burns in hell."
"ABC doesn't know what "family" or "child-friendly" means. Have you ever seen their ABC Family channel? I would never let children watch that homosexual lust fest. It's sickening that they try to promote homosexual lust, portray it as something equal with Christian love. But ABC is owned by Disney, purveyor of homosexual entertainment that makes its money off of children."
"I have to agree - in saying that I don't think it is family TV viewing when on primetime TV this is flaunted in our faces. What is happening to our society and family values. The more it is put out there as "normal" the more it is accepted. What message are we sending to our children and future generation. We will not be watching!!!"
"Well it certainly 'tis the season of the liberals!! Ugh! Looks like DWTS is trying to make a political statement this season. I can only hope one of the Italian princess wins this season. Wonder if producers will give equal time to conservatives in season 14?!"
"GOD saw to it that Cher gave birth to a girl......... Who are we to change our sex simply because someone decides it more fun to be gay than a lesbian. I have no problem with gays or lesbians, I do however have a problem with someone who wants to be a man with a female part.... i mean really.. He may dance well but I would rather watch a gay Carsen than a confused person who doesn't know what sex they want to be..... GOD did not make us one sex so we could decide we wanted to be another sex........"
"the fact is the loyal viewer have the right to ask for decent viewing and standards. ABC is wrong to push the choices on us....for many this is the only affordable entertainment we have and asking for pleasant decent people to appear is just a basic desire and right of a viewer."
"Honestly i dont care if other people know that i can change my channel. I am posting this so that abc knows that I will not be watching. I am all about people being treated humanely and justly. I do not have to agree with their lifestyles and watch it being flaunted on tv. I don't have kids and dread the day that i do because of how sick our society is becoming."
But it's not all doom and gloom. The great thing about Bono's appearance on DWTS is the exposure the trans community will gain and the education the viewing audience will receive. It should prove interesting to see how people will vote. And even if some viewers are intolerant, the hope is that after this season, they will at least be less ignorant on the matter.