As Dancing With The Stars struggles to find good stars, and some stars struggle to get on the show and fail (Teresa Giudice), the show decided to take an interesting risk by enlisting transgendered contestant Chaz Bono.
Chaz Bono, born as Chastity Bono to celebrities Sonny & Cher, is a female-to-male transgendered person who underwent sexual reassignment surgery in 2009. Now, in 2011, he'll be competing as a man, and be partnered with a woman, on Dancing With The Stars.
As soon as the announcement about Chaz participating on the show came out, people were quick to criticize DWTS for casting a transgendered individual. It has been noted that conservative groups believe that Chaz's appearance makes DWTS no longer allows the show to be family friendly. Their reasoning? Seeing Chaz will be confusing for children. That's an oversimplification if I've ever heard one...and basically a lie, at that. If a kid asks why Chaz 'looks funny' or something, tell the kid that people look different and that's what makes each person unique. End of story.
That being said, we all know that's not the real reason that conservative groups oppose Chaz's appearance - they think being transgendered is wrong. Well, I think it's wrong to say that people can't be who they want to be, as long as they live their lives in a moral and ethical manner!
Fortunately, dance partner Lacey Schwimmer is supportive of Chaz and looks forward to working with him. And rightfully so! She and Chaz are going to be a part of history, and if Chaz can dance, he and Lacey have a great chance of winning season thirteen of Dancing With The Stars.
Why Chaz Bono being on Dancing With The Stars is great for DTWS and society
Chaz's appearance on DTWS is great for ABC. While some people may boycott the show, most rational people will remain as loyal viewers, and many new viewers are likely to tune in. I, for one, do have not watched Dancing With The Stars, but plan to watch the upcoming season to support ABC casting Chaz on the show.
Chaz appearing on DWTS sends a positive message to transgendered individuals. It shows that transgendered people do not need to hide and can achieve whatever they want to achieve. Plus, transgendered individuals are underrepresented in both scripted and unscripted television, so this is a breakthrough for the transgendered community.
This will also raise awareness about transgendered people. The show can help people open their eyes to the fact that transgendered people can be good people, just like anyone else. Chaz is sure to be a positive role model, rather than the negative influence that conservative groups are claiming he will be. Plus, I stand by the fact that Bristol Palin, who was famous for being a pregnant teenager, is way less of a positive role model than Chaz, and she did really well on DWTS.
Why I personally advocate Chaz appearing on DWTS
It bothers me when people are judged for following their hearts when their actions are legal, ethical and do not harm anyone. Chaz, through his gender reassignment surgery, is now free to be who he is. Who are we to say that he can't be physically male when it fulfills his dream to do so? People should not have a right to tell Chaz he shouldn't or can't change his physical gender when he knows that's what he needed to do. And, to prohibit him from living freely in society is just wrong.
By protesting Chaz's appearance, conservative groups are simply making themselves look silly to those of us who believe in accepting people for who they are. Why not accept his appearance on DTWS as a learning opportunity to understand Chaz better and become more accepting of his choices? By continuing to speak out against those who don't fit the "perfect" image that conservative groups want on television, the groups are creating hatred that could otherwise be lessened or eliminated.
I also think the conservative groups that focus so much on what's on television need to take a step back and focus on what's really important in life. Instead of talking about how much sex is on Glee (another prevalent issue) and the fact that someone 'different' is appearing on a reality TV show, how about you focus on making the world a better place and helping your community? And if you don't like a TV show, don't watch it. If all TV was squeaky clean with no hint of controversy, no one would watch it. So take a step back from your closed-minded world and look around you. People are different, people have different interests and people enjoy different things. Just because you don't like Chaz being on a dancing show doesn't mean that you should try to stop him from appearing so no one can enjoy his appearance on the show.
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