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Katie Couric asks transgender guests about their private parts, gets an education

Model Carmen Carrera and actress Laverne Cox tell talk show host such things are personal
Carmen_Carrera, Katie_Couric and Laverne _Cox
Photo: Katie Couric Twitter

Katie Couric wanted model Carmen Carrera and actress Laverne Cox, both transgender, to tell her audience about their private parts during a show that aired this week.

They refused.

Couric asked Victoria Secret model Carrera: 'Your private parts are different now, aren't they?'

Responded Carrera: 'I don't want to talk about it, it's really personal.'

She added: 'After the transition there's still life to live. I still have my career goals, I still have my family goals.'

When Cox, one of the breakout stars of TV's Orange is the New Black, joined the conversation, Couric went there again while acknowledging that people need to be educated.

She said to Cox: 'Carmen recoiled a bit when I asked her about her transition.'

Cox explained why: 'The preoccupation with transition and with surgery objectifies trans people and then we don't get to deal with the real lived experiences.'

''The reality of trans people's lives is that so often we are the targets of violence,' Cox added. 'We experience discrimination disproportionately to the rest of the community. ... If we focus on transition, we don't actually get to talk about those things.'

Sharon Brown, director of human resources at the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center, watched the exchange on Couric's show and tells Gay Star News she is surprised such a veteran journalist would ask such a question.

'Genetalia does not itself define gender identity,' said Brown, a transgender woman. 'I respond with tenacity and zeal and politeness that I don't answer that question. That is between myself and the person I am intimate with.'

Brown added: 'I go on to let people know it is a possibility, depending on how I answer, that you would maybe see me differently. I believe that is a very personal and private matter.'

She believes Couric 'should take time to do a little more research on what is appropriate to ask. It's a common mistake that's made by the average person - even my family members ask. But we are talking about an experienced journalist.'

Here is a link to the segment on The Katie Couric Show

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