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Did RuPaul change his mind about trans queens on Drag Race?

Did RuPaul change his mind about trans queens on Drag Race?

Gia Gunn in the All Stars 4 promo video

The cast of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars 4 was announced last week. One of the contestants is Gia Gunn, who came out as trans after her season aired.

So, this begs the question: did RuPaul change his mind about letting trans queens compete?

Background

RuPaul came under fire earlier this year for saying he wouldn’t accept trans queens on the show if they’ve begun to transition physically.

Yet, Gunn is proudly trans, even crowdfunding her gender confirmation surgery.

Gunn weighed in on RuPaul’s transphobia back in March on her YouTube channel.

Gunn responds to RuPaul’s comments

‘As a member of the trans community and a previous contestant on the show, I feel it’s necessary to use my platform to speak on behalf of my other brothers and sisters who are feeling hurt at this moment in time,’ Gunn said.

Gunn goes on to thank RuPaul for giving her a platform to advance her career.

‘There’s no doubt that RuPaul’s Drag Race has brought queer culture to the forefront of mainstream conversation,’ she said. ‘Since season one, many doors have opened for all sorts of performers. So let’s continue to open those doors by having positive conversations among members of the LGBTQ community.’

Gunn explains that many of the early drag shows she attended featured trans performers. She admits to being confused by this at first.

‘As I grew up, I learned what it meant to be transgender,’ Gunn explained. ‘And the difference between living your life full-time as the opposite sex versus for pleasure or a job.’

‘For me personally, I found my gender identity by doing drag,’ she said.

She goes on to discuss all the different types of drag. She states that in response to RuPaul’s comments, she would like to give Ru the benefit of the doubt.

‘For me personally, it’s always a little hard to decipher the true meaning of things when in text versus hearing it from the individual’s mouth.’

‘With that being said, I don’t think RuPaul is saying that trans queens and bio queens are any less valid than trans artists.’ For Gunn, she believes that Ru was just explaining the type of contestants he picks — those who look male. To her, this doesn’t mean those male-presenting people necessarily have to identify as male.

Gunn points out that contestants with lip, butt, and hip implants have been welcome on the show before. So, it seems, RuPaul only takes issue when it comes to breast implants or breast growth due to hormones (which Gunn is on).

‘I honestly just think RuPaul wants to keep the show representing the traditional definition of drag,’ she stated.

Gunn questions RPDR

‘So I have to ask myself: does this mean as a trans woman I will no longer be considered for future seasons of All Stars? I respect that this is RuPaul’s decision, but at the end of the day I don’t think my transness has anything to do with me as an artist or what I put out as Gia Gunn. If you’re a fierce queen and you bring it to the runway, you should be accepted as one. Nothing more, and nothing less.’

She quotes RuPaul’s famous line, ‘We’re all born naked and the rest is drag’. Adding, ‘I hope we can continue finding out what “the rest” means. Because for me, drag is universal.’

Gunn & All Stars 4

On Friday, 9 November, Gunn took to Instagram to share the news of being chosen for All Stars 4. She did not mention her trans identity in the comment.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

4 years ago a door had opened for me unexpectedly, because of that I then was blessed to be able to discover my authentic truth without forgetting where I come from! I am so excited and thankful to now be sharing this next chapter in my life not only in my true skin but also with ALL OF YOU💫Now, who’s ready for me to show these boys who the REAL queen is?!! @rupaulsdragrace #AllStars4 👗: @manzanaresny 💄: @neil_silverman_makeup Hace 4 años, una puerta se me abrió inesperadamente, por eso tuve la bendición de poder descubrir mi auténtica verdad sin olvidar de dónde vengo. Estoy tan emocionada y agradecida de poder compartir este próximo capítulo en mi vida, no solo en mi verdadera piel, sino también con TODOS USTEDES. ¡¿Ahora, quiénes están listos para que les muestre a estos muchachos quién es la reina REAL? #AllStars4

A post shared by Gia Gunn Official Account (@gia_gunn) on

‘4 years ago a door had opened for me unexpectedly. Because of that I then was blessed to be able to discover my authentic truth without forgetting where I come from,’ Gunn wrote. ‘I am so excited and thankful to now be sharing this next chapter in my life not only in my true skin but also with ALL OF YOU. Now, who’s ready for me to show these boys who the REAL queen is?!!’

In the behind-the-scenes video for the All Stars 4 promo shoot, Gunn can be seen mingling with the other contestants. Again, her trans identity is not mentioned.

So?

It’s unclear if Gunn’s transness came up in the decision to have her on All Stars 4. Nevertheless, she seems happy to be there. And perhaps maybe it’ll be discussed on the show?

RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars 4 premieres on 14 December on VH1.

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