After Lil Duval threw himself in a whirlwind of controversy for his transphobic remarks on Power 105.1’s The Breakfast Club, trans activist and best-selling author Janet Mock wrote an op-ed for Allure responding to the hate and misogyny the Florida comedian spewed.
The same week President Trump declared that transgender people were no longer allowed to serve in the military because of the “burden” their healthcare needs bring, Duval declared what he would do if he found out he’d slept with a trans woman.
“This might sound messed up and I don’t care, she dying,” he said. “I didn’t say I was gonna kill transgenders. I said, if one did that to me and they didn’t tell me, I’mma be so mad I’d probably kill them.” He also took to Instagram to keep adding fuel to the fire.
Just a few weeks prior to this incident, Mock was a guest on the radio show, invited by Angela Yee to speak about her new book, Surpassing Certainty. During the interview, co-hosts DJ Envy and Charlamagne Tha God didn’t hold back when asking Mock disrespectful questions about her genitalia. Still, she gracefully shared her experiences in efforts to educate them and their audience.
Mock wanted to “use the show’s vast platform to speak directly to their predominantly black and Latinx listeners, who are often excluded from the conversations held in mainstream LGBT spaces (which are largely white, moneyed, and concerned with the centering of cis folk),” she wrote.
Instead, she felt ridiculed by the blatant prejudice and discrimination that Envy, Charlamagne, and Duval later displayed. “The hosts laugh after using my image as a literal prop — just days after I was a guest on the same show — for laughs, vitriol, and a deeper call and justification for violence,” she stated. “Just so we are all clear: On a black program that often advocates for the safety and lives of black people, its hosts laughed as their guest advocated for the murder of black trans women who are black people, too!”
Mock also explained why the show’s hosts and their guests’ display of toxic masculinity only contribute to the hatred toward transgender women that can lead to their murder.
“Until cis people — especially heteronormative men — are able to interrogate their own toxic masculinity and realize their own gender performance is literally killing trans women, cis men will continue to persecute trans women and blame them for their own deaths,” she explained. “If you think trans women should disclose and ‘be honest,’ then why don’t you work on making the damn world safe for us to exist in the first place? The ‘I’d kill a woman if I found out’ rhetoric is precisely why so many women hold themselves so tight — the stigma and shame attached to our desires need to be abolished.”