Celebrated actress and transgender pioneer Laverne Cox sat down with Wendy Williams this week to have a legendary kiki that involved Wendy’s shoe cam, a wig note from Laverne, a Hebrew lesson, and more productive discussion about why questions about genitalia are invasive and rude.
In true Wendy fashion, the all-too-inevitable questions about transitioning and surgeries were asked pretty bluntly. “What is transgender?,” she said.
As if providing a one-stop answer to copy/paste onto anyone who still doesn’t understand, Cox delivers a simple and eloquent response:
Transgender very basically means that the gender you identify as is different than what you were assigned at birth — very simple. Transgender people’s experiences are really different. It’s an individual experience, there’s no one blanket transgender experience. It’s really about listening to individuals in terms of who they are and accepting people on their own terms.
Apparently Williams did not watch the Katie Couric interview during which she twice asked Cox and Janet Mock about their genitalia, because she compliments and draws attention to Cox’s breast implants. Couric was blasted for being “transphobic,” but good ole’ Wendy gets a good ole’ pass:
Off camera I can talk to you about it. I’ve chosen not to talk about any of the stuff I’ve gotten done because I think so often when trans people’s experiences are talked about, we far too often focus on surgery and transition, so I don’t talk about that. But I’m very happy with the situation.
Check out the rest of Cox’s awesome interview, including her thoughts about the raging success of Orange Is the New Black, below: