Katie Couric Offends Trans People Everywhere With Her Invasive Genitalia Questions

Katie CouricKatie Couric was schooled by transgender actress Laverne Cox and transgender reality star/model Carmen Carerra on her daytime talk show Katie Monday when she began asking invasive questions about the women’s genitalia.

Couric introduced Carerra as being “born a man and that’s why she’s on our show.” Once Carerra had taken her seat, Couric asked her about transitioning from male to female.

“Your private parts are different now, aren’t they?” she inquired.

Carrera responded by shushing Couric. “I don’t want to talk about it,” she said. “It’s really personal.” Then she explained that there is much more to her than what’s between her legs.

Couric said she hoped she hadn’t offended Carrera, only to then ask the same question to Cox minutes later.

Cox joined the panel during the show’s second segment. About halfway through her interview, Couric brought up genitalia again. But Cox wasn’t having one of it. Said she:

I do feel there is a preoccupation with that. The preoccupation with transition and surgery objectifies trans people. And then we don’t get to really deal with the real lived experiences. The reality of trans people’s lives is that so often we are targets of violence. We experience discrimination disproportionately to the rest of the community. Our unemployment rate is twice the national average; if you are a trans person of color, that rate is four times the national average. The homicide rate is highest among trans women. If we focus on transition, we don’t actually get to talk about those things.

This shut Couric up. She replied with a simple, “That was very well put,” before bidding her guests farewell and the show cut to commercial.


Watch video of the two interviews below.

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  • jeffy

    Laverne Cox answered politely and perfectly. Let’s not pretend Couric is a monster though. Most non-trans people are preoccupied by the transition, myself included. By Couric voicing this and Cox explaining it, everyone has been educated. Now we can move on.

  • stadacona

    When and how did trans issues become dumped on gay men?

  • Teleny

    @stadacona: why don’t you read Neil McKenna’s “Fanny & Stella”? It will enlighten you a bit.

  • Daveliam

    I actually don’t think that Katie was out of line. Her initial question to Carmen was too personal and Carmen let her know. She apologized and moved on. She didn’t ask Laverne the same question. She asked Laverne if she felt the same way as Carmen (that’s an important distinction).

    The way that you report it, it sounds like she, literally, asked the same question a few minutes later. She didn’t do that. She asked Laverne’s opinion on something that Carmen stated in the earlier segment. There’s nothing wrong with that line of questioning, in my opinion.

    I think that, while her initial line of questioning was perhaps inappropriate, she gave both Carmen and Laverne a chance to discuss the topic and Laverne, in particular, did an excellent job of pointing out the issue with the preoccupation of “reassignment” surgery. All in all, I think they all came off pretty well (Carmen’s vapidness aside).

  • Teleny

    @jeffy: that’s true. For some reason the straight world is overly fascinated by the genitalia of Tranz people, gay men & anal sex and fake lesbianism. It seems like we can’t get beyond these uninsightful topics. Laverne & Carmen handled it well.

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  • DShucking

    Get over it. She didn’t ask what she had in her pants, she brought the issue up for them to discuss. It’s a reasonable question, especially to ask an trans activist. For the longest we thought the end goal of a transgender was to have a sex change operation to correct having been born and raised as the wrong sex. Now we have a whole segment of the community who does everything up until that point and stops. The sad reality, especially for f2m, is that the end result of the ‘final operation’ is a painful reminder of how inadequate their male ‘genitalia’ will be so they don’t go through it. When a girl realizes she was born in the wrong body, she dreams of becoming a man. Not going through a bunch of trouble to look like a man only to not have a penis and testicles. That’s why they don’t want to discuss it.

  • jimbryant

    Laverne and Carmen look like garish stereotypes.

  • Will L

    I’m surprised that this was done seemingly blind. If she were “on their side” so to speak, you would expect her to have had a pre-interview visit with both of them to discuss the questions to be asked and where to draw the line. In many cases, the broadcast “interview” is a rehashing of what has already been discussed for the benefit of the audience.

  • JonReyes

    @jeffy: THANK YOU!

  • DShucking

    @jeffy: She educated people to the fact that there is a reluctance among trans people to address the issue but she didn’t explain it. Nevertheless, they were both dignified in their response but the question will not go away until it is answered honestly.

  • JonReyes

    In order to move forward we have to understand that a lot of what they aired has NEVER been heard of from a lot of the people watching. In knowing that, you HAVE to answer the questions. If you don’t want to answer the questions you have to explain why…like Laverne did. She appropriately diverted the question to the ISSUE that NEEDED to be talked about. She’s incredible.

  • MikeyMike


  • tardis

    Ugh. Enough with this political correct turd. Katie Couric is not our enemy. She means well. Perhaps her questions were odd, but you all have to understand that trangendered individuals aren’t fully understood. The questions she has are the questions I have, and I’m part of the community.

  • Tyler100


    And you sound like a pathetic troll, Jimmy.

  • DShucking

    @Tyler100: And you keep feeding the pathetic troll, Ty.

  • Miss Understood

    @KDub: So sick of every brown celeb being accused of skin lightening. Multiple photos of the same person look completely different from each other due to different lighting. Looking at a photo is not the same as looking at a real person. I have known Laverne for years, she looks more and more beautiful as time goes on but her skin is the same damn lovely shade of mocha it has always been.

  • AuntieChrist

    As a gay man who has been OUT, LOUD and PROUD for the last 39 years..All I can say is that some of you need to be bitch slapped real hard…Transgender people deserve our support and our respect…If you want answers go to F**KING Wikipedia or pick up a GOD DAMNED BOOK…Or is that just too much to ask of your feeble pathetic little brains.??? These people are a part of our community and they are being murdered and marginalized.

  • jimbryant

    Why on earth should “transgender” people “deserve our support”? What have they ever done to earn it?

    I’m not saying that we shouldn’t support them. I’m simply questioning this automatic, PC notion that “oh, yes, we must support transgenders”. Puh-lease.

    Let me make this point clear: transgenders often do NOT want to be thought of as gay. They think being gay is awful.

  • Meowzer

    I dont’ think Katie was out of line at all. If you’re a transgendered person going on national TV to address the issues of transgendered people, you should be prepared for that question. In order for “middle america” to understand you – to sympathize with you – there are things they want to know to connect and bond with you. To give the standard “none of your business” response is not a positive way to portray yourself. Tell the truth. You haven’t progressed to that point in your life. You still have your penis and are either working towards a full transition or you’re happy with where you are now and don’t plan to advance any further at this time. Simple as that. If you’re not embarrassed to be a representative of the community, then you should skirt the question.
    As a gay man who came out 27 years ago, I was one of the first openly gay people many of my co-workers had ever encountered. They were curious, but not in a negative way. They had thoughts/questions that puzzled them – they “wanted” answers to. I was proud to be the face of the issue and answer their questions. I wanted them to see that I wasn’t any different than they were, other than who I loved. I was normal and could be their neighbor next door, a relative of theirs, or the co-worker who had sat next to them for years.
    If you’re proud of who you are, why should you be insulted to educate people who would like to know.

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  • AuntieChrist

    @Meowzer: So when gays and lesbians outnumber transgender people about six to one, yet transgender people are being murdered at a rate that’s about 50 percent more than the murder rate for gays and lesbians world wide.. lets talk about whether or not you still have your junk…Last month, a mob chopped and stabbed 17-year-old Dwayne Jones, a gender non-conforming teenager, to death at a party in Jamaica…In the last year in the US alone over 200 Transgender persons were murdered…But lets discuss your junk…PC MY ASS you people need to GTFU…Discussing your sexual orientation with your co-workers is a hell of a lot different than something more intimate did they ask you what you did in bed and who is the girl in the relationship…???

  • RomanHans

    @Meowzer: “If you’re a transgendered person going on national TV to address the issues of transgendered people, you should be prepared for that question.” Yes, absolutely. And if you’re a gay man on television — like Anderson Cooper, Neil Patrick Harris, or Jim Parsons — whenever you’re interviewed you should be prepared to talk about anal sex.

  • AuntieChrist

    I have Transgender FRIENDS and I have never asked them questions about their private matters…It is indelicate and disrespectful…Just because they don’t identify as gay and there are many variations. They are part of our community…One thing is certain I know and understand my Transgender friends way better than the gay ones, and you tired bitches are no better for being narrow minded superficial twits.

  • AuntieChrist

    @RomanHans: She was prepared it’s a private matter and none of your damned business.

  • BJ McFrisky

    Just the latest chapter in Katie Couric’s publicly televised fall from grace, following her failed attempts as news anchor and daytime talk-show host.
    But frankly, what respectable interviewer wouldn’t ask about genitalia? It’s the only gauge that doctors use when determining the gender of a newborn, so how is it disrespectful to make the inquiry of an individual who claims to have changed genders?

  • stanhope

    Many straight people feel like they are missing out on the party….their entitlement allows them to ask any question, no matter how intrusive or stupid, that they want. Katie’s show is gone thank goodness. Can you imagine Ellen asking such stupid questions?

  • AuntieChrist

    @stanhope: Excellent point…My emotions always get the best of me…Thank you.

  • TinoTurner

    When are trans people not outraged?

  • RomanHans

    @AuntieChrist: Um, I *think* we’re on the same side. This time re-read my comment with sarcasm in mind.

  • jonjct

    katie couric is a c*un*t, this is why she is so preoccupied with body parts/genitalia.

  • AuntieChrist

    @RomanHans: My bad.

  • stranded

    The actual interview isn’t nearly as bad as the this article makes out. It’s actually a good thing that Couric asked the genitalia question again, because Cox was better able to communicate the reasons why we should’t just talk about transition than Carerra. At the end it didn’t seem awkward at all, she did get schooled but it wasn’t awkward.

  • KDub

    @Miss Understood: Not accusing, just making an observation of a very noticeable change. Lighting conditions don’t change anyone that much. Carrera and Couric are under the same lighting and both look as usual. I don’t know (or care) if it’s a chemical or makeup job, but Laverne is definitely intentionally doing something to appear lighter. We all know the drill: First the hair magically gets longer (like overnight), then the skin gradually gets “brighter”, then comes the fake “I have vitiligo” story. Lol

  • Teleny

    @RomanHans: you really think anal sex is a good topic for National tv when we as a community still lack complete equality?

  • Teleny

    @Teleny: oops-sorry-same mistake as Auntie.

  • Franco C.

    To be honest I don’t know why anyone cares what genitalia a person has, unless you want to have sex with them I suppose. What really matters is that they’re nice, caring, kind people. And these ladies certailny are, including Couric, who didn’t really do anything that deserves the scorn she has received.

  • sportyguy1983

    So we can’t ask them about their private parts but we are obsessed with the private lives of people we disagree with politically? Ah. I get it. Hypocrisy is ok. Cool.

  • GeriHew

    Katie Couric Offends Trans People Everywhere…..?


    Give us a break.

    No one is qualified to speak for trans people “everywhere”

    I mean this transwoman isn’t offended by a term which is outlawed on Queerty

  • Caine

    um… so where was the controversy?

  • DShucking

    If you want a birth certificate that says you are the opposite sex of what you were born as you should have to prove that you’ve had a sex change operation.

Comments are closed.