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ELIXHER | July 31, 2014

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Janet Mock Calls Out CNN’s Piers Morgan for Sensationalizing Her Story

Janet Mock Calls Out CNN’s Piers Morgan for Sensationalizing Her Story
ELIXHER

Last night, author and trans advocate Janet Mock’s interview with Piers Morgan aired on CNN. Mock talked about her memoir Redefining Realness, her journey disclosing her trans identity to her boyfriend, and the importance of people being able to be their authentic selves. While she flawlessly handled Morgan’s questions, which almost exclusively focused on Mock’s past and physical aspects of her transition, she later called the host and his producers out for seeking to “sensationalize” her life.

Janet Mock and Laverne Cox

Janet Mock and Laverne Cox

BuzzFeed reports that Morgan ended the first segment of the Piers Morgan Live interview by saying that Mock at one point had to tell the man she was dating that “you used to be yourself a man.”

The on-screen description of Mock read that she “was a boy until age 18.” Yet another inaccuarcy and inflation of Mock’s story. The reality is that she was identifying as a girl since high school and has never identified as “a man.” To add insult to injury, the Piers Morgan Live Twitter account posed the question during the interview, “How would you feel if you found out the woman you are dating was formerly a man?”

“He’s trying to do info-tainment,” Mock told BuzzFeed Tuesday night. “He doesn’t really want to talk about trans issues, he wants to sensationalize my life and not really talk about the work that I do and what the purpose of me writing this book was about.”

Mock, who was attending her book release party when the segment aired, tweeted this photo with trans actress Laverne Cox — side-eyeing the hell out of the show for the “lack of nuance in framing” her story.

Piers Morgan took to Twitter to defend himself saying, “A lot of very irate people accusing me of ‘transphobia’ because I devoted a third of my show to @JanetMock ‘s inspiring story. Weird.”

Things escalated as he received backlash and accusations of being a transphobe:

piers-morgan-janet-mock-tweetpiers-morgan-janet-mock-tweet2

Note to allies: Instead of getting defensive, listen and do better next time.

What did you think of the segment and Morgan’s Twitter reaction to the criticism?

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