FOF #2108 – A Transcendent Year

Jan 30, 2015 · 1985 views

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It’s been an extraordinary year for LGBT visibility and rights. Now, more than ever before, we are seeing positive representations of trans people in the media.

Today, writer Jen Richards, who personally knows pretty much every major trans person involved in the news last year, joins us to talk about the unprecedented trans visibility.


  1. What an excellent show! Jen Richards was such an articulate and eloquent speaker. I’m glad you featured someone who could speak to issues of gender expression, privilege, and misogyny with such grace and insight. I also really liked it when she called you on making cheap jokes at Melissa McCarthy’s expense! I hope you have her on again to talk about gay men’s fascination with drag queens. Thank for a great show to start my morning!

  2. Than says:

    Jen, I don’t understand the gay obsession with drag either.

  3. Joshua P says:

    Dearest Fausto,
    I just listened to episode #1208 with Jen Richards and I have to honestly say that this episode is the most educational I’ve ever heard. I have many trans friends and this hour and a half episode means so much to me. It was amazing. I wish the world could listen and HEAR what Jen has to say! It was funny and smart and again, educational!!! Keep up the great work. You and Mark are great!

  4. colaboy29 says:

    It is shows like this that you two deserve greater success than you currently have. Episodes like this that you put out allow me to learn and better understand different aspects that affect the LGBT community and help educate me. Thank you!

  5. Bryce says:

    It sort of irks me when people say things like, I don’t understand why people like this or that… You know, there are just some things you and me just aren’t meant to understand. I liked that Jen Richards asked about gay men’s attraction to drag culture in a very non-judgmental way. I would love to see this as a topic of a future show. I believe drag culture bridges the gaps. My mother watched RuPaul’s Drag Race starting back at Season 1 and she got me into watching it and thru it she learned a lot about trans issues, HIV/AIDS, coming out and honestly when I finally came out at twenty-six she was mentally and emotionally able to meet me halfway and that is an experience that is so valuable to me and I would like to think that drag culture helped to make that happen.

    I agree with colaboy29. This episode was Feast of Fun at it’s best. Don’t get me wrong I love the episodes with porn stars and drag queens and musicians but whenever you have a guests like Jen Richards and Zach Stafford, it really helps the wheels in my head start turning. We need to have more open and honest dialogues. Last year marked the end of what I hope was a very hostile relationship between gays and trans people. Let’s let all of that go, meet in the middle and move forward. We are all in this together. Whenever a trans person is beaten or murdered, it might as well be one of us. Thank you so much Jen for sharing your views. You are truly a fascinating person and I will be checking for you in the future. Please come back!!!!

    Fausto. Marc. Do you guys have some sort of beef with RuPaul? Did I miss something. Now I am not one of those people who thinks RuPaul is above reproach. However, I have noticed a few instances of where you guys will bring up RuPaul, almost as if you are hoping the guest(s) will perhaps slip up and say something mean or negative. Or maybe it is just me. I don’t know. I just feel like this episode, unlike a lot of the trans-related episodes from last year, was filled with positive examples of which the trans community alongside the gay community is moving towards progress and fulfillment. But it was like slipping shemale-gate and RuPaul into the beginning of this episode sort of put a slight damper on things. Again, maybe I am wrong and reading too much into it. I am curious as to what you two really think about RuPaul.

    • We love RuPaul, but honey… nobody’s THAT flawless! We love him and like to think of him as a friend you don’t always get to see, so you’re always joking about.

      I’ve been following, interviewing, chatting with Ru for most of my adult life. I don’t plan on stopping, and look forward to the day when he wants to come back on the show again! Maybe I’m bitter because I adore him and he’s too big of a star to hang out with us anymore on the podcast? Who knows…

      Regarding She-male gate, I’m over talking about it too, but when you’re taking a look at the last year, you can’t deny it was one of the biggest topics for our audience and for us (since we love drag and LGBT folks so much.) And despite all the pain and negativity, I think we all came out better people for it. Do think Ru could have handled it better? Sure, but I doubt if I were in her high heel shoes if I could have done better myself.

  6. Jonas says:

    Jen Richards was such a pleasant guest, not only well-spoken and eloquent but one of the first trans activists who wasn’t too aggressive about it. Not that there’s anything wrong with being demanding about achieving, what are really, basic human rights and equality, but there’s a certain kind of tone that some social justice adovcates have, that immediately throws me off.
    I loved her point about white male privilege, which goes hand in hand with my first point.
    Loved Jen.

    On the topic of gay men being obsessed with Drag Queens: gay men have always fawned over strong female personalities, Madonna, Whitney, Judy, Marilyn etc. . This is of course just my opinion, but some of these women were also very tragic people and a lot of gay guys, I assume, can identify with their struggles and relate to them on a deeper level. Personally, shortly after coming out, I admired and loved Drag Queens, they were tall and strong, they didn’t take shit from anyone and they wore masks that made them bulletproof. Given my own past with bulllying and my very real struggle with gender identity, it just fascinated me how they were just above all of this.
    Also, I just accepted it as a celebrated and acknowledged part of gay culture.

    Great episode, guys.

    • If you think about it, all these “tragic” women were actually very very successful in their chosen fields, despite all the adversity they faced. I think a lot of people, especially gay men jive with that.

      But gay men are connoisseurs of intense women, weather they be pretend or real. Their story echoes our own, and so we become super-fans of them. The reason why gay men adore RuPaul is the same reason why gay men adore Madonna or Calpernia Addams.

  7. Jen Richards says:

    Thanks to all for the kind comments, and to Fausto & Marc for having me on. It was a pleasure I hope to repeat!

  8. GaryS says:

    Jen Richards is a wonder! I just listened to her podcast and I didn’t want it to end. Pleasant, bright articulate, thoughtful, challenging, funny, are just some of the adjectives that come to mind. 5 minutes into the podcast and my head was spinning with variations of “Wow, I never thought of that…..” swirling around in my brain! Thanks Jen for such a delightful and thought provoking show, and thanks Fausto and Mark for having such a great guest on your podcast!

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