Skater Johnny Weir
Wow! Major story: A male figure skater looks a little effeminate.
Come on. Is this news?
Apparently, Claude Mailhot and Alain Goldberg, commentators on RDS, the French-language TSN, think so.
Their comments on American skater Johnny Weir's costumes and body language - Goldberg even suggested that Weir take a gender test - are not only homophobic, but demonstrate their incompetence as skating's on-air blabbers when they make it seem like they've never seem a faggoty male skater before. Watch the offending clip here.
Where have they been for the past 30 years? The figure skating community has produced a parade of queer male competitors - Canada's own Toller Cranston being the most obvious example.
It's one thing to complain about the ice dancing costumes - ugly or what? Like queer drag, the ice dance aesthetic hasn't changed in nearly 40 years. But to suggest that young guys won't go into skating because Weir's a little too, uh, light on his blades as role models go is really ridiculous. Mailhot and Goldberg may think that Weir has gender issues, but most young boys are smarter and know perfectly well what they're risking when they lace up those figure skates.
Kudos to Weir for his astonishing grace in this situation.
In a televised interview, he said that he was pissed off that he was attacked so personally. But he also expressed his wish that more kids grow up the way he did and have the freedom to express themselves.
And, by the way, instead of hassling Weir, why isn't anyone complaining about those extreme close-ups of Joannie Rochette's emotional breakdown after her short program skate last Tuesday? That kind of coverage in the aftermath of Rochette's mother's sudden death borders on grief porn.[rssbreak]