Comedian Chelsea Handler is facing criticism for a tweet Thursday that many are calling homophobic, Yahoo News is reporting.
Thursday, October 11 was National Coming Out Day, which encourages LGBTQ individuals to come out of the closet if they are ready (National Coming Out Day occurs during LGBTQ History Month, which is October). To mark the occasion, Handler took to Twitter to make a joke about Republicans and what she sees as the party’s institutionalized homophobia. She also named names.
“If you’re wondering why Republicans took a sick day today, it’s probably because it’s #NationalComingOutDay. Looking at you @LindseyGrahamSC”
It’s unclear why she suggested that the South Carolina Senator might be closeted. Graham’s record on LGBTQ issues is, according to Human Rights Campaign, one of outright hostility to the cause. He has, for example, compared same-sex marriage to polygamy, opposed protecting LGBTQ individuals from discrimination and opposes allowing LGBTQ individuals to adopt.
Nevertheless, Graham has been rumored to be gay, and has even responded publicly to those rumors. As The Wisconsin Gazette reported in 2010, a New York Times reporter had claimed that he had evidence that Graham was gay. Graham denied it.
“I know it’s really gonna upset a lot of gay men. I’m sure hundreds of ’em are gonna be jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge – but I ain’t available. I ain’t gay. Sorry.”
Nevertheless, Twitter users on both sides of the aisle took the 43-year-old comedian to task for what was seen as a homophobic tweet.
— The Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) October 12, 2018
One Twitter user referenced Handler’s 2008 book Are You There, Vodka, It’s Me, Chelsea.
“are you there, homophobia? it’s me, chelsea.”
Another accused Handler, who recently started shooting a Netflix documentary about white privilege, of failing to see beyond the end of her nose.
“Chelsea Handler continues to be one of the worst “woke” comedians who loves making homophobic jokes”
Another user, according to AOL News, accused Handler of exploiting the old canard that being bigoted towards gays is itself a sign of being gay and closeted.
“It reinforces a negative connotation about homosexuality and links bigotry to being in the closet which is unhelpful. This tweet is trash. And you know it.”
As it turns out, this isn’t the first time Handler has accused Graham of being gay and closeted. Back in January of this year, as Variety reported at the time, Handler posted a profanity-laden tweet about the South Carolina Senator.
“Holy, fuck f**k. I just the video of trumps bipartisan “meeting” yesterday. Hey, @LindseyGrahamSC what kind of d**k sucking video do they have on you for you 2 be acting like this? Wouldn’t coming out be more honorable?
Handler was widely criticized for that tweet as well.