While many people, especially in the LBGT community, have lauded the addition of Chaz Bono to the "Dancing with the Stars" cast, others are concerned, disappointed, and just plain angry – and they went to the show’s online message board to let producers know how they feel.
One of the main concerns was that transgendered contestants will be confusing to children and inappropriate for a family program.
“I personally do not mind watching Chaz,” wrote Callisandria2. “The problem is that I watch this show with my 10 year old daughter. I am sure the show will talk about Chaz and the controversy, and I am not ready to explain all of that to her yet. We just barely covered the birds and the bees. We always watch one show together, in the fall it's DWTS, and in the spring it's American Idol. Looks like we will try X-factor instead this season.”
Other fans were more blunt.
“Manufactured genitalia is not the conversation I want to have with my children,” said trident606.
Some fans had moral issues regarding Chaz Bono’s gender reassignment and refused to accept Bono’s “male” status.
“I have never missed a season, and I won't miss this season,” sandimac65 said. “That being said, when Chaz Bono is on I will not watch his/her segment. All these people who think it's a choice - if you don't like being the sex you're born, just go change to the sex you wanna be...oh no! Sorry! As the old commercial used to say, 'It's not nice to mess with Mother Nature!' If God had meant for her to be a him, that's what she would have been born.”
Jan Pizzolato shared that sentiment.
“I cannot watch this season. I am disappointed in the cast,” she posted. “Chaz Bono was born a girl. What she/he has done is her/his decision to change God's plan for her. It makes me sad to think that what was once valued as morals has so deteriorated as people have gotten so oblivious to what is right and wrong.”
However, other fans came to Bono’s defense.
“It didn't take long for ignorance and bigotry to rear its ugly head. Calling Chaz Bono a 'he/she' or 'him/her' or 'freak of nature'. now THAT is disgusting,” cathieil said.
“What he is doing requires a ton of courage and I wish him well on both the show and in life,” she added.
“I am disappointed in all the judgment about a person none of you even know," dstaner wrote. "Chaz is just trying to live his life as all of us are. You aren't going to watch the show because he is on it. Get a life. As for explaining to your kids....please. come up with a better excuse than that. Tell your kids his mother is Cher ( who is very famous). Until you have walked in his shoes you have no right to judge. What would Jesus do? You are mostly all a bunch of hypocrites. Clean up your own backyard.”
Many posters were less concerned with Bono’s gender status than they were with the fact that he is not really a “star” in the first place.
“The name of the program is Dancing With the Stars. Since when is Chaz a star?” said an anonymous poster. “Okay, he starred in his own documentary about his transition to male, but other than that what has he done with his life? Stardom? Not hardly. I think I'll pass on watching this season. Maybe they'll get some stars next season.”
“OMG. I was so looking forward to the new season of DWTS. But what were they thinking when they chose this cast?” said sassyred55. “I know why they chose Chaz.... Not because he is a Star, But for the reaction that most of us fans are feeling. His mother is the Star. This is the worst cast so far!”
Another fan chose not to single out any one cast member – none of them were appealing enough.
“Where are the promised A-List celebs?” the fan wrote.
“With apologies to Kathy Griffin (who would have been a great contestant) the show should be titled, ‘Dancing With The D-List.’”