Orange is the New Black star Lea DeLaria spoke to the Television Critics Association recently about the success of the Netflix series, but also took the opportunity to talk about her own identity as well.
“Butches have a shared life experience, and you saw all of it in Boo’s backstory,” DeLaria said. “My own community ostracizes me and thinks of Nelly Fags and Butch Lesbians as sort of the pariahs of the community.”
She went on to share how her own experience was fortunately different than Big Boo’s, her character on the show.
“My parents actually learned, they actually listened to me, they actually became people who understood that being uncomfortable within my own skin and having no apologies for who I am was an important thing in this world. Unfortunately, the story that [OITNB] showed, Boo’s story, is all too common.”
DeLaria had some positive things to say as well, suggesting that the LGBT community is making big strides in the right direction.
“The politics of the LGBT community has been about gaining our rights, fighting for our rights, achieving our rights,” she said. “And recently it’s been turned a little bit more towards winning the hearts and minds of people.”
“I feel very strongly that Orange is the New Black has been very important in that part of what’s happened to us in that community,” she added. “That’s an amazing turn of events.”