Stephen Colbert and The Colbert Report have been the brunt of criticism for their coverage of trans issues in the past. On the one hand, he sat down for a great interview with Janet Mock after her infamous interview with Piers Morgan on the now thankfully defunct Piers Morgan Live. On the other hand, a Change.org petition urged him — as well as Jon Stewart and The Daily Show — to reject their use of transphobia for the sake of laughs. Never one to shy away from the tightrope that is comedy, Colbert discussed the recent ruling by the Department of Health and Human Services lifting the ban on Medicare coverage for gender reassignment surgery.
Colbert cites his interview with Mock, Laverne Cox’s Time cover and Carmen Carrera’s bid to become a Victoria’s Secret model as evidence of how fine everyone is with transgender issues — “as long as you are hot.” Colbert draws the line at unattractive, non-transgender people, however, because it’s not like he’s “made of humanity” or something. But instead of tax payers footing the bill for a sex change, he suggests you just put a muumuu on it. Ta-da! And cue the next petition.