entertainment

RuPaul on 'SheMail' backlash: 'People have a vested interest in their victimhood'

2015-03-12
RuPaul is Attitude's Style Issue cover girl and, as you'd expect, the drag icon didn't hold back when speaking to us. As part of our wide-ranging, three-page interview, we had to ask Ru about the controversy surrounding the infamous 'You've got she-mail' line in RuPaul's Drag Race. The controversial line was recently dropped from the show following a backlash from the transgender community. RU PAUL How do you feel about the ‘she-mail’ controversy and criticism from members of the trans community a year on? Look, you can’t tell people certain truths, because they won’t understand. You can’t explain irony to an idiot. It’s a waste of time. So it’s not even worth talking about it here, because people have a vested interest in their victimhood. There’s nothing you can do to stop certain people from using their victimhood as a badge of identity. You tweeted at the time, ‘Animal Farm: The pigs didn’t really want a revolution, they just wanted to be Farmer John.’ What did you mean by that? Well George Orwell put it perfectly, and I love that George Orwell put it in the form of a parable, because you can’t explain complex ideas to people whose minds will not got there, so it’s best to put it in a parable or a cartoon or a song. And that’s what’s brilliant about Animal Farm, because really it’s about the history of humans on this planet: we forget why there was a revolution in the first place. We forget the past and we’re doomed to repeat our mistakes. And was that sense of ownership and not wanting to be a victim something you always had, even as a younger gay man growing up? Was there ever a turning point for you? Well I’ve always known that you have to take responsibility for yourself, and as soon as you point the finger at other people, you’ve really lost the plot. Listen: I’ve had the temptation to do it. I’m a human being on this planet. I have to fight the temptation to want to blame things on other people, but becoming empowered you realise that you have the power and it’s important not to point the finger at anybody else. If you feel unhappy, do something about it! And usually, doing something about it has nothing to do with anyone else. It has to do with you changing your mind. A miracle is a change in your perception. If you look at something from a distance, it looks smaller, but is it actually changing? No it’s not; it’s just where you’re standing. You can read our full interview with RuPaul, in which she talks about everything from the changing face of drag to her friend Michelle Visage's appearance in Celebrity Big Brother, in the new Style issue of Attitude, which is available to download to your mobile, iPad or tablet device now, at Pocketmags.com/Attitude. The issue is out in shops now, and you can also have it delivered directly to your door at newsstand.co.uk. RU PAUL 150dpi