Words: Alastair James; pictures: YouTube
One of the hosts of the American chat show, The View, Joy Behar, has been criticised after encouraging "everybody" to come out over Thanksgiving in the US.
On Wednesday’s episode (24 November) ahead of the holiday, Behar, 79, encouraged people to come out to family and friends saying people should "see what happens."
She has been lambasted on social media for seemingly being unaware of how difficult coming out can be for LGBTQ people, and that not everyone gets a positive response.
"Don't let anybody tell you who you have to be"
In a discussion about political conversations with family over holiday season (something no one looks forward to), Behar advised LGBTQ people to come out.
"I would like to suggest that everybody out there come out to your family this Thanksgiving. Just come out. See what happens."
After confused reactions from her fellow hosts with Oscar-winner Whoopi Goldberg jokingly (we think) ask if Behar meant "come out… the door?" Behar clarified she meant to come out of the closet.
She continued: "I’m old enough now, I know that life is short because it went by like that. […] But I say that you should yourself, this is my philosophy in life […] My whole thing is come out and be yourself. Don’t let anybody tell you what you have to be in this life."
While being applauded by the studio audience, the audience online has not responded as warmly.
One Twitter correctly summed up the exchange, which they posted part of on Twitter as “chaotic”
Every single second of this is chaotic
pic.twitter.com/PzVd4dmujb— shania twink (@shania_twink) November 24, 2021
Another person joked that it was ok for people to come out now they had The View host’s blessing.
Earlier this year Behar also courted controversy over another tactless joke about NFL player Carl Nassib coming out. She said in June: said: “I know he's the first active NFL player ever to come as gay, but come on, it's 2021, is this such a big deal?”
She then joked: “After they said penetration in the end zone they lost me.”
The Attitude December issue is out now.