Image via WikipediaGenerally speaking, I do not watch so-called reality television. There have been a few exceptions, but for the most part it is not something that I usually watch. I can say with all honesty that I have never watched a single episode of American Idol. Nor have I watched shows like Survivor, Big Brother, or The Amazing Race. They just do not interest me.
As I said, it is a general rule for me. There have been a few exceptions over the years, usually if there was a celebrity participating in the program that I had some sort of affinity for. For instance, last year, I got caught up in watching The Biggest Loser when it was announced that Olympic gold medal wrestler Rulon Gardner would be a participant. I watched Celebrity Apprentice the year that Trace Adkins was a member of the cast.
Dancing with the Stars is one of those programs that I rarely watch though I have watched with some interest in the past. I think the only full season of that program that I watched was the year that Kristi Yamaguchi was a participant and eventual winner. I watched a good bit the year Sara Evans was on the show. As much as I like Sarah Palin, I did not watch much when her daughter Bristol was on the show.
The cast for the upcoming season of Dancing with the Stars was revealed, and in looking at the cast, I can safely say that I don't believe that I will be watching the show. Their is just no person on the cast that I am even remotely a fan of. I will say that the inclusion of Chaz (nee Chastity) Bono as a member will make for an interesting study of human nature and the tolerance of the country as a whole.
Chaz was born as a woman, the only daughter to Sonny Bono and Cher. A few years ago, she began the process of gender transformation, identifying herself as a man, taking hormone shots and having sex change surgery. A year ago, she had the court recognize her gender as male and legally changed her name from Chastity to Chaz. Henceforth, for the rest of this post, I will refer to Chaz in the male gender as is his preference. Chaz will be participating in the show as a man with a female dance partner.
Personally, as a Libertarian (though very conservative leaning) I could care less how Chaz identifies himself gender wise. To each his own is my motto. If this is what Chaz needs to make himself feel whole and happy, then more power to him. When it comes to gay issues, I usually tend to be more neutral than hostile to their causes. I do, however, also understand the issues that some more socially conservative folks have, especially withing the religious community.
I do believe that the majority of this country is center-right in their social and political views. While I personally have no qualms with Chaz participating in the show as a man, there are those out their calling for ABC to remove Chaz from the programming and calling for boycotts of the show. As I said, I will not be watching this year, but not because of Chaz Bono. I do think it might be interesting to see if ratings suffer at all due to his appearance, or if there would be a concerted effort to see him eliminated from the show. Then again, their could be a push from the gay community to vote for him.