Monday night, the new Dancing With the Stars cast was announced for Season 13. While there are several controversial celebrities attached to the season, the name that seems to be riling people up the most is that of Chaz Bono. The idea of being transgender is certainly difficult for many people to understand, and Chaz is working hard to advocate for the community. While many Scottsdale fans are excited to watch this season of Dancing With the Stars, including Bono’s participation, a good number of show fans are posting on social media outlets with cruel, hate-filled and closed-minded comments. Wednesday, Chaz’s mom Cher and his dance partner Lacey Schwimmer spoke out in support of his efforts.
As Scottsdale fans know, Chaz was born the only child of Sonny and Cher, and grew up as Chastity Bono. Now, Chaz has embraced his transgender truth and identifies himself as a male. He will be dancing on Dancing With the Stars as a male, with Lacey Schwimmer as his partner. Many applaud his bravery in taking on the role, and some worry about just how harsh things will get in terms of public criticism. Chaz’s mom Cher took to her rarely used Twitter page today, posting:
lovelies! Chaz is Being Viciously Attacked on Blogs & Message boards about being on DWTS!This is Still America right ? It took guts 2 do it
Lacey and Chaz may have seemed an unlikely pairing when the matches were announced Wednesday morning, but it sounds as if the two have meshed well so far. Lacey spoke to The Insider about their partnership, and she has nothing but love for her partner. Lacey was asked if the producers checked with her before matching her with Chaz, and she says that they didn’t, and she believes it is because they knew it was an unnecessary conversation. She says she has always been accepting and open-minded, and she thinks having Lance Bass on the show a few seasons ago opened the door “for the LGBT community to be accepted in Middle America and it’s about time. It’s 2011, let’s evolve a little bit here.”
Schwimmer is disappointed with all the negativity surrounding Chaz joining the cast, saying “We’re all taught to not bully, or harass, and treat everyone as equals yet all these people are doing the exact opposite.” Luckily, as loud as the outraged people are, many are squarely in their corner. Lacey adds, “At the end of the day, everyone is going to have a hater. I choose not to listen to it, because it’s ridiculous. To us, it’s more important to focus on the positive people.”
Lacey didn’t fare well with her last partner on the show, Mike Catherwood, and she is determined to stick around this season. She shares that Chaz picks up the choreography quickly, but has some work to do to get in dancing shape. Lacey is choreographing a routine that is fun and will highlight Chaz’s strengths. This season a couple does go home the very first week, which hasn’t been the case in recent seasons. Lacey and Chaz are working hard to try to ensure they are not the first pair out this season.
Do you think Chaz and Lacey will have what it takes to stick around for a bit this season? Tune in Monday, September 19 to see the Season 13 premiere of Dancing With the Stars.