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Róisín Murphy responds to controversy surrounding anti-trans Facebook comments

The singer-songwriter has been criticised for comments made around the use of puberty blockers in treating young people with gender dysphoria

  • 31 August 2023
Róisín Murphy responds to controversy surrounding anti-trans Facebook comments

Róisín Murphy has responded to criticism around comments she made regarding the use of puberty blockers in treating young trans people.

In a statement posted on Twitter, the singer-songwriter said she "cannot apologise enough" for causing an "eruption of damaging and potentially dangerous social media fire and brimstone." However the singer-songwriter did not clarify her perspective, or apologise directly to the trans community.

Murphy had made the comments on her private Facebook account, writing in response to an article about sitcom writer-turned-anti-transgender commentator Graham Lineham: “Please don’t call me a terf, please don’t keep using that word against women. I beg you! but puberty blockers ARE FUCKED, absolutely desolate, big Pharma laughing all the way to the bank. Little mixed up kids are vulnerable and need to be protected, that’s just true.”

The comments were screenshotted, and then shared on Twitter by activist and drag queen Joanna Cuddle, who wrote: “You can't hide from the truth, cause the truth is all there is” - well @roisinmurphy - the truth is that you ARE expressing transphobic views here on FB with your personal account under a post about the vile transphobe Glinner."

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Murphy has since been criticised by social media users, particularly due to her role as a purported LGBTQIA+ icon.

"So many thoughts on Roisin Murphy," writes Twitter user Iamshanereaction. "But the main one is that I've seen her call herself a gay icon in interviews so she can't really act surprised when we're appalled that she's using the same Big Pharma argument as those people who've been calling us groomers for the past year."

In another interview with Gay Times in 2020, Murphy referred to having a gay fanbase as "the biggest compliment," and "the fact I have a hardcore gay fanbase makes absolute sense in terms of the music and scene that I’ve come out of."

Murphy has regularly appeared at queer events such as Manchester's Homobloc, Berlin's Panorama Bar and even shared in a Mixmag interview in 2021 that she felt "at home" at queer events such as Trade.

In 2015, she released track 'Gone Fishing' which ,she claims, was directly inspired by the hugely influential 1990 documentary Paris Is Burning — which documents drag ball culture in the New York, and the trauma experienced by trans women within the community.

In the statement posted on August 29, which appears to have been written by Murphy herself, she begins by saying she has been “thrown into a very public discourse in an arena I am uncomfortable in and deeply unsuitable for."

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The post reads that the comments were made while “scrolling”, as it had been “something that had been on my mind”. She asserts that “I’ve spent my whole life celebrating diversity and different views, but I never patronise or cynically aim my music directly at the pockets of any demographic… I am so sorry my comments have been directly hurtful to many of you.”

“I will now completely bow out of this conversation within the public domain” closed the post.

Trans DJ, producer and singer-songwriter Ariel Zetina wrote in response to Murphy's statement: "Puberty blockers have saved so many trans kids and the rate of detransition statistics are so low!!!!! wish there was one sentence here where you uplifted trans people- hate to see this bc the lgbt community is the backbone of your fan base!!"

Mixmag has contacted representatives for Róisín Murphy for further comment.

Tiffanie Ibe is Mixmag’s Digital Intern, follow her on Instagram

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