Jennifer Lawrence won the moral high ground with her response to the celebrity nude photo leak, earning praise for her dismissal of tabloid media and online perverts. Now she’s in trouble after commenting again on the Fappening, this time making a joke about hermaphrodites that has the trandgender community upset. She joked “At least I’m not a hermaphrodite. I could have been outed — ‘Jennifer Lawrence, hermaphrodite.’” The online response to the joke has been less than enthusiastic. A comment on Tumblr read “it is an issue. she’s using trans women and intersex people as a joke.” On Twitter: “If anybody else said that ‘hermaphrodite’ comment they would get trashed but no it’s Jennifer ‘relatable’ Lawrence.”
It remains to be seen if Lawrence suffers any more negative publicity beyond online snark, and whether the joke will actually result in a hit at the box office (several commenters vowed to boycott the new Hunger Games movie). Is this just a case of a celebrity trying to make light of a serious topic and making a thoughtless throwaway joke? Or has she committed a sincere faux-pas in our politically-correct and quick-to-make-snap-judgment culture?