TLC Cuts Ties With Derick Dillard After Transphobic Tweets About Jazz Jennings
In a tweet he posted on Thursday, Dillard, 28, took aim at the 17-year-old Jennings by referring to her using masculine pronouns and also referring to her existence as an agenda. "I pity Jazz, 4 those who take advantage of him in order 2 promote their agenda, including the parents who allow these kinds of decisions 2 be made by a child," Dillard said. "It’s sad that ppl would use a juvenile this way. Again, nothing against him, just unfortunate what’s on tv these days," Dillard said.
Dillard then questioned whether Jennings was of the appropriate age to know who she is and make the decision to transition. "Also, has anyone looked into whether a child is capable of making that kind of decision. We can’t vote til we’re 18; our brains aren’t fully developed til around 25," Dillard also tweeted.
Dillard is married to Jill Duggar Dillard and has appeared with her on TLC’s 19 Kids and Counting spinoff show, Counting On. I am Jazz, also on TLC, follows Jennings and her family as she shares her journey as a transgender teen.
Jennings responded to Dillard’s transphobic tweets by refusing to engage him. "In the face of constant ignorance and hatred I prefer to disregard negative opinions and continue moving forward with love," Jennings tweeted in response.
This is not the first time that Dillard has taken aim at Jennings on Twitter. Back in August, he attacked the show in response to a promotional tweet made by TLC for I am Jazz. “What an oxymoron … a ‘reality’ show which follows a non-reality. ‘Transgender’ is a myth. Gender is not fluid; it’s ordained by God,” Dillard tweeted.
He then misgendered Jennings while trying to explain it was not personal. “I want to be clear. I have nothing against him. I only have issue with the words and definitions being propagated here,” Dillard tweeted in a reply to the backlash he was receiving.
Jennings took Dillard’s first post in stride. “Every day I experience cyber-bullying, but I keep sharing my story. Today was no different,” responded Jennings.
As a result of Dillard’s transphobic remarks, TLC decided to sever their ties with him while also voicing their support for Jennings. “We want to let our viewers know that Derick Dillard has not participated in Counting On for months and the network has no plans to feature him in the future, We want to reiterate that Derick’s personal statements do not reflect the views of the network. TCL is proud to share the story of Jazz Jennings and her family and will continue to do so,” the network said in a statement issued via Twitter.