Wilson Cruz Opens Up About Being Called a Homophobic Slur

Star Trek: Discovery star Wilson Cruz recently shared that he was called a homophobic slur during a convention. The out gay actor portrays Dr. Hugh Culber, who is married to Lieutenant Paul Stamets, played by Anthony Rapp. They are the first gay couple in Star Trek history.

The free fan event took place on September 8th in honor of Star Trek Day, and Cruz shared a photo of himself on the panel with a wide grin. His caption reads:

“I wonder if this was the moment on stage when I heard a ‘fan’ on Star Trek Day refer to me with a homophobic slur… Still smiling, though. You’ll never kill my joy.”

One fan replying to Cruz’s tweet claims that a friend heard the slur and got up to leave in disgust. Others responded in disbelief that this could happen at a Star Trek event, one in which host Whil Wheaton was sporting a rainbow Vulcan salute pin on his lapel. Many pointed out that bigotry goes completely against the show’s progressive history (the original series featured the first interracial kiss on television). 

While the response to Cruz’s tweet was one of overwhelming solidarity, Cruz now believes some fans are going too far. Outrage quickly shifted to the event organizers as people began to wonder why the homophobe in question was not removed.

According to Forbes, a CBS insider said that the organizers were not aware of the slur at the time and would have taken action if they had been. Producer Michelle Paradise, who was seated close to Cruz on the panel, did not hear it, and it was not captured on the video recording of the event.

Cruz later took to Twitter again to plead with fans to focus on the positives of the event and to stop harassing the organizers.

Speaking to Forbes, he elaborated on the incident: “I have spoken to the parties that be and we’ve discussed it at length. The fact of the matter is that I could never identify the person. I just heard it as I was walking out and it was almost like, ‘Did I really hear what I think I just heard…?’

“It wasn’t ‘shouted’ at me, as some are now claiming. I would’ve absolutely made an issue of it if I had been able to confirm the person, but I can’t, so I really meant it when I said I wanted to move on. I don’t hold anyone at CBS, Paramount or the event staff responsible.”

He added, saddened by the disproportionate attention one bigot has received, “I regret saying anything at all, to be honest…It’s taken away so much from what was a great event.”

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