Bette Midler has apologised after a tweet she posted about Caitlyn Jenner was considered transphobic.
“Now that @IAmCait has been cancelled, will she go back to being Bruce?” Bette wrote.
The actress then added to the controversy by referring to Caitlyn’s ex-wife Kris Jenner, and her ability to spin any experience into a money-making one, continuing: “Will Kris take him back? Do I smell a re-wedding?!”
Those on social media were quick to point out that she was transphobic and out of touch.
Josh Haigh tweeted: “@BetteMidler @IAmCait Yes, because being transgender is just a phase? What a vile tweet. Will you go back to being irrelevant?” Annie Wallace added: “Just shows, you can be as gay-friendly all you want, but to some, transphobia comes so easy…”
Bette’s offending tweets were promptly deleted and she issued an apology explaining that she had “misread the temper of the times”.
The apology received a mixed response, with some accepting it and others suggesting the actress was still unaware of the major error she had made in her initial tweet.
U.S. writer Parker Molloy explained in her replies to the apology: “There are ways to joke about Jenner that aren’t transphobic. Calling her ‘him’ isn’t one. The issue wasn’t making a joke about Caitlyn Jenner, but in referring to her as ‘him’.
“That’s transphobic, about more than her. This shows a fundamental misunderstanding of what it means to be transgender. Really disappointing.”