Sara Ramirez Real ONeals Biphobic

Grey's Anatomy Alum Sara Ramirez Blasts ABC for 'Biphobic' Real O'Neals Episode: 'I Am Truly Disheartened'

Don’t count on Sara Ramirez checking back into Grey’s Anatomy anytime soon.

The actress on Thursday took to Twitter and blasted ABC for not eliminating a joke from The Real O’Neals that demeaned bisexuals. “As someone who has worked [for] them [for] 10 years, [I] am truly disheartened and disappointed,” she wrote, before adding, “Quite frankly, I will invest my brand where I am respected.”

The actress — who identifies as bisexual and whose Grey’s character Callie was also bisexual — linked to a petition on Change.org that called on ABC to “End Biphobia and Bi-erasure on The Real O’Neals.”

At issue is a joke from the sitcom’s Jan. 17 episode in which Noah Galvin’s openly gay Kenny likened bisexuality to such hardships as “webbed toes” and “money problems.”

The Real O’Neals finds itself back in hot water less than a year after Galvin gave an incendiary interview in which he accused Eric Stonestreet of “playing a caricature … of a stereotype” as Modern Family‘s Cam. ABC was reportedly so angry by his outburst that it threatened to trim the show’s Season 2 episode order — something the show’s producers later denied.

Check out Ramirez’s tweets below and then hit the comments with your thoughts on the controversy.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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62 Comments
  1. Jaime says:

    If I remember correctly, the show is produced by Dan Savage who has made biphobic comments in the past. It’s extremely disappointing, but not surprising.

    • Lucifer says:

      Ryan Murphy is also very biphobic and incorporates biphobic jokes or lines into his shows here and there. Hell, even most of the gay men on his shows are just there to die in really degrading ways. But nobody says anything about it, so I doubt this will go anywhere.

    • Pedro says:

      Can we stop the trend that all characters represent the views of the show, writers and network? Characters say things and have flaws. It doesn’t mean ABC is “biphobic”. I’m sure HBO execs didn’t approve of all Joffrey ever said.

      Also, no one is entitled to sex to anyone. That would be rape. If a person does not want to have a romantic and/or relationship with a bisexual, they shouldn’t be forced to.

      • Anne says:

        Dude, no one is saying that bi people want to go around raping people. My god. Bisexuality isn’t respected very much in gay or lesbian circles, and no, no one should be forced to date a bi person…the point is that they are stigmatized by both sides for being ‘gross’ or ‘tainted’. That’s what people want changed

        • Pedro says:

          Never heard a bi person called either. Just people expressing concern that they might not want a partner that they could fully satisfy. Now, even if you think that is wrong, the fact that a character says something bad doesn’t mean the writers, the show or the network feel that way. I never assumed House was speaking for Fox or the creators.

          • Anne says:

            Lol that a bi person couldn’t be fully satisfied or fully satisfying to a non-bi partner is well, ridiculous and not really the point.
            .
            The point is that a lesbian or gay man shouldn’t completely disregard a bi person because they’ve been intimate with the opposite gender.

          • Pedro says:

            Says who? Should I be forced to have a relationship or sex with them? Why? Why should anyone ever be forced to have any sort of romantic or sexual relationship with someone they don’t want to? Should i also not disregard romance and sex with women too or else I’ll be misogynist? Kenny didn’t disparage bisexual people. He just expressed he didn’t want to date one. And even if Kenny is wrong, characters can have flaws. It doesn’t mean ABC endorses everything every character ever says.

          • Honest says:

            Now you’re just spreading disinformation. Bisexuals are satisfied by the partner they are with all the time. The only difference is that they had been in the past or might be in the future be satisfied by someone of the sex that is not the same as their current partner. Pushing this false narrative is not unlikely what the Christian church says that gays are pedophiles because a few of they might be. We do not have rapresentation, we’re pushed away from the group that is supposed to understand how we’re feeling and we’re left alone for being honest about our sexuality. No wonder so many of our youth commit suicide.

  2. aria808 says:

    First its star blasts Colton Haynes and now this comes from the show? SMH

  3. bostonjay2014 says:

    Didn’t realize Real O’Neals was even still on….poor show is fighting for any kind of relevance.

  4. Kam says:

    I think the whole point of it was to show how gay men stereotypically view bisexuality.

  5. dennis says:

    ummmmm
    its a TV show
    WTF?
    why are people so angry these days at being overly politically corrected?
    ugh.
    if you dont like the show then dont watch it.
    your opinion is not the only one that matters Sara. its people like you that ruin COMEDY

  6. Wordsmith says:

    There is a disheartening perception that bisexuality – even more so than homosexuality – isn’t a “real thing,” and people who identify as bi are just confused or kidding themselves, which is frustrating and untrue.
    That being said, context is vitally important. TV characters make foolish, misguided or false statements all the time, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s what the writers believe. It’s totally possible to write bigots, murderers and morons without being one yourself.
    I didn’t see this episode, so I can’t judge whether or not that’s the case here.

  7. Phil says:

    I’m a few eps behind on this show, but I did just watch season two’s fourth episode, “The Real Move”, and wanted to show it some love. I think it is one of the BEST pieces of media about the reality of divorce I’ve ever seen. Kenny is sidelined in this episode as the parents really and truly break up – and the way in which it’s done, and the ritual at the end, I thought was incredibly thoughtful and could be very healing to a lot of “broken” families.
    I wish this episode could actually get the attention it deserves for the respect and health it shows to all people facing the reality of divorce, and how to handle it well.
    Highly, highly recommended!

  8. Haz says:

    Oh God! Sit down and shut up. I’m so sick and tired of these idiots being offended by every little thing. Don’t like it? Turn it off! As a gay man I could moan and complain about how Modern Family has Eric Stonestreet, a straight male, playing a stereotypical flamboyant gay man, but I don’t. When they take some stuff with Cam too far I fast forward or mute the scenes till he is off my screen. And yes while Family is praised for having a openly gay couple, if the overly PC crowd wanted to they could go after that show due to the way Cameron Tucker is written.

    • Ron says:

      It’s not about being offended by a “little thing.” It’s being pissed off that bisexuality is still regarded as a joke and something that doesn’t actually exist. I’m bisexual, and I’ve had several gay friends laugh at me and say things like, “true bisexuality doesn’t exist,” or “that’s just a phase,” or “why can’t you just accept that you’re actually gay.” And it’s so disheartening that so much of that erasure happens in the LGBTQ community; it’s as if the ‘B’ is conveniently forgotten. Well, as someone who’s bisexual, I’m here to say that it does exist, it is not a phase, and I’m not 100% gay, nor will I ever be. Again, it’s not an issue of being offended. It’s an issue of wanting to actually be acknowledged and not wanting to constantly be erased. Gay men and women had to fight for representation. If they had listened to the people who told them to “sit down and shut up,” well, we’d be further behind the times than we already are, to say the least. Obviously gay and lesbian representation still has room for advancement, but there’s still some. Bisexual representation is still fighting for a seat at the table.

      • Pedro says:

        No one is entitled to sex to anyone. That would be rape. If a person does not want to have a romantic and/or relationship with a bisexual, they shouldn’t be forced to.

        • Ellie says:

          Pedro, you’ve said this same thing before, and it’s a bit concerning. I don’t think you know what bisexual means. It simply means that they are attracted to both men and women. Bisexual people are no more likely to rape than anyone else. And contrary to popular belief, bisexual people are not more likely to cheat.

          Of course no one HAS to enter into a relationship with someone who is bisexual, but if the only reason you don’t want to date someone is simply because they’re attracted to members of multiple sexes, than that makes you biphobic. I’m a straight woman, and I would have no problem if my boyfriend told me he was bisexual. As long as I like him, and he likes me, we’re cool.

          • Pedro says:

            You don’t seem to understand what I said. At all. You seem to imply that a gay man that doesn’t want to date bisexuals is somehow wrong and biphobic. No one is forced to date anyone. The notion that you have to agree to date bisexuals or you are biphobic seem to imply people are entitled to have sex with you. A person should only have sex with whomever they want to, for whatever they want to and not consenting to sex doesn’t make anyone biphobic or bigoted.

          • Ellie says:

            Oh Pedro, you are clearly so stupid, it’s pointless to even try to explain things to you. No one is forcing anyone to date or enter into a relationship with a bisexual person. Not dating a bisexual person doesn’t automatically make you biphobic. Maybe you’re just not attracted to them, maybe their annoying, whatever. But if the only reason you wouldn’t date someone is because they happen to be bisexual, than it IS biphobic.

            The only difference between a bisexual man and a gay man, is that the bisexual man may be attracted to a wider range of people, but in no way does that change his personality/look/who he is.

            As a straight woman, I’m not going to date a lesbian. It’s not because she’s a lesbian, it’s because I’m not attracted to women. I would not rule out dating a bisexual man (I would still have to like his personality), because he is still a man, and I am attracted to men.

            But really, everything I’ve said right now will go in one ear and out the other, because you can’t seem to comprehend and recognize your own bigotry.

          • Pedro says:

            So you are calling a stranger over the internet clearly stupid. OK. Since we are assuming, something-phobic is something when someone disagrees with you, not actual biphobia and LGBT discrimination. You can love and respect all people and be their friend, relative, co-worker, sibling-in-arms and anything else and you can still decide who you want to date or have sex with without people telling you are biphobic for choosing not to date or have sex with someone. Consent, for whatever reason, is always paramount.

      • Ben says:

        It was just a joke!. Uhg… soo sensitive and emotional… nope… not B at all dude :P. #PCB******DONTMINDINCOMEDY

    • Anne says:

      You say you “could complain”…..but I’m pretty sure this comment IS you complaining…so what’s your point exactly?

  9. sha ron says:

    Sure hope ABC makes the correction. I loved u in Greys. U r always for Arizona.

  10. Jared says:

    I swear this show only gets negative press. No wonder the ratings suck.

  11. readenreply says:

    You expect sensitivity from a show whose lead teen character is bigger stereotype than any gay character that was every on Glee.
    I love the show, but the gay character is a narcissistic brat.

  12. Mary Ann says:

    They need to end this show once and for all, this character and supposed “actor” do not respect the LGBTQ community enough to do a stronger job.

    • Youry De Jong says:

      Does that community stand up in protest every time a bad joke is made about heterosexuals, out of respect? Seems respect should swing both ways.

      • Miranda says:

        That would be completely different. Heterosexuals are not oppressed.

        • Pedro says:

          Neither are bisexuals in the context that we are often talking about. Much like a straight woman can decide she only wants to date heterosexual man, a lesbian woman can decide she only wants to date homosexual women.

          “I want to have sex with you, but you won’t” doesn’t equal biphobia.

          • Ellie says:

            Not wanting to be with someone because you’re not attracted to them, is categorically different than not wanting to be with someone because they are bisexual.

          • Pedro says:

            No. It’s not. You can decide you only want to date people with a job, or who speak Spanish. Or vote for the same party. Or love Glee. Whatever. Consent is not something you have to justify and defend. You can say no whenever you want, to whomever you want for whatever reason. You are not a bigot for not consenting to sex or a romantic relationship, regardless of the reason why. You can decide you only want to date people with a job, or who speak Spanish. Or vote for the same party. Or love Glee. Or are exclusively gay. Or have curly hair. Whatever. No one is entitled to date you without you wanting them to.

        • Youry de Jong says:

          Oppression is a very strong word in this context. Sense of humour and ability to not take oneself seriously all the time is not for everyone, it would seem.

  13. Fido says:

    [why] feel the [need] to not [quote] her exactly [?]

  14. Patrick says:

    Yeah! We also should stop calling white people “honkies”
    Blonde women as “dumb and or bimbos”
    Mexicans should no longer be described as “lazy or thugs”
    Asians as “smart and know martial arts”
    Jews being good with money.
    Muslims are terrorists
    Indians with a quickie mart accent.
    Gays being fabulous and happy all the time.

    Let’s stop offending everyone!

    • Anne says:

      We could continue to whine about how “sensitive” everyone is…..or we could like, y’know, try to be better human beings and work towards a society where people don’t feel excluded and mocked

  15. Youry De Jong says:

    The bigger the toe, the easier it gets stepped on.

  16. Nerdbot says:

    When the episode in question originally aired, I read some comments from viewers who complained about this issue and even though I agree that what Kenny said is offensive, I think we all have to realise where this point of view comes from. I mean, if you’ve watched The Real O’Neals, you’ve seen that Kenny comes from a family that never talked about anything (in the pilot alone, everyone shares the secrets they had been keeping from each other,) and sort of lived in their own little world. When you’re a closeted gay, with no experience or knowledge about the LGBTQ community other than what you see on TV or movies, it’s quite hard to be able to see that there are different realities and that things aren’t black-or-white when it comes to sexuality and relationships. If a comment like this was made by an character from Grey’s Anatomy, HTGAWM or any other show with any adult LGBTQ character, who has had experience getting to know the world we live in, I think we could all agree that is offensive, but we’re talking about a teenage kid, who came out to the world not so long ago, whose only gay friend is a closeted lesbian and who is just starting to date men, so we can’t ask him to accept that other realities are as valid as his. Something like that takes time and I really hope that we get to see his growth as a person, because while he might not be the best role model for gay people, he represents the gay kids who didn’t grow up in a particularly accepting environment and our perception of the world changes only when we’re exposed to other people’s realities; it’s not like we all learn what the world is like right away after we’ve come to terms with our very own sexuality.

    • I can understand a character in a fictionalized show saying this but Creator Dan Savage is very bi-phobic so I feel its more his personal ideology than what Kenny in character would feel

      • Pedro says:

        Why is he bi-phobic? If it is just because he doesn’t date bi-people, it’s just because no one is entitled to have sex with him. Is he misogynist for not dating women.

        • Thea says:

          Who hurt you, Pedro?

          • Pedro says:

            The idea that now I’m forced to have sex with a bisexual person or else I am biphobic. Many gay people prefer to date exclusively gay people. If that makes me biphobic, again, I guess I am also misogynist, because I don’t date women.

          • Thea says:

            Do you screen all potential partners to find out if they’ve been tainted by even the thought of finding a woman attractive? Just think, you might have missed out on your soulmate because he dated a girl once.

          • Pedro says:

            A person who dated a girl once is not bisexual. And you are using terms like tainted. I think you seem to have a very strange view of things.

          • E. D. Boddy says:

            Say what?

    • E. D. Boddy says:

      Is the take-away that ABC is afraid of bisexuals (that’s what “phobic” means, after all), or is the take-away that Kenny is self-centered, uninformed, and a bit of a smug a-hole?

  17. Mark says:

    Please cancel this show. I love the mom and daughter, but I cannot watch because of the actor who plays Kenny. It’s too hard to separate fiction from reality, and I find him to be a despicable person.

    • Ryan O says:

      Too hard to separate fact from fiction? Awwwww, you must be attending UC Berkeley, snowflake…

    • A says:

      I dont think the actor is a despicable person because of what he said he said very insensitive things which unfortunately a lot of young people who are not in the public eye say and get away with.
      If he does not do it again its something which l can forgive because he is young and says stupid things like a lot of people. I hope he takes it as a learning experience to become a better person.

  18. So this is where we are now, and this is how we respond to anything we don’t like or don’t want to hear?!?! Bish, you and your unwanted “brand” can take a seat!

  19. Loli says:

    The network could be less biphobic in general. Take Once Upon a Time, if Emma or Regina were male, they would be a canonical couple. Not just the hope of fanfiction.

  20. MLO says:

    She’ll “invest her brand… ” puh-lease! She was a minor part of an ensemble cast on, granted, a very popular show. But looking at IMDB, seems all she’s done since is some voice-over work. Don’t exactly see people beating down her door for her ‘brand’.

  21. pickles says:

    No wonder people cut back on watching TV. It’s always something.

  22. RenatoB says:

    I am bisexual and this bothers me none. It’s a joke. A rather unfunny one, but not because it’s “controversial”, just because I don’t even get the humor of it (but it’s not like I watch the show, so…). Get over it.