Derick Dillard Under Fire for Criticizing TLC Star Jazz Jennings, Claiming 'Transgender Is a Myth'
"If you are upset with TLC calling HER a HER than maybe you shouldn't be apart of the reality TV network that pays your bills," tweeted one fan
The father of two — who stars on TLC’s Counting On alongside his wife, 19 Kids and Counting alum Jill (Duggar) Dillard — took to Twitter on Wednesday to issue his take on 16-year-old Jennings, the star of TLC’s I Am Jazz.
“What an oxymoron … a ‘reality’ show which follows a non-reality,” tweeted Dillard, 28, in response to a promotional tweet from the network about Jennings’ series.
“‘Transgender’ is a myth,” he added. “Gender is not fluid; it’s ordained by God.”
FROM PEN: Trans Activist Juliet Evancho Opens Up About Her Sex Reassignment Surgery
A slew of fans criticized Dillard for his tweet, including one user, who responded by asking: “Is it necessary for a grown man to throw shade at a teenage girl?”
“I want to be clear. I have nothing against him,” replied Dillard, referring to Jennings. “I only have issue with the words and definitions being propagated here.”
Dillard’s response prompted further outrage, with Twitter users pointing out his choice of pronoun when referring to Jennings.
“You mean her,” tweeted one user. “Use the right pronoun if you have no issue.”
“If you are upset with TLC calling HER a HER than maybe you shouldn’t be apart of the reality TV network that pays your bills,” tweeted another.
Another Twitter user accused Dillard of bullying Jennings: “Bullying a teenage girl? How brave and ‘godly’ you are.”
“Why does it bother you?” asked another. “Does this affect your life in any way? Let the girl live. Love thy neighbour.”
“Jazz is a female,” tweeted another. “There is no changing it. God would want us to be who we want to be and he truly would find a way to love us no matter what.”
TLC issued the following statement to PEOPLE regarding Dillard’s tweets: “Derick Dillard’s personal statement does not represent the views of TLC.”
Though Jennings has yet to issue her own statement, the TLC star retweeted several messages of support from fans on Thursday, including one that read: “Very hypocritical of your family to profit from a network which airs content against your beliefs. Don’t like it? Don’t associate with it.”
Jennings also replied to a tweet from trans activist Jennifer Boylan.
“Haha you’re awesome,” she wrote in response to Boylan’s tweet, which read: “Dear @JazzJennings You rule. Love, jenny b.”