‘The Office’ Star Rainn Wilson Apologizes for ‘Chestfeeding’ Joke

by Emily Morgan

“The Office” star Rainn Wilson is walking back comments he made regarding transgender people. On Thursday, the veteran actor apologized for a since-deleted tweet that included an off-color joke. The tweet seemed to take aim at trans people.

The 56-year-old wrote, “Yesterday I tweeted a mean crack about breastfeeding vs chestfeeding,” he wrote. “After speaking with some Trans friends and educating myself a bit more I want to apologize for the tweet. It was adding to misinformation and meanness. I’m sorry.”

Rainn Wilson’s original tweet on Wednesday included: “TIL you can no longer say ‘nursing or breastfeeding mother’ you have to say ‘chestfeeding person.’ Just FYI.”

Shortly after writing the tweet, he faced a backlash from the trans community, who took offense. Now, the actor hopes to repair the damage caused by his statement.

Per The Daily Beast, Wilson’s tweet may have come in the wake of a recent U.K. public health service guide. The guide seeks to incorporate more inclusive language for trans parents, specifically regarding midwifes.

Shortly after making a public apology, many of his followers praised him for taking positive steps to educate himself.

One fan commented on his post, “You’re a good person Rainn, thank you for sharing this.” Another added, “Thank you for educating yourself and doing better.” While a third wrote, “Thanks for the apology. I had just heard about the joke but I’m glad to see this is the first thing on your page when I came to check it out.”

Rainn Wilson, Lizzo receive backlash for their recent language

However, the former Dwight Schrute character is not the only celebrity who has recently apologized for insensitivity around language.

This week singer and songwriter Lizzo expressed regret for an offensive lyric in her new song “GRRRLs.” When fans pointed out she used an ableist slur, she quickly tried to remedy her mistake.

As a result, Lizzo released a new version of the song. She removed the line “I’m a sp-z.” Sp-z comes from “spastic.” The term is used to determine people who have specific disabilities.

“It’s been brought to my attention that there is a harmful word in my new song, ‘GRRRLS.’ Let me make one thing clear. I never want to promote derogatory language. As a fat Black woman in America, I’ve had many hurtful words used against me so I overstand the power words can have (whether intentionally or in my case, unintentionally),” Lizzo wrote in a statement via Twitter. “I’m proud to say there’s a new version of GRRRLS with a lyric change. This is the result of me listening and taking action. As an influential artist I’m dedicated to being part of the change I’ve been waiting to see in the world.”