Jericho podcast talks theology, transgender people
When pro-wrestler, musician and podcast host Chris Jericho interviewed transgender wrestler Nyla Rose on his podcast Talk is Jericho, the subject matter quickly turned to theology and what it meant to be trans.
During the one-hour episode, Rose recounted her career, and discussed what it meant for her to transition, as well as receiving ‘heel heat’ in the United States’ ‘bible belt’. This, she said, didn’t bother her, as her training as a comedic actress taught her to find humour in everything.
“I step through the curtain like, “You guys are booing my existence, not my character.” But eh, I’m a heel. Bring it on,” she said.
According to Rose, she has encountered judgement from Christians who thought that her transition was an affront.
“…I’m pretty sure you’re not supposed to judge anybody, but you conveniently forgot that part,” Rose said.
“People think they know, and they want to preach to me, and they think it’s a big sin…I’m not trying to ‘play God’ I’m not trying to do any of that. I do believe in God. I believe this is my journey to womanhood. I’m not trying to change God’s work, I think this is the journey God wanted me to take.”
Jericho (whose real name is Chris Irvine) indicated that he had thought about the issue himself as it applied to his own faith.
“As a Christian myself… I learned a long time ago if you go to the basic principles of Jesus Christ, it’s that, “Love your neighbour.” Not, “Love your neighbour if he was born a male and stayed a male,” Jericho said.
“God also made (the) platypus (which) is a strange animal…there are different characteristics for all of us.
“It’s a very hypocritical thing to say if you are a Christian… to be mad at you because of this journey that (trans people are) taking.”
“It sucks and that’s why a lot of the LGBT community stays away from the church,” Rose said.
“They’re so shunned and shut out, instead of being like, “I don’t understand it, not my thing, but you’re a person, so I respect you on that level.”
Rose recently became the second woman to hold the AEW women’s championship. While transgender women have held titles before in Japanese and Mexican wrestling, she is the first to do so in a major American promotion.
As well as wrestling for both AEW and New Japan Pro Wrestling, Jericho is the frontman for the rock group Fozzy, and hosts Talk is Jericho, which drops twice a week.
Jericho recently attracted controversy for interviewing Donald Trump Jr on the podcast. According to the host, their conversation crossed into the subject of transgender people, but that part was edited out “out of respect” to Rose, and because he thought that the comments were not well informed.
Talk is Jericho is streaming now via Westwood One.