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Has Tyra earned an award from the LGBT community?

Later this month, Tyra Banks is set to receive a GLAAD Media Award for “Excellence in Media” for her work with the LGBT community on the Tyra Banks Show and America’s Next Top Model. Last year, Banks famously paid for ANTM contest (and D.C.-area local) Isis King‘s sex reassignment surgery.

Queers United questions whether Banks is a true ally, noting that her treatment of gay issues has sometimes bordered on the offensive: “In the past few months, the Tyra show seems to be giving a lot of airtime to debating whether sexuality can be changed, and to insinuate that orientations like bisexuality are fake,” writes QU.

I’m not going to argue as to whether Banks is a “true” ally of the LGBT community. But I have to wonder: Why give Tyra an award when she’s so willing to pat herself on the back?

Take this announcement for a future Tyra show:

Are you a transgender teen or young adult who was inspired by Isis, the transgender woman who appeared on “America’s Next Top Model” during Cycle 11? Did Isis inspire you to come out as transgender to yourself, your family, your friends or to the entire world? Did Isis’ success encourage you to pursue a modeling career or otherwise reach for a dream that you once thought was unachievable? If you are a transgender young woman who was inspired to change your life by Top Model’s Isis, SUBMIT BELOW.

Oh, Tyra. Isis King is a positive role model. Highlighting transgender issues on a national platform is great. But is this show designed to appreciate King’s accomplishments, or Banks’ accomplishment in bringing King on her show? Isn’t there any trans issue Banks could discuss that doesn’t have Tyra Banks Media Empire crossover written all over it?

Photo via Wikipedia Commons.