Radio Host In Hot Water After Repeatedly Saying “Sir” To PA’s Transgender Health Secretary

Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine speaking to the press.Governor Tom Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine this afternoon provided an update on the state’s COVID-19 mitigation efforts, including one new presumptive positive case in Pike County, bringing the state’s total to 22, and guidance on how to reduce the spread of the virus..Harrisburg, PA – March 12, 2020

HARRISBURG, PA – Marty Griffin, an AM talk radio host on Pittsburgh’s KDKA-AM radio station is in hot water after insulting the state’s top health officer, Dr. Rachel Levine.   Griffin “misgendered” Levine, calling the secretary, “Sir” on several occasions.   “When folks know what yellow is kind of sort of but they don’t even know what green is because you don’t,” Griffin asked. “What’s the end game, sir? Where do we get to the point where folks can be confident they can conduct business if they do it safely and there’s no time frame and there’s no window? Correct me if I’m wrong, sir … ma’am.”

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After receiving no reply, Griffin threw it out there again.

“How do you respond, doctor, to the conjecture that your response is jeopardizing the health and well being of seniors by moving them into nursing facilities even if they’re no longer COVID positive, sir,” he asked again.

Griffin responded, “Please don’t misgender me.”


Griffin apologized for the comment and Levine let him know the secretary was insulted.  Griffin apologized again, and said his intent was accidental and not malicious. Later, he posted on Twitter, “I apologize. I apologized twice. I truly did. It was not intentional. It was not. I was not focused. I was doing six things at once.”

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Levine has been the target of criticism as PA Governor Tom Wolf continues to keep the state in lockdown.  As the face of the health crisis in the state, Levine has been the subject of terrible internet memes and transgender bias.  The attacks on Levine from the public during the COVID-19 pandemic has only strengthed the health secretary’s support base.  She is originally from Boston, Massachussets.  Levine, whose birth name was Richard Levine is previously married with two children.  Levine made the sexual transition in 2011 from a man to woman and in 2013, was divorced from her husband.  Levine was appointed by Governor Tom Wolf in 2017 and graduated from Harvard College and the Tulane University School of Medicine.

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