Arquette is a known advocate for transgender rights. Her sister, Alexis Arquette, was an actor and very dedicated transgender rights activist who passed away three years ago. Arquette strives to keep fighting for the cause in honor of her sister.
Variety spoke with Arquette on the matter and she explained that she doesn't see the humor in Gervais' joke.
“I think it’s a really important conversation for everybody to have. Obviously, I have very strong feelings about protecting the trans community,” Arquette told Variety at BAFTA’s annual tea party in Los Angeles. “I just don’t think anything’s funny about making fun of the trans community. They’re really persecuted, so I don’t think it’s funny.”
This isn't the first time that Arquette has spoken publicly about transgender rights. She honored her sister and pushed for transgender awareness during her 2019 Emmy speech.
“Trans people are still being persecuted,” she explained. “I’m in mourning every day of my life, Alexis, and I will be for the rest of my life for you, until we change the world so trans people are not persecuted — and give them jobs. They’re human beings, let’s get rid of this bias we have everywhere.”
Arquette won the Emmy award for supporting actress as Dee Dee Blanchard in Hulu's limited series 'The Act.' She is also nominated for the 2020 Golden Globes for the same role.
Ricky Gervais' transgender tweet was in regards to a user commenting on JK Rowling's tweet. Rowling tweeted in favor of a scientist who was fired for theorizing that it is not possible to change one's sex.
"Dress however you please. Call yourself whatever you like. Sleep with any consenting adult who'll have you. Live your best life in peace and security. But force women out of their jobs for stating that sex is real? #IStandWithMaya #ThisIsNotADrill," J.K. Rowling tweeted.
“Those awful biological women can never understand what it must be like for you becoming a lovely lady so late in life,” Gervais wrote in response to one user's tweets defending transgender rights. “They take their girly privileges for granted. Winning at female sports and having their own toilets. Well, enough is enough.”
“I do. I also make jokes about AIDS, Cancer, Famine, and The Holocaust. Those things do a bit of harm too. But jokes don’t. Have a nice day,” he wrote in a following tweet.