I love you. I value you. I stand with you. ❤️ You – my trans brothers and sisters. You – our service members. You – fellow Americans. ❤️ And may me and my heart humbly remind you that #transrightsarehumanrights and #loveislove.
Today, I was sad, hurt, empty. But someone gifted me a little red heart sticker after my speech – and it not only brought a smile to my face, but somehow lifted my spirits, reminded me of the goodness in humanity, and made me believe in progress, in resiliency, in opportunity, in our unique ability to rise in power and cocreate a more bright, just, equitable future united by love, unity and safety for all.
Transgender individuals who serve in the US military protect, defend, risk all and die for our country: 15,000 heroes worthy of our respect – not burdens or disruptions. If you want and are able to serve, we should be immensely grateful for such courage, patriotism and sacrifice. Our nation and military benefit from, rely on and succeed because brave individuals enlist and serve honorably – trans included. THEY make America great, strengthen our security, contribute to society and fuel our economy. We must send a clear message that the trans community has and deserves a place in the United States of America and our armed services. Turning our backs on people – of any gender identity, sexual orientation, color, faith, anything – is unconstitutional. Banning transgender individuals from serving in our military is discriminatory, craven, disgusting, undemocratic, senseless and plain wrong. Attacking a marginalized, targeted, long-oppressed, vulnerable group of Americans is repugnant, cruel, baseless, sickening and hateful.
I’m driving around with a heart sticker on my face and a heart full of love – because there is no other answer. We, the people, are not going anywhere, nor are our trans brothers and sisters in the military and beyond.