It was serendipity that Kylar Broadus was born on the same day as Martin Luther King, Jr.’s march on Washington, D.C.
A transgender activist, Broadus grew up in a small rural town in Missouri, the grandchild of slaves. For years, he searched for a way to describe why he didn’t feel right in his skin — in his adult years, he would discover the word “transgender.”
After transitioning, the attorney and college professor has been fighting for the rights for transgender people of color, including testifying before the Senate and creating the Trans People of Color Coalition.
What are your memories of growing up trans?
I don’t think I ever told anyone else because I knew it wasn’t something safe, that I was different, that I felt different from other people, other kids. I just remember my first memory of knowing the difference between he and she and somebody referring to me as she and thinking, who are they talking to? I would try to read and find and see if there was anything, trying to find people like me. There was no Internet, so you’re out reading and reading and trying to figure it out… I felt like I was dropped into the wrong life that’s not mine.
Gay Pride Flag
Perhaps the most iconic and most recognized symbol, the rainbow flag flies in support of the LGBT movement. The simple but effect flag was designed by Gilbert Baker in June 1978. On his website, he tells the story of how he was honorably discharged from the Army while stationed in San Francisco and then taught himself how to sew. With his new skills, he became a part of the gay rights and anti-war movements, making flags and banners for the marches — including those lead by the legendary Harvey Milk.
Students at a Missouri high school walked out of their classes Monday to protest a transgender girl using the girls locker room.
The protest involving 200 students at Hillsboro High school lasted about two hours, according to Fox 2 Now.
The student, Lila Perry, 17, publicly came out as a transgender girl last February and was granted the right to use the girl’s locker room this school year. Last school year, she used gender-neutral facilities to change.
“I feel these girls have a right to their own privacy,” said Jeff Childs, a parent at the school. “Without the privacy they have nothing.”
At 14, Jazz Jennings is not just a transgender girl, but she’s also one of the youngest transgender activists you’ll find. Diagnosed with gender dysphoria at 3, the South Florida teen has undergone a rollercoaster of experiences as a trailblazer for young trans kids.
She appeared on 20/20 with Barbara Walters in 2007 and has openly told her story to further the cause for equality. She founded the TransKids Purple Rainbow Foundation with her parents the same year, wrote the children’s book “I Am Jazz” in 2013, was named one of “The 25 Most Influential Teens of 2014” by Time magazine, is a Human Rights Campaign youth ambassador, and is one of the faces of Clean & Clear. Now, she and her family are starring in the TLC docu-series, “I Am Jazz,” taking America into the world of the Jennings family and its ups and downs.
Needless to say, she’s busy.
“Until trans people are treated equally I will continue to share my story. I want people to understand that we are just like everyone else,” Jazz said.
South Florida Gay News had the opportunity to chat with Jazz and her mother, Jeanette, about their show and sticking up for transgender people everywhere.
Graphic by Brendon Lies
Every week there seems to be a social media battle, and a recent one brought up two of the hottest topics we’ve got going at the moment: gender and race.
Bruce Jenner came out as a woman in an interview with Diane Sawyer, then introduced herself as Caitlyn on the cover of Vanity Fair. Shortly after, Rachel Dolezal “came out” as a white woman — or should we say — was outed.
Dolezal was the NAACP chapter president in Spokane, Wash. and a faculty member at Eastern Washington University teaching Africana Studies, claiming to be at least partially black for almost a decade and doing speaking engagements on the experience of the black woman in America.
On Facebook and Twitter, people compared Dolezal’s “coming out” to that of Jenner’s just weeks before saying if someone can “choose” to be a woman, why can’t they “choose” to be black?
Photo by Jasmin Rodriguez
In the fourth season of the beloved “American Horror Story” series on FX, Erika Ervin joined the “Freak Show” cast and was nothing less than a show stopper. Set in Jupiter, Fla. in the 1950s, a circus filled with “freaks” is on its last legs and the neighboring community accuses the group of a series of murders. Ervin played the strong woman, Amazon Eve.
“The narrative of our show is this is a family, the horror is what’s happening to us in this paradigm,” Ervin said.
Also known as Amazon Eve off screen, the nearly 7-foot-tall transsexual woman was a former paralegal turned wrestler and model and nailed the role originally slated for a man. While she’s tight lipped about her future on “American Horror Story,” she did tell us that she was offered two auditions for two network television shows. Also, she’s working on a solo show to be accompanied by a book.
“The work is coming my way which is really nice,” she said. “I’m getting noticed all over the world.”
This iconic all American athlete’s story should inspire us to demand change
The online world blew up on June 1, 2015 when Vanity Fair released its cover story: Caitlyn Jenner.
Hell, it was such big news that the pregnancy announcement by Kim Kardashian was an afterthought. That’s some pretty serious stuff.
Formerly Bruce Jenner, the transgender woman known as the patriarch of the Jenner-Kardashian reality television empire has been under speculation for months, if not years, of being transgender.
Everyone’s curiosity was alleviated when she officially came out to ABC’s Diane Sawyer in a two-hour interview on April 24. Then, with much glitz and glamour, she was photographed by famed photographer Annie Leibowitz for a 22-page spread in “Vanity Fair.”
She told the world, “you can call me Caitlyn.”