Current Affairs

Laverne Cox speaks out against people who don’t see transgender women as real women

Josh Jackman June 6, 2017
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Laverne Cox

Laverne Cox has spoken out against people who don’t see transgender women as ‘real women.’

The Orange is the New Black star has brought a new level of representation for black trans women on TV, also appearing on CBS’s legal drama Doubt.

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She has also become an important advocate and activist for trans people, as she showed when she brought Gavin Grimm’s case to the world’s attention at the Grammys in February.

And speaking to Channel 4 ahead of season 5 of Orange is the New Black being released on Friday, Cox tore apart the reasoning promoted by so-classed Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminists.

In March, Dame Jenni Murray, host of BBC Radio 4 Woman’s Hour, wrote a column for the Sunday Times Magazine that was titled “Be trans, be proud – but don’t call yourself a ‘real woman’”.

Germaine Greer has also voiced trans-exclusionary rhetoric, facing criticism and protests before appearing at an International Women’s Day event in Brighton earlier this year.

Cox said: “Gender is really, really complicated, and everyone experiences their gender in a different way, and gender is different based on the culture.”

But, she said, “when we say that transgender women aren’t women, that is a way to discriminate against us.

“That is a way that folks use to deny us access and deny us healthcare and jobs, and it’s a reason that people perpetrate violence against us.”
11 trans women of colour have been murdered this year in the US, according to the Human Rights Campaign.

Cox also called Trump “a president who ran on an overtly white supremacist, xenophobic platform”.

She added: “I don’t even like to say his name.”

When asked if she felt less safe in Trump’s America, she responded: “I’m very privileged, and I’m very lucky.

“I think there are lots of trans folks who don’t have that privilege that I have.”

She referenced bathroom bills in Texas and North Carolina targeted at trans people, and Trump rescinding guidance from the Obama administration that trans kids should be treated equally.

“It’s inevitable that there’s backlash when there’s progress,” Cox said.

Related topics: bathroom bill, Donald Trump, doubt, gavin grimm, laverne cox, North Carolina, OITNB, orange is the new black, Television, Texas, Trans, Transgender, US, US

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