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Pop icon Sophie Ellis-Bextor just came out swinging for trans rights with a simple but powerful statement

Lily Wakefield April 22, 2020
Sophie Ellis-Bextor

Sophie Ellis Bextor performs onstage at The Anvil on November 27, 2019 in Basingstoke, England. (Harry Herd/Redferns)

Sophie Ellis-Bextor has come out swinging for trans rights, shutting down cisgender people in the LGBT+ community who think trans identities are up for debate.

Ellis-Bextor has a committed LGBT+ fanbase, and has headlined Pride festivals around the UK for years.

She told The Guardian: “My relationship with my gay fans is very precious to me – it’s shaped the career I have.

“After I had my first baby, I hadn’t performed for a while and I did my first gig back at [the London LGBTQ+ venue] G-A-Y … I honestly feel like that night was pivotal for me.

“It was like a wall had come down and I felt my inhibitions go. Since then, I feel like I’ve been a different kind of performer.”

But when asked about the exclusion of trans people within the LGBT+ community and the “war” over trans rights, the newspaper reported that Ellis-Bextor “sat up in her chair”.

She said: “I think we’re now so much better at understanding the spectrum of gender and how people choose to identify and what feels right.

Of course, that’s so logical. Why on earth should someone say: ‘I need to adhere to that list of gender specifics?’

“Once people feel like they can define themselves the way they want to, then we can have a debate about nuance.

“What works for one transgender individual is not the same for another.

“We’ve got to get to a point where we can have their voices heard. But the main point is about just making sure that, socially and economically, [trans people] are supported in the right way.”

Sophie Ellis-Bextor wants her children to have ‘choice’ when it comes to gender expression.

In terms of her own experience, Sophie Ellis-Bextor said she’s concerned about how gender roles affect her five sons.

“If you look at kids’ toys, it’s very much girls’ toys and boys’ toys, maybe even more than I remember when I was small,” she continued.

“I don’t know if it’s some weird fear that, if you give kids lots of choice and let them interpret themselves as they are, then you’re going to encourage some sort of craziness.

“I think a lot of people feel very uncomfortable about it and I don’t really know why.”

The “Murder on the Dancefloor” singer said she’s “not really bothered” about how her children identify, and added: “I just want them to feel like they have choice.

“I’m sure that’s how most people must feel about raising their kids… I’ve been given my children and I can’t mould anything about them. I’ve just got to support them and love them and try to guide them.”

She joked: “And that’s probably why most of them are feral.”

More: Children, expression, gender, murder on the dancefloor, Pride, sophie ellis-bextor, trans rights

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