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A trans boy and his mother have a heartfelt discussion about their shared fears.

He's only 8 years old, but he's worried about something very serious.

A trans boy and his mother have a heartfelt discussion about their shared fears.
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#WhoWeAre

8-year-old Gabe López shares a happy memory with his mom, Chris, about the time he went to camp and met his three best friends.

Their names were Luke, Brock, and Cooper — and like Gabe, they were all transgender boys, meaning they were boys who were assigned female at birth.

"Brock taught me how to pee standing up," says Gabe, prompting a laugh from Chris. The experience, shared in a new video collaboration between StoryCorps and Upworthy, was a joyful moment that contributed to the self-validation of Gabe's identity. The experience led to Gabe and Brock becoming "bros."


Image via StoryCorps/Upworthy.

The conversation takes a serious turn when Chris asks if Gabe ever gets scared thinking about what it'll be like growing up transgender.

"I’ve been wondering if when I’m older a lot of people will try to hurt me or something," he says, simply. "Do you worry about me?" he asks Chris.

"I worry about how other people might treat you," she says. "And it makes me upset to think about what you might have to go through."

The truth is that their shared fears of mistreatment and violence are valid — even, and perhaps especially, in today's world.

While transgender issues have been getting more attention in recent years — in 2014, Time famously declared the world had reached a "transgender tipping point," 2015 saw the emergence of Caitlyn Jenner, and earlier this year, Sarah McBride became the first transgender person to address a major political party's convention — that progress comes with a hefty price.

Increased attention to these issues has emboldened anti-trans lawmakers to enact laws designed to legalize discrimination against the group. Additionally, trans people are often the target of hate crimes. Every Nov. 20, the transgender community commemorates Trans Day of Remembrance to celebrate the lives of those who've been lost to anti-trans violence.

It's sad that an 8-year-old boy has to worry about whether he'll face violence just for being his authentic self. It's on all of us to push back on the forces that validate those concerns because no child should have to live in fear.

Listen to Chris and Gabe's heartfelt conversation below.

Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels
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Increasingly customers are looking for more conscious shopping options. According to a Nielsen survey in 2018, nearly half (48%) of U.S. consumers say they would definitely or probably change their consumption habits to reduce their impact on the environment.

But while many consumers are interested in spending their money on products that are more sustainable, few actually follow through. An article in the 2019 issue of Harvard Business Review revealed that 65% of consumers said they want to buy purpose-driven brands that advocate sustainability, but only about 26% actually do so. It's unclear where this intention gap comes from, but thankfully it's getting more convenient to shop sustainably from many of the retailers you already support.

Amazon recently introduced Climate Pledge Friendly, "a new program to help make it easy for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products." When you're browsing Amazon, a Climate Pledge Friendly label will appear on more than 45,000 products to signify they have one or more different sustainability certifications which "help preserve the natural world, reducing the carbon footprint of shipments to customers," according to the online retailer.

Amazon

In order to distinguish more sustainable products, the program partnered with a wide range of external certifications, including governmental agencies, non-profits, and independent laboratories, all of which have a focus on preserving the natural world.

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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.