Earlier this week, the Trump Administration announced plans to narrowly define gender. The announcement sent shock waves across the country.

After so much progress in recent years for transgender and non-binary people, this was an unscientific and insulting setback that seems squarely rooted in scoring cruel, political points rather than in any cohesive policies or principles.

Enter Lady Gaga.

Still glowing from her breakout performance in “A Star is Born,” the singer/actress has become a reliably admirable voice on social issues. Gaga is a uniter not a divider, but she’s not afraid to call out people like President Trump when they are doing the dividing.


Using her Twitter account, Gaga sent a message of hope and a rhetorical call to arms, writing:

"The government may be living in an alternate universe, but we as a society & culture know who we are and know our truth and must stick together and raise our voices so we can educate them about gender identities.”

"While today you might feel unheard or unseen, know that this is not the reality of humanity. This is another display of leadership being driven by ignorance."

It's easy to feel hopeless in the face of a continued assault on the rights and dignity of marginalized people. But we can stand up to, and put a stop to, inequality when we speak out.

Lady Gaga is using her powerful voice to give strength to those our government would unjustly harm. But we can all make a difference by transforming that voice into a chorus that's impossible for the world to ignore.

For some people, every day is Independence Day. For Janis Shinwari, this will be his first 4th of July as an American citizen. And boy, he earned it.

"If I was in Afghanistan—if I didn't come here, I wouldn't be alive now. I would be dead." Shinwari told CNN Heroes in 2018. Shinwari risked his life for nine years serving as a translator for U.S. forces in his native country of Afghanistan. He risked his life everyday knowing that should he be caught by the Taliban, the consequences would be severe. "If the Taliban catch you, they will torture you in front of your kids and families and make a film of you." Shinwari said. "Then [they'll] send it to other translators as a warning message to stop working with the American forces."

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