Identity

Trans kids get an outpouring of love as people on Twitter share moving letters of encouragement

Thriving trans adults are switching the narrative to joy and hope.

letters 4 trans kids twitter
Twitter. Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash.

It gets better.

As trans children face bullying, violence and a potential loss to healthcare rights, the world might seem like a hostile and lonely place.

However, several trans adults, now thriving in their post-formative years, have taken to Twitter to offer solidarity and hope.

Kicked off by Axios Chief Technology Correspondent Ina Fried, the Letters 4 Trans Kids hashtag recognizes that “it’s been a rough time for trans and nonbinary youth,” and offers to show support by “posting a message of encouragement to these amazing young people.”

Hundreds did.


Fried set the tone early on with her letter, which was filled with compassion.

“I know it can be hard sometimes — really hard. It’s tough enough to figure out who you are inside. And then you have to figure out what to do with that knowledge and how to make your way in a world that isn’t always so kind.

Please know that however many angry voices are out there, there are also lots of us cheering you on. I want you to be fully you, whoever that turns out to be. And it’s okay if it takes some time to figure it out.

That’s part of what being a kid is supposed to be all about - figuring out who you are.

I just want you to know that I may not know you, but I see you and I stand proudly with you and for you every day.

Keep being you.”

From there, journalist Arthur Webber followed suit, sharing a story from his own childhood:

“My nights were spent praying that in the morning I would be a boy. I would wake up disappointed. However, I already was a boy–no divine intervention required.

On Christmas Eve aged 7, I cut off all my own hair and enthusiastically told my family that I finally was a boy. I had been watching ‘The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe’, so perhaps I took the image of children coming out of a closet too literally. However, I already was a boy–no (terrible) haircut needed.

When I met other children on holiday I would tell them I was a boy. I’d avoid giving them my name and say I was born without one. Which everybody is, really. The devastation I felt when my family would fetch me using my deadname and reveal that the outside world believed I was a girl still lingers with me. However, I already was a boy.

I was a trans kid like you. It's a limited edition gift with no receipt. Sometimes you’d give anything to return it because it’s too hard to look after, but most of the time you’re thankful that it’s unique."

Filmmaker Alice Wu applauded trans children for their self-awareness.

“In many ways, you are more mature than the world is (than I was at your age)....we need you,” she wrote.

“I am embracing you. Accessing the Power, the Magic, the Love of our friends, our community, our ancestors and engulfing us in it,” wrote Puerto Rican actor and drag king Vico Ortiz. “We are so proud of you…you are a light in this world. A gift…I am in awe of how fierce y’all are…and with every fiber of my being I will fight with you and for you because you are indispensable.”

He also noted having more representation than ever on “film, tv, media” starkly contrasting “thousands of bills threaten[ing] our very existence” felt “a little dystopian.” However, he regarded it as a “reminder” of the trans community's power.

Countless tweets began to flood in from other trans artists, advocates and allies ready to open up their hearts.

Everyone had a different version of supportive words and stories. However, the general message was clear: You are valued exactly as you are, and you are not alone.

When so many obstacles seem to await these kids—all while facing the everyday challenges of simply growing up—genuine care like this can go a long way.

Moricz was banned from speaking up about LGBTQ topics. He found a brilliant workaround.

Senior class president Zander Moricz was given a fair warning: If he used his graduation speech to criticize the “Don’t Say Gay” law, then his microphone would be shut off immediately.

Moricz had been receiving a lot of attention for his LGBTQ activism prior to the ceremony. Moricz, an openly gay student at Pine View School for the Gifted in Florida, also organized student walkouts in protest and is the youngest public plaintiff in the state suing over the law formally known as the Parental Rights in Education law, which prohibits the discussion of sexual orientation or gender identity in grades K-3.

Though well beyond third grade, Moricz nevertheless was also banned from speaking up about the law, gender or sexuality. The 18-year-old tweeted, “I am the first openly-gay Class President in my school’s history–this censorship seems to show that they want me to be the last.”

However, during his speech, Moricz still delivered a powerful message about identity. Even if he did have to use a clever metaphor to do it.

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Matthew McConaughey in 2019.

Oscar-winning actor Matthew McConaughey made a heartfelt plea for Americans to “do better” on Tuesday after a gunman murdered 19 children and 2 adults at Robb Elementary School in his hometown of Uvalde, Texas.

Uvalde is a small town of about 16,000 residents approximately 85 miles west of San Antonio. The actor grew up in Uvalde until he was 11 years old when his family moved to Longview, 430 miles away.

The suspected murderer, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, was killed by law enforcement at the scene of the crime. Before the rampage, Ramos allegedly shot his grandmother after a disagreement.

“As you all are aware there was another mass shooting today, this time in my home town of Uvalde, Texas,” McConaughey wrote in a statement shared on Twitter. “Once again, we have tragically proven that we are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us.”

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Joy

Meet Eva, the hero dog who risked her life saving her owner from a mountain lion

Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva when a mountain lion suddenly appeared.

Photo by Didssph on Unsplash

A sweet face and fierce loyalty: Belgian Malinois defends owner.

The Belgian Malinois is a special breed of dog. It's highly intelligent, extremely athletic and needs a ton of interaction. While these attributes make the Belgian Malinois the perfect dog for police and military work, they can be a bit of a handful as a typical pet.

As Belgian Malinois owner Erin Wilson jokingly told NPR, they’re basically "a German shepherd on steroids or crack or cocaine.”

It was her Malinois Eva’s natural drive, however, that ended up saving Wilson’s life.

According to a news release from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva slightly ahead of her when a mountain lion suddenly appeared and swiped Wilson across the left shoulder. She quickly yelled Eva’s name and the dog’s instincts kicked in immediately. Eva rushed in to defend her owner.

It wasn’t long, though, before the mountain lion won the upper hand, much to Wilson’s horror.

She told TODAY, “They fought for a couple seconds, and then I heard her start crying. That’s when the cat latched on to her skull.”

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