A brave fourth-grade trans girl shamed Texas senators for trying to effectively ban gender-affirming healthcare in a powerful speech.
Actor and trans activist Kai Shappley told the Texas state affairs committee on Monday (12 April) that she was tired of lawmakers “attacking” her identity. She declared that she doesn’t like “spending my free time asking adults to make good choices” when she could be doing something she loves, such as ballet or studying maths.
“I have been having to explain myself since I was 3 or 4-years-old,” Shappley said. “Texas legislators have been attacking me since pre-K – I’m in fourth grade now.”
Watch: Growing up trans
Texas legislators are currently considering a bill that would make providing gender-affirming care to trans minors tantamount to child abuse.
SB 1646, written by Republican senator Charles Perry, would add “administering or supplying, or consenting to or assisting in the administering or supplying” of gender-affirming surgery or puberty blockers for the purpose of transitioning to the list of punishable offences under Texas’ child protection laws. This would mean parents could lose custody of their children if they help their child transition.
Kai Shappley said she “immediately” feels angry when she hears about bills that target trans youth because it has been “very scary and overwhelming” for her. Shappley continued: “It makes me sad that some politicians use trans kids like me to get votes from people who hate me just because I exist.
“God made me, God loves me for who I am and God does not make mistakes.”
She ended her statement before the committee by reminding all the adults in the room that “bullying is bad”, but it’s “never too late to turn it around”. Kai Shappley also thanked the politicians who are “sticking up for kids like me”.
“By the time I’m in college, you will be celebrated in the history books,” Shappley said.
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