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Jenner and the Arthur Ashe Courage Award

Being transgender is not an easy life, and transitioning in the public eye can be daunting, but I do not believe that a celebrity deserves an award for courage when so many of us transgender individuals go through hardships that Ms. Jenner could never understand.

There are those of us who have lost our entire families when we transition; we have no support and must go at it alone. Yet we win no award for our courage to face life without a celebrity fan base that supports us.

There are those of us who will never be able to afford to transition, because of the vast discrimination when it comes to employment for the transgender community. Yet we win no award for our courage to face life feeling trapped in a body we cannot afford to change, less we wish to go without food or shelter.

There are those of us who have lost our homes and live on the streets, children thrown away by their parents, adults who were shunned after transition. Yet we win no award for our courage to keep going, to fight through the fear of freezing in the winter or over heating in the summer.

There are those of us who are no longer with the living, because of the horrendous violence perpetrated against transmen and transwomen each and every day. Yet we win no awards for surviving in a world that calls us abominations because we cannot buy our perfection.

Is Ms. Jenner brave for being true to herself? Yes, but giving a transwoman that has not competed in sports while being openly transgender an award for courage is an insult.

Courage is not having your own reality television show and more money than the average American make in a year to spend on your transition, it resides in the transgender population of the world that continue to fight for day to day life, knowing the deck is stacked against them.

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