The Aftermath of the Bruce Jenner and Diane Sawyer
By Victoria Priola
One of the last statements Bruce Jenner, Olympic superstar, reality TV show star, and father of ten made during his last interview as a male was, “2015 is going to be quite a ride.”
Jenner and Diane Sawyer took seventeen million viewers through the journey that was his life.
With many trending hashtags that came up throughout the night of the special, it was apparent that Jenner had an endless amount of support from his children and ex-wives for coming out as transgender.
Sawyer acknowledged in the program that Jenner continues to go by the pronouns him/his until further notice.
“Not only was I able to call him my husband for 25 years and father of my children,” said Jenner’s ex-wife Kris Kardashian, “I am now able to call him my hero.”
The Sawyer and Jenner interview came just in time for the LGBT Equality & Justice Day on April 28.
A celebrity like “Orange is the New Black” star Laverne Cox and, now, Jenner have educated the public of the transgender community.
Six hundred LGBT community supporters rallied in New York City to stand up for the civil rights of transgendered individuals. The solution comes from the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA).
According to change.org, the New York State Assembly passed with bipartisan support the bill to protect LGBT youth from the practice of conversion therapy. Nothing has been said about the passing of GENDA yet.
Jenner exclusively said that he is not an advocate for the transgender community. His story, however, shed some light on others who face a similar battle.
The special mentioned the seven women who were murdered solely because of their gender identity.
Leelah Alcorn, a seventeen year old transgender woman who took her life due to pressure from her family, was also mentioned.
“My death needs to mean something,” Alcorn said in her suicide note. “Fix society. Please.”
Singer Demi Lovato dedicated her song “Warrior” to Jenner post-interview during her World Tour.
She commended him on his openness and referred to him as an “American hero” for saving the lives of others in similar positions and have felt alone in their struggle.
Talk show host Wendy Williams had a very different take on the ABC special than most.
On her show, she claimed Jenner was just as money hungry as the Kardashian clan. The subject of Jenner’s daughter Kylie and her 25 year old boyfriend was also brought up and Williams claimed Jenner has “bigger fish to fry than becoming a woman.”
Williams said that Jenner will air a documentary series of his transformation this summer. Jenner denied all accounts of his transition being a publicity stunt.
Jenner is not the first celebrity to publicly announce a gender change and the special mentioned Chaz Bono as an example.
Williams has referred to Bono as “very brave” and supported him in making his documentary “Becoming Chaz” in 2011 on her talk show.
After the interview aired, fans began to show their support for Jenner immediately by spreading the hashtag #PaintYourNailsForBruce. Jenner claims that one of the perks of having his story publicly shown is being able to wear nail polish for a longer period of time.
Supporters of all different gender identities painted their nails in support of him, KIIS 1065 DJ Gordie painted his nails red and spelled out “Bruce” in black.
Jenner’s interview featured a brief segment on the difference between being transgender and cross dressing. Although he will become a woman, Jenner claims he is still attracted to women.
The segment featured scientists and professionals in transgender studies in the hopes that with this attention, the LGBT community is one step closer to getting equality.
“I am saying goodbye to people’s perceptions of me and who I am,” said Jenner. “I’m not saying goodbye to me, because this has always been me.”