My name is Lea Campbell, and I am a straight, married, cisgender 40-year-old woman. Some of my dearest friends from the past and in the present are trans people. I can't imagine my life without them because my trans friends have shaped me into a better woman. I'm inspired by their courage and commitment to living their personal truths despite what society tells them they "should" be. It reminds me, that as a woman, I don't have to conform to society's expectations of who I should be.
Their friendship empowers me to commit to being who I truly am and their strength sustains me as I witness them taking ownership of their precious lives despite much harsher judgment and circumstances than I will ever face. I'm inspired by the resilience and grace they display in the face of discrimination, abuse and judgment. And despite, or perhaps because of, all of the judgment they have endured, my trans friends are among the most selfless and compassionate people I know.
Today, on Transgender Day of Visibility, and every day, I am proud to stand in solidarity with the trans community, and I pledge to continue learning how to be the best ally that I can be.
Lea Campbell, President
Mississippi Rising Coalition
"Nobody's free until everybody's free."
-Fannie Lou Hamer