Caitlyn Jenner: Mixed Reactions Surface In Trans Community

Everyone is still abuzz with all things Caitlyn Jenner. After having made her debut into the world yesterday by gracing the cover of Vanity Fair, support and praise continues to poor in – and while the majority of responses have been overwhelmingly positive, it’s been revealed that not everyone within the transgender community shares their enthusiasm.

RELATED: The Best Reactions To Caitlyn Jenner’s Vanity Fair Debut

Speaking to The Guardian, Janetta Johnson – a black trans woman who works with TGI Justice, an advocacy group for transsexuals both in an out of prison – expressed her disappointment with the way Caitlyn has gone about her transition. “For her to come out as a trans woman and say ‘Oh, please keep calling me “he”’ – I think she may have set us back,” she said with reference to Jenner’s recent interview with Dianne Sawyer .

“Jenner’s a rich white bitch – she can pay for everything she needs. But I think she now needs to put some of that money back into the transgender community as she has taken a lot. All these years we have been abused and battered, yet she has used none of her power to help the community and bring about change.”

A rich white bitch or not, most people have rallied behind the former Bruce Jenner and are hailing her for “accelerating the acceptance of transgender people” and being a voice for women’s empowerment. As Orange is the New Black actor and transgender women Laverne Cox said, however, the struggle isn’t over.

While Cox welcomed the news of Caitlyn’s debut on tumblr, saying: “Yasss Gawd! Werk Caitlyn! Get it!” and noted that her “courage to move past denial into her truth so publicly” was beyond beautiful, she addressed some of the hurdles the community still faced.

“Most trans folks don’t have the privileges Caitlyn and I have now have,” she wrote. “It is those trans folks we must continue to lift up, get them access to healthcare, jobs, housing, safe streets, safe schools and homes for our young people.

“We must lift up the stories of those most at risk, statistically trans people of colour who are poor and working class. I have hoped over the past few years that the incredible love I have received from the public can translate to the lives of all trans folks,” Cox continued.

“I hope, as I know Caitlyn does, that the love she is receiving can translate into changing hearts and minds about who all trans people are as well as shifting public policies to fully support the lives and well being of all of us. The struggle continues…”

What do you think?

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The Best Reactions To Caitlyn Jenner’s Vanity Fair Debut

After such “a long struggle to be living my true self,” Caitlyn Jenner has finally made her debut on the cover of Vanity Fair magazine. Looking elegant, poise and most importantly comfortable in her own skin, the transgender women formerly known as Bruce Jenner, is now “free.”

RELATED: Bruce Jenner’s Transition Confession Generates Support

In a behind-the-scenes video shoot, Caitlyn confessed: “Bruce always had to tell a lie, he was always living that lie… Every day he always had a secret, from morning till night, Caitlyn doesn’t have any secrets.”

“As soon as the Vanity Fair cover comes out, I’m free.”

Social media has since gone into overdrive with thousands reaching out to welcome Caitlyn and show their support. The reaction from Jenner’s family has also been incredible, with all girls taking to Twitter and Instagram alike to celebrate the 65-year-old’s transformation. “Now that’s a cover,” tweeted daughter Kendall Jenner, before writing: “Be free pretty bird.”

The Best Reactions To Caitlyn Jenner's Vanity Fair Debut

The reality TV star’s family weren’t the only celebrities rallying behind her – Lady Gaga, Lena Dunham and Lance Bass were among many who used social media as a platform to applaud Jenner’s courageous cover. “Caitlyn, thank you for being a part of all of our lives and using your platform to change people’s minds,” tweeted Gaga, while Bass wrote: “Well HELLOOOOO Caitlyn Jenner!!! My wish is that everyone is able to live a happy life as their authentic self.

Lena Dunham confessed via Twitter that she wanted Jenner to teach her to drive a stick shift in heels and took to Instagram to praise her figure. “The best thing about being a woman is the prerogative to have a little fun (dying for that old school glamour waist to breast ratio),” she said.

The Best Reactions To Caitlyn Jenner's Vanity Fair Debut

Hailed as a “brave new voice” for women’s empowerment by Maria Shriver, Jenner’s coming of gender has also had a positive impact on the transgender community. “By sharing her journey with the world, Caitlyn Jenner is accelerating acceptance of transgender people everywhere and reminds us all how important it is to live as your most authentic self,” Sarah Kate Ellis, head of advocacy group GLAAD told ABC News.

The former Olympian even managed to break a world record, becoming the fastest person to ever reach one million Twitter followers. “Another Jenner world record, and at 65? Who’da thought!” tweeted Caitlyn in response. “Humbled and honoured to have reached 1M followers in 4 hrs. Thank you for your support.”

The Best Reactions To Caitlyn Jenner's Vanity Fair Debut

In a tell-all interview with Dianne Sawyer recently, Caitlyn, who at the time was still officially Bruce, admitted that she had always felt feminine. “People look at me differently. They see you as this macho male, but my heart and my soul and everything that I do in life — it is part of me. That female side is part of me. That’s who I am.”

While the 65-year-old hasn’t had genital surgery, according to the Sydney Morning Herald she did undergo facial feminisation surgery, a process that took 10 hours. Speaking to Vanity Fair, she confessed: “If I was lying on my deathbed and I had kept this secret and never ever did anything about it, I would be lying there saying, ‘You just blew your entire life.'”

Bruce Jenner’s Transition Confession Generates Support

For decades the topic of transgender has often been avoided or overlooked. Instead, assumptions or judgements have been made based on a lack of knowledge and the transgender community have silently struggled just to be themselves. Recently, however, the community have been given a voice and society is finally starting to turn a corner.

In a tell-all interview with Dianne Sawyer on Friday, former Olympian and reality TV star Bruce Jenner confessed – after much speculation – that he was transitioning into a woman. “For all intents and purposes, I’m a woman,” Jenner told the ABC’s Sawyer.

“People look at me differently. They see you as this macho male, but my heart and my soul and everything that I do in life — it is part of me. That female side is part of me. That’s who I am,” he continued.

While the 65-year-old said he didn’t want to be a spokesperson for the community, he revealed: “What I’m doing is going to do some good. And we’re going to change the world. I really firmly believe that we’re going to make a difference in the world with what we’re doing.”

His emotional interview – viewed by over 17 million people upon airing – has been met by the public with love and support and is a positive step towards equality. There is still a long way to go, however, with USA Today reporting that 90 per cent of transsexuals had experienced harassment in the work place, while a concerning 41 per cent of the community had admitted to attempting suicide.

“Everything they [the public] know about transgender people comes through the media. And until recently, frankly, the media was filled with stereotypes and misinformation about transgender people,” Nick Adams, the director of programs for transgender media for GLAAD, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocacy group told USA Today.

“If you look around and see discrimination, poverty and violence, it’s very difficult to see a future for yourself as a happy, successful transgender person. We really need to change that,” he continued.

And change that we are. Recently, Laverne Cox, transgender star from Orange is the New Black, appeared on the cover of Time Magazine, while Vogue – for the first time everprofiled transgender model, Andreja Pejic. ”It’s good. We’re finally figuring out that gender and sexuality are more complicated,” she said.

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