Jennifer Lopez shares moving video of father’s fight for transgender daughter’s right as an athlete
Jennifer Lopez shared an article on Tuesday (Mar. 16, 2021), showcasing a viral speech given by Brandon Boulware, a Missouri father, about his transgender daughter at the Missouri state House earlier this month about restrictions regarding trans athletes in school.
Lopez shared how she felt by writing in the caption, “I love… this touched me… a parent’s love… love changes the world… [three heart emojis].” Not stopping there, she also highlighted news articles about Boulware’s testimony on her Twitter and Instagram Story accounts.
Boulware talked about his journey in accepting his daughter’s gender identity as he urged Missouri legislators to vote against House Joint Resolution 53. The proposed bill itself would hinder trans athletes from participating in high school sports in Missouri since it requires them to participate under the gender listed on their birth certificate.
Pleading on behalf of his daughter, Boulware began by introducing himself as “a husband and father of four kids – two boys, two girls – including a wonderful and beautiful transgender daughter.” He went on to tell lawmakers that he used to force her daughter to wear boy clothes, get short haircuts and play on boys’ sports teams. He stated that he wanted to protect her from being teased.
Boulware then admitted it took years for him to understand how “miserable” he made her feel, and detailed an incident that made him realize that his “daughter was equating being good with being someone else.” He continued noting that when he began to accept his daughter and let her live authentically, he saw an immediate transformation in her.
Pointing out that his daughter has since joined the girls’ volleyball team, Boulware told legislators, “I ask you. Please don’t take that away from my daughter or the countless others like her that are out there.” He concluded his speech by stating, “Let them have their childhoods. Let them be who they are. I ask you to vote against this legislation.”
Lopez, in the meantime, has shown support for the LGBTQ community for quite a long time. Back in 2020, she shared on Instagram a short film, titled Draw With Me, about transgender youth and their journey of coming out to their family.
The film is about the coming-out story of Brendon Scholl, a transgender youth who happens to be J. Lo’s nibling. ICYDK, nibling is a gender-neutral term used in place of niece or nephew to refer to the child of one’s sibling. (Brendon is the child of J. Lo’s sister, Leslie Ann.)
The short film tells Brendon’s story from coming out as trans in eighth grade to their present-day life as a young adult, including the deeply personal struggles they’ve navigated along the way, and how their passion for art has helped them cope.
“The film is important and timely in its story and message and can have a huge impact on those of us who watch and experience what Brendon and their family are going through in this time of acceptance and admission,” J. Lo says in her video introducing the film.