"People are really queerphobic and transphobic,” the actress said.|
by Alanna Vagianos, published on February 13, 2019 - 11:36 am ET
Ellen Page is saying it loud and clear for those in the back: LGBTQ issues are not a debate.
The actress and activist stopped by BBC Radio 5 on Monday to discuss the progress and setbacks of issues plaguing the LGBTQ community. Page, who married Emma Portner last year, said the U.S. still has “so far to go” when it comes to queer rights and equality.
“Of course, there’s been so much progress that we’ve seen, wonderful progress. But a lot of the most marginalized people in the community get left behind,” she said, pointing to the fact that trans women of color face an average life expectancy of 35 due to transphobic violence.
Most recently, President Donald Trump has rolled back protections for transgender people including banning the community from serving in the U.S. military and removing protections that allowed trans students to use the bathroom that adheres to their gender identity.
“It needs to go so much further, particularly in media who are pretending that it’s a debate whether or not trans people should have rights,” she continued. “It’s a debate whether it’s OK to have a religious liberty law that would give you the right to deny an LGBTQ person service.”
“That’s not a debate. That’s an excuse that has been used countless times, whether it was during segregation, interracial marriage, what have you,” Page added.
The actress said she believes the media poses LGBTQ issues as a debate because “people are really queerphobic and transphobic,” adding, “This is the conversation we need to be having because it is life or death.”