President Obama Acknowledges Humanity of Trans and Bisexual Americans in Historic State of the Union


Tonight, President Barack Obama includes transgender and bisexual people in the State of the Union address in reference to American values and the defense of human dignity. This inclusion is unprecedented in any State of the Union address.

In tonight’s State of the Union address, President Obama said:

As Americans, we respect human dignity […] It’s why we continue to reject offensive stereotypes of Muslims – the vast majority of whom share our commitment to peace. That’s why we defend free speech, and advocate for political prisoners, and condemn the persecution of women, or religious minorities, or people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. We do these things not only because they’re right, but because they make us safer. ​

In response to President Obama’s inclusion of transgender and bisexual people, National Center for Transgender Equality Executive Director Mara Keisling said:

“It is very heartening that President Obama has chosen to speak up for transgender people in a State of the Union Speech about American values. While other years, he has focused on a laundry lists of policies, mention there would have been important. In those years when we were not mentioned in the State of the Union, the President was still leading the way in advancing policies that have improved and saved transgender lives. Of course, the advancement of those policies is so much more important than a mention in a speech. But make no mistake, the President of the United States condemning persecution against transgender people is pivotal. It will empower trans people to stand taller and work harder to improve this country for all people. That he has also said bisexual for the first time in a state of the Union Address is very significant as well.”​

“His mention of us makes us know that he meant us when he talked about Americans. When he spoke about children, he meant transgender children too. When he spoke about immigrants, he meant transgender immigrants too. When he talked about service members and veterans, he meant the transgender people too.”

Read the President’s complete remarks as prepared for delivery here.

5 Responses to President Obama Acknowledges Humanity of Trans and Bisexual Americans in Historic State of the Union

  1. Sir Vertigo says:

    Reblogged this on Masculinity: A Surgical Exploration and commented:
    Such subtle words mean so much for a community it still missing it’s voice. Thank you Mr. President 😊

  2. I am so thrilled to have read/heard this 2nite. What’s one word? Lots….when it comes from the President…..especially because it’s one more victory against our adversaries who have tormented us long enough.

  3. […] de la voix pour les personnes trans’ dans un discours sur l’état de l’Union, a commenté Mara Keisling du National Center for Transgender Equality. (…) Toutes ces années où nous […]

  4. […] Mara Keisling, executive director of National Center for Transgender Equality in a statement on the organization’s blog: […]

  5. This is really important to respect the dignity of a human being regardless of his or her gender or other kind of biological disability.

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