Padma Lakshmi is sharing her platform for Transgender Awareness Week.
The Top Chef judge turned over her Instagram to Trace Lysette, a trans actress best known for her work on Transparent and in Hustlers. Lysette’s first post was about attending the 2017 Golden Globes, when her Prime show was nominated for Best Television Series - Musical or Comedy, a moment she called “bittersweet.”
“I find the glass ceiling placed on an actor who is trans deeply frustrating,” Lysette wrote. “Reflecting... As I sat in that room ... it was somewhat bittersweet. I was of course happy to be there, but when I looked around I realized it was likely that I was the only trans person in the room.”
The star continued, “Imagine for just a second, looking around a room full of people being celebrated for their craft and not seeing yourself, not seeing people like you.”
Lysette said, “That's what it's like for trans people in many situations. I know other minorities know this feeling. I wanted so badly to walk across the stage that night,” although the show lost to Atlanta, “but I was thankful for just being in the room, because I knew it was not a regular occurrence for someone like me.”
The post ended with Lysette saying, “I think it's important to talk about these things publicly so we can fully realize just how far we have to go. I'm encouraged by our progress but I'm also a realist in terms of where we need to be.”
Lysette came out as trans shortly before landing her role as Shea on Transparent. The show ended after the star Jeffrey Tambor was accused of sexual misconduct, including by Lysette.
Lysette recently signed on as an executive producer of the documentary series Trans in Trumpland. The four-part series, directed by trans filmmaker Tony Zosherafatain, follows four people as they fight for transgender equality in the U.S. during the Trump presidency.
Transgender Awareness Week takes place each year between Nov. 13 and 19 to raise the visibility about transgender people as well as to spotlight issues that members of the community face. Nov. 20 is Transgender Day of Remembrance, which honors the memory of the transgender people whose lives were lost in acts of hate violence.
President-elect Joe Biden posted on Twitter to recognize the day of remembrance on Friday:
Demi Lovato, Jane Fonda, Kelly Osbourne, Cynthia Nixon, Frankie Grande and Jameela Jamil (via iWeight) are among the celebrities passing the mic in the #TransTakeover, created by Ashlee Marie Preston, on social media.
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