Caitlyn Jenner hasn’t turned in her Republican Party membership yet, but the world’s most famous transgender woman admits Donald Trump is a “disaster” for her community.
During a controversial speech in Britain’s House of Commons on Wednesday, Jenner, a former Trump supporter, said the president had set trans rights “back 20 years” and implored the UK “not to go down the same road.” She criticized decisions such as Trump’s ban on transgender service members and the repeal of Obama-era protections for trans students.
Jenner’s invitation to speak before Parliament had been strongly criticized by those who felt she was too disconnected from the real issues.
“If Caitlyn Jenner’s Number One mission is to be the Mother Teresa of this community she has to be educated on our real lives,” said Carmen Carrera in a video posted on TMZ. “We all know her life does not reflect the average life of a trans woman.”
On Twitter, trans comedian Shon Faye said Jenner’s life story was “far removed from what British politicians need to be hearing.”
When a UK broadcaster can only pick a white, conservative, rich, famous AMERICAN trans celebrity to address the BRITISH Parliament on diversity re transgender issues – that isn't a sign of progress, thats a sign of a problemhttps://t.co/ftLAxiMq1k
— shon faye. (@shonfaye) May 4, 2018
But in her address, Jenner defended her newfound activism.
“I’m not going to apologize for working hard and being successful,” said the 68-year-old reality star. “But what that does is yes, give me a sense of privilege—but it also gives me a platform.”
“I always suggest to every trans person out there, everybody has a platform that they can utilize to make it just a little bit better for the next generation coming up,” she added.
Jenner’s keynote lecture was part of an annual series hosted by Channel 4 in the House of Commons aimed at addressing the importance of diversity in entertainment.
“Caitlyn Jenner is one of the most high-profile transgender people in the world,” a rep for the network told Buzzfeed. “Her transition brought transgender issues into the mainstream, helping to stimulate debate and increase awareness.”
Before the election, Jenner insisted Trump was “very much behind the LGBT community.”
But by October 2017, she had changed her tune, calling the Trump White House “by far the worst administration ever towards the LGBT community—and particularly the trans community,” adding that it was time “to gather together… and fight what they’re doing.”