Laverne Cox is one of the most prominent voices in the transgender community. Now, she’s using her voice to narrate a stunning animated video telling the history of transgender rights and where they are going forward.
Presented by TIME and the ACLU, the 4-minute video is gorgeously animated by Molly Crabapple. The combination of colorful sketches and Cox’s eloquent, steadfast voice-over makes for a moving experience.
The video starts with the Stonewall riots in 1969, often cited as the beginning of the LGBTI movement in the United States.
‘But the movement has much deeper roots,’ Cox explains. She then reveals the lesser-known movements led by trans women and people of color at Compton’s Cafeteria in San Francisco in 1966. There was also Cooper’s Donuts in Los Angeles in 1959, The Black Cat in Los Angeles in 1967, and Dewey’s in Philadelphia in 1965.
‘They remind us of our courageous history of resisting institutionalized bullying and oppression.’
While trans people are more visible than ever, they also face harmful laws, homelessness, HIV, and incarceration in staggering amounts.
‘But when we manage to survive, and even love ourselves, we are stronger than ever,’ Cox finishes. ‘We take care of each other, we tell our stories, and we demand justice.’