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Indya Moore used accessories on the red carpet to highlight transphobic violence

Image via Indya Moore
Words by Maeve Kerr-Crowley

“Because my life is politics.”

The world’s fashion weeks are undeniably exciting, but we’d argue it’s even cooler seeing someone use such a huge platform to do some good.

While being honoured as the first trans person to appear on an Elle magazine cover during New York Fashion Week, actor Indya Moore used the opportunity to make an important political statement.

Together with stylist Ian Cogneato, Moore filled a pair of Beads Byaree’s Keepsake earrings with photos of 16 trans women who have been killed in America this year. The earring chains dramatically dangled to the actor’s hips, emphasising the number of deaths.

During the Pose star’s speech, they also showed a framed photograph of 17-year-old Bailey Reeves, who was killed three days before the event, after the earrings were made.

In a statement on their Instagram following the event, they explained, “I accept this award in honor of the truth that the best award and the award we all deserve is to be able to get home safe.”

“I accept this award in good faith that my recognition doesn’t lead to the erasure of other trans and GNC folks who also deserve health care, housing, safety in visibility, magazine covers, runways, leading film and tv roles, doctorates degrees, high school diplomas, college educations and representation everywhere.”

Watch the whole acceptance speech below.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Thank you Aree, for sharing your keepsake earings so I could bring my sister’s with me tonight. Just Like me these women dare to exhaust their freedom to exist by being visible, however, instead of being celebrated, they were punished for it. While we make up .6 percent of the American population, The life expectancy of trans women/femmes is 35 years old. Existence that requires bravery is not freedom. A life that requires bravery is not free. I accept this award in honor of the truth that The best award and the award we all deserve is to be able to get home safe. I accept this award in good faith that my recognition doesn’t lead to the Erasure of other trans and GNC folks who also deserve health care, housing safety in visibility, magazine covers, runways, leading film and tv roles, doctorates degrees, high school diplomas, college educations and representation everywhere. Jewelry @kbhjewels Make up @aerieldandrea Hair @monaeartistry Style @iancogneato dress @oscardelarenta repost • @beadsbyaree The first “Keepsake” earring was created to honor my Iya (godmother) who passed this April. Not knowing what to do in the darkest times of my life, I held on to love. I was inspired by love and representation of it. In each frame I inserted images of my sisters who my Iya has raised. They carry her in their faces and are a reminder of her presence to me simply by being themselves. We’re all entangled. We may look like one person but we show up as many. @iancogneato contacted me with a mission for the earrings. He was prepping @indyamoore to receive the honor of Cover of the Year for ELLE at @dailyfrontrow. They wanted to pay tribute to and also build awareness for the 16 (now 17) trans women who were murdered this year in the USA. The issue is so pressing that after creating the earring and three days before the event, Bailey Reeves, a 17 year old girl from Baltimore was killed. For her, Indya carried a frame around with her face. @indyamoore’s jewelry served as an altar and their speech was both a prayer for the future and a call to action. In their hour of celebration they put their trans sisters in the forefront.

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