Pose star Indya Moore says that empathy will save the world

Indya Moore, the non-binary actor who rose to fame as Angel in HBO’s Pose, is on the September cover of AnOther Magazine.

The 24-year-old is a model signed to IMG, the face of Louise Vuitton, plays a lead role in Pose and is also, as they say, “a black trans person from the Bronx who comes from poverty”.

While, AnOther Mag says, the British media regularly gives column inches to hateful pundits seeking to dehumanise anyone who exists beyond the gender binary, trans people remain, as Moore puts it, those “whose very existence is politicised, is up for debate”.

Pose is revolutionary because it’s giving people an insight [into the] experiences of people they’ve never met before, right on their living-room screens,” Moore said.

“When you see yourself in someone who is not you, you see your experience being represented in a body that is not yours, that looks nothing like you, that is what stimulates empathy. You’re able to empathise with an experience you may not have had any proximity to… People seeing us in the same spaces that they see themselves in ‘un-others’ us.”

Indya Moore, who left home at 14 after transphobia caused a family rift, experienced extreme gender dysphoria growing up.

As a result, they lived in all five boroughs of New York, moving between group homes and foster parents. It was a foster parent, a trans woman, who first provided them with hormones.

“We need people to care about us. No one’s ever going to care about us if the only things they know about trans people are [from] Maury and Jerry Springer, if the only thing people know about trans people is fear… I think the thing that destroyed our world was apathy, from colonialism to war. Empathy is what’s going to save it.”

Moore joined the legendary ballroom house of Xtravaganza – first immortalised in the 1992 documentary Paris is Burning – which led to them auditioning for Pose.

In the interview, Moore outlines the advice they would give to younger trans people: “Community is important. Stay dedicated to the truth. Be dedicated to history. And every single person that is born, every single person that exists on this planet, has a responsibility to affect and influence anyone that they come to be in proximity to.

“Everyone matters. Everything matters. Don’t let anyone take your joy. We can find joy anywhere and in anything. Make sure that you experience joy in ways that don’t harm us, and that we hold onto joy, no matter what.”