Jennifer Lopez and Dwyane Wade rally behind father of trans kid whose impassioned speech touched the world

On the left: Jennifer Lopez looks to her right in a yellow dress. On the right: Dwyane Wade smiles in a red printed shirt and black blazer

Jennifer Lopez and Dwyane Wade have become the latest to praise the father of a trans girl who went viral for his emotional plea against an anti-trans bill.

This year has seen an avalanche of Republican-controlled states bulldoze vicious legislation targeting trans children, often seeking to ban trans girls and women competing in sports.

Both Lopez and Wade shared the video of lawyer Brandon Boulware urging Missouri legislators to not go ahead with a proposed ban on trans youth, including his daughter, from playing on high school sports teams.

In an impassioned speech he urged lawmakers to stop stoking a “culture war” and remember that trans kids are “more than bedrooms, bathrooms and locker rooms”.

“I love,” tweeted Lopez, who has a trans nibling called Brendon, on Tuesday (16 March).

“This touched me… a parent’s love… love changes the world.”

Wade, whose daughter Zaya is trans, also made his opposition to anti-trans laws perfectly clear.

“I vote AGAINST this legislation!” he said in an Instagram caption Monday (15 March).

“I don’t know Brandon Boulware at all but I do know we have something real in common. Here’s the one thing we can’t do: ‘SILENCE OUR CHILD’S SPIRIT’.”

“Thank you for using your platform and sharing your family’s story!”

‘Let trans kids have their childhoods’, urges father of a trans daughter 

Facing the prospect of his daughter’s dreams being dashed, Boulware spoke at a hearing for House Joint Resolution 53, which would force high school athletes to compete on sports teams according to their sex assigned at birth.

He described how he and his wife made their daughter wear “boy clothes” and barred her from playing with “girl’s toys” when she was younger. The result was a child “who did not smile”.

This, Boulware said, shows how important it is to never deny a child’s truth and to accept them for who they are.

“Let them have their childhoods,” he said. “Let them be who they are.”

But lawmakers in 25 states seemingly disagree. There are currently 60 anti-trans bills on the cards across the US, forming the Republican Party’s brutal pushback against Joe Biden’s sweeping efforts to expand trans rights.

Strategists say the bills are simply the Republican Party angling itself for gains in the 2022 midterms – reducing the lives of trans people, once again, into a “wedge issue”.

To LGBT+ activists, the bans are “discriminatory, harmful and unscientific” and rely on tired myths about trans athletes.

But as much as Republicans have sought to divide America and turn trans kids into a “hot-button issue”, Americans themselves don’t quite agree.

The majority of Americans emphatically support trans teens taking part in sports, researchers have found, with 73 per cent believing that trans kids should compete on the team corresponding to their gender.

Overall, pollsters have found that Americans do vastly support trans rights. Sixty-two per cent have become more supportive of trans rights in recent years, according to a 2019 survey.

And even among one of the Republican’s most relied-upon voting bloc, white evangelicals, a slim majority support trans rights.