Caitlyn Jenner’s speech accepting ESPN’s Arthur Ashe courage award.
Transcript from http//:Lybio.net
Caitlyn Jenner Emotional Speech ESPYS 2015 ESPN Awards 2015
[Caitlyn Jenner Emotional Speech ESPYS 2015 ESPN Awards 2015]
[Caitlyn Jenner (born October 28, 1949), Bruce Jenner:]
Wow, I have to talk after that? Thank you so much. It is so wonderful to be here tonight. Now the last few months have been a whirlwind of so many different experiences and emotions.
But this transition has been harder on me than anything I could imagine. And that’s the case for so many others besides me. For that reason alone, trans people deserve something vital. They deserve your respect. [applause] And from that – and from that respect comes a more compassionate community, a more empathetic society, and a better world for all of us.
There have been so many people that have traveled this road before me. From, in sports, Renée Richards to Chaz Bono, to Laverne Cox, and many others. Janet Mock is here with us tonight. And I want to thank them all publicly, as well as the ESPYs, and the late Arthur Ashe and his family for giving me this platform to start the next phase of my journey. I also want to acknowledge all the young trans athletes who are out there — given the chance to play sports as who they really are.
And now, [applause] – and now as of this week, it appears trans people will soon be serving in the military. That’s a great idea. [applause] We have come along way. But we have a lot of work to do.
I’d like to thank personally, my buddy Diane Sawyer. You know, [applause] you can only tell your story the first time once and Diane you did it so authentically and so gracefully. And uh… me and the community is so thankful for that. And thank you so much Diane, I am so proud to have you as a friend. [applause] [gasps: Ahh! …]
Here comes the tough part. I’d like to thank my family. Now the biggest fear in Caitlyn Jenner coming out was I never wanted to hurt anyone else, most of all my family and my kids. I always wanted my children to be so proud of their dad for what he was able to accomplish in his life.
You guys have given so much back to me, you give me so much support, I am so, so grateful to have all of you in my life. Thank you. [applause]
And certainly last, but not least, my mother. My mom uh… who, just a little over a week ago, um… had to have surgery and I didn’t think she was going to make it, and but she is here with me tonight to share this night. Now, [applause]
You know I always thought that I got my courage and my determination from my dad. Who landed on Omaha Beach and fought all the way through World War II. But you know what I’m thinking now, Mom, is that I got all these qualities from you. I love you very much. I’m so glad you’re here to share this with me.
You know, it is an honor to have the word courage associated with my life. But on this night another word comes to mind and that is fortunate.
I owe a lot to sports. It showed me the world, it has given me an identity. If someone wanted to bully me, well, you know what? I was the MVP of the football team. That just wasn’t going to be a problem. And the same thing goes tonight. If you want to call me names, make jokes, doubt my intentions, go ahead, because the reality is ‘I can take it’. But for the thousands of kids out there who are coming to terms with being true to who they are, ‘they shouldn’t have to take it’.
So for the people out there wondering what all this is about – whether it’s about courage or controversy or publicity – well, I’ll tell you what it’s all about. It’s about what happens from here. It’s not just about one person, it’s about thousands of people. It’s not just about me, it’s about all of us accepting one another. We are all different. That’s not a bad thing, that’s a good thing and while it may not be easy to get past the things you do not understand, I want to prove that it is absolutely possible if we only do it together.
Thanks you so much for this platform. Thanks you so much for this honor bestowed on myself and on my family. Thank you.