Caitlyn Jenner: The Vanity Fair Cover & Why She Is So Important

Caitlyn Jenner has made her powerful and stunning debut for the July cover of Vanity Fair and the issue's cover headline, “Call Me Caitlyn” quickly became a worldwide trending topic.

Caitlyn's look was created by four industry legends. She was photographed by the legendary Annie Leibovitz, her makeup was done by industry veteran and Vogue and Allure regular, Mark Carrasquillom and Oribe, celebrity superstar stylist did her hair.  She wore some stunning outfits, including a hip-hugging red dress by Donna Karen and a gorgeous off the shoulder gown by Zac Posen. “I'm very proud to be included in the roster of chosen designers for such a historic moment captured by the iconic Annie Leibovitz,” said Posen. “I think the most important message that comes from this is to be who you are and feel beautiful in your skin.”

But the Jenner story and the Vanity Fair cover is so much more than how beautiful Caitlyn looked and what she was wearing. This is such an iconic moment and a monumental move forward for the lgbt movement.  

Caitlyn being brave enough to share her story, struggles and journey with the world will do immeasurable good.  How moving to know how many people who feel alone, misunderstood or afraid to be who they are who will now have the courage to embark on their own journey. Caitlyn's coming out has also sparked a lot of intelligent dialogue regarding gender identity and will no doubt continue to spur conversations. The overwhelming support Jenner has received is so important for the world community as a whole, but is especially powerful to be witnessed and read by those who are naive to the trans community or perhaps feel negatively in some way towards them. 

While trans visibility has certainly been on the rise thanks to Jenner and other brave souls, we still have a long way to go when it comes to the trans community as a whole, the conversations we have surrounding trans people and how we treat them as individuals. There is still a lot of work to be done. More than 72% of anti-LGBTQ+ homicide victims in 2013 were transgender women. 41% of transgender and gender-nonconforming youth have attempted suicide in their lives, compared with 1.6 percent of the general population. Transgenders are 4x more likely than the general population to have a household income of less than $10,000 and are unemployed at twice the rate. 25% of transgender recipients reported losing a job because they did not conform to gender norms and 90% said they faced some form of transgender-based discrimination. Jenner's story has brought these, and so many other devastating statistics surround the trans community to light on an international scale. 

I think we can all agree that both Bruce and Caitlyn's bravery and courage in nothing short of inspiring. 

Statistics from the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs-NCAVP, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law and the Bureau of Labor Statistics Data

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