Dwyane Wade says he fears for the safety of his transgender daughter Zaya

Don’t Mess With Dwyane Wade.

The retired NBA star and activist sent a fiery letter to lawmakers who signed state laws restricting the rights of transgender youth. A father of three has spoken emotionally about his concerns for his 15-year-old transgender daughter Zaya Wade.

“To me, it’s a joke,” Wade told CNN’s Poppy Harlow at the Time100 summit this week when asked about lawmakers being overly focused on restricting access to gender-affirming medical care for transgender youth. “This is our life. We live this. When you’re out there making the rules and not experiencing this, if you don’t live this and go out and sign laws, it’s not right, that’s a joke.”

“Come and live a day with my daughter,” he added. “Come and see how she goes in this world like her.”

Wade and his wife, Gabrielle Union, routinely spoke out in support of their daughter, who emerged in 2020 as a transgender and has since used her platform to highlight transgender issues.

“I’ve gone years without telling my chef that I don’t like cilantro on my burger — as an adult, it took me years to trust saying that,” Wade said. “My daughter, who is 8, had the confidence to say ‘This is me. This is what I want to be.”

Dwyane Wade, his daughter Zaya Wade and his wife Gabrielle Union routinely use their platforms to advocate for LGBT rights. (Photo: Andrew Toth/Getty Images)

The Wade family’s voices come at a crucial moment. Just this week, Louisiana banned transgender women from competing in women’s sports — the latest in a series of anti-LGBTQ bills introduced this year so far, most of which target transgender people.

When thinking about the attacks against the transgender community, Wade couldn’t help but say that as Americans we are “losing the human side of us.”

“As sad as it is, and as blessed as my daughter is to have two parents who can support her, I am still afraid every moment you leave the house,” he admitted. “Not just because of gun violence, but because of the way people look at it in this world, the way the people out there are trying right now. [limit her]. “

“It really doesn’t make sense to me,” he continued, apparently referring to a wide range of attempts to control students’ thoughts and learning, from book bans to Florida’s recent “Don’t Say Like Me” law. “We are in this world now where… we learn information on social media, we can find everything we want to know about life. Our kids can find all of these things. Then it’s like, ‘Don’t talk about this at school, don’t This is at school.”

“Why don’t we talk about it?” He completed. “Why don’t we educate our children? Why don’t we educate ourselves instead of trying to close the book on it? You can’t close the book on what someone wants and how they feel. We won’t close the book on any gay, bisexual or transgender person, and we can’t close the book on it.” I personally don’t understand.”

Understanding the nuances of the mutant experience was something Wade had to learn on his own.

Last year, the basketball player sat down with Trevor Noah to discuss his photographic diary, DwayneIn which he explained how he helps Zaya find herself in a world that continues to evolve around LGBT issues.

“I think when things happen to you personally, when you have a personal connection to something or someone, you take it a little bit more seriously,” he said at the time. “When that happens to you, you have to look it in the face. You have to.”

“[With] My daughter is looking at me across the table, I have to, this is something I need to deal with meaning, I don’t know everything,” “As a parent, you want to make sure when your kids come to you, you have the answers, you have the right words, you have the right support, whatever You have the right motive.”

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