Actor Don Cheadle made a strong statement behalf of transgender youth without having to say one word as he hosted NBC’s Saturday Night Live this past weekend. Cheadle introduced musical guest Gary Clark Jr. while wearing a black t-shirt that read "PROTECT TRANS KIDS" in big white lettering, and the social media world took notice.
Though he only appeared on screen wearing the shirt for a few seconds, the actor made sure the message was seen as he held his arms folded behind his back. Members of the transgender community and advocacy groups alike praised Cheadle his choice to raise awareness and support the transgender community.
"Trans kids have a (super)hero in their corner now. Thank you @DonCheadle for using your platform to make such an important statement,” tweeted the National Center for Transgender Equality:
Members of the transgender community responded in droves:
Comedian Sarah Silverman also weighed in:
Cheadle did not only show up for transgender rights during Saturday’s live broadcast, he also made a statement against the President during the show’s closing. He wore a former Soviet Union hockey jersey with “CCCP” (Russian for U.S.S.R) on it, the number “45” and the name “Trump” on the back, making a statement about the President’s possible collusion with Russia.
The actor also received great reviews for his performance on the show. On Sunday, Cheadle took to Twitter to respond to all the love and support he received.
"(Love, Peace, Power) to each and every one of you beautiful tweeps. i awoke to so much support and love!! thank you @nbcsnl for the opportunity to play and pay respect and throw shade in an historic space in an historic time. keep fighting, y'all. evil grows in the dark."
Watch Don Cheadle introduce musical guest Gary Clark Jr. on YouTube below: