Just days after President Donald Trump issued guidance on his transgender military ban, trans service members walked the red carpet Sunday at the MTV Video Music Awards.
According to Billboard, MTV invited Air Force Airman 1st Class Sterling James Crutcher, Air Force Staff Sgt. Logan B. Ireland, Army Capt. Jennifer Peace, Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Akira Wyatt, Army veteran Laila Ireland and former Navy Lt. Cmdr. Brynn Tannehill to the awards show. They joined Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD.
"Any patriot who is putting their own life at risk to fight for our freedom and stand for equality is a hero at MTV and to young people everywhere," MTV President Chris McCarthy said in a statement, Billboard reported.
In a pre-show interview with MTV, Peace offered some advice to young trans people pursuing a military career in the wake of Trump's ban.
"It doesn't matter who you are; our nation is only safe if we have the best and brightest in our country serving the military," Peace said. "There was a time where blacks couldn't serve, where women couldn't serve, where gays and lesbians couldn't serve, and there was a time when trans people couldn't serve. But today, the Armed Forces are open to everyone, regardless of your race, gender, religion or anything else. If you're willing to serve our country and you're among the most qualified in the nation, you should be welcome in the United States Armed Forces just like everyone else."
Tannehill spoke to CNN about what's next for the trans service members.
"Our people are naturally concerned about what's going to happen next, but we're going to continue to do our jobs day-in, day-out, the way we've done before and the way we'll continue to do."
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