A photo of a trans boy crying in a Texas courthouse over a proposed “bathroom bill” has recently gone viral. Nine-year-old Max and his mother Amber Briggles are the two featured in the photograph. Max started his transition three years ago and the photo that has gone viral was taken in March.
Max’s mother, Briggle, posted the photo last Wednesday and it’s clear — she’s as fed up with anti-trans legislation as we are. Briggle wrote:
“This is my transgender son in TEARS outside the Office of the Governor Greg Abbott . Can I just admit for a second how effing tired I am of having to comfort my baby and protect him from bullies in Austin? Let me just be real for a second. This sucks so hard. He deserves a summer vacation with his friends, not a political pissing contest with the Texas Legislature. Not fair. I’m mad as hell.”
Briggle told HuffPost why she shared the photo: “Max deserves a summer break, free from bullies like Governor Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick ― he’s a little boy who shouldn’t have to worry about these sorts of things.”
She added, “It made my heart break looking at this photo and I hoped it would do the same for others. That’s why I posted it on my public page, hoping to gain visibility for transgender people across the state, and across the country since this fight is really taking place in every state to some degree.”
Briggle also can’t understand how Abbott supports passing anti-trans bathroom bills after such a law went horribly in North Carolina.
“Is this really the legacy you want?” Briggle asks of Abbott. “Look ― North Carolina passed a bathroom bill. North Carolina voted for Trump. North Carolina had an incumbent Republican governor who LOST his seat to a Democrat in November. Are you SURE you want to play this game, especially when you’re responsible for making little boys like Max cry? The NFL, NBA, and Boy Scouts are all welcoming to transgender boys ― so what’s taking you so long to figure this out?”
And just as Briggle is tired of trans bullies like the Texas legislature, she calls on parents to not be a bully to their trans kids.
“Love your kids. It’s not hard. Stop overthinking it,” she told HuffPost. “If you’re more worried about what your neighbor or coworker might say about your transgender child than you are about teaching your child to live authentically, then you have your priorities all wrong… Don’t be your child’s first bully: help them stand up to bullies and shield them with your unconditional love.”