Friday, September 29, 2023

Good Title!

As I look through various news sites like Google News, Yahoo News, and those posted on Facebook so I read a lot news article from many sources and every once in a while one pops and I know I have to post it.
Justine Lindsay is the NFL’s first openly transgender cheerleader. For many football fans, her presence represents a new, more inclusive era for the league’s cheer squads.
By Rose Minutaglio
Sep 18, 2023

You know what she looks like. Her hair is blonde, her waist is small, and her skin is almost always white. She’s Torrance Shipman in Bring It On. She’s Quinn Fabray from Glee. But, Justine Lindsay says with a laugh, “she’s definitely not me.” Lindsay, 30, is the first openly transgender woman in NFL cheerleading. She is a sideline crusader, an agent for change from within the machoest of macho sports. And it’s not a position she takes lightly: “But I am a cheerleader,” Lindsay adds, “so I do it with a smile on my face.”

When Lindsay made the Carolina Panthers’ TopCats squad last year, she upended decades of deeply-rooted stereotypes about cheerleaders. For many football fans, her presence in the stadium has symbolized the start of a new chapter for NFL cheer, one where “it’s okay to be your most authentic self,” Lindsay says. Since then, she has started a podcast about her experience, written a viral essay on trans rights, and spoke at a GLAAD event spotlighting inclusion in professional sports. As transgender voices continue to be silenced all across the country, Lindsay is making hers louder than ever.
This drives conservatives crazy. Why? Because people who accept us for who we are!
At times, her courage comes at a cost. Dealing with social media bullies and intolerant football fans can feel like a challenge to her humanity, but Lindsay believes it is a price worth paying. “Everything that I’m going through now, it’s bigger than me,” she says. “I’m setting things up for the younger generation. No one is going to stop this show.”
Yeah, I can understand there has to be an awful lot nuts out there that must be flipping out about this. I think, this is just my theory is that these macho guys who flip their toupees over it are worry that they might have the hot for one cheerleaders and she’s trans. They are worried “Gasp!” someone might think them gay!

One of the nice things is that she has family support.
Her actual family members drive in from all over North and South Carolina to attend almost every game. Lindsay, who grew up in the Charlotte suburb of Dilworth, says she feels at ease in the scrum of a sports locker room thanks to a childhood spent playing sports with older siblings and a gaggle of cousins. Before cheerleading, dance took center stage in her life. She was five years old when the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater came to town performing Revelations, the company’s signature piece using African-American spirituals and song-sermons. “Seeing people that looked like me… and how they were able to move their bodies, well, it really stuck with me,” Lindsay remembers. “I was like, ‘Dang, I could do that.’”
I wonder how it will be on the road with her?
In true cheerleader fashion, it’s rare to see Lindsay without a smile on her face. But the weight of her day-to-day reality isn’t lost on her teammates. “We learned how to navigate the different issues and hardships that we each carry as individuals outside of being TopCats,” Crawford says. “We are a family here, and family protects each other.” As any good cheerleader knows, no formation is complete unless you have a strong support system.
Is sounds like the team members have her back.

The antagonizers out there causes concern but will the support of the team she has confidence.
There’s still a lot—a lot—of work to do, but NFL cheer, along with many other cheer squads in other leagues, do seem to be trending in the right direction. On the TopCats, one of the most diverse NFL cheer teams, at least half the squad are women of color. They don’t adhere to a prescribed set of regulated beauty standards and can wear their hair however they choose to.

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