Helpers 2022: LGBTQ+ Advocates, Activists, and Leaders To Know

LGBTQ+ Helpers 2022

It was the iconic Fred Rogers that told us, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”

At Good Good Good, we’ve made that the foundation of our work — to know that even in times of extreme hardship, there are always people looking to do good in the world, people ready to receive the good, and most of us at the intersection of taking action. 

This past year has been another “unprecedented” year (ugh), full of overwhelming challenges and large-scale catastrophes. But what keeps us moving forward, what keeps us afloat amidst so many unknowns, is the potential to respond, problem-solve, and care for one another.

2022 ushered in violence and fear — threats to healthcare (the Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade), ongoing climate change (climate disasters rocked areas across the globe), political unrest (Russia invaded Ukraine and continues to inflict unrivaled human rights violations) — and so much more.

But in these heartbreaking moments, we cling to hope. We must.

From entertainers using their platforms to help others, and protesters and activists fundraising and speaking out to change the future, to community members providing necessities to their neighbors at war, or leaders fighting to end gun violence — this issue celebrates just a tiny amount of the work at the center of it all.

What we love most about sharing and celebrating good news is that it’s messy and real; it’s full of hope, failure, triumph, and resilience. It helps us step into a new day with the unwavering belief that things do get better.

And it’s helpers like these that solidify this hope. As we step into another year navigating these unparalleled trials — and the enduring humanity that accompanies them — we look to them. 

Every year we highlight helpers in a number of categories — and this year we’ve chosen these categories:

In this post, we’re highlighting LGBTQ+ Helpers and simple ways to make a difference:

LGBTQ+ Helpers To Know —

Dylan Mulvaney

Dylan Mulvaney
Illustration by Johnathan Huang for the Goodnewspaper

Dylan Mulvaney is a trans actress, comedian, and content creator who is best known for her TikTok series “Days of Girlhood,” where she highlights her transgender journey every day.

Throughout 2022, Mulvaney has delighted her over 8 million followers (including Lady Gaga) with queer joy and exciting milestones: From fun makeup routines, surgery consultations, and adding tampons to her purse to give to other women in the bathroom — to modeling in New York Fashion Week and attending the Forbes Power Women Summit.

Most importantly, she’s made the Internet — and the world — feel like a safer place for other trans people.

“For the first time in a long time, I didn’t feel alone,” Dylan said in a TikTok after her digital community defended her online.

“I knew that I had people that loved me, and I felt really protected. I wish we could love and protect every trans person like y’all do for me.”

Read Dylan Mulvaney’s beautiful essay about her first Pride as a trans woman

Mpox Vaccine Mobilizers

Monkeypox Vaccine
Illustration by Johnathan Huang for the Goodnewspaper

A September 2022 tweet from user @husbandkiller reads: “the decline of monkeypox cases proves that if COVID had hit the gays first, we would have beat that shit.” Now, we’re not saying husband killers are always right, but this one might be onto something.

While the monkeypox virus — now called mpox (but we’ll call it MPV for short) — remains a global concern, cases are steadily declining.

This trend has been fueled by the LGBTQ+ community — from protestors in New York demanding access to vaccines, human rights organizations investing in vaccine education campaigns, and gay men — who have long been at the hands of HIV stigmasreceiving their shots in droves.

According to the Pew Research Center, 66% of gay or bisexual men said they definitely or probably will get an MPV vaccine to prevent the disease, including one-in-ten who say they have already done so.

While MPV is not a sexually transmitted infection, it has largely impacted queer communities — who rapidly mobilized to shut down disinformation that might keep them from health resources or cause further stigma.

While the fight for vaccine access continues, LGBTQ+ folks champion public health and community care.

Kai Shappley

Kai Shappley
Illustration by Johnathan Huang for the Goodnewspaper

Kai Shappley is an 11-year-old transgender activist in Texas, a trailblazer at the heart of one of the most anti-LGBTQ+ states in America.

In April 2021, she testified before the state legislature, speaking against a bill that would have banned gender-affirming medical care for minors.

Alongside legacy activists, she helped defeat that bill — and 50 other anti-trans pieces of legislation that year. And in 2022, when Texas Governor Greg Abbott directed state officials to investigate any reported instances of parents providing gender-affirming medical care to minors, her fight continued.

Barely a teenager, she’s exhausted. But she’s also full of hope.

“I want to be president,” Kai told NBC News. “I want to be a mother of 103 cats and live on a big beach — free cat litter. I want to be an astrophysicist. I want to be a scientist. I want to be a ballerina. I want to be an activist. I want to be an actress. I want to be everything.”

Read about more kids making a difference and inspiring teen activists

3 Ways To Be a Better Ally To the LGBTQ+ Community:

  • Learn from queer folks on their terms. Your LGBTQ+ friends aren’t a walking Gay Culture Encyclopedia. But you can follow amazing people, like @dylanmulvaney, @alokvmenon, or @blairimani, who love to educate folks online!
  • Share your money and resources with trusted LGBTQ+ organizations. Consider donating to a community member’s gender-affirming surgery fund, volunteering with The Trevor Project, or setting up a recurring donation with the Human Rights Campaign. 
  • Show up and take action. Visit ggg.news/articles/how-to-celebrate-pride-month for ways to take action to support the LGBTQ+ community during Pride and beyond

Article Details

December 16, 2022 5:30 AM
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Three photos. Left: Hunter Shafer plays Jules Vaughn in HBO's 'Euphoria.' Center: Bella Ramsey and Storm Reid in 'The Last of Us.' Right: Christina Hendricks leans atop Hannah Einbinder, about to kiss her in an episode of 'Hacks.'

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