Hilary Swank won an Academy Award for her portrayal of a transgender man who was raped and murdered by male acquaintances (after they discovered her character was biologically female) in 1999’s “Boys Don’t Cry.” Now, the actress is speaking out following the recent suicides of five young gay men who took their lives because of being bullied, taunted or tormented.
“Everyday I do a lot of work, and had done a lot of work when I was living in New York City, with gay, lesbian, transgendered and questioning youth,” Hilary told Access Hollywood at the Los Angeles premiere of her new movie, “Conviction,” on Tuesday. “Every single one of them said they’re either physically abused or mentally abused every day of their life. So, I think we’re making leaps and bounds, but certainly there’s a lot more to do and a lot more awareness that needs to be raised.”
The two-time Oscar winner is one of many celebrities voicing their support for the gay community in the wake of the recent tragedies.
As previously reported on AccessHollywood.com, comedian Margaret Cho wore a rainbow-colored dress on Monday night’s “Dancing with the Stars” performance, and dedicated her dance to LGBT youth. Ellen DeGeneres also expressed her anguish over the situation on her talk show last week, while Kathy griffin, Wanda Sykes, Lance Bass, Nate Berkus and Tim Gunn shared their thoughts on Monday’s “Larry King Live” about the harrowing subject.
As for prevention, Hilary believes the key to ending the abuse lies with keeping the issue at the forefront of the public’s mind.
“I think keep talking about it,” Hilary said, when asked what action can be taken to stop bullying. “To talk about it like this, and to never forget.”