Trust me when I say, this will leave you speechless. On Thursday, Entertainment Weekly revealed Laverne Cox as the star covering their official LGBT issue's cover, and honestly, this may just be the fiercest photo I've seen all year. In the picture, Cox is posed as the Statue of Liberty, a statement that indicates just how much of a symbol of freedom and opportunity she's become since she began stealing screens everywhere as Sophia in Orange Is The New Black. Since the Netflix series' debut in 2013, Cox has consistently used her celebrity and success to advocate for the rights of transgender individuals, and empower the masses — no matter how they identify.
The cover is fittingly brilliant, of course — considering Cox is involved, there's no way it could really not be: She's a genuine trailblazer. For instance, in May 2014, Cox became the first transgender individual to be featured on the cover of TIME Magazine, ever. In her interview with Time, she discussed major laws that affect the lives of transgender individuals, and her hopes for the future. Additionally, Cox was also the first transgender person to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award in an acting category, and the first to be immortalized as a wax figure at Madame Tussauds.
She also discussed how the media handled Caitlyn Jenner coming out, and cited her Tumblr post — which wisely reminded people that Jenner should not be praised for her looks, but rather, her courage. Cox used her EW cover story as another opportunity to ask the media to focus beyond Jenner's good looks and sensationalist stories:
Can we get past the surgery questions now? [...] I chose not to write about that because it’s really complicated. But what I do know is that, at this moment, Caitlyn’s narrative is about transitioning. And obviously she’s just at the beginning stages of her womanhood…the pickup it’s gotten and her visibility has been unprecedented. This is why I’m so grateful that I had the luxury of transitioning in private. Because when you transition in the public eye, the transition becomes the story. I’m always disturbed when I see conversations about trans people that focus on surgery. But I believe Caitlyn will transcend this moment.
Amazing words from an amazing individual. I can't to read the full interview, and the other features in this special Pride Issue — but until the issue hits newsstands, here's a sneak peek at the amazing cover: