A soldier who serves as a behavioral health specialist in the Army was tired of people calling Caitlyn Jenner unworthy to receive ESPN’s Arthur Ashe Courage Award. So he quietly wrote a Facebook post detailing his disgust, and nearly 6,000 shares later, it’s become a viral sensation.
“Bigotry in any form is unacceptable and I guess I was just fed up with seeing people’s offensive remarks about a person they know nothing about,” Joey Vincente told BuzzFeed News.
People stormed social media Wednesday night after Jenner was announced the winner at the 2015 ESPYS Award.
Here’s what the 23-year-old wrote on July 16:
Your negative opinions on Caitlyn Jenner and her deservedness of an award that you didn’t even know about until a few days ago are irrelevant.
Your definition of what or who a hero can or cannot be is irrelevant.
40% of the transgender community have attempted suicide. What if I told you that her speech last night saved even one human being from attempting to take their life. I’d call that a victory on any scale. I’d call that (gasp)… heroic?
You don’t like that a female who used to identify as male got an award at a ceremony run by ESPN? Here’s a hint: get over yourself. You are on the wrong side of history. Like many bigots of the civil rights era, you will one day have to answer for your hate, whether it is to your God, a loved one, or your few hundred Facebook friends that you think give the slightest bit of a [expletive] about what kind of sandwich you ate or what kind of workout you got in today.
You want to voice your opinion? Please, I beg that you do. But in using terms like “freak” or [a slur] you paint a much more vivid picture of yourself than you ever could of Caitlyn Jenner, a human being just now finally finding her comfort zone.
On Saturday, he posted he was “overwhelmed with the love and support of the past 24 hours” and has heard from people all over the world. “The positivity has much outweighed the negativity,” he wrote, “and that is a testament to our progression.”