‘To Be Queer Is a Gift’: ‘Pose’ Creator Steven Canals Shares the Emmys Speech He’d Prepared
On Sunday the 73rd Primetime Emmy Awards aired, with shows like Ted Lasso and The Crown sweeping most of the trophies. Despite being snubbed for its final season (the series had been nominated for “Lead Actor, Drama Series,” “Outstanding Drama Series” and “Lead Actress, Drama Series”), Pose creator Steven Canals took to Instagram to share what would have been his Emmys acceptance speech had the show rightfully been acknowledged by the Academy.
“Well, @poseonfx didn’t take home any Emmys last night but that doesn’t change how proud I am of our final season. Here’s what I would have said had I made it up on that stage. All of this will always hold true.”
The message of Canals’ Emmys acceptance speech is pretty powerful, whether recognized by the Academy or not. He wrote:
The reason I get to stand up here as an openly queer Afro-Latin person is because of my ancestors.
In 1969 the fight for Trans and Queer liberation reached a fever pitch, built on the backs of the women, who happened to be Trans and Lesbian. Who happened to be Black and Latina.
And so I want to honor Marsha P Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, Miss Major, and Stormé DeLarverie. And that work continues today with MJ Rodriguez, Dominique Jackson, Indya Moore, Hailie Sahar, Angelica Ross, Our Lady J, & Janet Mock.
Trans is beautiful. Non-Binary is stunning. And to be Queer is a gift. We LGBTQ+ people are cultural leaders, we are culture makers, WE ARE UNMATCHED!! Don’t let anyone tell you anything otherwise.
Though it would have been incredibly magical to hear Canals say “to be Queer is a gift” on live television, he’s right. These words will always hold true. And we will never stop making art, creating culture and telling our stories.