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Don Cheadle Just Stood Up For Trans Kids on 'Saturday Night Live'

Don Cheadle

"A reminder from the hero himself."

MikelleStreet

On the latest episode of Saturday Night Live, actor Don Cheadle made a silent statement -- but one that oddly needs to be repeated over and over. While introducing Gary Clark Jr., the celebrity appeared on screen wearing a black shirt with the words "Protect Trans Kids" on the front. And though he didn't vocalize the sentiment, the sartorial choice said enough.

SNL has no qualms going political, and last night's episode was no different. And though his debut hosting gig on the show didn't see him participate in actual skits or sketches, he did enough. At another point, Cheadle wore a jersey, with lettering indicating Russian origins. The jersey boasted the name "Trump" on the back, nodding to ongoing collusion accusations that the actor has been vocal about before. But the "Protect Trans Kids" tee saw a flood of support online.

"A reminder from the hero himself," Janet Mock, guest editor of Out's March issue, tweeted likely referring to Cheadle's role as War Machine in the Avengers franchise. Others like the Human Rights Campaign, Jeffrey Marsh, Sarah Silverman, Munroe Bergdorf, and more also chimed in.

The support drew a response from Cheadle himself. "I awoke to so much support and love," he wrote on Twitter on Sunday. "Thank you NBC for the opportunity for to play and respect and throw shade in an [sic] historic space in an historic time. Keep fighting, y'all. Evil grows in the dark."

Cheadle obviously isn't the first to use fashion to make a salient point. In 2017, Frank Ocean went viral for wearing a t-shirt that asked "Why be racist, sexist, homophobic, or transphobic when you could just be quiet?" That company, which is run by Kayla Robinson, a bisexual Afro-Latina, has centered there entire brand on pieces that make a statement.

It is unconfirmed where the design of Cheadle's shirt is sold.

RELATED | Here's Where to Buy Frank Ocean's Anti-Discrimination Panorama Tee

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Mikelle Street

Mikelle is the former editorial director of digital for PrideMedia, guiding digital editorial and social across Out, The Advocate, Pride.com, Out Traveler, and Plus. After starting as a freelancer for Out in 2013, he joined the staff as Senior Editor working across print and digital in 2018. In early 2021 he became Out's digital director, marking a pivot to content that centered queer and trans stories and figures, exclusively. In September 2021, he was promoted to editorial director of PrideMedia. He has written cover stories on Ricky Martin, Miss Fame, Nyle DiMarco, Jeremy O. Harris, Law Roach, and Symone.

Mikelle is the former editorial director of digital for PrideMedia, guiding digital editorial and social across Out, The Advocate, Pride.com, Out Traveler, and Plus. After starting as a freelancer for Out in 2013, he joined the staff as Senior Editor working across print and digital in 2018. In early 2021 he became Out's digital director, marking a pivot to content that centered queer and trans stories and figures, exclusively. In September 2021, he was promoted to editorial director of PrideMedia. He has written cover stories on Ricky Martin, Miss Fame, Nyle DiMarco, Jeremy O. Harris, Law Roach, and Symone.