Billy Porter just made history as the first openly gay actor to be nominated for an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series.
The POSE star spoke to TheWrap on the heels of his nomination and revealed that he believes all people can be enlightened through art.
“There are a lot of older white people who are watching the show who stop me on the street and thank us for being brave and bold enough to stand inside of our truth — when many in the world think our truth is insignificant, that our truth is mutable, that it’s dismissible. That our humanity is up for legislation, constantly,” he told the outlet.
“Some of the people that I’ve come in contact with are conservatives…Conservatives are human beings, too. They can be moved and can be changed. It’s all about respecting each other’s humanity — we get to teach people how to do that. How to love. How to choose love and not hate.”
He also opened up about the impact of the groundbreaking series he stars in and the real people it represents.
“I came out when I was 16 in 1987 and we went straight to the front line to fight for our lives. I have realized with this show that the T in LGBTQ has been really absent from my knowledge,” he said.
“If you want to see real authenticity, the bravest kind of authenticity, look at these transgender people and how they live,” he added. “The choice in this world. The necessity to be authentic. We throw that word around a lot. I always say it’s easy to be who you are when what you are is what’s popular. These are true heroes, in my book. and true teachers. They’re teaching us what it means to be honest to be truthful to be authentic — no matter what.”