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Arthur Ashe Courage Award


Caitlyn Jenner accepted the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the ESPYs on July 15.

While receiving the award, Caitlyn Jenner has called on sports people to help change attitudes towards transgender people.

But boxer Evander Holyfield doesn’t seem to get it.

Caitlyn Jenner, who used to be known as Bruce Jenner, received a standing ovation after winning the “courage” award at a ceremony in LA.

Speaking on stage at the ESPYS, which honors sportspeople, Caitlyn Jenner said: “Trans people deserve something vital, they deserve your respect.”

Afterwards, former heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield said: “I just know that’s Bruce Jenner and I’ll leave it at that.”

Photo AP

Photo AP

Others on the red carpet reacted differently though.

Little League baseball pitcher Mo’ne Davis, who is 14, described Caitlyn Jenner as “brave to have the courage to get through a lot of those things”.

Although some think say college basketball player Lauren Hill, who died of brain cancer in April, was more deserving of the honor.

ESPN has also denied rumors Caitlyn Jenner was given the award in exchange for plugs on her new reality show, calling the claims “completely false”.

In her 10-minute acceptance speech, Caitlyn Jenner asked the audience, which included football, basketball, baseball and ice hockey stars, to make transgender equality one of their issues too.

Caitlyn Jenner, 65, said what sport stars say and do is “absorbed and observed by millions of people, especially young people”.

The former Olympian told them about trans teenagers who are bullied, beaten up, murdered or kill themselves, mentioning two people deaths that particularly touched her.

“If you want to call me names, make jokes and doubt my intentions, go ahead because the reality is I can take it,” Caitlyn Jenner said.

“But for thousands of kids out there coming to terms with the reality of who they are they shouldn’t have to take it.”

Caitlyn Jenner described the last few months as “a whirlwind” after confirming she was transgender in April.

She thanked her family for their support, with daughters Kendall and Kylie Jenner wiping away tears in the audience.

The Arthur Ashe award is named after the tennis player who died from AIDS in 1993 after a blood transfusion.

Caitlyn Jenner said she had met Arthur Ashe a few times and knew education was important to him.

“Learn as much as you can about another person to understand them as well as you can,” she said.

Caitlyn Jenner’s new show I Am Cait starts this July.


Former Olympian Bruce Jenner, now known as Caitlyn Jenner, accepted the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the ESPYS on July 15.

Caitlyn Jenner received a standing ovation from some of the sporting world’s biggest stars after her 10-minute speech during the annual awards honoring the year’s top athletes and moments.

She also urged acceptance for others who are transgender.

“This transition has been harder on me than anything I can imagine,” said Caitlyn Jenner.

Photo AP

Photo AP

Abby Wambach of the US soccer team that won the Women’s World Cup presented the trophy to Caitlyn Jenner, whose voice broke as she thanked members of her famous family, including stepdaughters Kim and Khloe Kardashian. Tears welled in the eyes of Caitlyn Jenner’s younger daughter, Kylie, whose sister, Kendall, wiped a tear from her eye.

“I never wanted to hurt anyone else, most of all my family and my kids,” said Caitlyn Jenner, who admitted that until earlier this year she had never met another transgender person.

Caitlyn Jenner urged the crowd that included football, basketball, baseball and hockey players to remember what they say and do is “absorbed and observed by millions of people, especially young people”.

A video traced Caitlyn Jenner’s life from the time when she was known as Bruce Jenner to her current transition. She was shown applying makeup, buttoning her blouse in her closet and fastening the strap on her heeled shoes.

Caitlyn Jenner didn’t walk the red carpet outside the Microsoft Theater in downtown Los Angeles, and she didn’t appear backstage to talk with reporters, as most of the previous Ashe award recipients have done.