Gay Lawmaker's Fiery Speech on Transgender Bill Viewed Over 800K Times

A video of Missouri State Representative Ian Mackey confronting Representative Chuck Basye over an amendment that would allow school districts to ban transgender student athletes from youth sports has gained over 800,000 views on Twitter and more than 935,000 views on TikTok.

Basye, who proposed the amendment, stated, "This isn't about hate, this is about fairness," according to the Springfield News-Leader.

In a viral video from the House floor, Mackey, who is openly gay, asked Basye to recall his remarks from a year ago regarding the issue.

"Your brother wanted to tell you that he was gay, didn't he?" Mackey asked. Basye said yes and that his brother believed the family would hold it against him.

"Why do you think he thought that?" Mackey asked. After a rebuttal from Basye, Mackey said, "Can I tell you that if I were your brother, I would have been afraid to tell you, too."

Growing more intense, Mackey said, "I would have been afraid to tell you too, because of stuff like this—because this is what you're focused on. This is the legislation you want to put forward. This is what consumes your time.... I was afraid of people like you growing up."

"I grew up in a school district that would vote tomorrow to put this in place. And for 18 years, I walked around with nice people like you, who took me to ball games. Who told me how smart I was. Then who went to the ballot and voted for crap like this," he said.

"Thank God I made it out," Mackey continued, "I think every day of the kids who are still there who haven't made out, who haven't escaped from this kind of bigotry. Gentlemen, I'm not afraid of you anymore. Because you're gonna lose. You may win this today, but you're going to lose."

The video has gained roughly 830,000 views on Twitter and close to 980,000 views on TikTok as of Friday evening.

Rally Held In Support Of Transgender Community
A video of Missouri Democratic Representative Ian Mackey confronting Republican Representative Chuck Basye about an anti-trans bill has racked up over 800,000 views on Twitter and TikTok. In this photo, activists and supporters rally in support of transgender people on the steps of New York City Hall in New York City on October 24, 2018. Drew Angerer/Getty Images

After almost three hours of heated and emotional debate, the amendment allowing school districts to vote to remove transgender student athletes from youth sports teams was approved on an 89-40 vote.

Basye sent the following statement in response to Newsweek: "Representative Mackey is a loudmouth crybaby. He was campaigning on the floor of the Missouri House of Representatives. He is worried about his re-election and his rhetoric during the debate has absolutely nothing to do with the amendment I offered to House Bill 2140. During the 3 hour debate the radical democrats attacked my character and made many slanderous accusations!"

The statement continued, "It didn't phase me at all, I went home afterwards, enjoyed a delicious glass of Maker's 46 Bourbon then laid down and slept like a baby!!"

Transgender teens have battled Missouri state laws regarding sports teams for several months. On March 1, State Senator Mike Moon introduced a bill that stated, "an interscholastic or intramural athletic team or sport that is sponsored...shall be expressly designated as one of the following based on the biological sex assigned at birth," mentioning males, females or co-ed athletics.

In February of 2020, Basye presented a separate bill that would require Missouri public schools to notify parents if class material, guest speakers or displays mention sexual orientation or gender identity. Under the legislation, schools could be sued for violating the terms.

According to an earlier Newsweek report, Missouri legislators have tried to file a bill that would protect the rights of LGBTQ individuals from discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations since 1988, but it has yet to be passed.

Newsweek reached out to Ian Mackey and Chuck Basye's office for comment.