Caitlyn Jenner, the man formerly known as Bruce, spoke before Britain’s House of Commons this week to give the annual Channel 4 diversity lecture.
In a plea to British officials, the former Olympian, who supported Donald Trump’s bid for President, urged the U.K. “not to go down the same road” regarding transgenders, alleging that the Trump administration set trans people “back 20 years” because he won’t allow them in the military or to urinate in a public school bathroom that doesn’t correspond to their biological sex.
After being introduced by Channel 4 CEO Alex Mahon, Jenner praised London for being the “most culturally diverse city in the world.”
“When I came out the first year was very good, everything was going along great and then all of a sudden I became this person of privilege,” he said. “I didn’t ‘get it’ when it came to the trans community, we have a very marginalized community and I didn’t get it and I got so much of this for so long.”
“I will never apologize for everything I’ve been able to do because I’ve worked very hard and I’m not going to apologize for working hard and being successful. But what that does is gives me a sense of privilege but it also gives me a platform.”
“I always suggest to every trans person out there, everybody has a platform that they can utilize to make it just a little bit better for the next generation coming up,” Jenner added.
Some in the LGBT community did not welcome Jenner’s speech before the British parliament, alleging he is far too privileged to lecture on diversity. Transgender comedian Shon Faye said Jenner’s life story is “far removed from what British politicians need to be hearing and considering on this issue.”
A spokesman for Channel 4 said the aim of the “diversity lecture is to raise awareness and stimulate public debate about diversity issues.”
“Caitlyn Jenner is one of the most high-profile transgender people in the world and her transition brought transgender issues into the mainstream, helping to stimulate debate and increase awareness,” the spokesman said.
According to The Guardian, Caitlyn Jenner’s lecture also kicked off Channel 4’s “Genderquake season” — two weeks of programs that will “open up the debate on gender.”
Actor Idris Elba and Riz Ahmed have given the lecture in previous years.