The group raised enough money to create a message of acceptance.
A Southern California community were so angry about a transphobic billboard put up by Republican Congressional candidate Tim Donnelly that they decided to post one of their own.
Donnell's initial sign which featured U.S. Navy trans veteran Allison Hannan, asked readers why Democratic rival Paul Cook "voted to allow our military funds to be used for sex-change surgeries!”
According to LGBT Nation, the question is in reference to Cook’s 2017 vote against a National Defense Authorization Act amendment which wouldn't have allowed the Pentagon to pay for healthcare related to transitioning.
This display of transphobia did not sit well with the community and a group gathered together to show their disapproval. “The way we see it, Donnelly’s billboard was an act of hate, targeting our transgender neighbors,” they said in a statement.
To counteract the message of the first sign, the group paid for one of their own which said, “Transgender people deserve health care, support, justice, safety, love.”
“Our focus is making sure that our trans neighbors know that they are supported, appreciated, and celebrated in our community,” they said.
Ultimately Donnely lost the election to Cook who received 41% of the vote.
Out Magazine originally published the picture of Hannan by photographer Cassidy DuHon.
DuHon may take legal action since Donnelly never got approval to use it. But Donnelly doesn't think he needs permission.
“As far as the photo on the billboards, you don’t get to make yourself the face of transgenders in the military and then complain when your image is being used,” he said.