Michael Stipe to the Transgender Community: 'We Will Not Abandon You'

This week, President Donald Trump announced that transgender soldiers will not be allowed to openly serve in the United States army in any capacity. Public response was immediate and united with a message of support towards the trans community. Many celebrities lent their voices to the cause and expressed their dismay at this measure. 

Billboard Pride, along with GLAAD, took initiative and asked artists to submit video statements with a message of support to the trans community in the United States and worldwide. Artists swiftly reacted to this call and submitted videos with short, yet compelling, statements of their support of transgender people. These individual submissions were then put together in one video

One of the messages came from Michael Stipe, who asserts that "this latest stunt is a political smoke screen" and reminds the trans community to "continue to stand firm and proud," because "we stand beside you and we will not abandon you."

Watch Micheal Stipe's full video message above, and check out the full clip -- with Sia, Rita Ora, The Chainsmokers and more -- below.