YouTuber Kat Blaque on living authentically

by Alex Solari, Staff Writer

Some people have a hard time living authentically and truthfully, but Kat Blaque, a transgender YouTuber, came to UMass Dartmouth to teach her audience how to do just that.

On November 17, the Claire T. Carney Library Grand Reading Room hosted the event, Kat Blaque: Living In Her Truth. At the event, Blaque talked about her struggles with gender identity, and the success of her YouTube career.

Kat Blaque has been a YouTuber since 2010, and has been able to accumulate 114,000 subscribers on her channel. On top of being a YouTuber, she is also a talented children’s illustrator.

Chesca Leigh, a fellow YouTuber asked her to illustrate a video she was doing on her channel surrounding privilege. Blaque initially was reluctant to do this, and explained this saying, “I didn’t want my YouTube channel to be successful because I enjoyed being stealth. I said to myself that I need to accept that if I collaborate with Chesca Leigh, with that may come a lot of attention, and with attention comes hate.”

For those who are unaware, being “stealth” refers to a trans person being able to hide the fact that they are transgender. According to Blaque, this is what she was always able to do, and that was what made her comfortable.

But Blaque decided to be part of the video, and it was released in March of 2015. As she guessed, this video did come with a lot of attention and new subscribers. But according to Blaque, this was a great decision and has helped her live in her truth.

In talking about her past struggles with gender identity, she spoke on how her gender identity changed while she was in college.

She says, “I started to recognize that I was not actually gender-queer, but I was a binary trans woman. Even with the new friends I had, it was hard for me to explain. I look at my approach to life as just ripping a Band-Aid off the wound. I like to just do.” This, she said, also helped her to start living authentically.

Those who came to the event were ecstatic to see her, and kept their eyes locked on her for the entirety of her presentation.

An attendant of the event, Derek Fox, a junior economics student, said, “As someone who also identifies as being trans, I was really interested in hearing what she had to say about her own experiences.”

He went on to say, “She was very inspiring and I think what I really took away from this event is that you shouldn’t try to hide from yourself; you need to embrace who you are, and those around you will, too. It’s easy as a viewer to understand who she is, what she stands for, and why. It’s nice to have a contemporary social media icon who I feel like I can actually relate to.”

Elizabeth O’Donnell, a junior English student explained why she believes Blaque has been successful. “She discusses topics, gives the facts, gives the brutal honesty, and gives you information to help communities.”

She explained what she took away from the event, “She is so informative and very well spoken. I learn something new every time I watch her. She is a wise teacher as much as she is a bold speaker. She is an important voice of our generation.”

Kat Blaque ended her presentation speaking on her success as a YouTuber, and why she believes her videos are important.

“I may not be the most amazing YouTuber in the world. I’m not threatened by others who are doing better than me. I just think the conversation needs to keep going.”


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