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Maddison Kleeman Rose is a pretty normal Oklahoma 12-year-old. She enjoys school, she dances at the drop of a hat and she loves church. She also happens to be trans, which is why Maddie’s life is anything but pretty normal.
Three weeks ago, the first day of seventh grade at the Achille public school in her tiny hometown, Maddie went to the bathroom. The girls’ bathroom. She was in a new building and in the commotion none of the adults around had remembered to tell her where to find the bathroom she’s allowed to use. That’s the staff bathroom, part of a deal her parents worked out with the school after staff discovered she was trans back in fifth grade.
After Maddie went to girls’ bathroom, transphobic parents in her community started to come out of the woodwork. Many people in the town of Achille want to welcome Maddie. But plenty would rather she never moved in.
VICE News interviewed Maddie, her family, and the leaders of her town as the Rose family prepares to leave a place they hoped they could call home.
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