Buck Angel, the world’s first female-to-male transgender porn star is perhaps one of the most unique, fascinating and charismatic people I’ve ever met and now he’s on a mission to bring diversity into the cannabis industry. I caught up with Buck Angel just as he prepared to speak on Edibles List Magazine’s first ever Infused Expo Diversity panel, along with other distinguished speakers like Maya Lapid who co-founded Whoopi & Maya™ with Whoopi Goldberg, and Oscar nominated actor Eric Roberts.
You coined the phrase, “it’s not what’s between your legs that defines you!” You not only inspire people to think outside the box, you are re-defining gender and educating an entire generation on the fluidity of sexuality and identity politics. How do you identify and why?
I identify as a man, but obviously my own definition of a man, because I still have my vagina. I believe that you are the only person that can define yourself and no one else. It was a lesson I learned when I chose not to have penis surgery or what we call “bottom surgery” in the trans world. I always saw myself as a man. And so when I had the opportunity to transition to a man it was exactly what I did. The great thing about today is that we have so many different ways to transition and you can now just be!
Are you a weed smoker?
Yes I am an out and proud user of cannabis. 28 or so years ago, I got sober from drugs and alcohol. My problems with substances I have since discovered came from my issues with my gender. Once I became me and through years of working on my mental health I have finally found peace. I am a very hard working man and travel the world spreading my message of self love, with that come sleepless nights and some anxiety. I started to use sleeping pills to sleep. But they were making me feel like I was using drugs and hated that feeling. My friend suggested cannabis as a natural sleeping aid. WOW it is amazing! I never feel hungover or in any way like I am going to go back to using. I have been using cannabis now for 5 years and have never even thought of drinking or using drugs.
I’ve heard you speak publically about the significant connection between the use of cannabis and having a positive body image. It may seem like a bit of a stretch to connect the two; marijuana and body image, can you clarify?
For sure I can. Within the transgender community we have lots of anxiety, PTSD, mental health and just plain old self-doubt and detachment from ourselves. What I have found with the use of cannabis is that it helps me to reconnect to myself when I am feeling low. What I have also found is that there is a large use of prescription drugs being administered to my community for all the things I spoke of above. I am not a fan of narcotics and think that most of the time they can be very damaging for long term use. They just put you in a state but don’t give you a place to explore how you feel, where I think cannabis does. That said I am not saying cannabis or narcotics can work for everyone or don’t work for everyone. What I want is to start dialogue around using the alternative such as cannabis for example with PTSD.
Marijuana consumption has taken various popular forms; there are edibles, vaporizing, bongs, water pipes, pipes, joints, blunts, which is your preferred method?
My favorite is the vape because of travel as well as using edibles, which my favorite is chocolate. But sometimes I just love a good old fashion joint.
Do you think our current presidential candidates are talking enough about marijuana legalization, and Trans Equality?
No way! No one is. We need to get cannabis fully legalized and get people to understand why it is important. We are being blocked by big pharmaceuticals. Cannabis is the new way to help people start to reconnect with their bodies and minds. We need to remove narcotics from the table and start to help people see the benefits of cannabis. This is why I have become public about my use. I don’t want to look like a hypocrite and when you are visible this creates change!
On your social media, I frequently see you post the hashtag, #tranpa, what does that mean?
#tranpa is just a way of expressing that I am an elder in the trans community. I had my transition 20 years ago. I have seen lots and lots. I mentor many LGBTQ youth and so they call me, “tranpa”.
You can learn more about Buck Angel at:
Selene Luna, seleneluna.com