Opinion Writer

Simón is an opinion writer for the Spring 2024 Sojourners Journalism Cohort. Learn more about the program.

Simón Cázares is a proudly transgender, queer, African American, Mexican American, Jamaican, and somehow Canadian storyteller based in the heart of Miami, Fla.

What matters most to Simón is making sure historically underrepresented communities are seen and the issues that affect them heard. They have had over a decade of experience sharing stories of BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities for public radio stations across the country. They work hard to build meaningful connections with sources, tell stories that reflect important traditions, and bring attention to issues that impact their communities.

Simón now works as the communications and community engagement manager for the YWCA’s South Florida division, serves on the National Association of Hispanic Journalists South Florida chapter, and is an active member of the established Miami Poetry Club.

In their free time you can often find Simón exploring Miami's incredible art, food, and cultural scenes. They also enjoy dancing lindy hop, spending their days at the beach, and long games of fetch with their sidekick, Oso the cavapoo.

Posts By This Author

Despite Transphobic Laws, I Found A Queer Community in Miami

by Simón Cázares 04-17-2024

D'Arco Jones of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. takes part in the festivities at the 2017 Miami Beach Gay Pride parade on Sunday, April 9, 2017 in Miami Beach, Fla. Credit: Miami Herald/TNS/ABACA via Reuters Connect.

Standing hand in hand with my fellow classmates at St. Lawrence Catholic Church and School in North Miami Beach, Fla., I couldn’t help but notice how sweaty my hands were. It was 2006, and another 98-degree, humid day in my hometown was upon us. The old church’s air conditioner wasn’t very effective, and I remember I had a feeling I just couldn’t shake — even at the young age of 9: I felt as though something was deeply wrong with me.

I was raised in a primarily Caribbean Catholic tradition, where my family and community emphasized that adhering to the strict rules of the church was what made you a good person. Every morning, my dad would rush me and my sister out the door to school. We would line up with our classes and recite prayers before entering the building, no matter how hot it was outside. During the day, I took religion classes and memorized scriptures my teachers required me to recite at church twice a week. I hated it all.