QUEER VOICES
07/20/2014 08:16 am ET | Updated Feb 02, 2016

CeCe McDonald Discusses Police And Prisons With Dean Spade, Reina Gossett

Activist and formerly incarcerated transgender woman CeCe McDonald has firsthand experience with the injustices of the criminal justice system -- particularly when it comes to the lives and bodies of transgender individuals.

In this video, McDonald sits down with prison abolition activists Dean Spade and Reina Gossett for a nuanced discussion about how the police force and prisons don't actually keep members of the queer community safe. Through a discussion about her own personal experiences surrounding her arrest and incarceration -- McDonald was convicted of second degree manslaughter after she used deadly force to protect herself from a brutal transphobic and racist assault in Minneapolis -- she shares her ideas about the criminal justice system and what could actually keep us, as queer individuals, safe.

"[The police] are the people that it comes out of our pockets to protect us but they choose who they want to protect. They choose who they want to serve. And it's not us. So I feel like we as a community need to put our pride to the side... once we let go of that and stop making our bodies and our transitions competition... and focus on the things in our community that are actually detrimental to our schools, to our homes and our community in general. Because the prisons don't help, the cops don't help -- none of this is actually helping our community, it's making them worse."

Check out the clip above and head here to read more about the Prison Industrial Complex. And be sure to stay on the look out for the upcoming documentary about McDonald, co-produced by "Orange Is The New Black" star Laverne Cox.

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