In an effort to hasten change, the Transgender Human Rights Institute has begun a petition calling for a permanent end to transgender conversion therapy in Leelah's name. At this point, only with help from the federal government can we hope to see differences made quickly in the United States on this front.
I held it together in public, but I really wanted to cry at the beautiful moment I had just witnessed. But then it hit me; I had just judged someone. I had assumed that because this man fit a certain stereotype that he was instantly against equality, and there was no way that he could possibly approve of his son's sexuality.
Let us not forget that transgender is an umbrella that encompasses all persons whose authentic identity does not conform unambiguously to conventional notions of male or female genders and assigned gender at birth. Male and female are increasingly being presented as two distinct states, with nothing between.
Hank recently recounted his story in Kevin Allison's popular stage show and podcast RISK. He candidly talks about his childhood struggle for acceptance in his family and church, which I found hilarious, sad and surprising. Even if you aren't gay or Asian, there are universal truths about family and the holidays that everyone can relate to.
We have to encourage our gay friends and each other to value ourselves more, not to succumb to the easy temptation of quick, cheap ego boosts that will actually set us back socially, for we are not just satisfying sexual cravings when we indulge down-low men but committing self-betrayal and hypocrisy.