Universal human rights are not available à la carte: No one gets to pick and choose who deserves rights and who doesn't. Either everyone has them or they cannot be considered universal. For far too many trans people, the struggle for basic rights has become a matter of life and death.
Today only two of my 13 closest sisters are alive. I close my eyes and see them standing next to me on the street, proud of who they are and never ashamed of their identity. I applaud my fallen sisters for showing me the way with the grace of God.
Though those who were killed in transphobic acts of violence in the past year may not have been known to us personally, many of us hold their memories in our minds and hearts as fallen brothers and sisters, so the recitation of the Kaddish seems especially fitting.
We celebrate that we are a resilient people, we are a resilient community, we care for one another, we advocate for one another, and we continue to rise up, to live our lives in dignity and truth, and to bring about change in our society.
I have heard the excuse, "I don't have a job right now," or, "They will call me a freak or something." Many times I have heard this cry from the trans community. There are some states that will make it a headache for you to get this done, but it all boils down to how badly you want it.
I was stunned into silence the other night when we tuned in to the second episode of the season. In the first 15 minutes I counted a lesbian-prison-rape joke, a straight-men-perceived-as-gay joke, a Carl-kissed-a-trans-woman-ha-ha-ha joke, and a joke about said trans woman's genitals.
On days like today, when I hear gut wrenching stories about those who are brutally tortured, beheaded, sliced, and maimed because they don't fit into cultural prescriptions of gender dress or behavior, I wonder what it means for me to be compassionate.
Jeydon is, from the point of view of his family and his health provider, a young man. But the school has presented Jeydon with a Hobson's choice: If he agrees to dress as a woman, he will be untrue to himself and basically agree that there is something wrong with being who he is.
Hey, Christian, heterosexual, cisgender, white men who are freaking out because there's a bunch more people who aren't like you in media! Your fear is that you will wake up one day and flip on the TV and not see anyone you can relate to? Well, that's what life is like for the rest of us right now.
Listen. That's probably the most important thing you can do for any person who is sharing their story with you. Simply being present and giving them your undivided attention is huge.
I recently read about Alissah Brooks and her recent run-in with a bouncer who denied her entry to a club on the basis of her gender identity. It was only a few months ago that one of my friends and I were denied entry to a bar in Chicago for the same reason, apparently.
It's no mystery that having to live with poverty, homelessness, unemployment, drug addiction, or discrimination makes a person more vulnerable to HIV infection. So what are we to make of the fact that transgender people are much more likely to be facing all these problems?
Jorgensen, being one of the first trans women to become publicly known, conformed completely to the gender norms of her time, while Jan Morris was able to define her own womanhood and femaleness to a much greater degree than Jorgensen could or would have.
As you see her up on stage, woozily doing her thing, you can't help but be happy for her. Amanda Lepore finds pleasure in the artifice of her body; with her immensely fake tits and voluptuous lips, she proves that her most authentic self can be all ornamentation.
The LGBT community's media darling, Rachel Maddow, has been telling her viewers that ENDA would protect employees from discrimination based on their "sexual orientation or sexual identity." I don't know what's worse: leaving out the "gender" in "gender identity" or replacing it with "sexual."
We exist, and there is nothing scary or dangerous about us. We don't just belong in your spaces; they are our spaces too. We belong.