A few readers have asked why I've been silent on the recent anti-Trans actions by 45. I've been watching- listening. Wondering how we've come to this point.
That said, I have been asked to speak at Trans Rights Are Human Rights: Rally for Transgender Equality in Media, PA on Saturday.
The following is the first draft of my speech for that day. Subject to change. Heck I've revised it four times since starting this post!
Gratuitous Sophie Selfie
I’d like to begin by paraphrasing one of those immigrants we’re told we should hate.
“These are the times that try Trans souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives everything its value.”
Thomas Paine, an immigrant from Scotland, was absolutely right.
We began to think we were making progress. We had a human being in the White House who saw Transgender people as fellow human beings. The Attorney General said “we see you; we stand with you; and we will do everything we can to protect you going forward.” We had Hope.
That has all changed. The new administration has done everything in its power to dehumanize us. They’re allowing states to discriminate against us. There are states where people like me cannot use public restrooms because they say we are “predators” and “perverts.” Never mind the fact that no transgender person has ever been arrested for predatory behavior in a restroom, and that several republican lawmakers have!
The US Government has become the biggest bully to transpeople. To them- to the entire Republican party- we are not human. Discrimination was written into the 2016 GOP platform, page 35, by their rejection of trans rights via Title IX. They approved it.
45 used transpeople as a political smokescreen- to distract from his collusion with Russia. We are not human to him. And his followers are happy to do his dirty work- violence against transpeople is increasing. On July 21, a former Navy sailor was convicted for the murder of a transwoman. He stabbed her 119 times and slashed her throat three times. Why? Because she was trans. The other day the 16th transperson this year in America was murdered because she was transgender. This just days after a comedian told the hosts of “The Breakfast Club” morning show that he would “kill” a woman if he found out she was transgender after having sex with her.
45 said that “Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail." How long will it be until the administration says that BUSINESS cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that a transgender holding a job would entail? Or housing a transgender person in an apartment?
Can’t happen? Won’t happen?
It CAN happen, and it WILL happen, unless transpeople, and those Americans who still believe in equal rights, stand against it. 45 will never listen. Not will Pence, who is blinded by hate. Nor will anyone else in the pocket of the Family Research Council, a Southern Poverty Law center anti-LGBT Hate group. But, many will- and these are the people we must speak to.
Pennsylvania Republican Senator Toomey has voted with the FRC 91% of the time. This isfrom the FRC’s own website. Think he’ll listen? Not likely.
Representative Meehan? 78% average over the past two years. Think he cares about transpeople? Doubt it.
Since his election to congress, my representative, Ryan Costello, voted with the FRC 67% of the time. Two Thirds. Representative Costello- why? “Religious freedom” is a code word for Discrimination, just as “alternative fact” is code for “lie.” Representative Costello, I challenge you to look me in the eye, face to face, American to American, and tell me why. Do you actually know any transpeople, sir? Have you listened to our stories from our own mouths and hearts?
This nation is at a turning point. Do we stand for freedom, or do we stand for hate? Do ALL Americans have the right to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness? Or is it just straight, cisgender people? This is NOT a choice- I was born trans. Am I to be denied my rights because of it?
I am Human. I am American. I am Transgender. And I am PROUD to be these things.