Archive for June, 2012

WTF? The Streets Aren’t Any Safer

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

I have been sitting with two pieces of news from the past week, and am still unable to express anything past open hands.

Political progress is happening for transgender people. Here, students are protected in their bathroom use; their, trans people are included in hate crime laws. And yet… change is too slow in the world, on the streets, outside the bars, in the backyards where real life is lived.

CeCe McDonald, a black trans woman, is in a men’s jail, after killing one of the white men who attacked her and some friends, on the street, while out to buy groceries. It’s clearly a case of self-defense. The racism and anti-trans feeling in this case are breathtaking. See the Trans Women’s Anti-Violence project for an article. A men’s jail is a terrifying prospect for any trans person.

Meanwhile, I heard this (un)surprising new statistic; in 2011, the highest percentage of LGBT violence was against trans women of color (here’s a link). My first response was – this is news? Hasn’t anybody been going to or reading about the Transgender Day of Remembrance events? Really?

I wish I could’ve been surprised by this statistic. Or not. I’d like to be surprised by a study showing the incidence of violence against trans people (and all LGBT people) to be on the wane.

Like many other men of transgender experience, I have a sense of helplessness. Who am I even to mention this news? My rage and sadness don’t matter to the women out there. I do what I can, but I am not in my sisters’ shoes.

There is just no adequate response. So… be aware, everyone. We are all just people looking for love, and groceries.