November 20th is Transgender Day of Remembrance, and
it’s an opportunity for all of us to stand up to end violence against all women.
Female identified people throughout the feminist movement have been pushing for
equality, and have been breaking down the stereotypes of being women in our
No longer are we forced to wear skirts, or cover our faces. This is
blurring our gender binary system, by letting female identified women come
together and wear what they want, when they want it. Transgendered people are a
natural ally in this movement, because we too are blurring the gender binary.
Some of us that are transgendered are very clearly male
identified or female identified regardless of what we were assigned at birth.
But others are less clear from a social standpoint and have a very strong sense
of self that exists somewhere in between. This blurring of the gender binary is
a wonderful thing, because it lets all of us be who we are and be treated with
respect for our identities.
Yet, transgendered people regularly
suffer violence, and even death for simply being who we are. We are still
classified as having a mental health disorder, even though leading transgendered scholars have proven that it doesn’t
help us at all. Many of us have a very hard time after transition staying in
our chosen profession, and we end up doing all sorts of socially unacceptable
jobs, including sex work, which further puts us at a social disadvantage. When police are
regularly documented beating us up, when nobody ever looks for our
killer, when society doesn’t let us go to the
bathroom in peace, we know it’s time for change.
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Yet there is change, we’ve actually
caught, gone to trial and successfully convicted someone for the murder of a
transgendered person, which is rare. Federal laws are being talked about, however
misguided they may actually be, and yet the number of deaths is
rising, not falling. Some counts have the average number of murders of
transgendered people at 19 per month! Or put another way, 1 in 12 of us in America will be murdered. But
we as transgendered
people are the only ones counting, in pretty much every country
across the world. I’m a transgendered sex worker, and I want to not get killed
for who I am or what I do. As our death count rises, I beg that you consider
your prejudices around gender, and let us live in peace. I’m literally begging
for my life.