Two viral photos from this weekend destroy the myth of ‘post-racial’ America: On left: a Cleveland cop pulls a gun on two unarmed black women after a minor traffic accident. On right: a white man at a Confederate rally grabs his gun in front of cops and they tell him to calm down.
All…this is a post from a tumblr blog I follow, not my own writing, but her concluding question echoes many things I have written about, namely that all the “Remember the Dead Trans-girls” rallies change absolutely nothing.
We don’t want to be remembered.
We want to live…be fruitful and share life.
I don’t want you to say my name when I am killed…I want to say my own name in the zest of life! Without fear of attack, policing, othering or rejection simply for being born.
I echo Jen’s question: since last weekend’s events, what has changed?
PS: Language alert! If you are offended or defiled by scatalogical language, proceed with caution! F-bombs and other such things are in evidence!
Maybe….maybe if every man who has ever hired a trans escort, if every boy who has ever beat off to trans porn, if all the guys I and thousands of others have hooked up with via Craig’s List, if the millions who fetishize our bodies, who enjoy us on our knees in bathrooms, who press us against hotel windows, who lay with us in our beds, if the men who adore me and my sisters, but only behind closed doors, would STAND THE FUCK UP AND SPEAK OUT…maybe 21 year old women just enjoying an evening out with friends wouldn’t be beat to death.
Maybe if all of you who read this, our allies and friends and colleagues and family, would call out when others make jokes at our expense, even when we’re not around, if you’d tell advertisers and producers and journalists and writers and comics that you’re not okay with them making trans women nothing but the punchline of jokes or tragic tossaways, that you know us, that we’re not disposable….maybe groups of people would stop feeling so free to harass me and my sisters, maybe crowds wouldn’t just laugh when a man spits at me, or just watch when two young men chase me down the street yelling “shemale”…maybe if you ALL stood up and said enough, maybe a young woman just being herself wouldn’t be beat to death in the streets of the supposedly best place on earth to just be yourself.
Maybe if all the gay men who act as if equality means marriage, if all the white feminists who only serve those that look like them, if all the queers who drop “TWOC” like a shibboleth but don’t know or talk to or walk beside any actual trans women of color…maybe if all of you saw what was happening here and how your actions allow it, how every moment of silence, of waiting for people of color to start the conversation about race …maybe this child could have enjoyed a few more years of being beautiful among us.
A 21 year old was beat to death in our streets. It happened because she is a woman, and of color, and transgender. It happened because our men won’t admit they love us, because our friends aren’t speaking out against the thousand little dehumanizing actions of others, because our own “LGBT” community isn’t comfortable talking about race and class.
It’s the ruin and the wreck
of what has been, what might have been
that stands so stark, abrupt against
the soft caress of night and in
the harsh daylight that shows the stress
and strain and bite of time…
so cruel, so kind
in dismantling artifice
and taking more to leave it less
and thus confer a grace upon
the mess of pride and prejudice
there…in the gentle wind’s soft kiss,
that which remains and sanctified
by tears from skies so gray and eyes
so blue and thus made holy in
the loss they gain substance
and stretch across
that yearn forever,
it will burn
and those bones that burn so bright
in the ruin and the wreck
of what has been, what might have been
become what is