Now, The HRC video was absolutely cool. By any measure, it is one of the best videos made for the concept overall.
But, as usual, the HRC didn't get it right. They used old names, when the event is about the last year. There were 31 this year, Bil.
That's one thing that peeves us.
They use it to speak to hate crimes. It shouldn't be used that way. They use to call for donations. It shouldn't be used that way.
It serves one purpose and one purpose only. To make people aware that each one of us is pretty much 500 other people -- each one of us is 50 LG people.
That's the impact of it. In the trans community, we have 4 degrees of separation. At most. Usually 3.
Thats how heavy each of these weighs on our minds.
And that video does a disservice because, yet again, it is the transworld *from outside*. IT was set up and designed to be palatable.
It was like a prop 8 ad that had no gay people in it.
Transfolk can't be handled that way.
So you know, most transfolks *do* think the HRC sat around thining "ok, how can I co-opt the trans community on behalf of HRC".
Literally. We think that because the HRC has proven that it will do that. Time and time again.
We *also* think the VP is thinking "we have a problem with trans issues." The rest was already addressed in Tobi's outstanding response.
You are right -- not every person at the HRC is that way. There are certainly staffers willing to help.
IT doesn't matter.
The organization as a whole has, for the most part, screwed us over. In everything they do. We are *secondary*. An afterthought.
And we are tired of it.
I'm certain they made the video with the best intentions. Really, I am. I just, after all this time, suspect that their intentions are never in *our* best interests.
They don't want to hurt us, mind you. Once they get LGB protections in place, they will have to have a reason to exist. We are going to become that reason. Because that's all they will have left.
But they don't want to deal with us, Bil. We do not play well in Peoria. We fail focus group tests.
Transgender, Bil, means gay, lesbian, bisexual, and straight. It means men and women, and that which lies in between. It means the people that are called faggot first. The people who are shot in cars. The people who are hookers and prostitutes (something even our own activists all too often shy away from). It means the people who have AIDS now.
You once described your childhood in terms of gender roles. What you described is almost word for word what every MtF has ever said.
Word for word, Bil.
when I came out, I told a friend of mine, who really liked me. His reaction was immediate and visceral: "why do you wanna be a freak and cut your dick off?".
He was gay, Bil. Of the first 30 people I came out to, one of whom was my wife, he was the only negative reaction.
He showed up at the Phoenix TDoR tonight, and he gets it now.
IT is not that we want them to be silent. Saying that is akin to saying "I'll take my ball and go home".
what we want is action. concrete, visible, purposeful, intense action.
We want them to give our single greatest need the same amount of effort they give to marriage. Because we dying faster than the GLB community is, and there's a hell of a lot fewer of us.
Think for a moment, Bil. When was the last time that you, personally, felt a physical threat to your existence in an encounter with another person? When was the lat time someone called you faggot and then threw a bottle at you?
I've got a couple girls at the halfway house who have had that happen to them every day in the last 7.
They aren't called trannies, Bil. They are called faggots.
They are straight, too.
When the cops did their raid of the "gay bars" in New York City, they didn't go to the places that the then in power groups went to. Those bars no one knew because everyone seemed so "normal".
They went to the transgender bars. The places where the flamers and wild ones were. The places where the monsters were.
We get all the nastiest crap targeted at you. Because we are visible when you are not. You alone no one would think was gay, right? Well, we aren't that lucky.
We want them to say "Its time for an inclusive ENDA *now*". We want them to get it introduced in the next session and push it through for that first 100 days.
We want them to say "Barney Frank -- retract that bathroom statement". We want them to help fund state and city level protections. We want them to make the score card portions for trans inclusion *equal* in importance (scoring wise) to LGB portions. We want them to work on the ADA stuff. TO stand up and score health care providers with emphasis on transtreatment and care. We want them to ensure we get decent housing and treatment in prison. We want them to mae the fact that as a white gay man you have twenty times the risk of being killed walking out your front door than I do.
The single biggest thing they could do to win back Trans support is get inclusive ENDA passed. And, really, it should be the first and single most important thing they do. Now.
They don't ask us for money. They don't talk about how great it is going to be. They just get it done.
As I said, right now, Bil, they are Fred Phelps to us. They are Focus on the Family, or the AFA. They are every person who voted for Prop 8.
They are our enemy.
What would it take for you to start trusting any of those groups? Seriously, think about it for a moment, because if you look at what our reaction is to the HRC, its that same reaction we have to any of them.
What makes it worse is they say they are working for us when they do it. They say they are being nice to us when we ripped out of a bill.
You know more about us than they do, Bil. Ask them what the ADA would do for us if the provision barring us was removed.
That's due this next session, Bil. That's actually doable. Like, now.
I said it before: it takes 10 things to make up for every bad one. And they've don a lot of bad ones. They are already removed from the mainstream of the LGBT community as a whole -- they have ZERO knowledge of us or our issues.
Half the transfolk on this board have said they would be more than willing to speak with the HRC. What did we get? AN offer to do it during the largest Trans gathering int he world. Its like trying to hold a meeting during gay days on Key West.
If they could get through an ADA and an ENDA within the next 2 years, I'm willing to bet they'd have at least two thirds the trans community behind them. with cash (since we'll actually, you know, have some).
DO you know who Reed Erickson was, Bil? Any clue what that man did to enable the stuff the HRC stands on to exist? Look him up. Please.
He was transsexual.
Shannon Minter, one hell of a lawyer -- this guy argued and won the case for marriage in California.
He is a transsexual.
Lynn Conway, who created the ideas of instruction sets and some of the most critical architectures that enable Bilerico to exist. She is a Transsexual.
The President of the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association is a woman I was hugging a short while ago: Dr. Becky Allison.
What do they need to do? They need to find out who we are and what we want, and then go and do it.
Not decide for us.
They need to stop lying to us.
That's what they need to do, and why we are sick and tired of their trite little dumb stuff. Its time for them to come to us, hat in hand, and ask what they can do for us. Because we've tried it that way on our side and look where it got us.