Donna Rose

TDOR: Some Personal Thoughts

Filed By Donna Rose | November 20, 2008 6:00 PM | comments

Filed in: The Movement, Transgender & Intersex
Tags: hate crimes against LGBT people, TDOR, Transgender Day of Remembrance

Another Transgender Day of Remembrance (or TDOR, for short) is upon us. It occurs on Nov. 20 each year in commemoration of the murder of trans-woman Rita Hester and is our opportunity to celebrate the lives and mourn the deaths of our brothers and sisters who have been murdered during the previous year. DOR_2008.jpgThis years observances in hundreds of locations around the country and around the world mark the 10th anniversary of this solemn event. It is more than tragic that we continue to have no lack of victims to honor - this year 30 brothers and sisters have been murdered over the past 12 months.

These things are deeply personal for many of us. Being transgender is not an easy life even under the best of circumstances but to see our brothers and sisters slaughtered simply for being themselves is something each of us can imagine happening to our friends or ourselves. The entire spiral of not being able to get or keep a job, being forced into situations that are inherently dangerous, and ultimately being murdered viciously and brutally is far too common in our community.

I sometimes don't know which emotion I feel more: sadness or anger. I've personally attended 2 vigils of people honored at TDOR and have seen the anguish of a family who has just had a loving young life brutally taken from them. I've watched as police have turned a blind eye to these brutal murders that all too often go unsolved. I've listened to cold-blooded killers refer to their victim as an "it" as they describe how they took a tender young life by bashing her head in with a fire extinguisher. It infuriates me that people in this world can treat one another like that, where someone's life is somehow less valuable or less important.

The most recent incident occurred just last week when a trans-woman and her gay brother in Syracuse, NY were lured to a party and ambushed. Someone began yelling obscenities at them in their car before going into the house, getting a rifle, and shooting through the driver's side window. Latiesha was struck in the chest and died in a pool of her own blood. Poof. Another young life gone. And for what?

AngieZapata_Vigil.jpgAttending one of these vigils, like attending a TDOR event, can be life-changing. If you ever have an opportunity to hug a mother who has just lost a son or daughter to violent murder simply because they were being themselves - it will become personal to you, too. If you truly listen to the stories of the victims as they're read each year and you realize that each was a life, each had hopes and dreams that were brutally taken from them, it will change you. If you think about how that name being read next year could be you, or a friend, or a family member - it will change you. It makes you realize why ordinary people simply trying to live their lives become passionate activists because someone needs to speak out for these victims. Someone needs to keep their memories alive. Someone needs to make sure future generations of us don't face these same horrifying realities.

There was a time when I felt it was more than sad that the one event where the trans community comes together each year is about death. I have changed that opinion and I'll share why. Because on the outside TDOR is certainly a time to mourn. However, it is also a time to celebrate.

It is an opportunity to recognize the resiliency of the human spirit; a flame that refuses to be dimmed by those who seek to extinguish it through violence, hate, and ignorance. It is a celebration of community as a global family that these victims never knew in life comes together, bound not by genetics or by the fact that we may be transgender too, but by our humanity. It is a celebration of courage, and of authenticity, and of love. It is in that spirit that the solemn reason that we come together - to share our grief - often provides a strangely uplifting experience.

Each of us experiences the Day of Remembrance in our own way. I encourage anyone and everyone to find an event near where you live and make the effort to be there. Whether G, L, B, T, Q, ally, or simply sympathetic supporter please attend. Just know that if you do - it will change you.

The need for Federal Hate Crimes Legislation has never been more apparent, or more urgent. However, punishments won't bring these victims back. The difficult work to change our culture so that people whose sense of their gender may be different are not targeted for violence or death needs to be something each of us commits ourselves to achieve. There is no room in this world for Hate, so speaking up and speaking out does more than simply honor the memory of those who have been killed simply for being true to themselves. It saves lives.

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I 30 min, I will be driving downtown to our Capital Building for our TDOR event. This is the 9th year it will be held here. Only two cities participated the first year.

In Dacember 2001, Terrieann Summers was killed in her front yard. The killer was never found. I have a picture of myself standing next to her at the Win Dixie protest in Jan 2001, down in Jacksonville. It is on my bulletin board with a black ribbon next to her, to remind me. She was a friend. That TDOR in 2002 was the most horrific one for me, but . . . they never get easier. I hope none of you ever have a friend on that list. I hope the list will one day be zero.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | November 20, 2008 8:39 PM

a flame that refuses to be dimmed by those who seek to extinguish it through violence, hate, and ignorance.

Beautiful, moving post, Donna. Thanks for writing it.

And Monica, I'm sorry that your friend was among those killed.

I'll never understand, no matter how long I live, why someone can hate so much that they kill.

However, it is also a time to celebrate.... It is an opportunity to recognize the resiliency of the human spirit

Thank you for this. Sometimes in the midst of the commemoration, the preparation, the writing of the memorials, it gets so heavy and dark that a person forgets this.

I agree, it can be a moving experience. Chicago had it's vigil last Sunday night. It was cold and there were huge snowflakes falling. But it wasn't cold enough to hold back tears and remember our brothers and sisters who had the courage to be themselves.

Any time you can get a couple hundred transgendered people in one place, it is a cause for celebration.

TDOR is, basically, our day as T people, although we certainly welcome our GL friends and allies. It's, of course, sad, and was particularly so tonight because we lost a local member of the community. However, there is some joy involved as well. It is, by far, the most attended T gathering in my city. We gather for a service, held at and by the very friendly Presbyterian Seminary, then hold fellowship afterwards. It is the only time that many of us actually can see and talk to each other in same place and time, and every year, we have more and more allies who attend to learn more, or perhaps to support.

I spent most of the fellowship time speaking to a teacher from the Seminary. Her teenage daughter has been finding her place in society and the world, as teenagers must, and now feels she may be F2M. I was very happy to form a list of resources for her to study and read. Our speaker tonight was F2M, and he opened her eyes as to the fact that you must love your child, no matter the outward presentation. Speaking to her reminded me that minds are best opened one at a time.

Yes, TDOR is depressing and sad. It can also be uplifting. But, most of all, it is ours. It's about all we have, as T people, to call our own. That's why we're so mad about HRC trying to sponsor TDOR events, or doing videos about it: they truly don't understand what it means to us, and never will.

The Albany TDR is a potluck dinner, no vigil, no candlelight service.....needless to say I refuse to take part in this.

When this was first organized it was the Trans Day of Remembrance, today it's "transgender". I feel deeply that is very disrespectful to those who reject that term as an identity. Now several of you will be ready to jump down my throat for that but let me tell you a couple of things. If I were a victim, the last thing I would want is being labeled in death by a term I oppose in life. Unlike most of those attending these services, I have actually housed many of the group most at risk and did so on my SSI money. Almost no "community" support there or when we were raising money for Katrina TLGB victims.

I will be conducting a private service myself tonight. Remembering the dead isn't enough, tomorrow what will you do to change the climate? My guess for the majority of those who are merely loud voices on the internet, nothing, nothing at all.

While I'm not entirely sure about the history, I do like the idea of calling it the trans day of remembrance rather than transgender. Transgender is a fairly inaccurate word for all of us in the trans community, who changes their gender? (maybe that mayor in Washington). Cross dressers change their presentation, transsexuals change our anatomical sex, genderqueer people try to change social norms, etc. What we have in common is change and that is summed up simply with trans...we are those who change.

Its much more inclusive and much more accurate. Thank you for this Cathryn.

Also I hope I speak for all of us when I say that I am sorry the trans community has done such a disservice to you historically. I'm sure at least a few of the individuals that you helped are thankful. I know our mutual friend is.

I respect your feelings and certainly don't plan to jump down your throat. There are any number of ways to observe this event - the local youth group had an open mic night so people could say what they were feeling. Part of the beauty is that there's no one "right" way to do it. I do, however, disagree with you that it is disrespectful to anyone to use the word "Transgender" as part of the name. I'd argue that the reason people oppose that word in life is that it continues to carry stigmas that make it undesirable to many, The goal needs to be addressing the undeserved stigmas, not hiding from the word. As something resembling pride replaces fear, shame, and guilt when it comes to that term it will gradually lose the perjorative nature some seem so ready to loathe.

Donna, the sad fact of the matter is a "community" that demands respect of identity for itself denies it for those they claim are part of it and are the minority.

The immediate reaction to rejection of the term "transgender" is that we are ashamed to be associated with "those" people. Frankly that is bull. We don't like it because of the leadership that promotes it and the nasty, vicious way they have done so.

I loath that term myself. I've come to see it as a major insult and I know and have talked to, in person, HUNDREDS of women of trans history who feel exactly the same way. Were I to be murdered and on next years list, the odds are it would be someone "transgender" who killed me. I say this because of the very large number of death threats I've received over the years from precisely this group.......and this was when I was putting every resource I had in the world into establishing one of the very very few non government run housing projects working with minority homeless trans youth! While I was doing this, I was being trashed by the most vocal of the "trans-leadership", one of whom still does it here. It got me the term transgender embodies these people and attitude. This year I was openly accused of being a racist when my household had been a rainbow of people and I had personally been active during the Civil Rights Movement in the sixties. It was done on a major GLBT blog AFTER I had been banned from it so I could not answer the charges directly.

I don't work with this group anymore. I won't. I'll continue charitable outreach and work but it is for women.

The transgenders will never "get it" Those of us who reject that term for ourselves have every right to do so and have that respected. And those who absolutely refuse to respect it have no moral high ground to demand respect themselves....period.

I work with the dead, that's a major part of my spiritual calling. I'll be doing so tonight...but not among those who dispect me in life.

I will add something that never never seems to occur to those who promote the term "transgender" as inclusive. When you label someone "transgender" who has paid an enormous price to become a woman (or man) you are denying them that identity. You are taking it away to force them into a third category. You are engaging in the ultimate disrespect of their personal identity, their lives and all the did to arrive there. You are doing so for the most selfish of reasons, forcing them into your politics.

Each of us self-identifies in our own way. Although I appreciate your perspective, I disagree with it. I, too, have paid an enormous price to become who and what I am as have many of us who do not feel similarly that to acknowledge our transgender nature is in any way marginalizing our claims to manhood, womanhood, or anything in between. I also disagree that to honor someone on TDOR is to somehow "force them into your politics". It seems to me that there's much more going on about how you feel about "transgender" than simply honoring those who were killed because they may have expressed their gender differently. To get into an argument here about identities is a broader topic for another day.

"I also disagree that to honor someone on TDOR is to somehow "force them into your politics" "

This has to be one of the single most dishonest arguments I've ever seen you make.

I honour the dead....period. Of the over 400 names on the list how many felt the same way about being labeled transgender? I know for a fact some did.

You still don't get it do you? I did not "trans-ed" my gender....I "trans-ed" my sex. Why do those like you fight to death not to acknowledge that using something like "Trans" respects that and insisting on "transgender" that does not?

Trying to imply I dishonour the trans dead is beyond the lowest of the low. My personal opinion of you just took a major nose dive.

Cathryn: Your personal opinion of me is of no consequence to me. If your opinion is based upon how closely others believe as you do then I expect I'm probably in good company.

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Claire Jennifer | November 21, 2008 10:43 AM

Thank you Donna,

I spent most of the day close to tears.
We are having a TDoR service and candlelight vigil here in Sacramento, on Saturday, and I will take your uplifting words, of humanity and community, with me to the service.

This will be my first year of, open, participation at a TDoR service, and I am already emotional just thinking about it.

Thank you again Donna for giving me these words to reflect on.

The local TDOR ceremony I attended last night at a church was beautiful and moving, and some people got teary-eyed, including me.

It was well-attended by transgenders, lesbians, gays, and others wishing to remember those being memorialized and concerned by the violence that can make any transgender anywhere a victim at anytime.

In spite of what many may say and think, we are not in this fight alone. We have many non-trans allies who are willing to stand by us and are willing to risk becoming victims of violence by openly supporting us. My thanks to them.

Those who will do violence to transgenders, will do violence to gays, lesbians, all women regardless of orientation, and the elderly. If we transgenders ask for, and expect, others to help us, let us help them as well.

I will not comment on a certain group in this message.

It's good to see the event moved you. I do have one simple request. Please use the word "transgender" as and adjective, as in "transgender people," or such.

I really think that we should also start using "gay, lesbian and bisexual" as adjectives. We should focus more on our humanity rather then our gender identity or sexual orientation. I like, "LGBT Americans." The more we adopt that form of identification, the more we will be seen as part of the entire fabric of human existence. It's a way for us not to give up our individuality and still show we are part on this country.

Thank you for replying to my comments, and I will give your comments due consideration.

I have always had some trouble using the politically correct terminology for everyone, especially since it seems to be constantly evolving. I believe that I have some awareness of the sensitivity of gender-variant people. The terms I used in my comments are terms that I have seen commonly used, and this is first time that anyone has objected to my use of them.

I would also like to say, without any reproach to you, that part of my acceptance of myself involved no longer allowing others to dictate to me how I should express myself as long as I do not harm others.

Cathryn says:

“I will add something that never, never seems to occur to those who promote the term "transgender" as inclusive. When you label someone "transgender" who has paid an enormous price to become a woman (or man) you are denying them that identity. You are taking it away to force them into a third category”

And, Donna Rose replies:

“Although I appreciate your perspective, I disagree with it.”

Many of us (or most of us, if one ever wonders about the tens and tens of thousands of post operative’s that never care to enter the debate, a fact that at least the HRC understands) simply have our surgery, are absolutely glad to leave the past behind, and go on with our lives. We are women (or men), not transgender, and not only resent the term but abhor being included in a group in which we feel we don’t belong. The transgender advocates never acknowledge the fact that we do not identify as transgender (or transsexual for that matter) but simply as either female or male. Instead, they regularly speak out at public events insinuating at every turn that we are all, in one way or the other, the same…with absolutely no respect whatsoever for our position.

A few months ago, out of the blue, I got an e-mail from a friend of mine from college of whom I had not heard from in at least 30 years. In it, he indicated that he had recently heard from another mutual friend that I was “transgender”…he went on to express his support. It is impossible to explain the mixture of emotions that went through my mind as I quickly burned to the melting point at the speed of light. I did not transition to be known to others as “Susan, the transgender.”

What is so hard to understand about that? I ask again…WHAT IS SO DAMN HARD TO UNDERSTAND ABOUT THAT?

How can Donna Rose disagree with the perspective of Cathryn? If Donna Rose, or anyone else, wants to be classified in some third, less than, “not quite”, predominately GLB oriented, gender category I say more power to her. Perhaps Ms. Rose might say if those of us who do resent being labeled by proxy as transgender don’t like the term then simply bail out of the debate…to which we would say fine, we will…just as soon as the transgender movement acknowledges there are many of us who resent the label and those same people publicly exclude us from their narrative and agenda; never one time have I ever seen that acknowledgement.

That…as they say, is the issue.

Whats a post operative?

I only know of males and females. Did I miss a lesson in third grade?

Quick word of warning: This comment is off-topic. TDOR is the topic, not Donna Rose, Cathryn, HBS, or trans identity.

The post is a respectful reflection on our dead. It need not be marred by internecine struggle.

Thank you, Bil. Why is it that as soon as the "T" word gets placed anywhere on your blog, people have to use it as an excuse to complain about being included in a group that doesn't want them included in the first place?

Transgender Day of Remembrance is to remember those people who crossed the gender lines at least once in their lives or are no long living in the assigned sex/gender at birth and have had their lives taken by someone's hands. In the over 400 names on the Transgender Remembering Our Dead list, I have never once heard from a friend or family member of any of the post-ops on the list who objected about having them on the list. I never heard any stories about someone complaining. And, for those who interject into a "Transgender discussion" and say they are stealth seem to not understand the definition of the word "stealth."

I think that the fact that we are remembering these people each year helps their friends and family in the healing process. I know that when I'm gone, I will not have any say in how I'm remembered, if at all. Anyone who wants to remember me is not doing it to make me happy, but to help them heal. In death, like in life, labels are meaningless. Actually, in death, even more so. If people don't want to be remembered on Transgender Day of Remembrance if they are killed, then I suggest they put it in their will and stop bitching about it here. Otherwise, you won't have a choice after you're gone.

Sorry, Bil. After compiling the statistics from the Remembering Our Dead list for four years, reading each name at least a dozen times, I have no compassion for people who will use this day to further their agenda, and that's what happening here. It shows no respect for the dead.

Monica - couple of things.

1) I didn't notice your earlier comment that was all about Cathryn instead of the post. I TOSsed it, of course. Be careful; you know how we roll around here. :)

2) Actually - I agree with Cathryn on this one.

Calling the day "Trans Day of Remembrance" as versus "Transgender Day of Rememberance" seems worthwhile. As we've learned on Bilerico Project only too well, there is a group of folks that have a problem with the label "transgender." Why not honor that?

I mean, this is a day to honor all murdered trans women - even the HBS subscribers. To specify "transgender" seems to deliberately undercut the purpose of the day. Consider it "being PC" of me, but it seems like a simple way to make everyone feel welcome and honored.

The rest of Cathryn's comment that just strikes out angrily at the transgender community is irrelevant. We know that she's angry about this issue; she has every right to be - we can't control anyone's emotions but our own. But that doesn't mean we don't show respect.

Think of the ACLU defending those clients they find abhorrent but do so in the name of the Constitution. If TDOR is about honoring those murdered for their gender identity, it seems appropriate to do it in an inclusive way that doesn't unnecessarily stoke bad feelings.

The person who created the event, Gwen Smith, called it and officially named it "Transgender Day of Remembrance" and it has now been officially and legally registered as that. You don't get to call it something else nor does Cathy. Seems to me, you may want to complain next to the NAACP for not changing their name to reflect current PC terms.

Calling the day "Trans Day of Remembrance" as versus "Transgender Day of Rememberance" seems worthwhile.

The terminology never means the same thing to everyone. In some pockets in Canada, "trans" is used to refer strictly to operative transsexuals, and used to exclude crossdressers, non-ops, genderqueer, etc. (which was why I was long familiar with and bitten by the debate when I first arrived here, yet not as familiar with some of the terminology used elsewhere). I use the terms somewhat interchangeably, but whenever I see someone strictly distinguishing between "trans" and "transgender," to me, that usually means that several people are being shut out and deemed "not real." Even though the "Trans" DoRs still list people from all of those shut-out sub-communities and co-opts those stories to raise the issues of a far narrower group.

You can see why some of us get so tired of fighting about labels. I'd like to think that there could be a compromise, but it seems that some people simply don't want to be associated with some other people (whatever the umbrella term) in any fashion.

"Transgender" is the same sort of thing. To some, it means over-the-top expression, or that it's all about deconstructing a purely social construct of gender and not acknowledging people as "male" or "female," while to me, I feel that there is room in that umbrella to acknowledge that people reach a point (not necessarily defined by surgery) at which they achieve the right to call themselves male or female and leave the trans/transgender history behind; that there is a genuine biology at play; that yes, we have a lot of different factions in our community that sometimes don't understand each other, but there should still be room for mutual respect and recognizing some mutual objectives.

The label meanings are so different that eventually, the argument loses all meaning.

Personally I wouldn't be seen dead on the TDOR list .. so if I make it PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE .. have me removed !

I Agree with Susan & Cathryn.

I am tired of the endless dead, the shattered lives, the horrors that the LGBT community as a whole has to endure, but the Trans-connunities particularly so.

One of the things that can come out of the popular uprising now going on is a sense of unity, a sense of egalitarian oneness...a determination that this time we all go together, or we fail.

Lets seize the opportunity, for equality, for full citizenship, for marriage, for us all, so that eventually the Dar of Remberance remembers the dead of years past instead of this past year.

Apparently, you didn't read Bil's warning, or maybe it's just that you don't give a shit about what he says. Which is it?

It's a sad commentary that a posting lamenting all the hate and ignorance that leads to trans people getting killed brings out that very same hate and ignorance within our own broader community. Sigh.

Trans or transgender - use whatever word you want - the discomforts so many feel runs deeper than words.

My posting was not about who is some flavor of trans and who isn't. Let's save that discussion for a posting that's not about DOR.

Angela Brightfeather | November 24, 2008 10:47 AM

Cathryn has been putting her stamp of approvel on just about anything that has anything to do with the word, phrase, idea, or issue that anyone has about our community for years, without changing to many minds. What is her point if it means nothing and does nothing?

Anyone who wants to call others "men in dresses" and bemoan such personal inclinations as doing something wrong, is part of the problem, not part of the solution and only puts their stamp of approval or empowers anyone who wants to commit a hate crime aganist anyone in this community. God forbid that a lawyer who uses her type of language and argument in a case against a murderer to get them of the hook for killing one of us, actually wins a case using it.

Personally I think that people like Cathryn have no place in this community either. They are of in La La Land someplace, living on Denial Street. But that's Ok also if they like it there. I hear it's a lonely place to live, sparcely populated and comes with it's own version of urban blight of the mind and environmental damage. But most of us get the message, Cathryn is not Transgender. She also does not speak for those on the TDOR list either.

You see Cathryn, the people on the TDOR list don't care what they are or were called then. They would all just like to be alive and allowed to have lived their lives instead of what happened to them. That's the big deal here. Not your personal statements on how you might be referred to while being able to still live.

Most of us remember them because they were people who died because of hate. The same kind that your displaying here because of a word.

Let's see....

I'm hateful

I'm crazy (living in LaLa land)

I have no right to speak for those killed even though I was housing the very type of women on the list for years and did more than one TDOR myself.

I'm lonely, in denial (specifics please? Is this because I declined to sleep with both you and Monica in 2000?)

I'm giving arguments to the enemy (trans traitor?-too dangerous ideas?)

I called someone a man in a dress (specifics please)

and my personal favorite, I have the unmitigated gall to dare voice opinions in opposition to the self appointed leadership of the trans community and refuse to stop doing so when told shut the f**k up (failed to stay in my 'proper place' and presumably serve milk and cookies while the activists retire for brandy and cigars) Alice Paul is one of my heros.....she wouldn't shut up either.

Does that sum it up? You forgot self loathing and lousy self esteem....and racist. soon as the transgender community stops, once and for all, claiming to speak for women like me, stops, once and for all claiming the right to define me and others like me in opposition to our stated objections.....I'll go away, gladly, with bells on. You want me gone?......tell all your transgender friends to sign the petition to GLAAD to stop defaming us and denying our womanhood by pushing "transgender" as an all inclusive umbrella against our wills.

What you just demonstrated was yet another highly personal attack designed to silence. Substance level zero, just personal smears.

I hate no one, I deny no one their own identity and my heart literally bleeds for those killed. I WORK WITH THE DEAD as a major part of my spiritual practice. That you also invoke this to smear is beyond the pall. Have you no shame?

Everyday Transperson | November 25, 2008 8:52 PM

Cathryn, well said........ And please know that you are not alone in your opinions about this current "activist" issue and the problems it is causing for others in our community.

Concerning the TDOR, I will say this. Yes it is tragic that many trans men and women are still losing their lives to violence and hate crimes. I do not see, however, how some "activist/s" can look grieving families straight in the eye and say they support them when they know very well that they aren't doing enough in the activist scene to address the root problems of why hate crimes tend to happen to our community in the first place..........The current "leadership" isn't doing the job, plain and simple !!

Many hate crimes happen in areas where poverty, unemployment and lower socioeconomic conditions exist. We tend to know about these conditions all to well because the transgender community still, in most cases, is situated in areas that place us in a high risk category for these crimes. The fact is that many of us are poor and certainly disenfranchised at the discriminatory hands of politicians and corporate America. Yet, no one, especially this author and other trans "activists" will ever address this core issue in a lecture or in a blog, the very issue which is one of the root causes behind hate crimes and the deaths associated with them.

Think about it, if these deceased individuals had lucrative jobs that paid them a salary that could provide them an opportunity to live in more affluent and most importantly SAFE communities, then perhaps the death rates might go down. Yet, these activists will devoutly attend funerals and TDORs and mourn the symptom, but will refuse to address the core problem and even protect those entities who are directly responsible for contributing to it.

So I say this Ms. Rose. I would encourage you to humble yourself to sit down and have a long talk with these grieving families and tell them why you and other transgender activist "leaders" are not addressing the root problems that contributed to their loved one's deaths. As you would say Ms. Rose "OWN IT"

Lastly Ms. Rose, I am struck by the comment you made above:

"There is no room in this world for Hate, so speaking up and speaking out does more than simply honor the memory of those who have been killed simply for being true to themselves."

Well, don't look now, but when the person above decided to speak up and speak out in response to your article (a person who appeared to be true to her opinions and beliefs) she was personally attacked for it along with the aid of other crony protectionists just because she disagreed with your views. So I fail to see how your statement, Ms. Rose is in any way credible, valid or anything more than just hypocritical rhetoric.

Addressing the REAL issues needs to start happening in our community, despite retaliatory acts made by activist cliques, protectionist censorship exercised by media personnel, or coercive tactics contrived by corporate cronies. The public is not stupid ladies and gentlemen and sooner or later they will have the intelligence to figure out what is really going on. I feel that it is only fair that we continue to educate them and authoritative agencies as to what is REALLY going on rather than having them be educated by folks who selectively tell them only what they want them to know..........

Again, I am saddened to continue to hear about these deaths and am extremely sickened at some of the dialogue exchange which has taken place here which totally goes against the very ideology of what those people lost their lives for. I have all but given up hope that our community will one day reach a point where we can all debate freely without hateful retaliation and abuses of power.

Thank you all for your time.