Thursday, April 30, 2009

Shut Up Fool! Award-Kentucky Derby Edition

The 135th running of the Kentucky Derby happens in Da Ville tomorrow. We'll find out which horse wins the first leg of the Triple Crown and ends up in the Winner's Circle crowned with roses.

Today is Ladies Day at Churchill Downs with the running of the 135th Kentucky Oaks. All the races run today involve fillies including the Oaks. Just as the winner in the Derby gets a garland of roses, the winning horse in the Oaks gets crowned with a garland of lilies.

So sticking with the horse racing theme for this week's awards, I know y'all are ready for me to get to it, so lets see what horse's rear end wins the race for fool of the week.

There were many worthy contenders, but there is only one that was so breathtakingly stupid she's now in the running for a Shut Up Fool! lifetime Achievement Award.

And no, it wasn't Rep. Michele Bachmann.

That would be Rep. Virginia Foxx of North Carolina. I'll give you one guess what party she reps, but the folks in Winston-Salem might consider replacing her next year with somebody that has some brain cells and a 'D' behind their name.

While arguing against the Matthew Shepard Hate Crime bill she said on the House floor the Shepard murder was a hoax. Foxx said Shepard wasn't killed in 1998 because he was gay but because he was involved in a robbery.

She said this as Matthew Shepard's mother Judy was sitting in the gallery watching the debate on this legislation.

She also asked during the House Rules Committee meeting for the bill why prostitutes weren't included, because people who hate prostitutes as a class sometimes murder them for this reason.

"Should there be an amendment to this to say that prostitutes are a protected class? "Why is it worse to go after someone who's gay than going after someone who's a prostitute?"

Rep. Virginia Foxx, shut up Fool!

SRS Is Not A Requirement To Be A 'Successful' Transsexual

One of the things we need to do more often in this community is to spotlight and hold up our role models. We need our kids struggling with gender issues to see the diverse rainbow of transpeeps out there who are surviving and thriving out there in the cold, cruel world while being proud of who they are as transpeople.

There are two lists put together by Karen Serenity and Dr. Lynn Conway's TS Successes that do this quite well, and I applaud them for that.

However, there are two major problems with those lists.

Problem number one is the severe lack of melanin in them, and the second problem is that they focus almost exclusively on post-op transwomen.

I've said this before and will continue to drive this point home until I'm put in a nice casket and buried six feet under my beloved Texas soil that the cold hard truth is our transitions are not like yours.

We don't as people of color start out making a lot of money to begin with, so it takes us much longer if we do decide to get surgery to do so even if we start the transitions at a younger age.

There are also some peeps who can't get SRS for medical reasons as well or simply don't want to.

So riddle me this Karen Serenity and Dr. Conway. What happens when you create a list of successful transwomen that excludes people that either haven't publicly declared they've had SRS, have declared they don't want it or feel it isn't anybody's business to know what genitalia is in their panties?

It ends up as overwhelmingly white, middle-upper middle class and devoid of melanin.

If you are only including declared post-op transpeople on your lists, and the people who do go on to get surgery are overwhelmingly white and middle-upper middle class, what does the resulting list look like to a person of color?

Well, this POC is about to tell you.

One of the issues I had to deal with as a teenage transkid in the 70's was not seeing positive role models that reflected my ethnic heritage. It was one of the issues we've repeatedly discussed on my TSTB list of African descended transwomen.

I've noted that African descended transwomen growing up in the 80's and 90's had that same question and concern as well.

I've also made the point as well, along with many gender specialists that gender is not whether you have a penis or vagina between your legs, it's between your ears.

Transwoman, and especially you two ladies should know that better than anybody.

But one of the things that I have consistently seen from the WWBT crowd and transwomen who transition before 1990 is that they are still stuck in that same genitalia=gender paradigm, then label anyone who hasn't spent 20K for a neocoochie as 'not female'.

Congrats, you're no better than the radfems and the Religious Reich in that regard.

But then again, in order to get SRS back in the day, since many of the pioneering SRS gender surgeons were stuck in that rigid gender binary, they did make pre-1990's transwomen jump through multiple hoops and do crap that we post-1990 transwomen don't have to do.

But we all still have to swallow estrogen and deal with the same issues of negotiating society in a feminine body, and whether you have a neoclit or neocoochie as you deal with those issues doesn't change that one millimeter.

In Dr. Conway's case, she has a double standard in place in terms of her Successful Transmen page. As many of us in the community know, the bottom surgery for transmen is not even close to what transwomen have in terms of aesthetics and functionality, but yet she doesn't apply the same gender=genitalia standard to them that she applies to transwomen.

May I remind you ladies that being a success in life isn't based on your genitalia. There are also transwomen who have achieved wonderful things for this community who haven't necessarily spent time on a surgery table either.

I guess if the first transwomen elected to Congress or the first transgender mayor elected in a major city wasn't a post-op, you would decline to put her on your page.

While you have every right as the creators of those lists to determine the parameters as to who does and doesn't get included on the lists you spend your precious time compiling, I also have the same right, especially since people use them as resources to point out you're also doing those transwomen like Spain's Carla Antonelli for example, a disservice by ignoring their accomplishments.

You're also doing a disservice to people that need to see a wide palette of trans role models a disservice as well.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Susan Stanton Is New Lake Worth, FL City Manager

If you've been wondering what's up with Susan A. Stanton, she's doing quite well thank you after being selected on a 4-1 vote back on April 7 to become the new city manager for Lake Worth, FL.

As most of you who followed her story know, she was dismissed after 17 years as the Largo, FL city manager when she announced her plans to transition.

She was a finalist for two other city manager jobs in Tempe, AZ and Sarasota, FL before successfully getting this one.

She started her new job on Monday and is getting paid $150,000 to manage the city of Lake Worth, FL. Here's hoping that Ms. Stanton has a long, successful and less drama filled tenure there.

Artist Ernie Barnes Dies

If you were a devoted fan of Good Times back in the day, you know that Jimmie Walker's James Evans, Jr. character was an artist. That character and the show introduced the rest of the world to the artwork of Ernie Barnes.

'The Sugar Shack' dance scene appeared on Marvin Gaye's 1976 I Want You album and the closing credits of Good Times. It also inspired a generation of artists. Collectors of his work range from Ethel Kennedy, various professional sport team owners to Sylvester Stallone, Eddie Murphy, the late Sammy Davis, Jr., Kanye West, and from Seton Hall University to the California African American Museum.

The 70 year old Barnes died Monday night at Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles from complications from a rare blood disorder, said his longtime personal assistant Luz Rodriguez. Barnes is survived by his wife Bernie; brother James of Durham; sons Michael and Sean; and daughters Deidre, Erin and Paige.

His signature style uses elongation and distortion to convey a sense of power, fluidity, grace and intensity, addition to featuring people with closed eyes because as he put it, 'we are blind to people's humanity.'

Barnes was born in Durham, NC on July 15, 1938. His love of art began when he would accompany his mother to her job at a prominent local attorney's Frank Fuller, Jr's home in which she oversaw the staff. The attorney had a large collection of art books that young Ernie was allowed to peruse which fueled his passion for art.

In junior high Ernie was an overweight and introverted kid taunted by bullies, and spent that time sketching in a notebook. A sympathetic teacher who recognized his artistic talent put him on a weightlifting program. It allowed Ernie to excel in football and track in high school to the point in which Ernie was the state shotput champion in his senior year

He received over 25 scholarships, but no thanks to Jim Crow segregation couldn't attend Duke University or the University of North Carolina. He attended HBCU North Carolina College (now North Carolina Central University) on a football scholarship and majored in art.

He was drafted by the Washington Redskins in 1959, but that was problematic once they discovered he was Black. The Redskins racist owner George Preston Marshall refused to integrate his team until 1962, and they traded Barnes to the then NFL world champion Baltimore Colts. After playing for the Colts for a season he moved to the rival American Football League in 1960 and played for the New York Titans, the San Diego Chargers in 1961-1962 and the Denver Broncos in 1963-1964.

He still pursued his love of art while playing and painted his first piece called 'The Bench' which sold for $25,000 at a Denver show. A painting of his caught the attention of Barron Hilton, who commissioned him for a piece and encouraged him to successfully apply to become the official artist for the AFL. His artwork began appearing on the game day magazine programs across the AFL.

That led in 1965 to New York Jets owner Sonny Werblin noticing his work, and after having three art critics appraise it Werblin commissioned him to do thirty paintings. It led to a critically acclaimed 1966 art show at Grand Central Art Galleries in Manhattan that jump started his art career and led to his retirement from pro football.

In 1984 Barnes was named the 'Official Artist of the Games' and commissioned by the Los Angeles Olympic Committee to create five paintings to commemorate the LA Games. He was also commissioned by the NBA to create 'A Dream Unfolds' for the league's 50th anniversary, 'Fastbreak' for LA Lakers owner Jerry Buss, and the owners of the New Orleans Saints, Oakland Raiders and Boston Patriots football teams.

Former Baltimore Colts teammate and Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson commissioned Barnes to create 'Victory In Overtime', which is now on permanent display at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte.

There are ongoing plans for a traveling exhibit of Ernie Barnes art entitled 'Liberating Humanity From Within' which will be coming soon to an art gallery near you.

"Ernie Barnes is one of the premier figurative artists of the late 20th and early 21st centuries," said Paul Von Blum, a senior lecturer in African American studies, communication studies and art history at UCLA.

"His richly detailed paintings and drawings chronicling the lives of people have made a profound contribution to the contemporary history of American art."

Von Blum said the works that Barnes produced over 40 years "elevated him to the top rank of African American artists in the United States" and "solidified his stature in the grand tradition of visual art, a reputation that will serve as a model for younger artists for generations to come."

I agree. He will be missed.

H/T Black On Campus Blog

The President's Assessment Of His 100 Days

Here's President Obama's assessment of the first 100 days of his presidency. He spoke at a town hall meeting this morning.

Isn't it cool to have the 'A' students running the country again?

Obama Administration-Day 100

One of the truisms of presidential politics is that if you want to project how someone will govern once they are elected to the presidency, you watch closely how they run their campaigns.

President Obama ran a disciplined, historic campaign for the ages in becoming the first African-American president, and today marks the 100th day of the Obama Administration.

"I feel surprisingly comfortable in the job," he said two weeks after his inauguration.

Kinda obvious isn't it? He's zipping along with a robust 64% approval rating and an even higher one in various countries around the world. For the first time in five years more Americans think our country is moving on the right track than the wrong one.

He's busting stereotypes, has a wife as the FLOTUS who is doing the same as a fashion forward icon.

The president is also rapidly implementing the things he promised to do during his campaign while being opposed by the GOP at every turn.

*Restore our international good name? Check
*Eliminate the stem cell research ban? Check
*Americans and the world deliriously happy we have a president who knows how to spell and pronounce correctly 'nuclear'? Check

"The challenges are big, but one thing that I'm absolutely convinced about is that you want to be president when you've got big problems. If things are going too smoothly, then this is just another nice home office."

He's had some challenges in this first 100 days and has tackled an ambitious domestic and international agenda with gusto. He's had some stumbles, but he's also positioning himself to be the transformational president that we desperately needed at the critical juncture in our nation's history.

A Ladylike Guide To Dressing For The Derby

TransGriot Note: It's Derby Week here in Da Ville. That means parties, galas, parades and the Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby horse races on Friday and Saturday.

My fashion diva roommate and longtime Kentuckian Dawn Wilson explains this bit of Kentucky tradition for those of us not from these parts.

Guest post by Dawn Wilson

Is image everything? To many African American transgender women it means everything. Image defines you and your character. Going out is never just about going out and having a good time, it’s about going out and impressing people.

As the celebrities who come here will tell you, the Kentucky Derby and the activities that surround it is the place that one can do that, and it seems as though the list of those who come gets longer every year.

I've had the pleasure of attending more than 15 different parties and assorted Derby gatherings over the last few years, and have been graciously extended invitations for a few this year.

Recently my girlfriends at the LFC fencing club invited me to go Derby dress shopping with them last weekend in preparation for the Derby Week activities. No we didn't have any mint juleps, but a good time was had by all.

If you're one of the lucky people going to the Kentucky Derby this year or even if you just want to dress properly for the occasion when you watch this year's 135th running of the race at home, tradition states that certain rules must be followed.

What are those rules? Fear not, I'm about to tell you. Just follow them and you'll put your best fashion foot forward for Derby Day and fit in like a native.

Choose your hat (ladies only, of course). Hats go with the Derby like the frosting on a birthday cake. It should be large-brimmed, feminine and frilly (think 18th-century France), and worn low on the brow tilted slightly to one side.

The rest of your outfit is designed to complement your hat.

Now the dress. This will support the crowning glory of the outfit – the hat.

Now there is an art to picking and wearing a dress. Maybe that is why many WBT women often prefer wrapping themselves in shapeless jeans and blouses. It’s easy, it’s simple and comfortable, and doesn't require much effort.

But how about being womanly, attractive, and appealing? Why is everybody forgetting about being romantic, gentle, bright and inspiring, or outstanding and memorable?

Beauty and attractiveness are always in fashion. That is the fashion law, especially doing Derby. If you follow those rules to the letter, you won't be ticketed by the Derby fashion police.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Say hello to Democratic Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania.

"Last year, more than 200,000 Republicans in Pennsylvania changed their registration to become Democrats. I now find my political philosophy more in line with Democrats than Republicans."

Specter was greeted by a loud, sustained round of applause by dozens of constituents outside his Washington office shortly after the news broke.

"I don't have to say anything to them," a smiling Specter said. "They've said it to me."

The five term senator announced today that he is switching parties, thus guaranteeing that once sore loser Norm Coleman get the legal smackdown again and Sen Al Franken finally gets to take the senate seat he earned almost 100 days ago on behalf of the people of Minnesota, the Democrats will have the ability to shut down filibusters in the Senate.

First elected in 1980, he was once of the few GOP moderates left in the northeast United States. It's now a conservative, increasing ideological party that has shrunk to basically being strong only in the Deep South. Specter joins the 200,000 Pennsylvania Republican moderates fleeing the increasingly batturd crazy GOP.

President Obama's reaction was the same as many Dems. According to the president reached Specter, one of only three Republicans to support his stimulus package, on the phone at 10:32 AM EDT and told him "you have my full support." He added that we are "thrilled to have you."

Specter however sounded a cautionary note that just because he's now a Democrat doesn't mean that he won't be as independent as he was on the GOP side.

“I will not be an automatic 60th vote,” Specter said. “I would illustrate that with my position on employee choice, also known as card check. I think it’s a bad deal and I’m opposed to it. I will not vote to impose cloture. If the Democratic Party asks too much, I will not vote with them."

Welcome to the party Sen. Specter. As long as you're with me 80-90% of the time, I'll forgive the times you vote your conscience and aren't.

Call CBC Congressmembers On Hate Crimes!

I received an e-mail from the National Black Justice Coalition this morning and it's a classic good news-bad news situation concerning hate crimes legislation.

As many of you may already know, Representative John Conyers (D-MI) introduced H.R. 1913, the comprehensive hate crimes legislation in the House.

According to the NBJC, the following Congressional Black Caucus members have co-sponsored it.

Sanford Bishop (GA)
Corrine Brown (FL)
William Lacy Clay (MO)
James Clyburn (SC)
Elijah Cummings (MD)
Alcee Hastings (FL)
Sheila Jackson Lee (TX)
Barbara Lee (CA)
John Lewis (GA)
Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC)
Diane Watson (CA)

These are the Congressional Black Caucus members according to the NBJC who SUPPORT the bill, but have not committed to co-sponsoring H.R. 1913 yet.

Gwen Moore (WI)
Mel Watt (NC)
Yvette Clarke (NY)
Maxine Waters (CA)
Kendrick Meek (FL)
Andre Carson (IN)
Marcia Fudge (OH)
Keith Ellison (MN)
GK Butterfield (NC)
Gregory Meek (NY)
Charlie Rangel (NY)
Edolphus Towns (NY)
Artur Davis (AL)
Senator Roland Burris (IL)

The bad news is that the right-wing Forces Of Intolerance and their Uncle Tom lackey ministers in the Hi Impact Leadership Coalition are already hard at work in their opposition to the bill. They are flooding their representatives with letters and calls opposing hate crimes legislation and outright lies about the bill's effects.

If you are represented by a CBC congressmembers, if they are sponsoring it, call them to thank them for their support. If they're on the missing list please take a few moments to call your congressmembers to help drown out the voices of intolerance and ask that they consider co-sponsoring H.R. 1913.

This is our chance to secure federal protections for the LGBT community from vicious attacks and hate. But we've got to flood our legislators' inboxes and phone lines to make sure they hear our message loud and clear. There are some who are using this as litmus test to gauge how much political capital they can spend on ENDA, which will have much more determined right-wing opposition when it's introduced later this year.

Please take action now, then urge everyone you know to get in touch with their representatives.

No civil rights legislation passes without the CBC being on board. The Congressional Black Caucus isn't called the 'Conscience of the Congress' for nothing. Remind the members of that proud legacy when you ask them for their support.

TransGriot Note; Received an e-mail communication from NBJC's H. Alexander Robinson about the e-mail that went out. The folks that are listed under the co-sponsors actually SUPPORT the bill, but aren't co-sponsors of it yet. Post has been corrected to reflect the new information.


If you happen to see this bumper sticker on a car, you know it belongs to a Republican.

We are rapidly approaching 100 days since the January inauguration of President Obama. His term is a hit so far with the 69 million of us who voted for him and people around the world who celebrated his election.

As far as I'm concerned November 4 will forever be for me VC Day. (Victory over Conservatism day)

It's a hit with everybody except the 59 million peeps who voted for McPalin.

Baa, I'm mean waah. But then again both terms are apropos.

People, you lost, here's the proof and we didn't have to steal the election to beat you. It was a 365 to 173 electoral college blowout. So you peeps keep on hatin' while we keep cleaning up the toxic waste left over from the Bush misadministration.

Keep letting the batturd wing of your party speak for you. You're turning off moderates left, right and center with your racist and devoid of logic rhetoric. All we have to do is something you peeps never could get a handle on, govern the country.

Your white sheets are showing because the intelligent brother with the cute kids and the smart, beautiful wife is slaying stereotypes at every turn.

The prez is repairing our standing in the world as he promised during last year's campaign and cleaning up the economic mess Junior left him. He's making the majority of Americans who voted for him very happy after living in your wannabee theocratic dictatorship for the last eight years.

So keep on hatin' President Obama. He's done far more in the last 99 days than your boy did in eight years.

If he keeps it up, 1-20-13 will dawn with his November 2012 reelection to the office and President Obama prepping for his second inauguration.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Fighting Back Against Media Smears Of Transgender People

We have work to do in terms of getting respectful media coverage for Lateisha Green. The sooner she starts getting it the better chance Teish has of receiving justice.

Remember, potential jurors are being influenced by this drumbeat of disrespectful negative coverage.

First order of business is for you peeps in the Syracuse, NY area to call the local stations and RESPECTFULLY request that the stations follow the AP Stylebook Guidelines for reporting on transgender people. If you're not in the Syracuse area, you can do so as well, but local peeps do have more weight in this instance.

Remind them this is what the AP Stylebook states about covering transgender people:


Use the pronoun preferred by the individuals who have acquired the physical characteristics of the opposite sex or present themselves in a way that does not correspond with their sex at birth.

If that preference is not expressed, use the pronoun consistent with the way the individuals live publicly.

You can also e-mail GLAAD to report media smears as well.

The e-mail address to do so is and when you do so, make sure you include the following:

*Your name and email address
*The city and state you reside in
*Your phone number (optional)
*Date of the incident
*Detailed description of the incident (please include weblinks if possible)

The GLAAD Media Reference Guide is online as well and can be downloaded as a PDF.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Cosmo's Tripping About Sports Loving Women

I began chuckling when I read a commentary about a recent Cosmo article that echoed one I wrote in 2004 about the transgender community.

In that column I skewered members of the transgender community who would echo that same tired meme of 'feminine women aren't sports fans'.

It mirrored a December issue of Cosmo in which the so called male guru tried to say that a woman who likes watching sports would be single the rest of her life.

Yo Cosmo, join the rest of us in the 21st Century. There are women who like watching sports and not just because their boyfriends or husbands are playing on the team. One of my exes before I transitioned used to win drinks in clubs from guys because they foolishly underestimated the depth of her sports trivia knowledge.

I used to have a CAL coworker named Lucy Schroeder who was a rabid sports fan. We spent break times and dead time on flights we worked together talking about various sports, the Comets and her beloved Dallas Cowboys.

In the interest of full journalistic disclosure, for the record, I can't stand the Irving, oops Arlington Cowchips.

When I read this BS I also thought about UK superfan Ashley Judd. She's got floor seats at Rupp Arena to watch her beloved Wildcats.

She's such a devoted University of Kentucky sports fan that when the hockey team made a promotional poster to raise money for the program, it included a picture of her in a UK hockey jersey. When Ashley isn't making a movie and it's college basketball season, you can bet she's watching her beloved Wildcats playing ball and screaming at the SEC refs at the top of her lungs whenever they make a boneheaded call.

And like many Texas women, Eva Longoria Parker not only loves football, she was a basketball fan before she met and married some point guard for the San Antonio Spurs.

Holly Robinson Peete not only is a huge NFL football fan, she wrote a book about it to help women understand and enjoy the game. Peeps who teach the courses to supposedly help women understand the game quickly discover that women football fans are far more savvy about it than they are given credit for being and ask some sophisticated questions far in excess of their male counterparts.

Don't even get me started about the legions of women who watch NASCAR events, collegiate sports on both the men's and women's sides, NBA and WNBA basketball, are baseball fans, et cetera.

Some of them not only are fashionably attired sometimes when they do attend these games, some even happen to be married.

But don't hate if some of these women know more about sports trivia or in game strategy than some of you red blooded males do.

Dwight DeLee Trial To Start June 11

Now that Allen Andrade is rotting in jail for the rest of his life, it's now time for the transgender community's attention to focus on the other alleged murderer facing hate crimes charges for killing a transwoman.

"The decision to prosecute Lateisha's murder as a hate crime sends a clear message that targeting transgender people for violence will not be tolerated," TLDEF executive director Michael Silverman said. "Lateisha’s senseless death demonstrates the increased risk of violence transgender people face, but we are hopeful that justice will be done, and that the outcome will help prevent future violence against transgender people."

20 year old Dwight DeLee of Syracuse pleaded not guilty in Onondaga County Court to charges of second-degree murder and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon in the November 14, 2008 shooting death of Lateisha Green at a house party.

Her untimely death occurred just as the worldwide transgender community was beginning to gather together for our annual Remembering Our Dead commemorations.

22 year old Lateisha was transitioning at the time of her death.

Note to Syracuse, NY media peeps: y'all really need to read the AP Stylebook, GLAAD Media Reference Guide and the NCAVP guidelines for reporting on transgender people.

So far the local Syracuse media is failing miserably in terms of respectful coverage of Lateisha. They are consistently using her old name and there's rampant usage of incorrect pronouns.

DeLee is being held at the County Justice Center jail with no bail, and the DeLee family is already trying to sow the seeds for the 'trans panic' defense and garner sympathy for him.

Never mind the fact that Green's family not only lost a child to this senseless murder, her brother Mark Cannon was shot in the same incident as well.

Roxanne Green, stated at the time the decision was made to prosecute this case as a hate crime. "I am grateful that Teish's death will not be in vain, and that it will be prosecuted as a hate crime, which it was."

"It took a long time for Teish to live her life openly and proudly. When she finally stood up and began living as who she was, she was taken away from me. I can't understand how anyone can hate someone so much because of who they are, and I hope that no other mother has to mourn a child killed because of who she was. I hope that justice will be done."

If DeLee is convicted, he faces 25 years to life in prison, and like Allen Andrade, has a prior criminal history as well.

The New York City based Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund is assisting Green's family, and hopefully these reprehensible tactics will massively fail in a much larger college town like Syracuse, NY just as it did in Greeley, CO.

We're Not The Only Peeps Holding Transgender Conferences

One of the things I talk about here on TransGriot are the various transgender conferences we have here in the States such as Southern Comfort,, the IFGE Conference and Colorado Gold Rush and what transpired at them for the folks that couldn't attend.

They have been invaluable in helping transpeople in the United States get organized as a national level community over the last 20 years. We get to spend a few days gathered in a locale sharing information, getting connected, forming friendships and networking with other activists.

The experiences I had at SCC and IFGE conferences in 1999 and 2000 were so critical to my development as a national activist I saw the need to have the same type of event available for people of color. I helped organize a group of African American transpeople to form our own conference called Transsistahs-Transbrothas in 2005-2006.

I'm happy to see that our transbrothers and transsisters in other parts of the world are doing the same thing in order to coordinate their efforts, and get organized on a national, regional and sometimes international scale.

Whether it's events like the 2007 Pan African one in Johannesburg, SA or the growth of Gender DynamiX as a strong voice for transpeople in South Africa and the African continent, gatherings such as the European Transgender Council event in Berlin last year, the education efforts by STRAP in the Philippines or the upcoming national conference sponsored by Agender that will be held Queen's Birthday weekend May 29-31 in New Zealand's capital of Wellington, these events are valuable for building community, networking, strategic planning, and educating allies and supporters about our lives.

With report after report by various international organizations detailing just how marginalized we are and how much work we have to do to change that, these conferences are vital pieces of the organizational puzzle.

They are so important to transgender community organizing efforts that serious thought needs to go into making these events affordable. There are people who would love to be there for them, but finances won't allow them to participate. It's something I've griped about that's a problem for the large transgender conferences here in the States and I hope that mistake isn't being replicated elsewhere.

Our enemies who make up the Forces of Intolerance are networking, plotting, planning and coordinating their efforts as we do the same. We must ensure the message gets out no matter what part of the planet we inhabit that transpeople are human beings, too.

One day I hope I'll get the opportunity to deliver that message in person at your various local conferences around the world.

Renee Won!

Congratulations to my podcast partner Renee at Womanist Musings! She was a double winner in the 2009 Canadian F-word Blog Awards.

See, Renee. Told ya your hard work would be recognized. ;)

She won in the Best Political Blog and Best Feminist Blog: Oh Canada! Categories. To me it's even cooler because it's recognition from her countrypeeps.

If I had a Timmy's nearby I'd grab a few doughnuts, some coffee and toast you with it.

But alas, the closest one to me is three hours drive time in Columbus, OH so I'll have to hit my local Krispy Kreme instead.

Congrats, sis. It's just the first batch of many awards headed your way for your quality writing on Womanist Musings and it only took you a year to start getting them.


Transgeneration is a 2005 documentary by filmmaker Jeremy Simmons that spent a year following the lives of transgender students Gabbi, Raci, Lucas and TJ. It was interesting to watch them define who they are and take control of their gender identity and their lives, and was a little bittersweet for me personally.

It was so popular they were reunited at in April 2006 for the GLAAD Media Awards in which thi film was nominated for Best Documentary

I need to add this documentary to my own personal DVD collection.