Friday, November 30, 2012

Who Will Win The 2012 Shut Up Fool of the Year Award?

When I'm traveling the country or out and about in the community, one of the things that my readers consistently tell me is they love my weekly Shut Up Fool Awards.

And now that the calendar page is about to turn to December, time for me and you TransGriot readers to think about who will get the 2012 Shut Up Fool of the Year Award.

Every New Year's Eve since 2009 I've given that award to the fool , fool or group of fools who have shown consistent jaw dropping ignorance and mind numbing stupidity for that calendar year.

The inaugural 2009 award went to then RNC chair Michael Steele.  In 2010 it went to Sarah Palin and in 2011 Herman Cain snagged the honor over some stiff competition.

Who will earn it this year?   Will it be (hallelujah) former Rep. Allen West?   Mitt Romney?   Rep. Michele Bachmann?  Former Rep. Joe Walsh?  Rush Limbaugh?  Rep Paul Ryan?  Rep Louie Gohmert?  Gov. Rick Scott (R-FL)?   Gov Jan Brewer (R-AZ)?    Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX)?  Or will it be a group award for the first time for Fox Noise?  The Republican Party?   The Romney Campaign Team?

Nominations are open until December 26 for the 2012 Shut Up Fool of the Year .  

Sage Smith Case- Police Want To Chat With Erik McFadden

While there's unfortunately still no word about Sage Smith and her family has yet to hear from her a week after being reported missing, there is some news in this case.  The Charlottesville, VA police have a person they wish to talk to that may shed light on what happened to her.

21 year old Erik Tyquan McFadden was the last person she talked to on her cell phone the day she went missing on November 20.  According to McFadden's Facebook page he is a student at Lincoln University in Pennsylvania. 

The Charlottesville police spoke to McFadden, who admitted he did talk to her, they were supposed to meet on that day but according to him it never happened.

Since that conversation with the po-po's occurred McFadden is believed to have left the area and his whereabouts are unknown.  Police want to talk to him again, but as of this writing have not issued a warrant for his arrest nor have they named him as a person of interest in this case.

The Smith family, friends and supporters held a candlelight vigil Wednesday for Sage at Lee Park according to local media and asked for anyone who had information in this case to come forward.   A Facebook page has also been created for that purpose as well.

If I hear any information or important updates concerning the ongoing Sage Smith case, I will pass it along to you TransGriot readers as fast as I receive it.

Shut Up Fool Awards- I Love The Houston Dynamo Edition

MLS Cup 2012 happens tomorrow in Carson, CA at the Home Depot Center and for the second consecutive year it features our orange clad football team playing in it against the LA Galaxy.  

Hoping there's a better ending for the Dynamo in this championship game than MLS Cup 2011 and David Beckham goes home disappointed in his last MLS game.  Have a better shot this year of making that happen with Brad Davis back in our lineup and one of the best goalkeepers in MLS in Tally Hall.

So we'll find out on Saturday if there will be another championship parade and celebration on the steps of City Hall.   But one thing you loyal TransGriot readers won't have to wait for is finding out what fool, fools or group of fools won this week's Shut Up Fool Award.

And just a reminder, the 2012 Shut Up Fool Of The Year will be announced on December 31, so get those nominations as to who you think was the biggest fool this year in to me by December 26.

Moving on to this week.

Honorable mention number one is a shared group award for GOP Senators Kelly Ayotte (NH) , Susan Collins (ME), Bob Corker (TN), Lindsey Graham (SC) and John McCain (AZ) for their continued racist smear attacks on UN Ambassador Susan Rice.   

Y'all ain't slick.  We know the reason y'all are doing it is to force the POTUS to appoint Sen. John Kerry (D)  to create a senate vacancy that the defeated Scott Brown could attempt to fill in a special election.

Didn't y'all learn anything from opposing Elizabeth Warren's nomination last year?   Guess not. 

Honorable mention number two is Grover Norquist, who is seeing the iron grip he's had on the GOP no new taxes policy with his pledge slip away and he ain't liking it..

Honorable mention number three goes to Fox News fembot Gretchen Carlson who spent a little too much time at Rep. Michele Bachmann's knee as a child. (Bachmann was Gretchen's babysitter)   Carlson and Fox Noise have once again launched their faux 'War On Christmas'  

This week's winner is Rep Louie Gohmert, (R-TX) who I'm sorry to say is from my home state and 182,000 East Texas idiots reelected to Congress for two more years.   Louie is one of my contenders for 2012 Shut Up Fool Of The Year, and he has his own batturd crazy conspiracy theory about what transpired in Libya.

"This administration sent planes and bombs and support to oust Qaddafi so that al-Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood could take over Libya."  

No idiot, President Obama sent them to forestall a looming massacre in Misrata.  And guess you forgot it's his admninsttion that not only got Osama bin Laden but 28 of the 30 leaders in al-Qaeda

Dayum, first it was 'terror babies', then allowing gay servicemembers would be a threat to the survival of the US, then it was jumping on the crazy train with Michele Bachmann and accusing Huma Abedin of being a member of the Muslim Brotherhood.

What next to secure your candidacy for 2012 Shut Up Fool of the Year?  Next you'll be ranting about your precious bodily fluids.

Rep. Louie Gohmert, Shut up fool! 


Ugandan Trans Woman's Open Letter To Parliament

TransGriot Note: As a transgender child of the African Diaspora, this 'Kill the Gays' bill is my business as well.  I'm sad and disgusted to say it was pushed by white American christobigots and does affect trans people who live in Uganda.  A Ugandan trans woman wrote this letter asking her members of Parliament to reject the so-called "kill the gays" bill.

Dear Honorables,

I greet you all in your distinguished capacities. I have never even for a second thought that I would ever have to write a letter to parliament, that my words would even have to be read by a people as you. I find myself, though, at a point in my life, where fate — if you believe in it — has bestowed upon me this duty to speak for the many voiceless out there, who like myself, find themselves at a point where your decision will determine if they will get to take another breath in this country, as free citizens or not. I pray then, that my words may not be in vain, but that they may appeal to that humanity that I know lies at the core of each of you.

I go by the alias of Cleo. I am a 26-year-old transgendered person. With my ambitious persona and insatiable thirst for knowledge, I’ve managed to see myself through school to the post-graduate level. I am a public worker, a scientist and a researcher to be specific, and earn an honest living from that. I am a Pentecostal Christian, loving God, though with my liberalist and realist values, I respect other people’s sentiments, however divergent they are from my own.

I was born a biologically male child to two very loving parents, Batooro by decent. Despite the love and care that they bestowed upon me, my childhood was tainted with a lot of misery. Being a transgender person, with my atypical behavior, and dress code that seemed to clash terribly with the stereotypical gender requirements of my society, I was faced with a lot of rejection from friends and family alike.

My family and friends have — with time and a lot of patience and struggle — come to understand my situation and not to judge me. A few months ago, when I made a monumental decision to fully transition into a girl, they have shown me so much affection and support, especially psychologically. For me, I consider this [one of] the biggest successes in my life; That my family and friends, despite our divergent values and their earlier negative sentiments, have finally managed, through a very strenuous process — that I should say, was not without wounds and tears — to understand and accept me, as a person, as their child, as their friend, as their sibling. Because that is the basic essence of what brings us together.

Being a transgendered person is not about who I am attracted to sexually. It's about what gender I identify with. Being a trans girl means that I was born biologically male, but with the physiology and psychology of a girl. At puberty I experienced a male, but largely female, pubertal development that left me very confused and rejected in all my social circles, for I was the black sheep. My parents did not know whether to protect me from boys or girls, but finally it so happened that I was brought up in a girls’ hostel up to the age of 15.
Growing up a transgender person meant that I had to deal with my teenage burdens alone with not a soul to tell — not my parents or peers or siblings — to disclose my darkest secrets. To cry myself to sleep every night, wishing I was dead, to battle with depression and suicidal tendencies — that’s all I remember in my teenage life.

I wonder then, why people say it was my choice to be this way. Why would anyone choose a life as lonely as this, a life of misery, pain, rejection, abuse and depression? And though I made it, many haven’t, because their self-esteem, their confidence, and their vitality, fails them in light of all the negativities that surround them. It’s hardly the disgustingly abusive world that the media paints of us, for if there is any abuse sustained even then by any party, it’s by us.

I ask myself, how one can judge me, before one even knows me. I understand this though, because for so long I was hated by people before they even knew me.

Being transgender, like being gay or a lesbian, is not a choice. What is rather a choice is accepting it for a fact. What is a choice is if you — at some point in life —decide to not live a masked life, under the guise of a straight, or asexual person like I did, and restrain yourself, from everything that you know you are from the core of your being.

It is very hard living your life through other people’s eyes; trying hard to make them happy while you restrain yourself of who you are, or even demonize your actual being because of their negativities. It's a strange reality that I can loosely liken to solitude in a crowd, for even though there were so many people around me, none of them knew me for who I was — for I deliberately concealed a part of me that I considered a flaw to my being.

At some point though, I realized, just like everyone does in life, that I could not live entirely on other people’s perceptions of who I was, battling to make other people happy at my own life’s expense. For we all have but one life to live. I came to the realization that I alone knew better who I was, and that I had a rare opportunity to let people know who I was, and not let them tell me who I was. It had been a sad existence of existing, but not quite living, of living a lie, trying to convince myself —and ultimately others — what I was, what I wasn’t, and I was determined to end that cycle.

As a transgender person, I envision a utopia of gender neutrality, where all the genders in all their entireties are able to coexist together, and live in utter harmony and mutual respect of one another. So that, if not to accept, they might tolerate each other, just like we have tried to do as people of different tribes, colors, religions, value systems and races; it’s the measure of our maturity as a civilization.

I believe then, that in the same regard that all diversities — racial, tribal, religious, sexual, and gender alike — instead of being criminalized and demonized, should be celebrated and empowered, so that rather than to condemn a sect of a few people to social redundancy, all the human resource that Uganda boasts of can be fully tapped.

Let’s not then condemn ourselves, so that when people in the future look back at us, they will do so, just like we do at our ancestors, and exclaim how inhuman and selfish they were to disregard the existence of a few people because of their color and race. Gender diversity and sexual orientation is no premise to crucify someone, just because you do not agree with how someone dresses, what they act like, or who they sleep with.

What then, I ask myself, are we teaching the future generations? Morality even at the expense of life? Morality in the eyes of a few self-righteous people? That all people aren’t the same, if they are different? That it is okay to be selfish?

But being transgender — as much as it is my gender identity — does not holistically define who I am.
As people, like facets of a gem, we are complex in our ambitions and aspirations. We are unique in our personalities, talents, and value systems. It is these things in their entirety, but none of them in unison of others that defines us. The binary reductionist paradigm of looking at life as being either black or white — rather than as a continuum of several shades — fails to address the issues of life as it is. I am only different because I am transgender, but other than that, I am human, with red blood coursing through my veins just like you, with family and friends that care for me deeply, with personal sentiments and feeling like you do. I cry and laugh like you do, but I cannot be reduced and labeled as transgender, as an item on a supermarket stall, because that’s not all I am. As a person, I am more than that.

Being transgender and having been rejected most of my life has taught serenity in the storm. It has taught perseverance, even when the storm wails on. It has taught me to respect other people despite their differences, and has taught me to be patient. It has taught me that life is not about being perfect, because in our flaws, in all our insecurities and in our inadequacies, we all have something to offer on the table. And that we are meant, as humans, to shine together, but not in solitude. And that we must help our brothers and sisters to shine, but not to trample upon them. To exist and live together, that is what humanity was meant for. For no man or woman is an island. For alone we burn out, and fail, but together we flourish. 
Finally, we must not forget our ultimate calling and obligation. For by virtue of our humanity, we ought to love others like we love ourselves, and treat them with the same delicacy and sensitivity that we wish be accorded us.

I pray then, that in your deliberations, by the power vested in you, you may not forget our concerns — as humans, as Ugandans, as your brothers, sisters, mother and fathers.

With respect,
Cleo. K.

Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson Debunks 2012 Mayan Doomsday Prediction

For those of you running around 'scurred' because December 21 is rapidly approaching and it's alleged that the Mayan calendar predicts it will be the last day of Planet Earth as we know it, peep this answer to a question about that very subject by astrophysicist Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson.

Before we segue to the video and Dr Tyson, some food for thought for you peeps thinking December 21 will be the planet's last day.  

One, you're raising the anxiety of the younglings with that kind of chatter. 

I can also point out numerous examples in my lifetime of so-called end of the world predictions exculing the religous based ones that were supposed to happen.  Back in 1997 we were supposed to be according to Nostradamus in the throes of World War III.  Let's not forget Y2K and the calendar flipping to January 1, 2000 that was supposed to wreak havoc on our computer systems.   Then there were the 1982 and May 5, 2000 Grand Conjunction in which the planets aligning was supposed to cause major drama for Planet Earth on those dates.

And yeah, NASA has commented about the subject as well..

But I like what Dr. Tyson had to say.    And yeah, I'm planning to have Christmas dinner at my mom's house and looking forward to the January 21, 2013 second inauguration of President Barack Obama.

Take it away Dr. Tyson.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

2012 TransGriot NFL Picks-Week 13

The 2012 NFL regular season is three quarters completed. In the final weeks we will have the AFC and NFC division leaders trying to nail those titles down and jockey for top seeds in their conferences while others will make their last push just to get into the playoffs.  

Once you get to the playoffs, anything can happen and you could get hot enough to earn that trip to New Orleans and be hoisting the Vince Lombardi Trophy in February.   Ask the New York Giants about that.

Then there are the also rans and hard luck teams who will be competing to see who gets the number one pick in the 2013 NFL draft.

My hometown NFL ballers are 10-1, are having their best season in franchise history and despite battling injuries on the defensive side are in good shape to have home field throughout the AFC playoffs.  But some challenging games remain on their schedule that include one huge one against the New England Patriots, three remaining AFC South Division games starting with the Traitors this weekend, a home and away series with the Indianapolis Colts and the last NFC North game with the Vikings.

Speaking of challenges, Mr Watts has creeped up on me to the point where my once formidable seven game lead is down to one game with four weeks to go in the regular season.  I didn't help the situation by not following my instincts in the Cowboys-Redskins game.   Got to do better than the 8-8 I had in Week 12 because I know Mike is going to have another bad week before this season ends.

Let's see if it's this week.  Mike's picks are here.   Mine are in underlined bold print

Week 12 records 
TransGriot  8-8
Mike Watts 10-6

2012 Season Records
TransGriot  113-62-1
Mike Watts 112-63-1

Week 13

Thursday, November 29
Saints at Falcons

Sunday, December 2
Seahawks at Bears
Vikings at Packers
49ers at Rams
Cardinals at Jets
Panthers at Chiefs
Colts at Lions
Jaguars at Bills
Patriots at Dolphins
Texans at Titans

Sunday Afternoon
Buccaneers at Broncos
Steelers at Ravens
Browns at Raiders
Bengals at Chargers

Sunday Night

Eagles at Cowboys

Monday, December 3
Giants at Redskins

Search For Missing Virginia Trans Teen

One of our young transsisters is missing in the Charlottesville,VA area.  The local police and the family of Sage Smith is asking for help in finding her.

The 19 year old has been missing since November 20 when she was supposed to be meeting a man on a date and missed a planned Thanksgiving dinner with her mother..

Sage was seen around 5:00-5:30 PM EST on that date by a friend in the 500 block of West Main Street in Charlottesville. The 5 foot 8 Smith was last seen wearing a black jacket, dark-gray sweatpants, a black scarf and gray boots, police said.

If you have any info, please call the Charlottesville VA Police Department at 434-977-4000

Let's hope and pray Sage's family gets an early Christmas present this year with their child's safe return to their lives and it happens before her 20th birthday on December 13.

BSG Blood And Chrome Episodes 5 And 6

For all you Battlestar Galactica fans.  Sorry I'm just getting around to posting last Friday's webisodes for BSG Blood and Chrome.   Hope SyFy is considering making this a weekly series. . 

Loving this so far..

The Cheapness Of A Black Life

'Guns and Coffee' photo (c) 2011, John Fischer - license:
I was going to comment on the latest infuriating instance of somebody 'standing their ground' and it ending up with another Black teenage kid dying, but Renee of Womanist Musings beat me to it.   This post of hers is definitely getting signal boosted.

As the mother of two Black sons, I would be lying if I told you that there aren't nights when I lie awake worried about their future.  I know that this is something all loving parents experience, but how many White parents of White children worry that their child will be perceived of as a threat and summarily shot? The only thing that eases my worries is the fact that we are Canadian and have much stricter gun control laws. The following story really struck a chord with me.
Michael David Dunn, 45, and his girlfriend were in Jacksonville Friday for Dunn's son's wedding when they stopped at a convenience store, Jacksonville sheriff's Lt. Rob Schoonover said.

Jordan Russell Davis, 17, and several other teenagers were sitting in a sport utility vehicle in the parking lot when Dunn pulled up next to them in a car and asked them to turn down their music, Schoonover said.

Jordan and Dunn exchanged words, and Dunn pulled a gun and shot eight or nine times, striking Jordan twice, Schoonover said. Jordan was sitting in the back seat. No one else was hurt.

Dunn's attorney Monday said her client acted responsibly and in self-defense. She did not elaborate.  (source)
Tell me again that all people are equal.  This confrontation started over loud music and it ended in the death of a 17 year old boy.  Of course Dunn felt threatened, he was after all in a confrontation with Black male youths and the message has been sent repeatedly that not only is Black life cheap, but that Black males are always violent and a threat to Whiteness.

Despite the medias constant presentation of the supposed Black male threat, there is nothing more terrifying than an angry armed White man.  Our children are dying in droves and reading stories like this has become a common occurrence, yet the myth of the violent murdering Black male continues to persist.  In fact, the more threatened White supremacy has become by the changing population demographics, the more violent it has become.  White male violence is glorified and deemed heroic, while men of colour are criminalized and deemed a threat to a safe society. This can be especially seen in the dystopian genre, where White men are often cast as all that is standing between humanity and destruction.  We are meant to see White men as the great savior and be thankful for their heroism, even as people of colour die in ridiculous numbers.

Guns and Whiteness are a recipe for Black death.  There can be no question if we look at the history of race relations since the first Black person set foot in the global north, Whiteness has murdered and raped with pure abandon, all while hiding behind the supposed barrier of protecting and civilizing the world. It is not logical to believe for one moment that Blackness represents a threat. 

I don't want to hear the bullshit about how we all bleed the same red blood, when the blood that is being spilled is Black.  I don't want to hear about how there is good and bad in every race, when Blackness is being criminalized and demonized everyday. Ridiculous euphemisms are not going to solve the problem and denying that the combination of Whiteness and guns are deadly, is only further minimizing the ongoing death and violence.

No matter how far we have come, Black life is still cheap and continues to be devalued by the inflation and elevation of Whiteness. As a Black mother, this is more than evident to me.  I often think about the history of Black mothers crying bitter salty tears and the line of coffins holding our loved ones. If anyone has a right to be angry and afraid, it is most certainly not the bitter, racist and entitled White men, who continue to commit these crimes against the very heart of our communities. The racist, angry White male has got to die, so that our children may live.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

$500 Million Powerball Musings

Texas is a Powerball state and like I did when the Megamillions jackpot hit that then record jackpot in  January 2011 I bought one ticket just to be in it to possibly win it.

The $500 million Powerball one could possibly be even higher by the time they draw the numbers for the jackpot at 10 PM  CST.   If you're thinking about buying a ticket, sales are cut off one hour before the drawing time.

If I were so lucky to win it, here's what would happen to Moni if I heard the news that the only winning ticket was purchased in H-town.    First up is all you friends and family peeps who didn't know me (or care to know me) prior to November 28, don't even bother trying to get to know a trans sistah.  

I'd be up bright and early the next morning hiring a good tax attorney, changing my phone number and making preparation for that trip to Austin to claim it.  

In the fine print of the Powerball ticket you’ll note that you only get the full $500 million if you match all six balls and you agree to take the payout in 30 inflation adjusted payments over 29 years.   Moni's taking all the money now so that means an adjusted $327.4 million payout.

That would still be a record jackpot amount for a single person.   I'd have to pay (and wouldn't gripe about it unlike you Republicans) the 35% federal taxes on that amount.  However since I live in Texas, I wouldn't have to pay any state income tax on that money.

That would leave me with about $213 million, and I'd be 'sliiiiding' some of it to Edenside Christian (my old church in Louisville) some peeps who helped me out (and who know who they are) when I was down on my luck, some family members and organizations and groups that prioritize helping trans people out.  

So yes, National Black Justice Coalition and Trans Persons Of Color Coalition, y'all would be the first organizations to get a call and a check from Moni. 

I'd blow $1 million just because and to get any wild spending spree out of my system.  There are a few shoe stores and clothing outlets that would see my statuesque behind in them, and a trip to Canada to visit a certain womanist mommy blogger would rapidly happen.  

Then I'd be make sure I'd have the bulk of my newfound millions invested wisely so I can live off the interest from it.  I have no desire to repeat the mistakes of far too many lotto winners who frivolously blew their windfall.   

Yeah, yeah, I know the odds.  But dropping $2 on a Powerball ticket and being blessed enough to have the correct five numbers plus a powerball would definitely be a life and bank account changing event, so why not?

And yeah, a TransGriot can dream a little bit can't she?

TransGriot Update:  White there were two people in the Houston area who received $1 million by matching 5 numbers but not the powerball, I wasn't one of them. My ticket was a dud this time

Diamond Stylz Chats With A Trans-Attracted Man

Y'all know I love the video blog of my Houston homegirl Diamond Stylz because she not only has her own definite opinions about a wide variety of subjects, she tackles some interesting topics as well.

One of the highlights of the 2012 Trans Faith In Color Conference for me was finally getting to meet her.  I still chuckle about the fact that despite us living in the same town, that was the first opportunity we had to meet each other.  And Diamond, still haven't forgotten I owe you a video interview.

But moving on to the gist of this post.

If you've ever wondered what's up with the cismen who love us, you'll want to catch this latest episode of Diamond's video blog as she interviews one of the brothers who love us and why.


And when you're done viewing this one, you may wish to peruse some of the other topics Diamond has tackled in previous video offerings.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Marsha P. Johnson Case Being Reopened

Marsha P. Johnson was one of our trailblazing trans women as a Stonewall veteran, activist and a co-founder of Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR) with Sylvia Rivera.   Her body was found floating in the Hudson River near the Chelsea Piers after the 1992 Pride March. 

The NYPD controversially ruled her death as a suicide over the objections of friends and supporters who emphatically stated she was not suicidal.

It was also anecdotally reported that Marsha was harassed near the spot where her body as later found.

Anyone in the trans community could have told them there is more to the story of any transperson's death, especially in light of the fact we face horrific levels of anti-trans violence aimed at us.  When you are dealing with the death of any transwoman found under mysterious circumstances as Marsha was then, those foul play angles need to be looked at until they can definitively be ruled out   

According to the Village Voice, thanks to the efforts of trans activist Mariah Lopez, the trans daughter of the late Sylvia Rivera,  the Manhattan DA's office has assigned a person to look into the case of Marsha P. Johnson and find out what really happened to her.  

Lopez believes as Sylvia Rivera did at the time that Marsha was murdered.  Lopez is also working to gather support for getting a permanent memorial statue of Marsha placed near the Chelsea Pier.

Granted it's 20 years later, the evidence and trail has grown cold, but it's worth it to definitively know what really happened to Marsha and the sequence of events that led to her untimely death.

Being Considered Beautiful Is A Trans Human Rights Strategy

In the feminist ranks I hear a lot of railing about the beauty standard that women are judged by.  Far too often that chatter is coming from the vanillacentric privileged wielding women who the system was designed to benefit.  We had an example of that recently from Oxford University student Alice Robb who complained that President Obama calling his daughters strong, smart and beautiful like their mother 'stung her'.

Easy to say that problematic bull feces when the beauty standard is designed to make women who look like you the default setting for what society considers attractive.

I submit that if the trans community is going to accomplish our stated goal of making the TDOR irrelevant, what has to happen is to make it untenable for society to easily dehumanize us.   When people are dehumanized, they are considered irrelevant and disposable by that society, and that leads to the slippery slope of genocidal levels of mayhem and violence aimed at them.

As the trans human rights push gains momentum, we will have to use all the tools in our civil rights toolbox in this fight to reduce anti-trans hate crimes committed against us and ensure that the perpetrators of them are punished. 

One of the things we trans women have to confront is the 'unwoman' meme. I believe the 'unwoman' meme aimed at trans women is one of the factors that fuels the anti-trans violence aimed at us, and it needs to be destroyed.  One of the methods in doing so will be thinking of being considered beautiful not as a detriment to womanhood but as a human rights strategy.  

We trans women have to deal with the reality that we live and interact with a world in which being attractive is considered an asset.  When I talk about being beautiful in this post, I'm not just talking about the physical aspect of it.  I'm talking about inside your mind and heart as well.

One of the strategies we African-Americans used during the civil rights movement in terms of battling the 'unwoman' meme aimed at our women and girls was to not only consistently reinforce the fact they are beautiful, but create the Miss Black America one to drive that message home at a time when we didn't have Black contestants in the predominately white Miss America and Miss Universe pageant systems.

The Miss Universal Queen pageant in Thailand, the Amazing Philippine Beauties one in Manila and the Miss Continental pageant system here in the States are ones specifically created for trans women.  There are also similar pageant systems create for African-American transwomen as well even though the compete, place and win in the Miss Continental ones.   

Now thanks to Jenna Talackova's fight, the Miss Universe system is open to trans women who have the desire to compete in them.  It remains to be seen if Miss America and the Miss World system will follow. .  

I believe that far from hatin' on the beautiful trans women among us, we need to be holding them up as examples.  We point to the world and say yes, trans women are beautiful, attractive, and given the opportunity can compete and possibly win a beauty contest in a head to head match up with a cis woman. 

When we acknowledge to ourselves that we are beautiful women in our own right, we own our power.

Being more determined not to allow others to denigrate our femininity and our beauty is also a way to deal with the shame, guilt and fear in our own ranks.   When we do so, we take pride in ourselves, have better self-esteem, stand up a little taller, are more confident as we deal with the world around us, will be less likely to engage in self-destructive behaviors and less likely to take crap from people.

We'll also experience the freeing of our minds and spirits the revelation that we are beautiful gives us.

So yes, we trans women need to consider being beautiful as a trans human rights strategy.        

Monday, November 26, 2012

Well Duh, GLAAD Review Finds Decade Of Trans Media Images Are Negative

I've been complaining on these electronic pages for years about the lack of positive media images when it comes to transpeople.  If you break it down still further and add race to it, those positive media images become even harder to find.

GLAAD recently conducted a review of the 102 episodes of trans inclusive non recurring characters in non scripted television show aired since 2002.

Not surprisingly to me GLAAD found that 54% of those shows were categorized as containing negative representations at the time of their airing. An additional 35% were categorized at ranging from "problematic" to "good," while only 12% were considered groundbreaking, fair and accurate enough to earn a GLAAD Media Award nomination.

GLAAD additionally discovered in their review:
  • Transgender characters were cast in a "victim" role at least 40% of the time.
  • Transgender characters were cast as killers or villains in at least 21% of the catalogued episodes and storylines.
  • The most common profession transgender characters were depicted as having was that of sex workers, which a fifth of all characters were depicted as (20%).
  • Anti-transgender slurs, language and dialogue was present in at least 61% of the catalogued episodes and storylines.
I'd be willing to bet if you broke the GLAAD decade long trans character show review down by race those numbers would be worse.

So what can we do to improve those numbers?   First order of business would be to make writers and producers of those shows aware of what they are putting out there that we believe is deleterious to our community.   

As we did as a community and with the help of allies when the dearly departed Work It desecrated the airwaves for its thankfully short run, we put pressure on the networks to get rid of the shows that don't meet that standard and make them aware of the ones that positively reflect on our community by supporting them.   

The ultimate solution would be to actually have trans people of all ethnicities writing said characters on those shows, trans actors to play those characters, and trans people producing and directing them.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Strange Fruit-Racial Divisions & The TDOR

As a former Louisville resident I've been keeping up with WFPL-FM's latest show Strange Fruit, hosted by Niece and Nephew. (AKA Dr. Kaila Story and Jaison Gardner to the rest of y'all).

They were discussing on this latest show their experience of attending the local Louisville TDOR, noting that the names of the people being memorialized were Black and Latina, but having an event that was overwhelmingly white.  

All thirteen of the US transwomen killed in the November 2011 to  November 2012 period that we tracked for TDOR were Black or Latina.

So guess who they called to discuss the nature of race and class in the trans community and who was happy to discuss it, especially in the wake of my own not so pleasant experience at this year's Houston TDOR?

Yep, the podcast is up for the latest edition of Strange Fruit and y'all can hear it by clicking on this link

2012 Cougar Watch-Final C-USA Football Game A Victorious One

It's been a roller coaster season for my fave college football squad    They started with a shocking opening day loss to Texas State, stumbled to an 0-3 start, began climbing out of that hole with a Bayou Bucket retaining win against Rice only to go on another three game losing streak as the injuries mounted to key players such as running back Charles Sims and quarterback David Piland.

The Cougars also had the life and death drama of senior cornerback DJ Hayden nearly dying on the practice field.  He tore his inferior vena cava vein during a collision and had to be helicoptered to Memorial Hermann Hospital for immediate emergency surgery.   That vein carries blood from the lower body to the heart and tears like that are 95% fatal.  That type of injury is usually seen in auto accidents but rarely reported on a football field. 

The final game at Robertson Stadium versus the Tulane Green Wave was memorable for many reasons. It was Senior Day and every member of the team wore DJ Hayden's name on their jerseys in tribute to him as he arrived on a cart.   It was the last game at Robertson Stadium, which is being torn down so the new stadium can be built at its site.

It was also the last football game the Cougars would play as a C-USA member.  UH is moving to the Big East in 2013, so they wanted to win this game for all those reasons since as a result of the twin three game losing streaks they weren't bowl eligible.

This game was also a microcosm of their season.  The Cougars got off to a fast 14-0 start, lost freshman RB Kenneth Farrow to a season ending injury in the second quarter but had freshman RB Ryan Jackson step up to rush for 129 yards and two TD's with one of them being a 72 yarder in the third quarter that pushed the Cougar lead to 27-10.   Tulane fought to close within 10 points twice before the Cougars put the game away. 

Fifth year senior QB Crawford Jones threw for 368 yards and two more TD's as UH beat the Green Wave 40-17 to finish the season 5-7 and 4-4 in C-USA West Division play

They also closed out their run at Robertson Stadium with a 72-44-1 record and when they play their home games in their first Big East season next year it will be at a different to be determined stadium before they open up their new on campus digs in September 2014.. 


Saturday, November 24, 2012

RIP Larry Hagman

Another one of our iconic Texans has passed on.  Actor Larry Hagman, who everyone remembers due his most famous character as JR Ewing for the CBS and rebooted TNT show Dallas, passed away of complications from throat cancer yesterday afternoon in Dallas.

The 81 year old actor was born in Weatherford, TX to actress Mary Martin and while many people remember him for playing the delightfully ruthless oil baron JR, there's another role people of my generation remember him for in addition to his roles on Broadway, and movies such as  Fail-Safe, Nixon and Primary Colors

He played astronaut Major Anthony Nelson on the sitcom I Dream Of Jeannie that ran on NBC from 1965-1970.

He recently reprised the role of JR Ewing in the TNT reboot of Dallas that started earlier this summer, was renewed and has completed shooting for its second season that will start January 28.

As to what that means for the rebooted Dallas is still yet to be determined, but we will all miss JR's larger than life presence on the show and the man who played him.

Rest in peace Larry.

Can My Transsisters FINALLY Get Some Love This Holiday Season?

While we had the vice president of the United States stating that trans rights are the civil rights issue of our times, with us being just 31 days from Christmas Day, all I'm asking for Christmas this year is the same thing I've been asking for since I wrote the original post in 2009 and repeated the call in 2011.

Can me and my transsisters get some love during this holiday season?  

It shouldn't be that hard to live up the Golden Rule for 31 days and treat us the way you wish to be treated, even if you have to plaster a fake smile on your face to do so.  But it seems as though every year we have people who get their holiday jollies on disrespecting us and making our lives as miserable as possible.

And in far too many cases, the haters are going too far and taking our lives.  In some cases the holiday drama we go through is enough to drive our more emotionally fragile peeps to consider taking their own lives.

I ask this simple question once again.  For the holiday season, can me and my transsistahs just be allowed to live our lives without additional drama?

Deep down, I suspect I already know what the answer to that question is going to be, but I had to try to plant the seed in your minds and get you to at least think about it.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Shut Up Fool Awards-Avoiding The Malls Edition

Thanksgiving 2012 is over and before we had a chance to let our holiday meals digest the Festival of Conspicuous Consumption was beginning.

While other peeps in H-town were watching the Uptown Houston Lighting Festival, others were camped out waiting for the after Turkey Day sales to commence.

When I worked for Macy's I endured my fair share of after Thanksgiving sales and watched people nearly get trampled in pursuit of bargains.

I'm not liking this latest trend retail stores are cranking up of opening either late on Thanksgiving Day or at midnight.   It's rare people in the retail biz get holidays off, so at least let them have Thanksgiving and Christmas to enjoy with their families 

But no, it's profits over people, so the employees had to tear themselves from their Thanksgiving holiday tables and head to work. 

Speaking of work, time to segue this into our usual Friday exercise of finding our fool, fools or group of fools who will earn the coveted TransGriot Shut Up Fool! Award for this week.  

I take time every week like I have since January 2009 to shine a bright spotlight on the ignorance and rank stupidity in our world, so let's get started carving up some jive turkeys who deserve it.

Let's get right to it.  I'm carving up a pair of turkeys for this week's Shut Up Fool Award in Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC).  

They have been the point fools in the racist smear campaign aimed at UN Ambassador Susan L. Rice in the failed GOP and Right Wing Noise machine attempt to scapegoat her for the Benghazi consulate attack.

The racist and sexist attacks on her caused outrage among Democratic female legislators and CBC legislators such as Rep Marcia Fudge (D-OH) and Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) 

Never mind the fact that the Republicans cut the State Department's budget funding for security, and the UN Ambassador doesn't have responsibility for embassy and consular security.

The conservafools and the not so dynamic duo are trying to smear her in the attenpt in their vanillacentric privileged minds to keep her from getting the Secretary of State nomination.   They wish to force President Obama to name Sen Joh Kerry (D-MA) for the job and cause a special election to be held in Massachusetts that would open the door to the defeated Scott Brown to run for the Senate again.

They have trashed her intelligence, and played into a long pattern of attacking top African-Americans in the Obama administration going back to Van Jones.

All together now gang. Sens McCain and Graham, shut up fools!

2012 Texans Watch-Giving Thanks For Another OT Win

The Detroit Lions have been playing NFL games on Turkey Day ever since 1934 while this was the first ever in Houston Texans franchise history.

The Lions came into this one with a 4-6 record and a decade long losing streak in Thanksgiving Day NFL tilts while the Texans walked into Ford Field with an NFL best 9-1 record. 

But the Lions gave them a fight in a wild game with some controversial plays.  Texans fans aren't liking the first quarter play in which NFL bad boy Ndamukong Suh's foot connected with Matt Schaub's groin after being taken down by a Texans offensive lineman or the 21-14 halftime deficit our boys wearing the liberty white road uniforms found themselves in. .

But the play that ruined Detroit area Thanksgiving dinners was in the third quarter.  Justin Forsett was tackled by two Lions players on a run and was clearly down at the 50 yard line as the replays showed.  But Forsett didn't hear the whistle, got up and sprinted the rest of the way to the end zone for an 81 yard TD that narrowed the Texan deficit to 24-21.

The scoring play would have been automatically reviewed and probably taken off the board but an incensed Detroit coach Jim Schwartz threw his challenge flag on the field.  That negated the auto review, allowed the Texan TD to stand and earned a 15 yard unsportmanlike conduct penalty for the Lions on top of it.     

The Texans made them pay for that critical mistake by eventually driving 97 yards and scoring the tying Arian Foster TD with 1:55 left in the game. 

After a Jason Hansen 47 yard field goal attempt to win the game in overtime and get their coach off the hook clanked off the right upright and dropped back to the Ford Field turf, with 2:20 left in overtime Texans kicker Shayne Graham hit the field goal to win the game. 

For all you Detroit fans complaining about the call, your team had opportunities to win the game.  Considering some of the jacked up calls and bad breaks that have cost Houston NFL teams games in the past, I prefer to think of it as the NFL karmic wheel bending toward football justice for long suffering Houston NFL football fans.

That wild OT win sent the Texans to 10-1, kept them a spotless 5-0 on the road, and if a few teams lose on Sunday the Texans could clinch a playoff spot by the time they head to Nashville to take on the Tennessee Traitors on December 2.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

2012 TransGriot NFL Picks-Week 12

Gobble Gobble and Happy Thanksgiving Day TransGriot readers!  

This is a historic day for my hometown NFL ballers as it will be the first time in franchise history they have ever played on Turkey Day and it ain't at Jerryworld.

The Texans tangle with the Detroit Lions later today at 11 AM CST and seek to go 10-1 on the season 

The Cowboys take on the Redskins at 3 PM and the Jets host the Patriots in the evening game.

I went 12-2 during Week 11 while Mr Watts was 13-1.  Gee thanks Chicago defense for not showing up Monday night and allowing him to cut my lead over him to just 3 games.   This holiday weekend all 32 NFL teams are in action, so we'll have 16 games to pick as our prognostication contest has five weeks to go and my lead over him is down .

Y'all know the drill.  Mike's picks are here while mine are in underlined bold print

Week 11 records 
TransGriot  12-2
Mike Watts 13-1

2012 Season Records
TransGriot  105-54-1
Mike Watts 102-57-1

Week 12

Thursday, November 22
Texans at Lions
Redskins at Cowboys
Patriots at Jets

Sunday, November 25
Raiders at Bengals
Steelers at Browns
Bills at Colts
Titans at Jaguars
Broncos at Chiefs
Vikings at Bears
Falcons at Buccaneers
Seahawks at Dolphins

Sunday Afternoon
Ravens at Chargers
49ers at Saints
Rams at Cardinals

Sunday Night Game
Packers at Giants

Monday, November 26
Panthers at Eagles

Happy Thanksgiving 2012

Happy Thanksgiving TransGriot readers!   My Canadian readers back in October got their grub on, and now it's time for me and my TransGriot readers in the States to do the same thing. 

We liberal progressives (and the trans community) are already giving thanks (along with the rest of the planet) to the fact we will have President Barack Obama leading our nation until 2017. 

Say a prayer for the trans folks in our community who are estranged from their family.   To you transpeople in that situation, make lemonade out of that lemon situation.  Find the people that love and unconditionally care about you,  make them your chosen family and start your own holiday traditions until your blood family come to their senses.

While I've had an up and down year personally, I do have a lot to be thankful for including having a roof over my head, friends and family in my life, being relatively healthy, making it to my 50th birthday a few months ago and several invitations to enjoy Thanksgiving hospitality.

I'm planning on taking the day off from blogging, getting my grub on, watching my Texans play the Detroit Lions in the AM NFL Turkey Day game and hatin' on the Cowchips in the midday one.

Hey, I'm a Houstonian.  We live for watching Dallas teams lose. 

If something moves me to write, you may see a post today besides my weekly NFL picks one.  Otherwise it's back to the normal posting schedule Friday including what turkeys I'm going to carve up for my Shut Up Fool weekly awards.  .

And naw, I'm not going anywhere near a mall or strip shopping center tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

White House TDOR Trans Meeting

If some of you thought that Vice President Joe Biden was selling woof tickets during the campaign about considering trans issues the civil rights issue of our time, and mine and the other trans folks assertion that President Obama's administration has been the best ever on trans rights issues, we have more evidence of how serious they are.

A meeting was held yesterday in which TPOCC Executive Director Kylar Broadus, Marisa Richmond, and DC Human Rights Commissioner Earline Budd were just some of the 20 plus people in attendance meeting with White House staffers to mark the Transgender Day of Remembrance and discuss ways in which we can work together to ensure dignity, equality, and justice for all people.

They also discussed a range of issues and concerns of importance to transgender people, building upon the progress for our community begun during his first term what can be done to ensure the safety and wellbeing of all transgender people in the States and around the world.

Glad to hear it happened, and hope we see even more meetings and initiatives like this between the Obama Administration and transpeople around the country in the years ahead.

Montrose Trans Summit

Hmm..guess my readership in Houston is bigger than I suspected.

Turns out when I attended last night's event at the MSociety building in Houston's Monstrose gayborhood I had Monique, one of the Houston Transgender Unity Committee board members and Cristan Williams there when I arrived.

The event the MCenter planned was one in which they screened the Logo documentary Beautiful Daughters, had a discussion about it, and then concluded with a candlelight ceremony.

What I wasn't expecting last night was the fireworks after it concluded 

There was a very contentious clear the air conversation between myself and Monique moderated by Cristan in Hillary Clinton mode in the parking lot of the MCenter over what happened at UH Saturday.

Houston Transgender Unity Committee plans this TDOR event and also organizes the Unity Banquet as well.  They recognize that Houston is a multiethnic city, are concerned about the lack of trans POC participation and tried to do their part to reflect that in this year's TDOR.   I just pointed out in that conversation where they fell short, offered some suggestions in terms of how to improve that in 2013 and beyond and suggest that one way to ensure a diverse event is to make sure the HTUC board has diverse representation on it.  

I also made the point last night that when you're trying to draw non-whites into your coalition group, your actions matter even more than your words along with the unspoken messages that go out.     

As of 10 PM CST last night the drama that started Saturday is squashed.  We'll see what happens at TDOR 2013, since I don't doubt we'll be gathering in Houston and around the world for another event on November 20.  We'll also see if going forward from this date if improvements happen for Houston POC transpeople in terms of being visible, active participants in this community who feel they have a participatory stake in it. 

But I'm not kidding about the rising frustration and anger in terms of POC transpeople not feeling the love in Houston, and I hope they take it seriously the warning I delivered last night    

And speaking of warnings, while this post is centered on Houston, this is not just a Houston issue in terms of POC transpeople being frustrated about the lack of representation in the organizations that claim to represent the entire diverse trans rainbow.    Don't sit smugly at your computer screens and think the same underlying tension isn't happening in your own trans locales because it is.  It needs to be addressed before some spark, misunderstanding, or miscommunication sets it off. .

You TransGriot readers already know that if the H-town situation doesn't improve, I'm still living inside the Houston city limits observing what's going on and will not be shy about commenting on it in these electronic pages.    

TDOR 2012 Speech Links And Posts

As I run across them, I'm collecting the links to 2012 TDOR speeches and TDOR related commentary from various people of color across the Net and posting it here.  If you TransGriot readers see any interesting links, have links to video, send it to me.

Phoenix TDOR opening remarks

Everyday People

The Speech I May Yet Give

Paying Real Homage To Our Transgender Fallen

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

It's Transgender Day Of Remembrance 2012

Today is the official date of TDOR, the Transgender Day of Remembrance.   We lost over 175 people this year around the world to anti-trans violence, and far too many of them were Black and Latina.

The bulk of the remaining TDOR commemoration events will happen today, including one organized by Houston POC transpeople at 6 PM tonight that I will attend. 

But one of the things I continue to be concerned about is the lack of POC participation in events organized by predominately white groups.  Once again I'm getting reports from around the country about TDOR events that are predominately monoracial down to the people who are attending them. 

That's unacceptable and it's something that either needs to be permanently fixed in 2013 and beyond or else you are probably going to start seeing as we do with the Black pride circuit now separate TDOR events.

I would like as a long time supporter of the TDOR for that split not to happen.  But neither can I ignore the vanillacentric privileged nature of the events that have been taking place with Gay, Inc org stamps all over them.  I also must point out the rising anger of Black and Latin@ transpeople who see these orgs popping their collars about what they do (or don't do) for the community on the backs of our dead.   Neither are we happy about not having a say in how these events are planned, executed or much less not being invited to participate in them.

But that's a fight for tomorrow.   Today is about focusing on the more than 173 people we've lost.

We have work to do on that front to change hearts and minds so that a transperson's life is considered just as valuable to society as a cis person.  We have work to do to ensure that transgender inclusion happens in all aspects of society.  We have work to do to spread the message that transpeople don't want tolerance, we want unconditional love and respect as fellow human beings on this planet.  We have work to do to reduce the unacceptable murder rate of our transsisters around the world so that having TDOR's will become unnecessary

And to those of us transpeople who are living, it's time for us to redouble our efforts in the spirit of this solemn day to ensure this happens as expeditiously as possible.

Houston Dynamo Are Headed To MLS Cup 2012!

Our other footballers had a wonderful Sunday afternoon as well.  The Houston Dynamo walked into their second leg playoff game at RFK Stadium with a 3-1 aggregate score advantage and knowing all they needed was a win, draw or not lose by more than two goals to win the series

Oscar Boniek Garcia got the scoring party started for the Men In Orange with his goal in the 34th minute.   DC United's goal in the 83rd minute was courtesy of Branko Boskovic, but was not enough as their crowd of 20,015 got to watch the Dynamo hoist the Eastern Conference championship trophy .

The 1-1 draw with DC United gave the Dynamo a 4-2 aggregate score for the playoff series, the MLS Eastern Conference title for the second straight year and a return trip to Carson, CA on December 1 for MLS Cup 2012.

Winning the Eastern Conference championship also earned the Dynamo a spot in the 2013-14 CONCACAF Champions League when it commences play.

The Dynamo earned a rematch with the LA Galaxy, who beat them 1-0 in last year's title game.
Brad Davis missed that match in 2011, but will be there in full effect for this one.  Hopefully midfielder Ricardo Clark will be as well.  He reinjured his groin and left the match in the 66th minute.

The Men In Orange will be headed to California for their second consecutive  MLS Cup business trip.   This time we Dynamo fans are hoping for a different result and a chance to celebrate our first MLS title since the back to back ones in 2006-2007.


Monday, November 19, 2012

BSG: Blood And Chrome Webisodes 3 and 4

here are the latest webisodes of BSG: Blood and Chrome.     SyFy needs to turn this into a series.  

Houston Remembering Our Own TDOR Event Tomorrow

I was not a happy camper after Saturday's Houston Transgender Day of Remembrance Event concluded.

An incident happened to moi during that event that incensed me to the point I almost left (and I'm still pissed off about)  but was talked out of leaving the UH TDOR event by a friend who was also there.  

Needless to say I was not happy with another HRC rep getting to speak at a Houston TDOR once again (and frankly I'm tired of that)   I believe that since it is one of the few trans centered events that the community created and one of the few that does get media attention, we need to spotlighting trans leaders and transpeople at it in addition to having trans voice front and center in running thangs. 

I was also not happy that we had no African-American transperson out of the eight selected to do so reading the list of 173 names that were predominately survey says Black and Latina

That vanillacentric Houston TDOR once again reminded me that the trans (and GLB one) community in this town is far too vanillacentric and too eager to kiss up to HRC.  The lack of non-white transpeople in attendance Saturday night at the AD Bruce Religion Center was telling in terms of the racial divide that is ominously opening up between the non-white and white trans community.  

I want to help bridge that divide and have done so in multiple ways since 1993 such as serving on the board of TATS and participating in several Texas lobby days in 1999 and 2001.  I'm contemplating participating in a Texas Lobby Day in 2013.   

But if I keep getting disrespected like I was Saturday night, I'm eventually going to have to say frack it and work towards building Houston POC transpeople and our SGL community the same level of community support and infrastructure that they desperately need and white transpeople in the Houston area currently enjoy.  That includes doing our own POC oriented TDOR ceremony in Houston to honor our fallen sisters.

Enough venting.  Time to discuss what this post is about. 

I was contemplating organizing one as I stewed this weekend and was glad to hear that a local group of African-American transpeople did precisely that and organized a TDOR event that will be taking place tomorrow 

The 'Remembering Our Own' TDOR event will happen starting at 6 PM CST and will take place at the MSociety building, 1116 Jackson St.  Houston TX,  77006.  

Hope people come and show their support for it.   I know I'm definitely planning on attending this one to compare and contrast the observances.    

2012 Texans Watch-Whew!

When the Texans played and easily beat down the Jacksonville Jaguars 27-7 back on September 16 they were laser beam focused on that game because they knew the Jags always play them tough and they wanted to get a win in the young season against a divisional opponent .

Afterr the hard fought win against the Chicago Bears, this had all the makings of a trap game.  The Texans first ever Thanksgiving Day appearance in Detroit looming and they were playing a Jacksonville Jaguars team they had beaten four straight times and who hadn't won in Houston since 2009. 

After the Texans efficiently torched the Jaguars on their opening drive to lead 7-0 and the Bulls on Parade defense knocked Jacksonville QB Blaine Gabbert out of the game on the Jags initial drive, it looked like this one was going to be over by halftime.  

The Jaguars had other ideas. Chad Henne came off the Jags bench to spark what turned out to be an entertaining but anxiety producing game for Texans fans.   They matched the Texans score for score as the Texans missed opportunities such as a 50 yard field goal clanking off the left upright that would have put the Texans ahead 20-17 at halftime.

But Jacksonville stormed out of the locker room and made some big plays of their own to forge a 34-20 lead with less than 6 minutes to go in regulation time. 

The Texans finally woke up and Matt Schaub hit 16 straight passes to erase the 14 point deficit.   The Texans defense also decided to join the party, forced a three and out late in the fourth quarter and Schaub guided the offense in position for Shayne Graham to kick the game winning field goal with 5 seconds left in regulation time.  A false start penalty and a badly shanked 47 yard field goal try later sent the game into overtime and sent Texans fans reaching for the Maalox.    

After the teams traded field goals it was Andre Johnson to the rescue.  A flanker screen turned into a 48 yard TD that ended the game, capped a 14 catch 273 yard career day and gave the Texans a thrilling but nerve wracking 43-37 win.  

Matt Schaub also had a career day with 527 yards and give touchdowns, falling just short of Norm Van Brocklin's NFL passing record of 551 yards but tying the Houston Oilers Warren Moon for second on the all time passing yardage list. .

More importantly, it moved the Texans to 9-1, allowed them to stay atop the AFC South Division, keep the best record in the AFC  and stay on track for home field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Dynamo 90 Minutes From Second Straight MLS Cup Final

The Men In Orange handled their playoff business last weekend at BBVA Compass Stadium and walked out of there with a 3-1 first leg MLS Eastern Conference Final win against DC United after trailing at the half 1-0.

The Dynamo head into this 3 PM CST second leg game at RFK Stadium in the enviable spot of needing only a win, draw or not losing by more than two goals in order to secure their second straight trip to the MLS Cup title game. 

If they do earn it, they will have to play in either Los Angeles or Seattle since MLS has changed the championship game format to where it is played at the home arena of the participating team with the highest seed.  And right now assuming things stay to form in the MLS Western Conference final it looks like the Dynamo will be getting a rematch against the LA Galaxy  

It's looking good for them right now, but they still have to play the and survive that match in front of DC United's rowdy fans before they can start making travel plans to either LA or Seattle and MLS Cup 2012.


Saturday, November 17, 2012

Where Y'all At For TDOR And Beyond, GLB Community?

Cheryl Courtney-Evans at her abitchforjustice blog wrote a post entitled 'Paying REAL Homage to Our Transgender Fallen' that discusses a recurring problem in the rainbow community.

When events are centered (or supposed to be centered on) the "T" end of the community, far too often the people predominately in the room when said event is scheduled to happen are trans with little or minuscule representations from the GLB end of the community.

Even the Transgender Day of Remembrance is not immune from this phenomenon, and that's galling since it's an event the trans community created.  For those of you who profess to be our allies, the least you can do if you're able to do so is show your support for our community on a day we created that transpeople all over the world are memorializing the people we've lost due to anti-trans violence.

Even if the GLB allies are well intentioned, it can still leave the transpeople in attendance feeling left out, as Cheryl points out in this excerpt from her post.:.

I attended one such dinner two nights ago, presented by an LGBT HIV/AIDS prevention organization. While it was enjoyable, with a mime performance by a transman of my acquaintance, a beautiful rendition of "Wind Beneath My Wings" sung by a personable young gay man and a small local 3-piece band, I left it feeling entertained but empty. There was a great, entertaining presentation about "Stigma Surrounding HIV/AIDS Infection" given to us by a terribly charismatic transgender woman (she really "took us to church"), and the food was good.... Don't get me wrong, I had a good time, but at the bottom of it I still felt empty. 

I felt this way because I knew when all was said and done, the only reason we were 'entertained' so well was because this LGBT organization was getting funded by a  pharmaceutical company who paid for the dinner so as to give the presentation (no word of our fallen, past the fact that the event was titled "Transgender Day Of Remembrance Celebration"). No mention was made of what we're going to do about changing the position of the transgender  community in the future, although there was a "humanitarian award" given to a doctor known for her attendance to HIV positive transgender individuals, with a couple of honorable mentions for young gay men who worked with this organization (the young singer among them). I had to wonder, "What's the point?" and "Would this event even have taken place without the pharmaceutical company's funding?" as well as "Who is this helping?" Okay, so we got out for a couple of hours, ate some good food and chuckled for a minute...but what next? Out of an audience of maybe 50 people, I'd say 30 were transgender (including the presenter); nothing was learned, no future plans for transgender advancement made or real homage paid to those of us who have died due to murder, abuse or neglect.

We not only want and need you there as our allies during this emotional time, but as my trans elder Cheryl pointed out, we also need your support on the days of the calendar beyond November 20.

I'm going to echo Cheryl by stating that being a trans ally doesn't begin and end on that date.  It's a 24/7/365 journey and 366 days in a leap year like this one.   You honor our fallen trans sisters by resolving to be the type of GLB ally that doesn't
pay lip service to the idea.  

We need you to stand with us and in some cases be front and center when we push for trans inclusive legislation and initiatives that help the trans community move forward.  Remember when we gain human rights coverage, your human rights expand as well. 

e need GLB people calling out and taking to task those in their ranks who spout the divisive words that trans people aren't part of 'their' community and calling out their fellow GLB people who actively work to oppress trans people.  We need lesbian and bisexual women pushing back against radical feminists and cis women who denigrate and disrespect the femininity of trans women.

We need GLB peeps to be just as fierce advocates for trans human rights and issues as we have been for your issue concerns for decades.  But most of all, we just need you GLB folks to show up and show out on our behalf.. 

Texas TDOR 2012 Events

As you TransGriot readers know, I am a huge long time supporter of the Transgender Day of Remembrance events and have had the honor and privilege of being the keynote speaker for TDOR's in Louisville (2002, 2003) and the Long Island TDOR in 2009. 

Just wondering when it will happen for me in my hometown and my home state (hint, hint)

This is the link to find a TDOR memorial near you in the US, Canada and around the world, but I'm focusing this post on Texas and when, where, what date and what time the Lone Star State TDOR's will take place.

Austin, Texas
Will be holding a Transgender Day of Remembrance event on Tuesday, November 20, 2012 at 6:30 PM CST at the Austin City Hall Plaza
Dallas, Texas
Will be holding a Transgender Day of Remembrance event on November 18, 2012 from 6:00-8:30 PM CST at the Cathedral of Hope, 5910 Cedar Springs Road, Dallas,TX., 75235
For more information contact: Oliver at
Houston, Texas
Will be holding a Transgender Day of Remembrance event on Saturday, November 17, 2012 at 7:00-9:00 PM CST at the UH Main Campus, A.D. Bruce Religion Center
parking in lot 13A
Lubbock, Texas
Lubbock's first Transgender Day of Remembrance to be held Thursday November 15, 2012 from 7-8:30 PM CST at Metropolitan Community Church  4501 University Ave, Lubbock, Texas 79413-3615
San Antonio, Texas
Will be holding a Transgender Day of Remembrance event on Thursday, November 15, 2012 at 6:00 p.m.
at the Metropolitan Community Church Sanctuary 611 E. Myrtle St.
San Antonio, TX 78212