Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Angela Ponce- Miss Universe National Costume Contest

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Getting closer to the live televised Miss Universe pageant, but the preliminary contest will happen on December 13. 

All 94 contestants will participate in evening wear, swimsuit and an interview portion in front of judges.   The scores they earn during that portion will determine who the 16 semifinalists will be competing on Sunday.   

On December 10 the National Costume Show was held.  It's a Miss Universe tradition in which all 94 delegates get to choose a national costume that best represents the culture of their nation. 

Y'all know I'm rooting for Angela.   Here she is repping Spain

 

If you wish to watch the entire show, have the video here for you pageant junkies.



Monday, December 10, 2018

Raquel Willis Becomes Executive Editor At OUT Magazine

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I'd heard Raquel Willis was leaving her position with the Transgender Law Center to move to New York, saw that she had posted it on her Facebook page, but didn't elaborate at the time why she was doing so. 

Now I know why she went from the Left Coast to NYC.  .

It was announced today that Willis would become an executive editor with OUT magazine  and in the process, become the first trans person in that role in the 25 year history of that publication.

“It’s an honor to be a part of this team and be a part of this new crew of queer and trans people who wanna shake things up, and bring in more color along with new perspectives,” she said in an interview with ESSENCE magazine.

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And you better believe I'm extremely proud of her for being tapped by OUT to fill this new role.

Willis is still getting acclimated to her new position and what she wants to do to elevate the voices of trans people on OUT's pages, but I am looking forward to seeing what happens at the magazine.

Congrats Raquel one making history, and I wish you nothing but success in your new position.

Kansas Trans People Suing State For Right To Change Birth Certificates

Luc Bensimon is one of four transgender individuals suing Kansas officials over the state's refusal to to allow them to change the sex listed on their birth certificates.
Kansas is one of three states  (Ohio and Tennessee are the other two) that obstinately refuse to allow trans people born there  to change their birth certificates under any circumstances. 

It's BS, so four Kansas trans residents filed a federal lawsuit on October 15 to change that unjust policy.   I was happy to discover but not surprised to find out that two of the four people suing are my Kansas based BTAC fam in Luc Bensimon and Nyla Foster

The lawsuit argues that the Kansas policy violates the due process and equal protection clauses of the Constitution.   It's also arguing that the policy violates the plaintiff's free speech rights.

The other plaintiffs in the suit are a transperson person identified as C.K., Jessica Hicklin, and the Kansas Statewide Education project (K-STEP)

The defendants are Jeff Anderson, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment; Elizabeth W. Saadi, the Kansas state registrar; and Kay Haug, director of the state’s vital statistics office, a unit of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.
Bensimon said the state's unjust policy made it easier for people to discriminate against him, “on top of the discrimination I already confront based on my disability.”

“I’m here to seek justice,” said Nyla Foster, a transgender woman and one of the plaintiffs. “My birth certificate does not reflect the gender I identify as, and I’m here to correct it so I can move forward with my life.”|

At a press conference in front of the federal courthouse in Kansas City, Kansas, Lambda legal attorney Omar Gonzalez-Pagan explained why it was challenging the state's transphobic documentation stance.

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"A birth certificate is more than a piece of paper.It's the quintessential identity document that follows a person from birth to death.  It must reflect a person's identity."

Gonzales-Pagan also pointed out that birth certificates can determine access to education, employment, healthcare, travel and impact the ability to obtain other identity documents.

Good luck to you in overturning this unjust policy.  Thanks Lambda Legal for having our backs again.



Saturday, December 08, 2018

Number 24- Rest In Power and Peace, Keanna Mattel


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I was wanting for Christmas no more trans death in 2018.   Unfortunately that is not going to be the case with three weeks left in this year.

We go to Detroit for our latest 2018 trans murder in the person of 35 year old Keanna Mattel. 

Detroit Police unfortunately found her lying dead in street from a gunshot wound on E. McNichols between Brush and Omira streets just before 6 AM EST.   A 46 year old male was arrested by DPD in connection with the shooting, which is still under investigation.

Keanna was active in the Detroit ball community, and was a beloved member of the House of Ebony.

Ironically just three years ago she had been interviewed and quoted in The Guardian in the wake of another Detroit trans sister who had been murdered named Amber Monroe.  .


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The way we clean up our community is not to just throw people in jail. It’s to offer help, resources, jobs … helping girls get their GED.” 


Mattel is the 24th trans person we have lost to anti-trans violence  this year.   She is also the 18th Black trans person we have lost to anti-trans violence (17 female, 1 male).  She's also the 10th person under age 40 we have lost. 

Her Black trans life mattered.   When are Black trans lives going to matter to the rest of Black America? 

As of yet, no word on a memorial service, but will pass that info along when I receive it.

Rest in power and peace, Keanna.  We won't rest until you receive justice, and all of our Black trans  lives matter.

Friday, December 07, 2018

Pat Manuel Making History As A Trans Masculine Pro Boxer

Pat Manuel takes a break after working out at his gym in Duarte.
Before transition, he fought in the 2012 US Olympic trials.  He's endured physical rehab, chest surgery, the fight to cut through red tape and get licensed as a boxer, and a multiyear journey to get to this point.

But tomorrow night, 33 year old Pat Manuel will step into a ring in Indio, CA  and make history.

"We keep being told that to be a high level successful athlete, you have to be born in a man's body." says Cyd Zeigler of Outsports. "and that anyone born in a man's body has an automatic advantage over anyone born in a female body.  People like Pat are showing that transgender men can compete at the highest levels against cisgender men."

"It is not just powerful for the trans community, but it really should open our eyes to the foolishness of the stereotypes we've always had about gender in sports." Zeigler continues.

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"I'm not the type of person that is just going in there for a participation trophy, my goal is to win,"said Manuel. "My mindset isn't really thinking about the history of this.  It's more thinking about going in there and performing as an athlete."

He's correct about that point.  It isn't his job to think about the historic trailblazing nature of this bout.  Thinking and talking about the history of this event is my job. 

He'll become the first out trans masculine person to box professionally when he takes on Mexico's Hugo Aguilar tomorrow night.  Manuel has already fought an amateur bout as a trans masculine person back in 2016, which he won by decision in three rounds. 

It'll be interesting to see what happens in his first professional bout.

I hope that debut as a professional boxer is a successful one.

TransGriot Shut Up Fool Awards- A Date That Will Live In Infamy Edition

The capsized USS Oklahoma lies next to a slightly damaged USS Maryland from this Dec. 7, 1941 photo. (Contributed photo/. (Records of Joint Committees of Congress)
Today happens to be the 77th anniversary of the 1941 surprise attack by Japan on the Pearl Harbor naval base in Hawaii that brought the US into World War II

2,355 Americans lost their lives in the attack and another 1,145 people were wounded.  18 ships, including five battleships were lost on a day that President Franklin D. Roosevelt described as 'a date that will live in infamy.

It was also a day that changed the course of American history

Today is also Friday, and you TransGriot readers know what that means.   Once again I get to call out people who have committed war on facts and reason, have said some off the charts idiocy, and it's time to drop the truth bomb on them. 

Honorable mentions were Agent Orange (AKA Donald Trump), Laura Ingraham, PETA and Kevin Hart

This week's fool is E.W. Jackson

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This conservakneegrow pastor went on an 8 minute rant on his radio show aimed at incoming congress members Ilhan Omar (D-MN) and Rashida Tlaib  (D-MI)  who also happen to be Muslim.

Jackson stated that 'Muslims will turn Congress into an institution of Sharia law' and threw in the US is being turned 'into a Islamic republic' dig just for good measure.

Rep-elect Omar clapped back yesterday by reminding Jackson that the floor of Congress will look more like America. 


In the upcoming 116th Congress,  120 women will be part of it.  110 people of color were also elected.   Diversity is America's strength, not a weakness as you faith based conservafools have your vanillacentric privileged sheep believing .

Pastor Jackson, the only people I see trying to force religious based laws on the American people are you Talabaptists 

E.W. Jackson, shut up fool       

US and Canadian Conservafools Are Hating On Angela Ponce

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We're two weeks away from crowning a new Miss Universe 2018, and the conservafools are tripping because of Miss Spain-Universe Angela Ponce not only being in this year's competition, but being considered one of the favorites to take the crown.

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Hate on, transphobic conservahaters.   And yeah, we know through your trans hate speech that you're definitely nervous about the prospect of Ponce actually being crowned Miss Universe.

They recognize the importance of Ponce competing as the first out trans contestant in what is considered the world's most prestigious beauty pageant   The conservafools in Canada and the US are throwing every lie and falsehood about trans people out there they can in their media outlets and hoping it sticks in the larger media universe.

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Ponce, to her credit has been what she always has been, classy in the face of transphobic ignorance.  It's rumored that Ponce will be roommates in Bangkok with Miss Colombia-Universe Valeria Morales, and reached out to her after she made those transphobic comments.

Hey, if that's true, she's better than me in this situation.  Knowing how shady pageants can get, I wouldn't trust home girl, much less want to be in the same room with somebody who publicly made disparaging remarks about me.

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Ponce stated in a recent TIME magazine interview that if she won, it would be a sharp rebuke to the anti-trans ignorance the Trump misadministration is trying to install at the federal government
level.

"More than a message to him, it would be a win for human rights. Trans women have been persecuted and erased for so long. If they give me the crown, it would show trans women are just as much women as cis women."

She also said in that TIME interview,"
I’m showing that trans women can be whatever they want to be: a teacher, a mother, a doctor, a politician and even Miss Universe."
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No matter what happens, she will always be in the history books as the first out Miss Universe trans contestant, and probably won't be the last.   

Ponce competing in Miss Universe has generated excitement not only in our international trans community, but pageant buzz that will probably translate into higher ratings for the live broadcast from Bangkok on December 16.


And yes, I'm hoping she wins for another reason.   Lauren Foster was outed by a jealous cis model when Foster was poised to compete in the Miss Universe South Africa pageant back in the 80's.

How delicious would it be if the current Miss Universe Demi- Leigh Nel-Peters, who is from South Africa, crowned Angela Ponce as her successor? 

Thursday, December 06, 2018

TransGriot 2018 NFL Picks-Week 14

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Aw yeah, my fave NFL franchise is on a roll right now.  A franchise best nine game winning streak  and a favorable schedule down the stretch to improve on their now 9-3 record after the Texans Bulls on Parade defense obliterated the Cleveland Browns 29-13.

Will the get number 10 in a row?  Keep reading.   But y'all got to score more TD's.

Now if the Patriots would lose one more game so we can get the number two seed and home field for another playoff round.   They have a tendency to lose to the Dolphins on humid days in Miami, but it's December.

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And as much as y'all know as a Houston resident I despise the Arlington Cowchips, have to give them credit for rebounding the way they have since they lost to the Texans.

Defending champion Mr Watts and I tied for Week 13 because he just committed the error that cost me a threepeat title last year.  He forgot to pick a winner in the Seahawks-49ers game, and under our contest rules any game not picked before its kickoff is an automatic loss.

We'll see in a few weeks if that costs him in Week 17. 

It's Week 14.   16 more contests, and with teams jockeying for playoff seeding and just to get in the playoffs, anything can happen.

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As usual, teams I'm picking to win will be in bold print with the HOME team in all CAPS.  Mike's Week 14 picks (and I presume after last week he'll make doubly sure he got them all) will be available at this link.

Then again, I made that same mistake Mike made TWICE last year.

Week 13 Results                                                 2018 NFL Season Results
TransGriot 10-6                                                   TransGriot
Mike          10-6                                                   Mike


Thursday Night Game
TITANS over Jaguars

Sunday Early Games
TEXANS over Colts
Panthers over BROWNS
CHIEFS over Ravens
Patriots over DOLPHINS
Giants over WASHINGTON
Saints over BUCCANEERS
Falcons over PACKERS
BILLS over Jets

Sunday Afternoon Games
CHARGERS over Bengals
Broncos over 49ERS
COWBOYS over Eagles
Steelers over RAIDERS

Sunday Night Game
Rams over BEARS

Monday Night Game
Seahawks over VIKINGS


Monday, December 03, 2018

Goodbye Ray Hill

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One of our iconic Houston TBLGQ community and civil rights activists in Ray Hill passed away on November 24 at age 78 of heart failure while in hospice care at Bering Omega House. 

Yesterday we go to say goodbye to Ray at his memorial funeral service on the steps of Houston City Hall 

The service lasted three hours and was emceed by former Houston mayor Annise Parker, herself an iconic leader in our community.   It featured local politicians, people connected with KPFT-FM's The Prison Show, family members of Ray, past presidents of the Houston GLBT Caucus and a host of people gathered on a sunny December day to tell their Ray Hill stories and remember a man who had a huge influence not only our community, but Houston and the nation. 

He helped organize the massive 1978 march against Anita Bryant.   The Town Hall meeting at the AstroArena that led to the organization of the Houston TBLGQ community.  Was a supporter and thorn in the sde at times of the Caucus.

Hill was also the subject of two documentaries, with the most recent one entitled, The Trouble With Ray.



Of course I knew Ray, and bumped into him from time to time at our various community events.  I loved talking to him because it's not every day you get to talk to a historical community icon

The one thing I loved about him and I've also emulated in my own advocacy work is that he didn't just work on gay issues.    He was a prison reform advocate.   He supported the trans community and the First Amendment.

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He was a proud, unapologetically gay agent provocateur and troublemaker pushing us in the TBLGQ community, local politicians and our community to be better. 

And we're going to miss him.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Number 23- Rest In Power and Peace Tydie

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I was hoping we could get through the remaining weeks in this year without having another trans person murdered. Sadly that is not the case.

We head to Baltimore for our latest sister we will memorialize in 2018. 

Her name was Tydie Dansbury, and she was found unconscious on the side of a street at 4:15 AM EST on Monday, November 26.  Neighborhood residents who called the Baltimore PD reported hearing a gunshot in the 2400 block of Guilford Ave at W. Lanvale St. 

The 37 year old Dansbury was taken to a nearby hospital where she died a short time later.

BPD Police spokesperson TJ Smith said in a Baltimore Sun video interview that what they do know is that some kind of argument took place between Tydie and another person, and that person pulled out a gun and shot Tydie.   The perpetrators subsequently left the crime scene at a high rate of speed in a dark colored vehicle.

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Baltimore police are urging anyone with information that can solve this murder and bring the perpetrators to justice to call the police homicide office at 410-396-2199 or text with tips at 443-902-4824    You can also call Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7LOCKUP (1-866-756-2587) to leave anonymous tips.

Tydie is the 23rd trans person we have lost to anti-trans violence in the US in 2018 and the 17th African American trans person we have lost this year. 

The Baltimore Transgender Alliance hosted a vigil tonight that started at 7 PM at their headquarters,  The BTA will be monitoring the situation to ensure that justice is served for our departed sister.

And I have to note one other thing.  Baltimore is the headquarters city for the NAACP.   When will they speak out. as HRC is doing, against the plague of violence disproportionately affecting Black trans people?

When will our Black trans lives matter to the oldest civil rights organization in our community?

Rest in power and peace , Tydie.  You trans family and everyone who loved you will not rest until justice is served in your death.

TransGriot Shut Up Fool Awards- Last Friday In November Edition

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It seems like it was just months ago we partying like it was 1999 as we welcomed 2018.   Now we're four weeks from ending this year and moving on to 2019.

It also seems to me as you get older, time moves faster.  New Year's Eve also doesn't feel the same to me ever since Dick Clark passed away.

Oh well, enough jibber jabber.   Time to get to this week's person or persons who earned this week's TransGriot Shut Up Fool Award. 

While there were some worthy nominees this week like Agent Orange, Sarah Suckabee Sanders, Paul Ryan, Ivanka Trump, Andrea Long Chu, Paul Manafort and Kevin Hart, once again for the second straight week, just going to get right to calling out this week's fool,

This week's loser  winner is FOX Noise spokesbigot Tomi Lahren

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Bigot Barbie couldn't stop herself from letting something asinine slide from that pretty mouth when she shared in the wake of the reprehensible teargassing of asylum seekers on the Mexican border that it 'made her Thanksgiving weekend.'

Really, rhymes with witch?   Was your Thanksgiving so jacked up that you considered that odious event to be the highlight of your holiday weekend?   

You're definitely a top contender for the 2018 TransGriot Shut Up Fool of the Year Award when I announce it on New Year's Eve.

Let me just end this right now.   Tomi Lahren, Shut Up Fool! 

More Chromosomes Than Just XX and XY

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Lately I've been hearing this talking point from the evilgelicals and the transphobically illiterate that goes 'you can't change your DNA'.   The other variant of it they like to throw is 'you can't change your chromosomes'.

They will then follow those initial attack comments up by saying, "If you have XX chromosomes, you are a woman.  If you have XY chromosomes, you are a man."

Not so fast my transphobic friends.   Humans come in far more chromosomal varieties than XX and XY.   There;s XO, XXY, XYY, XXYY, XXXY, XY/XO, XX/XO, XX/XY....

Biology is not a nice, neat binary.

Alicia Roth Weigel
And that's before I get to blow your feeble minds by pointing out an intersex condition that occurs in one in every 20,000 births called androgen insensitivity syndrome that ends up producing women with XY chromosomes like my homegirl Alicia.

She blew some minds in the Texas Lege last year when they were trying to pass SB 6 and came out as intersex     So when you faith based fools ignorantly assert that 'women have XX chromosomes', not all women do.

Another FYI for you scientifically illiterate peeps.  Medical science is rapidly advancing to the point where humans will be able to edit the DNA code in vitro and create 'designer babies'.

Chinese genetics researcher He Jiankui has claimed he helped create the first gene edited babies.  That news is causing controversy in the international scientific community.

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So there goes your 'you can't change your DNA' talking point.

That's why I and other scientifically literate peeps in Trans World laugh at you transphobes and call you ignorant when you start spouting those inaccurate talking points.

We know that our trans lives are not subject to debate.  We know better than anybody that gender is between your ears, not your legs.  We also know that the scientific research backing this point up is increasingly on our side as well. 

We also know that science and biology blow up whatever faith based lies you come up with.