One of the things I'm gratified to see lately is more of my cisgender sisters who may or may not claim the womanist label stepping out there on their own blogs to talk about transgender issues and how we fit into the sisterhood.
And when they do I encourage and applaud them for doing so.
I recently left this comment on Twanna A. Hines' funkybrownchick blog on a post she'd written about transgender children.
I definitely don't pretend I'm an expert on the topic, though I'm always open to learn more.
And that's all we ask for Twanna. I'm willing along with other transpeople to openly talk about our lives and provide that 'ejumacation' if my cisgender brothers and sisters will open their hearts and minds and listen..
The point is we transpeople have always been a part of the AA community, and we didn't forfeit our Blackness when we transitioned.
All we want is to be able to contribute our talents to uplift the race and peacefully live our own lives free from harassment .
I don't think that's too much to ask.
While I agree with my H-town sistah Jo Jo in theory on the valid points she made in this post while talking about the 'no cookies' policy, I think when it comes to transgender people, it's different.
We're so used to having to slog it almost alone and getting slimed in the process, even by our allies. When we finally do run across someone who takes being an ally seriously, complete with the willingness to educate themselves on the issues, first we're shocked, then we treat them as the precious jewel they are.
If we get to call them 'friend' it's even more of a blessing.
In the African-American community, we need to get up to speed on transgender issues. There's too much faith-based ignorance and misinformation floating around about transgender people of African descent despite the fact we've been part of the community since before we took the involuntary boat rides to the Americas.
All you have to do is peruse the comment threads on stories about transgender people to see that.
Our cisgender female allies who do talk up these issues are looked at with crossed eyes, or if they state for the record they have transgender girlfriends have their femininity questioned.
With coordinated information sharing and action from us and our cisgender sisters, we can help break down that wall of ignorance, have those informed conversations and begin to get the resistant element of the Black community to see that we're proud Black people, too.
For those of you who take up that challenge, not only do you deserve a cookie, you've earned a standing ovation and our deepest thanks as well.
Once the applause fades from that standing o, then we go back to diligently working to create a better community for all of us.