Sunday, July 05, 2009

I'm 'Hard To Take'? Please!

Being a blogger and leader in the TBLG community, I'm used to and relatively immune to criticism. Being on the Net and slogging through the discussion group wars for over a decade, I have seen many of the silencing techniques used by critics of POC's who write online commentary.

But I found interesting one of the comments in the storm of commentary that followed in the wake of me writing the post about the melanin free trans contingent for last Monday's recent White House GLBT ceremony.

The 'I'm hard to take' statement.

I'm hard to take? Please.

Why am I 'hard to take'?

Am I 'hard to take' because I'm unabashedly proud of being Black and trans?

Am I ‘hard to take’ because I'm beyond sick and tired of being sick and tired of my segment of the trans community being dissed, erased, ignored, and being treated as an afterthought and I'm vocal about it?

Am I 'hard to take' because I'm not afraid to call people out on their bull feces and speak truth to power?

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was 'hard to take'. Malcolm X was 'hard to take'. Mahatma Gandhi was 'hard to take'. Harvey Milk was 'hard to take'. Nelson Mandela was 'hard to take'.

Anyone who is proud of their African descent, or is part of a marginalized community who stands up for their rights is 'hard to take' by the people wallowing in privilege.

The first thing anyone sees about me before the trans issues is my skin color. I don’t have the luxury of divorcing myself from my ethnicity because I get reminded of it every second I’m breathing air on this planet.

So if my critics don’t like the fact I’m reminding people of the GLBT community racism, the marginalization of, erasure from trans history and disrespecting of an African-American trans community that is doing its part to help make TBLG history while taking the brunt of the casualties along with the Latino/a trans community, too damned bad.

I want my rights, too and I've done (and I'm still doing) my part to help make it happen.

But I’m not going to allow myself or my people to be forgotten, silenced or stifle what needs to be said about the state of race relations in the TBLG community or other broader issues of importance as I see it just to make some people wallowing in vanilla-flavored privilege comfortable.

So if that makes me 'hard to take', deal with it.


Mykell said...

I knew the mainstream LGBT community was disproportionately white, but I didn't know it was blatantly racist. As a hapa bisexual transman in the Midwest, I never see more than one of my identities represented at the same time - save for when I'm the one representing. Since I'm semi-privileged because of my race, it doesn't bother me too much that my race is completely invisible. I don't know what it would be like to be both attacked and invisible because of your race and will gladly hand the mic over to someone who knows from experience. I'm sure you wouldn't claim to know enough about being biracial or Asian and trans, and let us speak for ourselves about those issues. Non-black people who think they know best about black issues learned the wrong lesson.

Anonymous said...

Can the church say: AMEN! Say AMEN!