Thursday, February 17, 2011

Now You Discovered You Need Black Transpeople, You're Calling Us

I've only been saying that since I started working for trans rights on a national level since 1998 and on this blog since 2006.   I have warned you swimming in vanilla privilege TBLG peeps running ostensibly inclusive orgs to include us in the paid decision making ranks of this community or suffer the consequences.

Now the chickens are coming home to roost.

Equality Maryland is finding out the hard way that lack of persons of color on your staffs, boards and in your organizations leads to piss poor policy decisions and jacked up legislation that will not garner the support of TBLG people of color.

One thing they forget is that we read, think, and will not just swallow what you say as the gospel truth, especially when you have a long history of screwing us over.

We TBLG people of color also take civil rights legislation very seriously and believe in an approach that has worked since Emancipation.    Write the laws as broadly as possible to cover everybody.   

And once again, they made their usual blunder of not getting input from African-American trans leaders.  It's exacerbated by the fact that Maryland has a 30% African American population, and one of the wealthiest concentrations of African Americans in Prince George's County on DC's doorstep.

You not only need us on this issue, but will need us when the inevitable referendum happens on the marriage bill..  There's a large megachurch in Lanham, MD pastored by Bigot Harry Jackson who is just salivating at the chance to repeal it.

Then again, ignoring us is a deliberate pattern we in the Black TBLG community are beyond sick and tired of.   Since the white dominated TGLB orgs know that we hate the incrementalist approaches favored by the GL community on trans rights issues, they don't want any African American leaders who don't favor the incrementalist approach to have a voice or access to legislators.  

Did you see any trans leaders who look like me at the ENDA hearings

The Black trans community is taking the brunt of the casualties and discrimination. If you are going to use our stories to pass trans legislation or want us to lobby and stump for civil rights bills then you not only need to have our input, but make sure said legislation is comprehensive and as airtight as possible.

We also need to be at the table making those decisions. 

You cannot give bigots ANY wiggle room or loopholes to discriminate. Any civil rights bill that doesn't meet that criteria will not get our support.

That dynamic has played out in the last few days as Sandy Rawls announced Trans-United's decision to no longer back a flawed trans rights bill that has no public accommodations language in it at the behest of the Baltimore trans community..

And of course, the white dominated leadership of Equality Maryland is in panic mode.   

When she was supporting it, they couldn't sing Sandy's praises enough.   Now that the script is flipped, out come the white trans attack dogs who are trying to claim 'she doesn't care about the Black trans community' by opposing this bill.

Yeah, right.  When was the last time y'all latte sipping trans attack dogs wallowing in vanilla scented privilege showed up at a Trans-United event, much less in the 'hood in B-more?   

EQ MD tried to pull a fast one in trying to slide this bill through the Maryland legislature, and now that they've been caught are trying to do damage control.   

So naw, don't blow up our phones now when you didn't care what we thought about the piss poor legislation you were trying to craft then or seek our input in making it better..

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