Wednesday, February 20, 2013

First They Ignore You...

There is a famous Mahatma Gandhi quote that reads,“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”

Been thinking about that quote in the context of the approach of my 15th anniversary as a trans activist this summer and my observation of just how true that quote has been in the time I've been in the trans rights movement.

Short of the Whyte Radfem Womyn Gone Wyld who have been fighting us since the 1970's and elements of the gay and lesbian community who continue to falsely claim we're not part of 'their community' , we've been ignored for the most part by the Religious Right and the conservative movement in general.    

But as transpeople began to revive their dormant human rights struggle in the mid 90's, become more assertive, and get some political success, we got their attention.

They tried mocking and making fun of us but the victories for trans rights kept piling up.  We now have over 180 jurisdictions and 15 states that have trans human rights protections on their legal books.  Increasingly nations such as Argentina are passing laws to recognize the human rights of their trans citizens..

Having out and proud trans people of all ethnic backgrounds and around the world has also been a major boon toward the sustained success we have had in the last 15 years in terms of getting our message out there and overcoming the shame, fear and guilt in our own ranks.  

Now that the tide is perceptively shifting to conservatives eventually losing their culture war against gays and lesbians, we trans people are getting the full attention of the Right Wing Culture War Machinery because they need a new enemy to fight and rally their sheeple around.

The Religious Right already got that project started by coming up with a new faith based attack line claiming that trans people are 'rebelling against God' by altering your body.

When all you Christians stop getting breast and butt implants, tummy tucks, Botox injections, nose jobs and other major plastic surgery that alters your bodies, then maybe I'll be inclined to listen.   But until then, read Matthew 19:12, listen to Pat Robertson's October 5, 1999 700 Club show , have a Coke and a smile (or whatever your fave carbonated beverage of choice is) and peddle that faith based transphobia somewhere else. 

The conservative movement picked up a tactic from the TERF's (trans exclusionary radical feminists) and the Jim Crow era by peddling the bathroom meme in their attempt to stop trans human rights laws from passing.  

The conservafool oppressors know they have no justified legal argument they can make to oppose trans human rights laws.   They also don't have a credible faith-based one they can deploy either, so the only tactic they have left is their tried and true fear and smear one.

They have deployed Fox Noise in their increasing attacks on trans people.   Now that the discredited reparative therapy people won't have gay and lesbian kids to pick on anymore and gouge their desperate heteronormative parents for money, guess whose kids will become their new targets now they are aware of the existence of trans youth.

It's just a matter of time before they start giving Jerry Leach and his Lexington, KY based Reality Resources a call and you see him on your FOX Noise television screens along with increased anti-trans Dr Keith Ablow sightings.  PFOX is deploying an 'ex-trans' spokesperson who surprise, surprise just happens to have my ethnic background.

But the bottom line is, we're winning.   We're winning because we have the moral high ground, have the increasing medical and scientific evidence to back us up, the statistics back our cause, we continue to gain public support for our just cause and we are on the correct side of the human rights argument.  

Our human rights win is inevitable no matter how much money, time, and propaganda the haters deploy to stop it.   We have a human rights win that is ours for the taking.
   But that win will become a reality only if we transpeople here in the United States and around the world are tough minded enough to push back even harder against all our trans oppressors lies. 

We have to be tough minded enough to continue to do the education, be out and proud about being trans, work to pass trans human rights laws, talk to the persuadeable middle and get transpeople and and our allies who believe in our human rights cause elected to office and keep them there  

And that final victory will be so sweet when we accomplish it.

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.  But only if you are tough minded enough to fight for that win against your oppressors.

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