Monday, July 29, 2013

Houston Black Trans Community-Time To Step Up

One of the conversations I was engaged in as I attended a recent community event was one in which I was pulled aside by two of my African-American trans sisters and we discussed the state of the Black trans community here in Houston vis-a-vis our white counterparts.

I addressed some of their concerns as they saw it and have talked about the mounting frustrations about our invisibility and lack of visible local non-white trans leaders.

I have repeated my call for more visible diversity in the Houston (and Texas) trans communities and pointed out to the African-American community that Black trans issues are Black community issues.  .

But at the same time it would be intellectually dishonest to not point out this problem isn't just on Houston's white trans community.  Houston Black trans community, you have some internal things you need to do to fix this problem especially when white trans people of goodwill in the area are doing their part to reach out to us because they realize the importance of doing so.

We've got to step up, become visible and lead.   This situation isn't going to change unless people come out of the shadows to accentuate the point that trans African-American Houstonians exist.

I hear the commentary from elements of you stating 'there's nothing for the gurls' here in H-town, you don't feel comfortable at the TG Center, you feel left out or you would like to have trans events like (fill in the city) does. 

But when people have stepped up in the past to try to fulfill that FUBU need or organize those events, you either have an enthusiastic turnout of people at the first couple of meetings, then it fizzles out when it's time for the work to be done.

Or you don't support it for various reasons.  

Yes, I agree we could use some trans POC infrastructure geared toward our community and I understand a meeting was held in southwest Houston on July 22 to get that party started. 

But those chococentric trans organizations, events and support groups aren't going to create themselves.  They will take sustained organizational activity to get off the ground and need to be constructed with long term stability in mind.  They also need to be designed to benefit the entire community long after the founding members have left the scene.

If somebody wants to handle that task, I'll be happy to give them advice on what to do and the pitfalls to avoid.  I'll also provide moral support at whatever meeting you call that you make me aware of is happening.

But it's put up or shut up time.  The cohesive Houston Black trans community you tell me you want to build isn't going to happen organically.

Moni isn't going to be the one doing the heavy lifting on this project because I have others I'm involved with on a local, state and national level that need my undivided attention.    

But if 'having something for the gurls' is what you desire, time for those of you who desire it to step up, determine what it is you want, and exhibit the visionary leadership and drive to make it happen.

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