Thursday, October 17, 2013

I Don't Want Tolerance

Image result for tolerance
Tolerance according to the dictionary definition of the word is 'the ability or willingness to tolerate something, in particular the existence of opinions or behavior that one does not necessarily agree with.'  

When that word is used in conjunction with discussing the human rights of transgender people, I do believe it's problematic on some levels. 

If your goal as a cis person is to simply tolerate transpeople, then you aren't inclined or motivated to do the work necessary go beyond a Trans 101 level of understanding about our lives and the issues we face.  If you think your religious faith trumps our lives, you will act in transphobic ways that aren't in lockstep with the tenets of your faith.   Tolerance leads to the unjust situation trans people find themselves in remaining a deadly societal status quo for us. 

I do
n't want tolerance. I want the same first class citizenship that you demand for yourself.  I want recognition from you that I am living my life, not a 'lifestyle'.   I want you to hear me and my transbrothers and transsisters when we say we are the men and women you see when we are out and about in the world and take it at face value when we talk about how we live our authentic lives.

I don't want tolerance.  I want you to have a crystal clear understanding that transpeople are part of the diverse mosaic of human life and our existence isn't subject to a debate by transphobic cis people. I'm tired of cis folks demonizing my people, writing anti-trans hate speech on your websites and broadcasting incendiary rhetoric on your YouTube channels and television and radio stations that gets African-American and Latina #girlslikeus severely beaten or killed   Any attempt to dehumanize us from this day forward will be met with swift, unrelenting and unyielding determination to set the record straight.   

I don't want tolerance. Our trans existence is not a vehicle for vanillacentric privilege wielding TERF's to turn failed disco era transphobic second wave feminist hate speech into new book sales in a desperate attempt to remain relevant in the second decade of the 21st Century. 

I don't want tolerance.  I'm looking for acceptance of the emerging reality that our trans lives are not fodder for transphobic cis people who think the best way to score political points and fundraise for their failing right wing causes is to engage in a morally bankrupt War on Transwomen.  Neither is it an opportunity for alleged Christians to pimp faith-based hatred of transpeople from the pulpit because they are losing the culture war against the gay and lesbian community and think we're an easy target.  
I don't want tolerance.  My human rights as a trans person shouldn't be subject to a vote by cis people who hate me or so-called gay and lesbian allies who have no problem throwing us under the bus to advance their own human rights cause.  You scream bloody murder about your liberty and pursuit of happiness and freedom as enunciated in the Declaration of Independence being impeded, but have no problem engaging in actions that restrict mine and the trans community's opportunities to experience the same freedom and liberty you demand for yourself.

And for that you should be ashamed of yourselves.

I don't want tolerance  I want 
acknowledgment from society that my humanity and human rights as a trans person living in this country are non-negotiable. 

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