Thursday, September 27, 2018

TransGriot 2018 NFL Picks Week 4

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We are now a quarter of the way through the 2018 NFL season, and we now starting to get an idea what teams are looking like Super Bowl contenders, what teams are not living up to the hype, and what teams are playing for the number one pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Week 3 had a lot of upsets, and I muddled through it with a sub .500 record. 

So are my Texans, who need to bust a move to save their season after slumping to a 0-3 record and now since the Browns won, have the longest losing streak in the NFL at 9 games. 

I'm ready to put this behind me and get to Week 4.  Only 15 games to pick this week since the Panthers and Washington are on their bye week.   Team I'm picking to win is in bold print with HOME team in caps.  Mike's picks are here

Week 3 Results                                           2018 NFL Season Record 
TransGriot  7-9                                            TransGriot   25-21-2
Mike           9-7                                            Mike            24-22-2

Thursday Night Game
RAMS over Vikings

Sunday Early Games
Texans over COLTS
Patriots over DOLPHINS
Eagles over TITANS
Falcons over BENGALS
BEARS over Buccaneers
Lions over COWBOYS
Bills over PACKERS
JAGUARS over Jets

Sunday Afternoon Games
Seahawks over CARDINALS
BROWNS over Raiders
CHARGERS over 49ers
Saints over GIANTS

Sunday Night Game
STEELERS over Ravens

Monday Night Games
Chiefs over BRONCOS

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Astros Are The AL West Champs Again!

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While I was sleeping last night, my hometown defending MLB world champion baseball team clinched the American League West Division title for the second straight season thanks to the Oakland A's losing to the Seattle Mariners in extra innings at Safeco Field.

Image result for houston astros logo 2018The Astros had already handled their business by beating the Toronto Blue Jays (sorry not sorry Renee) 4-1 last night in Rogers Centre to not only win their 100th game of the season, but reduce their magic number to clinch the AL West Division title to one.

The A's were up on Seattle 8-5 in the eighth inning before the Mariners rallied to tie the game and force extra innings. 

Seattle scored two runs in the bottom of the eighth inning, then one more run in the ninth to tie the game.  The Mariners then won the game in the 11th inning thanks to a walk off home run by Chris Hermann that sends to A's to the AL Wild Card Game to face the New York Skankees Yankees.

It is the first time since 1997-1999 when they ruling the NL Central Division and playing games in the Astrodome that the Astros have claimed multiple division titles in a row.   It is also the first time in Astros history they have had back to back 100 win seasons and only the third time in team history the 'Stros have won 100 games

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With the AL West title secured, the Astros now know who they will play in the postseason as they try to repeat as world series champions.   They start an ALDS best of five series on October 5 against the AL Central champion Cleveland Indians.

Image result for yankee stadiumThe winner of the AL Wild Card Game will move on to play the AL East Champion Boston Red Sox, who have the best record in baseball this year at 106-51 with 5 home games left. 

Home field for the AL Wild Card Game is more likely to be Yankee Stadium since they hold the tiebreaker over the A's after going 3-3 in their head to head matchups and having a better division record than the A's. 

However, the Yankees have a brutal finishing schedule in which they play six AL East division games.   Three road games against the Tampa Bay Rays and three versus their hated rivals the Boston Red Sox in Fenway Park.

But back to talking about my defending American League champion Astros.


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Should they advance they would face in the ALCS the winner of the A's/Yankees-Boston Red Sox ALDS series in a best of seven for the American League title.   If the A's or Yankees prevail, they would have home field advantage.  If it's Boston, they would get it.

FYI to you Red Sox fans:  The Astros won the season series over you 4-3, and took 2 out of three games at Fenway Park.

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Should the Astros make it to the World Series again, they would have home field advantage this time against whoever walks off with the 2018 National League crown between the NL East champion Atlanta Braves, the NL Central leaders the Chicago Cubs, the NL West leading Los Angeles Dodgers and top NL Wild card team the Milwaukee Brewers. 

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The St. Louis Cardinals and Colorado Rockies still have an outside shot at playing October baseball at Miller Park as contenders for the other NL wild card slot.

The NL title contender with the best league record is the Chicago Cubs with 91 wins, and everyone else including the defending NL champion Los Angeles Dodgers is below that.

The quest for an Astros title repeat starts October 5.  Looking forward to it since I need a distraction from how badly the Texans are sucking right now.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

BLM HOU Panel At Rice University

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Header to the Rice University campus starting at 11 AM for a panel sponsored by BLM HOU.

Even though as a proud Cougar there's a rivalry between the two schools, even we have to admit that Rice has a beautiful campus that like ours, has hosted some historic events like the G7 Summit in 1990.

Today we'll be at Cohen House from 11-1 PM to discuss social justice issues of importance to the Houston area community.

Looking forward to seeing all the Rice students who read TransGriot there and those of you who can attend it be there.   


Sunday, September 23, 2018

The Trans Community Could Use Some Investment In Our Advocacy Infrastructure and Our People

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I noted with interest a conversation Renae Taylor had on her FB page recently in which she talked about the struggle we trans advocates have just making enough money to sustain our lives or the viability of our organizations.

She expressed a wish that a fund be created that would pay the bills of a trans advocate for at least a year so that they can focus full time on advocacy work instead of having to work non advocacy jobs to pay bills.

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Renae's modest proposal sounded to me similar to the MacArthur Foundation's Fellows Program, or what is called the 'Genius Grant'. 

Fellows must be citizens or residents of the United States, can be working in any field, and have shown "extraordinary originality and dedication in their creative pursuits and a marked capacity for self-direction".  

The Foundation doesn't take applications for it.   They solicit at a certain time anonymous and confidential nominations that are reviewed by a confidential group of a dozen people.  Those people review the nominations and recommend awardees to the foundation president and board of directors. 

Usually the first sign that a person has won a MacArthur Fellowship is when they get a congratulatory phone call from the Foundation.  According to the website, 'The fellowship is not a reward for past accomplishments, but rather an investment in a person's originality, insight, and potential". However, it is considered a significant honor to receive it.

MacArthur Fellows get a no strings attached $625,000 grant paid to them in quarterly installments over a five year period. 

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That is a life changing amount of money.  These fellowship grants have been awarded to 945 people since 1981, and people such as Marian Wright Edelman, Junot Diaz, Ta-nehisi Coates and Alison bechdel are just some of the distinguished people who have received MacArthur Fellowships.

So back to discussing Renae's idea.

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The trans community and trans activism suffers from a major lack of significant investment in our organizations via a vis organizations primarily focused on the lesbian and gay community.   If those trans organizations are focused on trans communities of color,  they get even less funding than their white trans counterparts..

Heaven help that trans organization if it is based in the eleven state southern US region, AKA the former Confederacy.   It gets as a whole only 8% of the available donor funding made to TBLGQ organizations, with the majority of that money being gobbled up by Atlanta and Houston based orgs.

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These underfunded trans organizations are fighting well funded right wing orgs with people who get paid quite well to come up with ways to oppress us.  The ED's of many of the anti-trans hate orgs are making just on their salary alone, more than the annual operating budget of many POC trans led organizations.

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And since 2014, the trans rights legislative battles have predominately been in the southern US.   Considering we're majorly outspent, it's a miracle we have been as successful and do the work we do on basically a shoestring budget.

So imagine what we trans folks could do, especially in communities of color if we could spend our days working full time in well funded organizations to help our communities,

Imagine if our most talented advocates didn't have to do Go Fund Me appeals just to get the money to pay their bills or have to spend time being stressed out and worried about how next month's bills are going to get paid

Just having them paid for a year would be a load off the minds of an advocate, and would allow them to focus on doing what is needed for the community and allow them to save what money they may earn elsewhere.

That's why Renae's idea is an intriguing one.   The question is where would the seed money come from for it? 

 Would be nice if Renae's idea became a reality, because at this critical point in our trans human rights struggle, we could definitely use the investments in our trans advocacy infrastructure and our people. .


Saturday, September 22, 2018

Arizona Family Calls Out Their Racist Congressional Brother

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Many of us in POC America have been saying for years now that progressive white people need to call their racist relatives and family members out instead of ignoring them in silence.

That call for our white allies to call out their racist kin has taken an even more urgent tone as the bigots have come out to play in the wake of Dolt 45's election. 

We have an interesting example of how to call out your racist relatives coming from Arizona.

Paul Gosar (R) is a far right wing nut congressman who has repped Arizona's 4th Congressional District since 2013.    Gosar has claimed that the infamous Nazi rally in Charlottesville, VA was planned and executed by 'The Left', defended British far-right activist Tommy Robinson, attacked "disgusting and depraved" Muslim immigrants at a speech in London in July, and in a Vice News interview, called billionaire George Soros a Nazi sympathizer.

His six siblings, horrified and disgusted by his long list of far right peccadilloes, all signed a letter printed in the Kingman Daily Miner stating: "It is extremely upsetting to have to call you out on this, Paul, but you've forced our hand with your deceit and anti-Semitic dog whistle."

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The Gosar siblings haven't stopped there.  They are now taking the step of endorsing his Democratic opponent, Dr. David Brill  in the upcoming November election because they don't want him repping the 4th Congressional District any longer. 

To make that happen, Tim, David, Jennifer, Grace, Gaston, and Joan Gosar also cut a brutal ad that called their racist brother out.




Brill 's campaign s considered a longshot to unseat Gosar, but when your own family is willing to go on camera to say that you shouldn't be in Congress, that's gotta hurt you big time politically.

We'll find out how effective the ad was on November 6.   

The First Beto-Cruz Debate

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As a TransGriot public service for all folks inside and outside of Texas who may not have gotten the chance to see the debate between incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz (R) and Rep. Beto O' Rourke (D), here's the video of their first encounter from the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas and hosted bu SMU, the Dallas Morning News and KXAS 5 TV.

The debate was held in front of a raucous crowd of supporters for both candidates .

This is the first of three debates.  The next two will take place on September 30 at the University of Houston and October 16 in San Antonio.

The debate, like the one scheduled for UH, will be focused on domestic policy.  The San Antonio one will be a mix of domestic and foreign policy   

Who won?   You can see for yourself.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Historic Marco Marco NYFW All Trans Fashion Show

Marco Marco Debuts Collection Seven With Style Fashion Week
There's a new generation of trans models who are keeping the tradition of the long stylish line of trans models going into the 21st century.  The best part about this current generation of trans models for me is that I not only am pleased and proud to call some of them my friends, I'm happy to note that the fashion industry is embracing them.

More importantly, the fashion industry is giving trans models unprecedented opportunities to work and have a successful modeling career.

More evidence of this occurred during the recently concluded 2018 New York Fashion Week. 

On September 9 a groundbreaking fashion show took place during this year's New York Fashion Week sponsored by LA based designer Marco Morante.

Geena Rocero
His Marco Marco brand of clothing has always catered to the TBLGQ community, and this time he took it a step further by casting all 34 spots in his New York Fashion Week show with trans people. 

While it is not uncommon to have out and non disclosed trans people strutting the catwalks during the New York Fashion Week major runway shows, they tend to be in those instances cast in shows that are overwhelmingly comprised of cis models. 

Laith Ashley
The Marco Marco Collection Seven show was the first time in New York Fashion Week history that a major show was cast in which all the participating models were transgender.

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“Although I have always had trans and non binary people in my shows, it became apparent to me that their presence was often overshadowed by cis gay men or cis gay men in drag,” designer Marco Morante said in an interview when asked about the casting. “I wanted to create a space to celebrate trans bodies. This was an opportunity for their presence to be undeniable and reinforce that trans is beautiful.”

Morante is one of the small cadre of designers that openly prioritizes hiring trans models for their runway shows.  


Dezjorn Gauthier
One of the participants in this historic show was my BTAC homie Dezjorn Gauthier, who rocked the runway along with models Laith Ashley, Geena Rocero, Carmen Carrera, Pose actresses Angelica Ross and Dominique Jackson, Transparent actress Trace Lysette, Gigi Gorgeous, Aydian Dowling, Gisele Xtravaganza, Claudia Charriez and Arisce Wanzer just to name a few of the trans peeps walking in the historic Collection Seven show that was attended by Laverne Cox.

Speaking of my BTAC homeboy,  Gauthier had this to say about his participation in this historic show. 


“It’s groundbreaking.  Marco is breaking the glass ceiling for transgender models especially transmen. This was more than experience for me, it was an act of resilience” 
Gauthier mentioned he will continue to use modeling as a form of advocacy to spread inspiration and empowerment worldwide. 
“It’s about creating equal opportunity for those after me and continuing the work of those before me”

Here's the video from that historic show


 

Shea Diamond Sings At The HRC National Dinner

I met Shea Diamond during the 2017 BTAC conference in Dallas, and one of the highlights of it was our Family Day when she, Shea Freedom, Diamond Stylz backed up by Carmarion Anderson on percussion gave us an impromptu mic drop worthy singing performance.

Last Saturday the 22nd annual HRC National Dinner was held in Washington DC at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, and Shea Diamond was tapped to sing at the event. 

Shea has been blowing up since I last saw her at BTAC.   She has been signed by a major label, and she is currently working on her debut EP that is being executive produced by Justin Tranter. 

After being introduced at the dinner by Olympic figure skater Adam Rippon, she went on stage and handled her business, singing an acoustic take on her hit song 'American Pie'.  She also gained a new fan in our former Vice President Joe Biden. 

VP Biden was so moved by her performance he met with Shea backstage after she finished



Congrats Shea on all the positive things happening in your life right now.   Looking forward to hearing that EP when it drops.



Thursday, September 20, 2018

TransGriot 2018 NFL Picks -Week 3

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It's Week 3 of the 2018 NFL season, and managed to win my second week in a row.    The key to winning these season long prognostication contests is to stay above .500 and avoid multiple losing weeks.

Unfortunately, my hometown NFL squad is not doing that.   They are in an 0-2 hole after losing to the Tennessee Traitors, and if they want to be playing football in January, they better bust a move now and actually start playing football in the first and second quarters instead of waiting until the second half to handle their NFL business.

And surprise surprise, we've had our second tie in this young NFL season between the Packers and the Vikings.  The Jaguars beating down the Cheatriots Patriots was also an enjoyable surprise.

So let's get to Week 3 of this competition.between me and Mr Watts.   Another 16 games in which I can build on my early lead.   My picks in bold print with HOME team in caps.  Mike's picks are here at this link.

Week 2 Results                                                     2018 NFl Season Record
TransGriot  8-7-1                                                   TransGriot  18-12-2
Mike           7-8-1                                                   Mike           15-15-2

Thursday Night Game
Jets over BROWNS

Sunday Early Games
TEXANS over Giants
VIKINGS over Bills
Packers over WASHINGTON
CHIEFS over 49ers
DOLPHINS over Raiders
Colts over EAGLES
JAGUARS over Titans
Bengals over PANTHERS
RAVENS over Broncos
FALCONS over Saints

Sunday Afternoon Games
RAMS over Chargers
Bears over CARDINALS
SEAHAWKS over Cowboys

Sunday Night Game
Patriots over LIONS

Monday Night Game
Steelers over BUCCANEERS





Why I Put The 'T' First In TBLGQ

It has come to my attention that I have a white gay male blogger who is letting his anti-Blackness and transphobic racism flow, and I felt the disturbance in the TBLGQ Force.

That's mighty white gay male of him.   Be mad and stay mad that I won this year's GLAAD Media Award for outstanding blog and I'm the first trans blogger to do so.

Saying it loud, Black, trans and proud. 

This person is also getting frothing at the mouth angry that I have basically done what the late Coretta Scott King used to do and intentionally changed the letters in the LGBTQ acronym around.

Questions for this hater who knows who he is.   Have you helped passed good legislation that expanded rights for everyone and killed bad bills like I have?   Participated in vigils for murdered trans people?

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Are you repeatedly called on to participate in panels at colleges and conferences that discuss politics, current events, human rights,  reproductive justice or criminal justice? 

Do you have a regular column in a TBLGQ magazine?   Are you asked to write pieces for other TBLGQ news outlets?

Have you been interviewed on camera to talk about human rights issues?   Are you quoted in other journalists work?    Have you gotten awards from various organizations for your human rights work? 

I have receipts.  Do you?   
Have several seats now that I'm done responding to your transphobic nonsense posted in your two bit three block blog.

So why do I write the community acronym as TBLGQ in much of my writing?   I prefer to put the 'T' first to remind you gay and lesbian folks that it was trans folks who have repeatedly put their behinds on the line to advance the human rights of our community.

That history of trans people standing up for their human rights and everyone else's goes back to the 1959 Cooper's Donuts Riot in LA, the 1965 Dewey's Lunch Counter Sit In and Protest in Philadelphia, the 1966 Compton's Cafeteria Riot in San Francisco, and of course, Stonewall in 1969.
It is also trans women of color like Sylvia Rivera, Marsha P Johnson, Lady Java taking on the LAPD's infamous Rule No. 9 and countless other trans people throughout the decades who have also fought tooth and nail not only for our human rights, but yours as well. 

And that tradition continues with our trans kids like Gavin Grimm, Jazz Jennings, and Nicole Maines just to name a few.

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I put the T first to remind my trans younglings that I and their trans elders love them, we acknowledge they are our future leaders, and we have their backs.  I and their trans elders want them to stay in school, get that education, and live their best lives by being unapologetically proud of who they are.

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I put the 'T' first in TBLGQ because we are being violently attacked, and it is my Black trans segment of the community taking the brunt of that anti-trans violence.

I put the 'T' first to remind our peeps that your best revenge against the anti-trans hate is to not end your life, but to survive, live and thrive.

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I put the 'T' first because it is a reminder to the gay and lesbian segments of the community and society as a whole that trans people still need human rights coverage codified in legislation, and our human rights fight is not over.

I put the 'T" first because I want to remind the world that the humanity of trans people is not up for debate or discussion, especially by cis people who are hostile to our existence. 

That's why I put the 'T' first in TBLGQ.  Because it deserves to be there, and we have paid in blood, sweat and tears for it to be there.

And if you don't like the fact I'm doing it, too bad.

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

What’s Houston Justice Doing?

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The Houston Justice Coalition has been around since 2014.  It was founded in the wake of the egregious failure to indict Officer Darren Wilson for the murder of MIke Brown in Ferguson, MO that triggered protests across the nation, including here in Houston.

It also jump started conversations about what law enforcement looks like in the Houston area.     
The organization’s founders decided to focus on things they could demonstrably measure such as local Grand Jury Reform, Body Camera Policy for local law enforcement and Community Policing and started those efforts with an event at the El Dorado Ballroom.     

The launch event drew a overflow crowd of over 300 people.  From that crowd, Houston Justice signed people up to apply for grand jury service and registered them to vote.

After a brief hiatus taken after the 2015 Texas Legislative session in which grand jury legislation favored by Houston Justice was passed,  Houston Justice is now focusing its efforts on three initiatives just in time for the critical 2018 midterm election.
One of the initiatives is #Project Orange, which started in 2017.  It is a nonpartisan effort to register eligible incarcerated persons in the Harris County Jail to vote in addition to staffing voter registration tables in the jail visitation areas.

Those 2017 efforts conducted on four consecutive September Sundays led to over 600 new registered voters who participated in the 2018 Democratic and Republican primary elections.    

Another one of the initiatives being tackled by Houston Justice is the Black Census being organized by the Alicia Garza founded Black Futures Lab.

The Black Census is an online questionnaire with the goal of giving us an opportunity to speak for ourselves and get a detailed informational portrait of Black America.   

The goal is to survey 200,000 people nationally, and Houston Justice wants to get 1000 people in our area to participate in it so that we can have solid data about the Houston Black community to show to legislators, discuss with the media, and other interested parties    

We also wish to get responses from the Black Census from all segments of the Black community, including the LGBTQ segment of it, and our formerly incarcerated people

The third initiative is #HOUVotes.   Texas had an abysmal 28.5% voter turnout in the 2014 midterms.  For the 2016 presidential election it was 51.6%, which ranked it 49th out of 50 states. We must do better than that in November 2018.

The #HOUVotes campaign seeks to reach out to former felons, the formerly incarcerated and their families to get them registered to vote in this critical election cycle, and empower them to go to the polls and do so.

The #HouVotes campaign seeks to achieve the following goals:

*Register 5,000 new voters,
*Communicate with the newly registered voters at least three times
*Increase voter turnout in our target audience     

The push started August 24, as several organizers went through training in preparation for an initial August 26 voter registration at St John’s Church Downtown.  While that was happening, Houston Justice’s Durrel Douglas was interviewed during Majic 102’s Sunday Morning Live show to talk about the initiatives.

Over the next few weeks Houston Justice organizers will also be busy getting the word out about the Black Census, registering voters, and doing their part to ensure that those newly registered voters participate in the November election.

2018 Houston GLBT Caucus Equality Brunch Award Honorees

The 9th Annual Equality Bruch will be taking place later this month to not only raise funds for the Houston GLBT Caucus, it will also honor some our local advocates and accomplices in our TBLGQ rights struggle.

I was honored by the Caucus with the John Paul Barnich Award in 2016, and now the Caucus has released the names of the persons that will be honored at the upcoming edition of the Equality  Brunch in the Hotel Zaza's Grand Ballroom.

Since I mentioned it, I'll start by announcing the winner of the John Paul Barnich award for 2018. 

The Barnich Award goes to the person whose work is rooted in justice for the LGBTQ+ community, and this year it goes to Ana Andrea Molina.

The Eleanor Tinsley Award for distinguished community ally goes to Precinct 1 Constable Alan Rosen 

The Don Hrachovy Award for distinguished Caucus member goes to Jim Taylor. 

The Kristen Capps Award for social conscience (and well deserved) goes to Kandice Webber

The President's Award for distinguished community leadership goes to Parker Sheffy

The Tony and Bruce Award for distinguished philanthropic leadership goes to Legacy Community Health 

The Tim Brookover Award for lifetime achievement goes to Bill Baldwin.

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The Equality Brunch will take place on September 30 from 12:00 noon to 2 PM at Hotel Zaza, located at 5701 Main Street near Hermann Park.  Tickets are going fast for it, so if you wish to attend, you may wish to get busy securing those seats or tables before they sell out. 

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

If You Can't (Or Won't) Unapologetically Love A Black Trans Woman, Step

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This cartoon has been making the rounds in Black trans feminine world probably because it has struck a nerve to the point it motivated me to write this post about relationships.

Far too often we have some trans attracted men who wish to date us, but only if we keep it a secret. Many are too scared to live in their truth about declaring their desire to openly date trans women without judgment from society.   Some demand relationship secrecy out of concern for their own egos, concerns about what other cisgender women or their homies will say, or fear they will have their manhood questioned for openly dating us.

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That social and political shaming of cis men who date trans women is a factor in what is killing us.

So hear me on this fellas and my trans sisters.  Time for a new game plan.  If you can't or won't publicly date me or my trans sisters, don't need your cowardly behind. We'll go to someone else who ain't 'scurred' to unapologetically date us and is ready to do so.


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We Black trans women want to be taken out during daylight and early evening hours to public places. We wish to be occasionally spoiled and treated like the regal queens we are.
And if the relationship progresses to another level, we wish to be proudly introduced by you to your family and friends.

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We are not your secret lovers, hit it and quit it sloppy seconds, your punching bags because life is frakking with you or your after 2 AM booty call. We are women of quality and substance who scratch, fight and claw with every fiber of our being daily to be recognized by society as the women we know we are.
We are women who know they deserve better in relationships and aren't afraid to demand our suitors meet or exceed those high LTR standards.
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Being in a relationship with a Black trans woman requires you to step your relationship game up. The world at times is unrelentingly cruel to us, and there are days we just need a hug, an empathetic ear, chocolate, an "I love you" whispered into our ear as were cuddling or all of the above.
We need you to be a best friend and a lover.
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If you can't handle the challenge of loving a Black trans woman, then step. If you can, like the Marines, we're looking for a few good men, be they cis or trans.
Black trans women are their unapologetic selves 24-7-365, and 366 days in a leap year. We need LTR partners who not only recognize that, but are confident and secure in their own personhood to do the same.

Miss America 2019 Says Trans Women Should Be Allowed To Compete

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Today was the day 35 years ago that Vanessa Williams, who repped New York state, was crowned as the first ever Black Miss America back in 1983.

The 92nd annual competition took place in Atlantic City, NJ on September 9.  This year's newly crowned Miss America, like the trailblazing Williams, is also a Black woman repping New York state in 25 year old Nia Imani Franklin.

Franklin is the ninth Black woman to wear the Miss America crown, and she was recently asked her thoughts during a The Clay Cane Show interview concerning whether trans feminine contestants should be allowed to compete for the Miss America title.

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Y'all know what my thoughts are concerning that question.   Here's what Ms. Franklin had to say about it:

"That’s something I haven’t given a lot of thought to. I could see the organization may be going into a different direction in the future, but at this time our goal is just to focus on women who want to further their education.” 
She continued, “If trans women want to compete I think they should be able to — that’s not something I think we are really putting too much emphasis on as far as, ‘Are you trans? Check this box’ when you compete. When I competed, in my application, there was nothing that asked me if I was a trans woman or not, so we’re definitely not discriminating.”
Yes, you are when the pageant has a rule that states only 'natural born women', whatever in the hell that means, can compete in the Miss America system.  
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The Miss Universe system has had since 2012 allowed trans women to compete, and later this year in Bangkok we will finally witness a trans woman competing for the Miss Universe crown in Spain's Angela Ponce. 

But the 98 year old Miss America system, despite moves to modernize the pageant and make it more relevant to 21st century life, like ditching the swimsuit competition for a current events Q&A, still bans trans women from competing.

But glad to hear the current Miss America titleholder thinks trans women who fit the pageant's eligibility requirements should be allowed to compete for this prestigious crown.

And I hope that change happens sooner rather than later.