Monday, July 20, 2020
Black Trans Folks Have Been Trying To Tell Black Cis Peeps What We Need- Y'all Ain't Listening
As you probably guessed in a conversation moderated by a cis Black man and of which nine of the twelve participants were cis, it didn't turn out that way.
Even though we had major Houston trans allies on that panel like BLM-HOU's Ashton P. Woods, Rev. Denise Junious and attorney Jolanda Jones, every time that we started talking about trans peeps, the conversation got diverted and derailed from its intended focus on Black trans lives
While myself, Kaleb Elijah and Tori Cooper managed to get some points across, the end result was that the trans participants and our allies were left frustrated at how the conversation organized by Black Greeks Speak Social Justice turned out.
There was far too much stuff we didn't talk about in the two hours allotted for this conversation.
For starters, we needed to talk about the transphobia in the Black community ranks that is not only in the Black same gender loving community, but has expressed itself in Black Greek Letter Organization (BGLO) ranks as well.
We didn't talk about the fact that the common thread with many of the Black trans women that have been murdered in the last few years across the country has been intimate partner violence and trans misogynoir
Translation: Cis Black men are killing and gleefully subjecting Black trans women to beatdowns
We didn't go into depth about the role that the Black church and Black media, be it traditional or social media, plays in pushing anti-trans hatred in our community to the point of so called 'comedians' like Lil Duval on shows like The Breakfast Club do on-air advocating for our murders.
Neither did we go in depth about the inaction of our legacy orgs like the NAACP when it comes to advocacy on behalf of Black trans folks. We also didn't talk about the lack of Black trans folks being hired to do policy work inside and outside the TBLGQ community.
So what do Black trans folks need?
We do not exist for y'all to beat on us or kill us because you're mad about whatever personal issues you're dealing with. Take those personal issues and problems up with your friendly neighborhood therapist and keep your hands to yourself.
We need Black cis people to cease and desist with debating our existence. Trans folks have been part of our community since the rise of modern humans and we aren't going anywhere.
Stop trying to pawn off your transphobia as a 'disagreement' Discussing whether Wilt Chamberlain, Oscar Robertson, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan or Lebron James are the greatest basketball players ever is a legitimate cause for debate and disagreement.
Trying to claim that Black trans people don't exist when the science and our very existence overwhelmingly say otherwise is not.
Black trans folks need good paying jobs. We need housing. We need competent non discriminatory medical care.
We need Black cis men to stop being 'scurred' and come clean about the fact some of you are attracted to Black trans women. Some of you wish to take that desire further and have long term relationships with us.
We need cis Black women to recognize that we trans women are not your enemy. The white supremacist Karens and Kens who wish to gleefully oppress all of us are. We would rather spend our precious time building sisterhood with other Black cis women, building long term friendships, and uplifting the community together.
We need y'all cis peeps to stop shadily whispering (or yelling) 'That's a Man' when a trans woman is in the club or elsewhere, and she happens to be on her feminine presentation A game. That shyt gets trans women beaten or killed. Mine nor any other trans woman's existence is not an indictment of you or Black womanhood in general.
Hell, the attacks on Black femmes have occurred long before Black trans women started getting written about in 19th century newspapers, and even those articles, like today's 21st century media coverage, were mostly negative.
We need you to stop trying to pass off your transphobia as part of your religion. That is a major sore spot with me, other trans folks and our allies that will get you called out. If your religion calls for you to hate on trans people, then you need a new religion
We know that must change. So when increasing numbers of Black trans people do decide to run for public office, we not only will need your support, be it financial or otherwise, we will need your votes when we do.
We also need cis elected officials at all levels of government to consider hiring qualified Black trans people to work on their staffs to do the needed and necessary policy work that will help improve all our lives
We also need you to listen when we talk about the issues that impact our communities. We trans and gender non conforming peeps are the experts when it comes to talking about our lives.
Most importantly, we Black trans peeps need you Black cis folks to treat us with the dignity and respect you demand for yourselves.