remembrant

The photo on the left is me about a week into starting Testosterone, 2 years ago. The photo on the right is me today. 

The past two years have been a journey- some parts extremely difficult, some parts utterly joyous- but above all, contrast or not, the journey has been magical. 

I can honestly say that when I look into the mirror- most days, I see myself. I see the person I knew I had in me all along. I can’t say I can do this all days- some days I still look at myself and I wonder what I look like to everyone else. 

But it matters less and less the older I get, the more confident I get, the more I love myself. The more I love not just the person I presently am, but the person I used to be as well. They tried their best- they never gave up, and here I am today. 

Happy, handsome, and free in body and mind. 

I missed Transgender Day of Remembrance, but I wanted to say a few words. First, I am so proud to be here with all of you, so proud to exist as part of the transgender community. So happy to love and to be loved by all of you. And to all my transgender siblings who are no longer with us today- you are loved. Remembered and cherished. And the path you took and the bravery you showed, still inspire me and countless others today. 

And to those who need to hear it- you matter. You are worth more than I can ever express and the journey to your self is long and hard, but I swear, once you start, it feels like magic when you see yourself for the first time staring back at you. Don’t give up on that magic- it exists for you too. Especially for you. 

Trans Day Of Remembrance was 2 Days ago and I totally forgot to upload something. Anyway, for those who don’t know I’m a trans man who has some controversial opinions on Trans issues, but that doesn’t matter right now. I wish a happy, safe, accepting journey for my Trans brothers and Sisters, and a peaceful rest for those who are no longer with us. 💓⚪️💙

Never forget, never forgive! 

On the night of November 9, 1938, violence against Jews broke out across Nazi Germany. It appeared to be unplanned, set off by Germans’ anger over the assassination of German embassy official Ernst vom Rath in Paris at the hands of Jewish teenager Herschel Grynszpan in revenge for the deportation of his family members who were living in Germany. 

In fact, German propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels and other Nazis carefully organized the pogroms. In two days, over 250 synagogues were burned, over 7,000 Jewish businesses were trashed and looted, dozens of Jewish people were killed, and Jewish cemeteries, hospitals, schools, and homes were looted while police and fire brigades stood by. The pogroms became known as Kristallnacht, the “Night of Broken Glass,” for the shattered glass from the store windows that littered the streets.

The morning after the pogroms 30,000 German Jewish men were arrested for the “crime” of being Jewish and sent to concentration camps, where hundreds of them perished.

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Some important political tweets on Transgender Day of Remembrance (November 20th, 2017).

If I missed any important ones, let me know.

The only Premiers in Canada to post about Transgender Day of Remembrance were John Horgan (BC NDP) and Rachel Notley (Alberta NDP).

Justin Trudeau & The Liberal Party each posted messages. The NDP posted a message (which Jagmeet Singh shared). 

Neither The Conservative Party of Canada, Andrew Scheer, The Green Party of Canada or Elizabeth May made a statement (though she did share a statement by BC Greens MLA Sonia Furstenau)

2nd August, Roma Genocide Remembrance Day

The Romani genocide/holocaust, also known as Samudaripen, was the planned and attempted effort, during World War II by the government of Nazi Germany and its allies to exterminate the Romani people of Europe. 

Roma were branded with hot irons, women had their ears cut off and they made us wear a brown inverted triangle to distinguish us from the others. We were persecuted, deported to concentration camps, tortured, murdered, used us as human subjects for perverted experiments, thrown in specific “Gypsy Ghettos” because the Germans wanted “.. to toss in the Ghetto everything that is characteristically dirty, shabby, bizarre, of which one ought to be frightened, and which anyway has to be destroyed. and much more.

The Nazis even implemented an Eugenics research program, which had the purpose of “proving” that Romani people were an “inferior race” which was why Nazi scientists traveled within Nazi occupied Europe documenting the Romani communities. Roma were forced to undergo DNA tests and something similar to the “one drop rule” was applied – even if you only had a rather small insignificant % of Romani blood you were still seen as Romani and persecuted.

No one knows how many Roma actually survived this horror, since no one ever bothered to list the victims or survivors. A lot of historians were (and still are) very biased against Romani people so it’s especially hard to get clear numbers. Some historians estimate that the number of Romani victims lies between 220,000 to 500,000 and that is not true. The real death toll is as high as 1.5 million to +2 million. Up to 90% of Europe’s Romani population was exterminated by the Nazis.

The Romani Holocaust ended in 1945, yet it took until 1982 (37 years later) for it to be formally “recognizedthat a genocide has been committed, and even then it was only recognized by Germany. An apology to the Romani has never been received. The German government paid war reparations to Jewish survivors of the Holocaust but not to the Romani. The Interior Ministry of Wuerttemberg argued that “Romanis were persecuted under the Nazis not for any racial reasons but because of an asocial and criminal record.” when that is clearly not true and there are countless of articles proving this statement wrong. 

The Roma who survived the Holocaust were regularly accused of lying about their experience and were denied any help or recognition. It was not until the 1990s that Romani who had suffered the concentration camps were entitled to apply for proper compensation.

Roma have been killed because of the Nazi’s racism, traditional anti-Romani attitudes and a mixture of prejudice towards Romani people – we were defined “enemies of the race-based state”. Yet this is still continually erased from the history books or barely even worth a footnote. 

European countries continue to make no or insufficient mention of the Roma victims in their official position regarding the Holocaust when they should put some effort on making the Roma genocide widely known and recognized to serve as a counter force to the increasingly violent rhetoric and action against Roma because of them and through them.

Please read, spread and remember this. This history should not be swept under the carpet or forgotten. Please also respect that this day is not about all Holocaust victims like 27th January. It’s specifically about the Romani Holocaust victims who continue to get excluded from the topic of the Holocaust/WWII even 72 years after this horror ended. The reason why 2nd August was picked as the date is also exclusively related to the Romani victims and has something to do with the Romani Day of Resistance.

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Today is Trans Day of Remembrance, a day to honor the trans people we’ve lost to a culture and system that fails to respect, protect, and provide for the trans community. We remember the 25 trans people who have been murdered in the United States in 2017 ALONE. We remember all the trans folks who cannot safely be themselves on a daily basis. We remember all the things that trans people deserve but don’t have access to—things like housing, jobs, affordable and competent healthcare, days free of violence, and families and communities who lift them up. 

[Illustration by @damianimated  🎨  ]