Just a reminder to our cis allies:
Transgender Day of Remembrance is NOT the trans equivalent of Gay Pride. We aren’t throwing parades. We aren’t throwing parties. We aren’t celebrating.
We are reading the names of our dead. We are trying to make it clear that more than half of all LGBTQIA non-suicide deaths are murdered trans women. These are almost entirely trans women of color. We are mourning our dead and raising awareness of the danger and presumed disposability of trans lives.
We’re drawing the clear line of cause to effect between the transphobia that pervades our culture and society and the murders of trans women of color. When you’re pointing out the routine dehumanization of trans people, when you’re talking about the transphobia suffused through all of the news coverage of trans people (and the conflation of trans people and Intersex people - see the coverage of Taylor Leann Chandler today), make sure you’re pointing out how it directly leads to violent murders and the lack of investigation and urgency in solving those murders.
We have exactly one state in which defense attorneys are prohibited from using the “Trans Panic” defense to justify their clients’ murdering trans women. It’s routine for women who manage to survive attempts on their life to be arrested and jailed (usually in men’s prisons) for daring to defend themselves.
The goal of Transgender Day of Remembrance is to create a world in which it no longer needs to exist. Raising awareness is great, but make sure you know what you’re raising awareness of on TDOR. Talk about the poor trans women of color and LOUDLY value their lives, don’t just advocate for middle class trans women and trans men. Go ahead and talk about how 50% of LGBTQIA homeless youth are trans, how they get kicked out of their homes and put in dangerous living situations because they are trans. Talk about how 41% of trans people have attempted suicide. Talk about how many people are dying through those means, but don’t you dare forget the trans women of color whose lives we are recognizing and whose deaths we are mourning today. Make sure you’re talking about the link between them.