TDOR 2017 is over. The memorials are done and the last tear has been shed. The sun is shining on this November 21st day. So what do we do over the next 365 days to not only help decrease the number of names we read at the 20th anniversary edition of TDOR in 2018, but make the world better for Trans kind?
You just knew I’d have a few suggestions for the question I just asked. It’s not just a few suggestions, either. It’s a Ten Point Post-TDOR Plan.
First one is collective community self defense. By that I mean not just self defense courses or arming yourselves with guns or tasers, but employing the buddy system whenever possible. Have one when walking in neighborhoods, or when going to our cars or public transit stops in the wake of leaving clubs or our community events. Let trusted people know where and when you’re headed out and make it a point to call certain people on a regular basis.
The second one is working with the media and the police to get them to understand that deadnaming our fallen people is not acceptable. Doing so whether by accident or accidentally on purpose to trans murder victims delays their ability to apprehend the perpetrators of those crimes and get justice for the victims. Many times we don’t know or don’t care what the person’s deadname was, so if you come to us citing that deadname, we’ll look at you with blank stares.
We also know that the most critical time to solving a crime in in the first 48 hours of it.
Third is continuing the ongoing education of the moveable middle toward unconditional acceptance of our humanity as trans people. We’re not going to flip hardcore Trump voters or doctrinaire Republicans. But we do have a large population of people who wish to be on the right side of history and do what’s decent for trans people. Let’s get to work converting them to supporters of our community.
Fourth is punishing our enemies at the ballot box, rewarding our friends, and running our damned selves for public office. You gleefully sponsor an anti-trans ballot measure or unjust law aimed at us and out kids, expect swift retaliation at the ballot box in the next cycle. You work hard to defend our community, expect to reap the earned political reward of unwavering community support. And if a cis candidate doesn’t step forward to take on the transphobe, we do the job.
If a qualified trans person is running for office help them get elected.
Voting is a trans revolutionary act, and we must do so strategically as trans people in every election cycle. We cannot afford to be politically aloof or ignorant.
Fifth is pushing back hard against people who wish to disseminate anti-trans propaganda like TERF’s, fundamentalist ‘christians’, the Republican Party and any assorted hater by not allowing any anti-trans speech or facts free comment to go unchallenged. Ignoring them and their hate speech is not an option. It must be challenged, and we don’t have to be nice when we do it either..
Sixth is ensuring our trans kids grow up with healthy self esteem by not only making them aware of the history that people like them helped make, but working with the Mama and Papa Bears to ensure they can just focus on their educations as we battle with the transphobic teachers and administrators to ensure our kids are treated with the dignity and respect in the educational setting
Seventh is ensuring that we trans adults love ourselves. We need to role model that sixth point I made in our own lives by looking in the mirror and repeatedly telling ourselves that we ARE the amazing men and women we see staring back at us.
Eight is build your expanded family. If you still have loving and supportive blood family members, that is a bonus in this case. If you don’t have blood family, create one. While they won’t help you totally alleviate the pain of being separated from blood family, they can go a long way toward helping you fill that vacancy where your blood family once was.
Nine is get involved in building our community. Whether it’s attending a monthly trans group organizational meeting, getting involved with a non -trans specific cause you support, or just going out on a regular basis with people you love and care about cis or trans, just do it.
Ten is love one another. We trans folks are all we’ve got in many cases.