Hell No To Incremental Progress 2.0, Shannon Gilreath

Why am I not surprised that a white gay male would post something in Huff Po Queer Voices in the wake of the passage of the unjust HB 2 making the call once again for not only Incremental Progress 2.0, but dumping trans folks from the movement we have and are still currently shedding blood for?

It’s obvious in the wake of the conservative movement being pissed off they lost on gay marriage that trans people are under legislative assault by bitter right wing bigots.   Now is not the time to call for trans people to be kicked to the political curb.

Not no, but hell no Shannon Gilreath and every other selfish white gay male thinking in that single minded ‘dump the tr****es’  fashion. We trans folks will not be ‘waiting our turn’.  Our people are paying in blood for our right to exist and the time to fight for our human rights is now.

We heard the same selfish calls for ‘incremental progress’ in Houston when HERO hit a rough patch prior to its May 2014 passage.  Our coalition that included trans folks like myself held and was rewarded with an inclusive human rights ordinance.  We lost HERO because of partisan GOP politics and Houston trans folks didn’t get the opportunity to fight our lying detractors head on among other reasons.

Blaming the trans community is not only disingenuous, but is self serving victim blaming at its finest.  You want to blame someone for HB 2, put it squarely on the shoulders of the North Carolina legislative GOP bigots and Dixiecrat enablers that gleefully proposed and passed with lightning speed the unjust legislation.

We trans folks also know from our painful examination of our history that GL folks have a less than sterling track record when it pertains to ‘coming back for the trans community’.  Wisconsin trans folks have been waiting since 1982 for you to come back for them to pass non-discrimination protections you have enjoyed in that state for three decades.  With Scott Walker (R) and a GOP controlled legislature now ensconced in the Badger State, unfortunately we’ll be waiting a little longer for that trans inclusive non-discrimination legislation. .

In New York, my trans brothers and sisters have been waiting for statewide human rights coverage since 2002, and a death bed promise to Sylvia Rivera to keep us in the proposed SONDA bill was violated to make a gay only bill pass.   We were thrown under the legislative bus then, and trans folks in New York are still waiting for GENDA to not only pass, but get the same money, time, media coverage and maximum effort you expended to pass marriage equality and the gay only rights laws you have enjoyed for over a decade.

Just as the gay and lesbian community pushed hard to make marriage equality a national push in 2003, we trans folks need in 2016 to have our human rights codified into law in all 50 states. We can’t afford as trans people to wait for that to happen any longer.  Neither can our trans kids.who are under legislative attack by these right wing legislative bigots you wish to abandon us to.

Neither can the trans community no longer have our basic human rights based on executive orders and favorable administrative policy changes. They must be based on and backed by legislation.  Those same positive administrative policy changes or executive orders that a Democratic POTUS or governor used the stroke of a pen to enact can be taken away with the same stroke of a GOP POTUS or governor’s pen.

Trans rights are human rights.  If our human rights as trans persons aren’t secure, as Houston and now North Carolina are ample witness to, your human rights as a gay person aren’t secure either.

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