transgender rights

Unable to Remain in the Shadows

Today, I wanted to post about the wonders of my school insurance and my transition related care. I wanted to urge people to take advantage of their insurance while it was available to them, but I just saw something on Facebook that I would like to talk about.

I was browsing through Facebook while I was cooking dinner, and I came across a post by one of my family members. This post linked to an article that talks about the recent amendment to a bill passed in California by the State Assembly that will transgender students to participate in sports that sex-segregated according to their gender identity. This is a step forward in transgender rights, in my opinion. It should be noted that in this amendment, the use of facilities is also included because you need a place to clean up and change after rigorous exercise, right? Well, this seems to have ruffled a lot of feathers among the conservatives. It seems as if they believe non-transgender teenagers will take advantage of this to watch people of the opposite sex change in the locker room. This seems absolutely ludicrous to me. They believe that teenagers will pretend to be confused about their gender identity, but fail to realize that the struggles of people who truly are trans or even questioning their gender identity.

Now, I had a decision to make. I could just go on with my night and pretend like I didn’t see this post, or I could sit down and write a response to try and show them a different perspective. It’s really easy to be silent when things like this happen. I am not typically the type to argue when someone has a different opinion that I. People are entitled to their opinion whether I think it is right or wrong, but I felt like I had to say something. Recently, I watched a video by a transman who talks about transgender rights and the need to step out of the shadows. I’m not sure if I would have said something or not had I not seen this video, but I agree with Dade. We do need to step out of the shadows and speak up if we ever want to see any change happen. No one will fight for us if we’re not willing to fight for ourselves.

So, I commented on this person’s Facebook post. I explained that it’s a tough situation for everyone, but try to imagine how this teenager feels who is struggling with their gender identity and being discriminated against for being who they are. I talked about the bit of anxiety I get these days when I have to go to the bathroom, and I’m not sure which bathroom I should use. I have only just begun my physical transition, so I still look pretty feminine despite me identifying as male. I make decisions about which bathroom I am based on location and situation, but I wish it wasn’t something that I had to think about at all. I think this amendment is definitely a step in the right direction. There are people who will take advantage of any law, but that doesn’t mean we continue to discriminate against a certain group of people because of the wrongdoings of others.

I’m not sure what will come of the comment I made, but I’m glad that I decided to speak up.