The ugly truth of my past thoughts and actions is that for the first half of my life, I was ignorant, uninformed, sexist and dangerous to trans identified persons.
I’m ashamed that I thought and acted like this. There is no apology I can make that will undo the harm of lack of care that I took part in creating and sustaining. I cannot undo what has been done, nor will I ignore it. Like every other action and inaction in my life, my role in harming trans ID’d persons - is part of who I am now and any legacy I leave.
Some 20 years ago, I dared to admit that I was wrong in my trans ID discrimination and complicity. Wrong thinking and wrong deeds. I didn’t like how that felt, and I wasn’t supposed to. I had been cruel and there was either honesty or dishonesty to choose from in dealing with what I had done, and who I had been.
I’m writing this today, in the shadow of the Transgender Day of Remembrance and Trans Awareness Week, to extend an invitation to anyone else harboring similar views and/or participating in their own acts of complicity in targeting trans ID’d persons negatively:
It’s never too late to stop being cruel. Please do. Now, and for the rest of your life.
We are talking about human lives. Children, friends, parents, neighbours, breathing, living beings, as full of love as you or I. Each and every person being a unique expression of life that exists no where else in this entire universe.
There is no good attained in the toll of human lives that results from cruelty, malice, violence and ignorance heaped onto a person because they ID as trans. The real cost is measured in blood, sorrow, hate and fear.
We are either part of the problem or part of the solution.
This complicity in oppression and cruelty is an easy thing to sustain. One of the easiest ways to maintain it is to ignore it, dismiss it, do nothing. It’s an every day thing. We don’t interrupt prejudice by thinking about it once and then never again. Every day, we listen instead of speaking. When we pretend that we know everything or that this issue doesn’t exist, we are helping the next life to be crushed, lost or taken.
This cruelty and violence doesn’t go away on its own. It takes all of us listening to each other not as who we think they are, but as who they say that they are.
That’s it. Thank you.