“So like are you really trans?”

This here is a PSA to inform all that asking transgender people inappropriate questions and claiming it’s to educate themselves is NOT cute. Who do you think you are, non-transgender person!? Why do some people think it’s okay ask people about their parts below the belt? Or pry into someone else’s sex life because they feel entitled to know how transgender people “work”? Please have a seat, Sir/Madam/Non-gender conforming individual. No, actually have several seats.

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Stuff like that really pisses me off. If someone walked up to a cisgendered person and asked them some of the insane questions transgender people get asked…Lord knows it wouldn’t be pretty. That person would be called a creep, pervert, pig, insensitive (and the list goes on). Not to mention if said person asked is a minor, the asker would most likely be called a pedo. Yes… transgender people who are minors get asked questions like these too *heavy sigh*.

I actually read about blogger, Noah Wolter, who wrote about their unwanted transgender Q&A.  Some of the questions they get asked include variations of: “Did you get THE surgery yet?”, “What’s your REAL name?”, “How do you have sex?” and the infamous, “What bathroom do you use?”.

RUDE. RUDE. RUDE. RUDE.

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In what world is asking questions like that, especially to complete strangers, acceptable? I know some may honestly be curious but there are a million other questions you can ask someone who is transgender that don’t involve a NSFW warning.

And what kind of question is, “What’s you REAL name?” anyway? What’s YOUR real name Bob? Hmmm hmmmm? Sure thing, Sam…if that’s your REAL name! Just call people what they tell you to call them. Making things complicated for no reason!

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Wolter also made a very valid point, suggesting or assuming that a trans person has had surgery is problematic. A transgender person does not need to have surgery in order to validate their gender change. Having surgery does not make one any more man or woman than they were before the surgical sex change. It can be a slap in the face for those who don’t desire a surgery to “finalize” their transition. Are they not good enough for cisgenders? Give them a break! It’s bad enough they are ridiculed for even being brave enough to come out as trans, now people are making them feel like they have to go under the knife in order to fit societal beauty standards?!

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Some might not have ill intentions when they ask these questions. People are people. And some people are nosy as hell and don’t think before they start running their mouths. Use your noggins, folks.

Jeez, for a group of people that get offended when you ask them a question about income and salary…folks sure know how to ask a lot of personal questions. Transgender people are PEOPLE with emotions and freakin’ personal lives. They aren’t immune to embarrassment or anger when you bombard them with questions or staring (like people who stare are so rude OMG). They deserve respect. If you respect them, you need to respect their privacy. With that being said, if you think your question sounds distasteful or offensive, it probably is. Hey, when in doubt, shut your mouth…just might keep ya outta trouble!

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Transgender Suicide Awareness

Maybe I picked today’s topic to be about suicide because I’ve been watching the Netflix series, “13 Reasons Why” which is about a girl who kills herself, and I wanted to add to the feeling of how important an issue this is. In general, no one should ever feel like they no longer belong in this world. Everyone in this world is given life for a purpose and they need to know that. Whether that is to love, grow, or experience new things. When it comes to the struggles being faced today they also need to know they’re not alone in this world because others may be going through the same things. It’s not worth risking their lives over.

This issue is usually one that people rather not touch. I completely understand as it’s a heartbreaking and painful subject. Even the transgender community are often afraid to speak of it because sadly transgender individuals are at a higher risk of suicide. According to this Huffington Post article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/brynn-tannehill/the-truth-about-transgend_b_8564834.html, 40% of transgender individuals have attempted suicide. This is something that needs immediate attention and we can’t just ignore it. All these individuals want is to be accepted by society for who they are and if they’re not getting that it can drive them over the edge where they might end up doing something drastic like suicide. This is why we need to be there for them more then ever.

The media is trying to promote helping them today with hotlines to call for help and having celebrity advocates. Caitlyn Jenner, who in 2015 made her transition as a transgender women right before our eyes, is an advocate for preventing teen transgender suicide. The more people that can advocate for this the more we can bring awareness on this issue and help transgender individuals never feel rejected in society.

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Stand Up to Assault

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Assault is an everyday fear for those who identify as trans and in order to help them, we need to look deeper into the issue. Sexual assault happens because the perpetrator wants to have power over the victim and trans people are disproportionality the victims.

Sexual assault is something that that has been talked about for generations, but for some reason, transgender people have been left out of the discussion. Even though a harrowing 50% of people who died in hate crimes were transgender women. Sexual assault was also a common occurrence in those crimes, according to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs.

By ignoring the importance of this exclusion, we are ignoring the importance of trans lives. This kind of ignorance is leading to more and more people denying the struggles of the transgender community’s goal of acceptance.

I remember learning about sexual assault at a very
young age, but not learning about trans people until about high school. Times have changed since then though, more activists (like Laverne Cox) have come into the IMG_0203spotlight and more trans people are being represented in media. Being trans is not as taboo as it once was. Though, this is a positive direction, there are still many who deny the importance transgender people. Those who come out, do so because they want to be themselves, but the dangers present in society are probably part of what’s stopping them.

The violence against transgender people needs to stop and we need to make strides in creating safe spaces for them. I know that sounds cliché at this point in time, but it’s important to have them when most of the world is a possible threat. If you see a trans person being harassed, do something. You could be what stands in the way of an assault.

We need to stand up for our trans brothers and sisters, especially now (considering who our president is), to ensure their safety and to encourage more people to come out and be who they are meant to be.

‘Bathroom Bill’

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‘Bathroom Bill’ is a common term referring to the rights, or lack thereof, of transgender people to use public restrooms or facilities because of how they identify.

Over the past few years, dozens of stories have surfaced from transgender individuals saying that they were denied access to bathrooms in schools and businesses because they identify as a gender different from what they were born as.

The fact that politicians, school faculty and business owners are scrambling to keep transgender individuals out of bathrooms is ridiculous. No one should have to desperately hold the in their bladder because they’re worried about a confrontation.

In an article written on March 7th, 2017 titled “Texas Republicans Take First Step Toward Anti-Trans Bathroom Bill,” Huffington Post reporter Roque Planas explains how Texans are trying to force transgender individuals to use bathrooms which are connected to their birth certificate, even if they have undergone the hormonal or surgical procedures to appear as the gender they identify as.

This means that a person who was born male, but has since fully transitioned to identify as female would be required to use the men’s bathroom at gyms, schools, restaurants, bars, everywhere.

Not only is this humiliating, since they will be effectively outed for being transgender in public spheres, but it opens transgender individuals up for harassment and assault.

Supporters of the Texas bill said that they would feel uncomfortable if they had to use the bathroom with transgender people, to that I say:

Boo-hoo.

This isn’t just a matter of comfort to transgender individuals, this could quite seriously be a matter of life and death to some, especially in a state so conservative and anti anything that is not a straight, white male.

Really though, I’m not surprised this is coming from Texas. I once took a course on women’s history, and a big chunk of that class was about modern day women’s and LGBT issues. One of the most comical of these issues was centered around another piece of Texas legislation.

According to a law, undoubtedly passed by several decrepit old white men, in Texas you cannot go into a sex shop, where one would buy sex toys or lingerie, and ask to buy a dildo. The store attendants will inform you they did not sell dildos, they sell “sexual education demonstration models,” which are the same exact thing, but Texas law requires them to be labeled as “demonstration models” for their sale to be legal.

Obviously Texas legislatures cannot stand to see things used, in such cases as bathrooms and “sexual education demonstration models,” in any other way as they want them used. Which to me is extremely ironic, since conservatives have always wanted government to be limited enough to stay out of their business.

At this point though, I’m sure transgender individuals just want the government to stay out of where they do their business.