Milk Fam Speaks Out Against Trump's Anti-Trans Policy
On October 30th of last year, Donald Trump paraded around his stage during a rally in Greeley, Colorado, proudly carrying a rainbow sign that read “LGBT’s for TRUMP.” The media applauded him, stating that no other Republican would have so boldly proclaimed—or even feigned—support for a community that’s been deemed problematic, perverted, sacrilegious, etc. by conservative peers. Yesterday, four months later, Trump officially ignited his discriminatory tirade against the LGBTQA community by rescinding legislature protecting transgender students and their freedom to use whichever bathroom they feel corresponds with their gender identity.
Shockingly (she’s far from beloved by liberals), Education Secretary Betsy DeVos argued vehemently against the heartbreaking legislature, worried about the harm this will surely cause transgender students, 30% of whom have attempted suicide at least once according to a 2016 study by the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Obviously, one opposing voice (and an unexpected one at that) was not enough to sway the administration to make the moral choice.
Milk stands firmly behind the transgender community. We spoke to trans members of the Milk fam and their allies about their thoughts on, concerns about, and methods of fighting the inhumane legislature.
Miss Queen Sateen and Exquisite (married couple as well as musical duo, Sateen) I am very proud every time I walk into the women’s restroom with my wife, a transgender woman. If people give us shifty looks, I stare them in the face challenging them. Trans people have a right to exist in public spaces with equal access. These are human rights, and it is archaic to think otherwise. We stand with all of the trans kids attending schools where their safety and basic human rights are not being advocated for. We encourage cis women to accompany trans women into public restrooms, and the same with their male counterparts. It is our duty as allies to protect our trans partners and friends, and to be LOUD about it. Especially when it comes to the most vulnerable people of all, children!
(More on Torraine here)
I am 17 and a transgender woman. I’ve found myself fighting my whole life just to be accepted for who I am and I have had to advocate for myself when it comes to the pronouns I use, what I wear and the ability to use the bathroom of my choice. President Trump’s revocation of federal guidelines allowing transgender students like myself to use the restrooms that correspond with their gender identity is a huge setback. It means that girls like me would have to use a men’s restroom. Can you imagine how horrible and awkward that is!? Not only does it exacerbate gender dysphoria for any trans individual but it worsens the stigma around being transgender. Because I am trans, I have not only faced an internal struggle my whole life but I have dealt with bullying and losing close friends and family. Being trans is enough of a battle, just trying to be happy with who you are; you shouldn’t have to battle the rest of the world. As an artist, I find moments like this to be a great opportunity to come together with my community and collaborate. This is a time where we should all be standing together in solidarity and pushing for equality.
I am not in school, but I am transgender. I am afraid. I am afraid of the mentality that is becoming acceptable, the prejudice that is becoming validated by the rhetoric being used by Trump, his cabinet and his followers. I am afraid of violence but mostly I am afraid of the possibility that legislation will be pushed through to eliminate the allowance for transgender people to change their gender on their passports through the state department. I am afraid to be myself in certain environments. I am absolutely afraid to use the bathroom in public places. I question which bathroom to use, which locker room to use after swimming laps and often just plan my day around those activities so that I can just change at home.
iO Tillet Wright
Donald may try to divide us, and he may legally sanction discrimination, but the terrible truth for them is that so many people have already turned their hatred of LGBTQ people into love and acceptance. Sadly there will still be bigots, and as long as discrimination exists, we will fight. ✊🏼🏳️🌈💜💙💚💛❤️
This is something that every single one of us can combat by petitioning the places we live and work to offer a gender neutral bathroom option. We can combat it by being vocal in our support of trans people and all of our right to be in exactly the shape we feel suits us best. Laws are meaningless if the people refuse to enforce them.
Trans/gnc folks have needed support since the moment we’ve existed, not solely in light of tragedy. While solidarity via social media is important & necessary, are you asking yourself what you can do to tangibly support the trans/gnc youth in our communities? Because that is how you fight back, by quite literally caring & nurturing, so that we may be strong enough to live another day in a world that doesn’t want us to, to speak in a world that seeks to silence us. Support: to bear all or part of the weight of; to hold up.
Lead graphic by Jordan Levinson
Stay tuned to Milk for more from the front lines of trans activism.