November 20 is Transgender Day of Remembrance (“TDoR”), a day to memorialize and mourn those who have been killed as a result of transphobia, and to call attention to the violence endured by those in the transgender community. Hundreds of transgender people are killed every year, and many more live in constant fear of assault and abuse. Then there is the astonishingly high rate of lifetime suicide attempts: 41 percent, an order of magnitude greater than the rate of the U.S. population overall (4.6 percent) and two to four times higher than lesbian, gay and bisexual adults (10-20 percent). Sadly but unsurprisingly, race and poverty correlate with even higher risk, as does rejection by loved ones and experiencing other forms of discrimination, victimization, or violence:
Family chose not to speak/spend time with them: 57%
Discrimination, victimization, or violence at school, at work, and when accessing health care
• Harassed or bullied at school (any level): 50-54%
• Experienced discrimination or harassment at work: 50-59%
• Doctor or health care provider refused to treat them: 60%
• Suffered physical or sexual violence:
— At work: 64-65%
— At school (any level): 63-78%
Discrimination, victimization, or violence by law enforcement
• Disrespected or harassed by law enforcement officers: 57-61%
• Suffered physical or sexual violence: By law enforcement officers: 60-70
Experienced homelessness: 69%
Transwomen in particular report shunning and exclusion even within queer communities. In a powerful essay, Remembering Us When We’re Gone, Ignoring Us While We’re Here: Trans Women Deserve More, Morgan Collado writes of appalling treatment by the very community where by all rights she should feel welcome and embraced. “How can I even see hope of living a full life,” she asks, “when I don’t see myself reflected in what is supposed to be my community?”
I am not trans, so it is impossible for me to fully understand what it is like to live with the hate and oppression that drives so many to self-harm. But I do want to be a good ally and advocate where I can. To that end, I am very much in Shut Up and Listen mode—which, frankly, is where we all should be with respect to any axis of oppression that we do not personally experience. If you have similar aspirations, the Trans* Awareness Project is a good place to start, the blog of Zinnia Jones is wonderful, and there are many links to additional resources in the Palace Bedroom under the heading Gender & Sexual Orientation.
One thing I can do is yield the floor and signal boost Morgan Collado’s list of fundraisers that could very much use your support:
Fundraisers to Cover Living Expenses
Support Cherno Biko in advocating for folks like us!
Help Aaryn reach her dreams!
Support CeCe’s work!
Lift Up Lourdes
Support a trans leader!
Save Fake Cis Girl from Financial Apocalypse
Help a trans woman of color keep her lights on!
Support Monica Roberts
Help Monica stave off homelessness!
Help a trans woman go to electrolysis school!
Help Michelle get money to go to school!
Miss Major Monthly Giving Circle
Help support a TWOC elder and living legend!
Fundraisers to Cover Transition Related Care
TRANLATIN@ needs HELP for Surgery
Help a Pervuian trans women get access to gender affirming surgery!
Support Vanessa on her medical need
Help Vanessa get chest reconstruction surgery!
Proud Trans Latina seeking help with GRS
Help Naiymah get access to gender affirming surgery!
Sophia’s Breast Fund
Help Sophia access breast augmentation surgery!
Help a Homegirl out!
Help a trans latina get access to transition related care.
Ida’s Surgery Fund
Help writer and activist Ida access surgery!
Fundraisers for Organizations that Serve Trans Women
Support the TWOC Collective
The TWOC Collective in NYC needs your support!
Help a documentary about a trans woman activist get off the ground!
Donate to support TWOC filmmakers!
Support an organization giving trans women the tools to support themselves!
Help a social network by and for marginalized folks get started!
El/La Para Trans Latinas
Help fund an organization working to advocate for trans latinas!
Trans Latina Coalition
Support an organization doing national movement work!
Support Casa Ruby
Help a community center stay afloat!
See also: this documentary about Marsha P. Johnson:
This feature-length documentary focuses on revolutionary trans-activist, Marsha “Pay it No Mind” Johnson, a Stonewall instigator, Andy Warhol model, drag queen, sex worker, starving actress, and Saint. “Pay It” captures the legendary gay/human rights activist as she recounts her life at the forefront of The Stonewall Riots in the 1960s, the creation of S.T.A.R. (Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries) with Sylvia Rivera in the ’70s, and a New York City activist throughout the ’80s and early ’90s. Through her own words, as well as in-depth interviews with gay activist Randy Wicker, former Cockettes performer Agosto Machado, Author Michael Musto, Hot Peaches founder/performer, Jimmy Camicia, and Stonewall Activists Bob Kohler, Danny Garvin, Tommy Lanigan-Schmidt, and Martin Boyce, Marsha’s story lives on.
And I feel this post would not be complete without a shout-out to transwoman Chelsea Manning, an American hero presently serving 35 years in a U.S. prison for exposing many illegal acts, corrupt and duplicitous practices and war crimes committed by the United States government for the benefit of America’s Owners. As Loyal Readers™ well know, Manning is also the Palace’s officially endorsed candidate for Vice President of the United States in 2016. As I noted on Veterans Day:
As of April 23, 2014, a Kansas district judge has approved her request for legal name change (from Bradley), and you can now address mail envelopes to her as “Chelsea E. Manning.” For the cost of a stamp you can write to her.
NOTE: mail must be addressed exactly as follows:
CHELSEA E. MANNING 89289
1300 NORTH WAREHOUSE ROAD
FORT LEAVENWORTH, KANSAS 66027-2304
Seriously, no joke:
- Do not include a hash (“#”) in front of Manning’s inmate number.
- Do not include any title in front of Manning’s name, such as “Ms.,” “Mr.,” “PVT,” “PFC,” etc.
- Do not include any additional information in the address, such as “US Army” or “US Disciplinary Barracks.”
- Do not modify the address to conform to USPS standards, such as abbreviating “North,” “Road,” “Fort,” or “Kansas.”
- For international mail, either “USA” or “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” are acceptable on a separate line.
For more information about restrictions on content, see here (or the blog of her lawyer David Coombs). The Chelsea Manning Support Network is also raising funds for her legal fees; you can also donate to her prison account, which she can use to make phone calls, buy stamps and purchase other small comfort items. Be sure to at least sign the petition to President Obama demanding a pardon for Manning—a simple action guaranteed to be just as irritating to him as it is futile!