Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Ironically, the Lyrics and Heroine in 'Let It Go' (Oscar for 'Best Song') Speaks Directly To What So Many Transsexual Women & Girls Go Through. Many LGB and Cis-Gender Straight People May Fail To Understand The Backlash Against Hollywood 'Trans Face' and Jared Leto's Transphobic Comments, But Frozen's 'Princess Elsa' Very Much Does Understand.

Princess Elsa from Disney's 'Frozen'

Ironically, the character Princess Elsa in the song 'Let It Go’,  (which won the Oscar for Best Song) could have easily been a trans* woman. In Disney's film ‘Frozen’ the plot starts out when Elsa is a child and her parents advise her to hide her differences because they fear others will misunderstand and shun her. She is pretty much over sheltered and treated like a handicapped person. Her parents die unexpectedly and it is just her and her baby sister. She continues to live in the shadows thinking it would be better for everyone. When she comes of age she can no longer mask her birth challenge and when society finds out they become fearful and vilify her. She runs away from her family and kingdom and retreats to a new home which is marginalized on the outskirts of society. Though she misses her family at least she is allowed to live openly as who she is. Everyone seems to have an opinion on who she is but only those who love her really know. After sometime as a recluse she decides that she is strong enough to own her truth publicly and ventures back to pursue justice. She won’t let the close-minded society alienate and banish her any longer. Her love for her sister is more powerful then what other people think about her. In the end the people of the kingdom realize that although she is different (who doesn't have something different about them?) that she is not someone to be frightened of and in fact that she has a beautiful and big heart and has a lot to offer the community.

It is a heartwarming story. I confess I have listened to this song on repeat many times because it really inspires me. While many people fail to understand why so many transsexual and transgender woman are feeling slighted by the Hollywood ‘trans face’ epidemic, the ramifications of institutionalized misgendering, transphobia (in both LGB and straight circles), the mockery that is Jared Leto’s ‘Rayon’ character and why he shouldn't have won the Oscar - it’s comforting to know that the heroine Princess Elsa very much does understand and has actually lived what many of my sisters and I have and continue to go through.

My advice to the many gay, lesbian and cis-gender straight people going on and on about why transsexual and transgender women should relax, shut up and just accept the many problems raised by the Jared Leto/’Rayon’/Misgendering/Hollywood ‘trans face’ controversy is to maybe take step back and consider our feelings, our life experiences, our loss, our pain and our desire to be loved and appreciated for who we are in a world that continuously mocks, dehumanizes and vilifies us. It’s not easy being the punch line of every joke or the punching bag of every bigot. Please exercise some compassion and actually listen. Being a true ally means listening, not arrogantly and cluelessly TELLING us our feelings are invalid. Be gentle with ua. The authentic heart of the protest against Jared Leto’s transphobic public comments and the constant Hollywood ‘trans face’ is thousands of girls and women simply wanting people to acknowledge our humanity and affirm who we are.

Here are the lyrics of the ‘Let It Go’ song which I and many of my trans* friends very much identify with:

A kingdom of isolation,
And it looks like I’m the Queen.

The wind is howling like this swirling storm inside
Couldn’t keep it in, heaven knows I tried

Don’t let them in, don’t let them see
Be the good girl you always have to be

Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know
Well, now they know

Let it go, let it go
Can’t hold it back anymore
Let it go, let it go
Turn away and slam the door

I don’t care
What they’re going to say
Let the storm rage on,
The cold never bothered me anyway

It’s funny how some distance
Makes everything seem small
And the fears that once controlled me
Can’t get to me at all

It’s time to see what I can do
To test the limits and break through
No right, no wrong, no rules for me I’m free

Let it go, let it go
I am one with the wind and sky
Let it go, let it go
You’ll never see me cry

Here I stand
And here I'll stay
Let the storm rage on

My power flurries through the air into the ground
My soul is spiraling in frozen fractals all around
And one thought crystallizes like an icy blast
I’m never going back, The past is in the past

Let it go, let it go
And I'll rise like the break of dawn
Let it go, let it go
That perfect girl is gone

Here I stand In the light of day
Let the storm rage on,
The cold never bothered me anyway

Friday, December 20, 2013

The Same Angry Mob That Lynched The Dixie Chicks (w/ Misogynistic Comments & Boycott) For Exercising Their Freedom of Speech Are Those Rallying For Duck Dynasty's Phil Robertson To Spit Racist & Homophobic Rants Without Consequences

There's nothing like a strong cup of other's Hypocrisy to get me all riled up to write a new blog post. Last night I was studying the statistics about the primary demographic of people who are losing their marbles over Duck Dynasty’s patriarch Phil Robertson getting suspended by A&E. It turns out they are the exact same mob who went off the deep end when the Dixie Chicks voiced their opposition against the war!
So let me get this straight: Women such as the Dixie Chicks, in particular lead singer Natalie Maines, cannot speak openly about the killing of innocent civilians and unjust wars overseas, but a man such as Phil Robertson with dated ideologies can not only spit the most racist and homophobic rants but he should be praised for those prejudiced beliefs, not reprimanded? ------ Now that’s one hundred flights over the cuckoo’s nest if I ever did see!

First of all, A&E suspending him has nothing to do with “freedom of speech”. This is about a network having the freedom to distance themselves from values in which they do not condone. It is also about advertisers actually being the ones who have the freedom to place their marketing dollars wherever they choose. Phil in fact has still retained his right to spit mumbo jumbo – he now just has to find a new platform to in which to do so.
There are real consequences to inciting hate and violence. One of them is losing friends.

I would very much like the people who rallied to boycott and vilify the Dixie Chicks to do some serious self-evaluation about the inconsistency of their supposed values. You can’t have it both ways. You don’t get to pick and choose.  The most vile and misogynist comments were said about the Dixie Chicks – ironically similar to the vulgar comments spewed by Robertson himself. It’s unbelievable that some people are incapable of putting a mirror up to themselves and becoming aware of their blatant and unapologetic double standards.
If I owned a company I too would kick racist and homophobic people to the curb. That negativity is soooo fifty years ago.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Dec. 1 - World AIDS Day - [from Black AIDS Institute] Ashley Love's '30 Under 30' Essay for BAI's '30 Years of AIDS' Commemoration Report

Two years ago I was invited to take part of Black AIDS Institute’s (BAI) 30th Anniversary project where 30 individuals ("young black leaders, celebrities and activists") were chosen to write essays about their advocacy work to combat AIDS. Today, Dec. 1, is World AIDS Day and I am sharing my essay with you. Much work remains, including eradicating the misgendering and misclassification n of transsexual women from the “MSM” category, providing more assessable and affordable care in Africa and ensuring more preventative measures.
“As part of its special "30 years of AIDS" commemoration report, the Black AIDS Institute is profiling 30 young black leaders, celebrities and activists who have worked to make a difference in the fight against black AIDS.” (Julian Breece, Editor of ‘30 under 30’ feature)

From Black AIDS Institute’s  June 2011 Issue and 30th Anniversary Edition:

[photo for Black AIDS Institute]
  Due to a lack of human rights protections from the government and understanding from families and society, many Americans born transsexual and/or intersex, or that have a transgender identity, find themselves in very vulnerable and dangerous situations.  Because of this alienation some people in these communities engage in unsafe behavior as a way to cope and survive, making them vulnerable to infection with HIV.

  I have lost two people close to me because of this disease.  One of them was a woman who was born with a transsexual medical condition.  She wanted love so much that she trusted the wrong man and, instead of protecting herself, took a risk that proved fatal.  

  A lot of work needs to be done to educate society about transsexual, transgender and intersex issues. The unhealthy stigma and dehumanization of these communities is what leads to situations where they contract the disease. Low self-esteem caused by people’s prejudice against human diversity is what causes many in these communities to fail to safeguard their health.

  If any of my sisters are reading this, know that your life is a beautiful gem.  Cherish yourself and your temple.  We all want love, but we have to love ourselves first and foremost if we are to receive authentic love from someone else.  Regardless of the misguided fear and toxic hate in the world directed at people who are born different, don’t believe the lies that say you are unworthy.
  You are a child of God just the way you are.  Treat yourself kindly, because you deserve it.

Ashley Love is the founder of Media Advocates Giving National Equality to Transsexual & Transgender People and a popular contributor to the Huffington Post.

Originally published in June 2011 by Black AIDS Institute


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

BREAKING: On The Eve of The Annual Trans Day of Remembrance Islan's Nettles Confessed Murderer, Paris Wilson, Has Charges Against Him Dropped.


The tragedy continues against Islan Nettles, the young woman of trans experience from Harlem who was recently murdered in cold blood. This beautiful woman had such a promising future which was robbed from her from a insecure and hateful little man who is could very well get away with this murder due to a technicality.

All this on the eve of the Trans Day of Remembrance, as if God is trying to shine a light on the terrorism that plagues our sisters for all to see. Poetic Injustice.

The case is still open. This outrage on top of my saddened state due to TDOR is a lot to deal with. Why is this happening? When will justice rain down from the mighty heavens?

Monday, November 18, 2013

Governor Quinn of Illinois and Illinois’ Leading LGB“t” Organizations Decide To Sign Illinois Marriage Equality Bill Not on the 19th or 21st, but on November 20th - The Trans Day of Remembrance. Really? How Amazingly Symbolic...

Governor Quinn of Illinois, the Governor's LGBT Liaison and the leading LGB Illinois organizations have decided to sign the Illinois Marriage Equality Bill into law not on November 19th, not on November 21st, but on November 20th - The Trans Day of Remembrance.

Um, ok.

How amazingly symbolic....

After the rainbow wedding cake and champagne party perhaps attention may actually go towards the epidemic of transsexual and transgender women of color being terrorized and slaughtered in Chicago, New York, Puerto Rico, Washington D.C., California, Brazil and all around the world?

Monday, November 11, 2013

VIDEO: Poet Sy Stokes, Alongside Fellow Black UCLA Students, Delivers Empowering Spoken Word Video Drawing Attention To UCLA's Overwhelming Lack of Diversity; Sign Petition Now!

Sy Stokes and fellow Black Bruins outside the Campbell Hall, where in 1969 two UCLA students Black Panther members were assassinated.

Sy Stokes, an UCLA Black student, and cousin of the late Arthur Ashe, delivers an empowering spoken word piece alongside fellow Black Bruins blasting the racist and classist policies of UCLA, it's fraudulent claims of "diversity", the pitfalls of California abandoning affirmative action and points out that Blacks are only wanted there to play sports.

Sign the Change.org petition to demand more diversity at UCLA: https://www.change.org/petitions/ucla-has-less-than-50-black-males-in-the-entire-freshmen-class-this-needs-to-change