The Terrible Flag of My People

Trans-sexual and trans-gender warriors marching under a battle standard defined with muted pastel colors around a milky white center do not inspire. Is it because my people spend so much of our lives trying not to stand out, but to fit in, to over-accommodate and become assimilated. Some even accuse us of attempting to mimic or  impersonate.

My people have been accused of being in other people’s spaces, inserting ourselves where we don’t belong, wanting special rights and access, wanting to become something that’s physically impossible or socially inconvenient. Everyone’s always telling us what we can’t do. So, we work hard at being invisible, because laying low is the best way to avoid being just another statistic of our status as the most murdered sexual minority.

From my own personal experience, I don’t spend much time with my people. When a minority group is sufficiently marginalized, the people create their own cultures and those cultures can be dysfunctional in the extreme. Trans culture can place too much emphasis on being mistaken for cis because being cis means being safe and secure. It means being able to get a job, to have a family, to have a place to live.

Being trans means being less than, being undeserving, being targeted. For trans women, along with that, it means being told we have unearned privilege, that we are a problem that needs to be solved, that we are a danger to people who matter more than we do.

We make people uncomfortable, it’s plain to see. Though, your discomfort is nothing compared to the discomfort we address every day of our lives.

That we would rally around a flag that is little more than a dingy white flag of surrender doesn’t surprise me. It’s a terrible flag that I will never fly.

My people are being beaten and murdered daily. My people are still denied basic human rights. My people are grossly misunderstood and misrepresented by all, including those who call us allies.

We are an endangered species. We are refugees from an ongoing ethic cleansing. Those of us who’ve survived this long are modern day ronin just looking for a home and honest work.

Our flag, if we must have one, should be a golden chimera on a blood red field.

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Johanna Wilder

Yes, indeedy.

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