…and yet, the ONLY rights that get any attention or focus are the rights that Big Gay, Inc. pushes. That is, marriage.
Some perspective for you: count how many white gay men have been murdered in April. Compare that to the number of trans women of color who have been murdered in April.
Some more perspective for you: count the number of news stories in mainstream media about ‘gay rights’. Compare that to the number of news stories in mainstream media about ‘trans rights’.
Supporting marriage equality is fine, but not to the exclusion of support for more basic rights for all the other members of your precious and falsely “inclusive” acronym.
Hey, I’m trans. I think trans rights are super awesome and important.
But I’m also gay. Well, for the most part. So, some things (like marriage equality) that we’re REALLY close on are things I advocate for and believe in.
Not to mention that gay marriage could wind up being really helpful for transgender individuals. Not just the gay ones like me, but abolishing gender restrictions re:marriage means that transgender people who want to marry can do so regardless of what cis people or laws in the past regard them as. Pretty cool, huh?
Trans people are pretty “out there” when it comes to mainstream acceptance. I’m not saying that’s right or fair. What I am saying is that we shouldn’t drop actively pursuing something we’re REALLY close on in favor of a struggle that’s going to be much longer and harder. We should work on both.
Not to mention that marriage helps us seem legitimate in a heteronormative society, which will help along some of the other issues. Once we’re ‘just like’ straight people, rationales for other discriminatory practices are easier to strip away! Not saying it’s right or fair, just saying that it is.
Support of marriage equality is not the issue. Most of the people that I see criticizing Marriage Equality aren’t saying that we should drop support of it altogether. They’re pointing out that there are other, more vital rights getting ZERO attention thanks to the enormous amount of effort going into the pursuit of marriage equality. While white, gay, middle-class men and women are fighting for their right to marry, trans women of color are fighting for their very survival, for housing, just to be seen as human beings. The right to marry somebody of the same gender as you DOESN’T HELP MUCH WHEN YOU HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT WHERE YOU’LL SLEEP NEXT OR WHETHER THE NEXT PERSON YOU MEET WILL TRY KILL YOU.
This response also smacks of some assimilationist thought: that if we show “them” that “we’re just like them,” things will go better for us. Believe it or not, there are quite a few people out there who don’t want to get married, don’t want anything to do with heterocentric mainstream society, and the pursuit of marriage equality does nothing for these people.
Pursuing marriage equality is, once again, fine. But not when marriage equality is the sole ‘gay right’ getting any attention. It leaves those members of our queer community with more pressing oppressions in the dust, and that’s unacceptable.