The Accidental Activist

It hasn’t been an easy… well, I was going to say it hasn’t been an easy week but then it occurred to me that it hasn’t been an easy few years. I know life has it’s challenges and victories and this will never change. Indeed, being able to adapt and overcome difficulties is what strengthens us. What doesn’t kill you, and all that.

It’s essential to acknowledge your feelings and not ignore the things that cause stress and sadness. Your emotions will eventually get the better of you, perhaps in a destructive way, so it’s best to process and express them when you feel it’s safe to do so.

I suppose that’s one of the reasons I write about some of the topics that I do. It’s depressing and infuriating to see the seemingly endless barrage of news articles about legislation designed to hurt the trans community. Writing about things like this, well, I’m not sure it helps but it doesn’t hurt either (but goodness it triggers a lot of angry emails, lol).

But I also write about things like these because we as a community need to be aware of what is happening and what lawmakers WANT to happen. Right now most of the laws are targeting those who are transitioning, but if there’s enough “success” in these efforts, soon the attention will turn to others on the trans spectrum, such as those of us who identify as crossdressers or those of us who aren’t planning on HRT and the like. I used to think the suggestion that doing drag becoming a felony was absolutely ridiculous but sad to say I could see it happening.

I never, ever set out to be an activist. When I started my website I wanted to essentially celebrate this side of us. I know a lot of trans bloggers write about their journey when it comes to transitioning as well as the stress and anxiety that comes with being transgender, but I wanted to focus on, well, how wonderful it is to have this side of us, no matter where you are when it comes to being non-cis gender.

But as time passed and as the world continued to attack our community (in various forms), I couldn’t ignore what was happening, and what was trying to happen.

So, I started to write about it. And there was some pushback from readers. “Stick to fun stuff” was something I heard (and still hear).

Part of me feels that if you identify as trans, you are on some level, an activist. You just might be a very quiet and unassuming one. You may not be retweeting news articles or protesting with a sign outside of your state’s capital, but there are other ways the world sees us.

I have spent entire Saturdays doing normal things. Getting a makeover, having coffee, wandering around a mall… just lost in my own little life. Not trying to change the world by any means.

But it’s like throwing a stone into a pond. I am having an impact on people, despite not saying a word or even noticing someone. Ripples, and all that.

If Hannah is out doing normal, boring things, others see that. They see a trans woman out in the real world doing normal, boring things. I am not preying on anyone in a restroom. My skirt might be short but I am not dressing in an overtly sexual way. I am chatting with a cashier and it’s a perfectly ordinary and mundane interaction.

What others are (potentially) seeing is a trans person existing and not doing anything as frightening as what others say about us. Hopefully this helps other people sees girls like us in a different light. Perhaps the cashier might think twice about supporting an anti-trans law in the voting booth after helping a trans person and seeing that they are just a normal person.

Perhaps this is overly optimistic and I am misjudging any influence I have, but after this week I could go for some optimism.

I look forward to the day (which will probably never come, but a girl can dream) where my writing is completely focusing on where to buy panties and how to walk in stilettos and posting pictures from a photo shoot.

Love, Hannah

8 thoughts on “The Accidental Activist

  1. Dear Hannah,

    There’s so much to say.

    First, this blog is your blog. Write whatever you want. No one (not me, either) has any right to tell you to do this or that with it.

    Second, I totally understand the reluctance to make politics a part of it. Politics is (designed to be) divisive, and I think you want your blog to be the opposite. That said, I also think you’re finding that it isn’t entirely up to you, in the sense that writing about trans people is, at this particular point in time, also writing about a political issue. That’s not your fault.

    Third, the reason this is happening is that trans people have become a wedge issue, which political people are using this year to create division (which, again, is a feature of politics, not a bug). This year’s cultural wedge issue could have been any number of other non-trans issues, but that didn’t happen; instead, trans people are the issue.

    Fourth (it took me a long time to see this, I’m sorry to say) it’s not one side or the other that decided to make it an issue. Conservative/traditionalists are upset by the increased visibility of trans people (which is a change from the past), and demands for trans people to be treated with respect instead of derision (which many perceive as accusatory); liberal/libertarians are to some extent the ones making those demands, and reacting to the con/trad flurry of laws and regulations.

    Fifth, there is a difference between the people and the powerful. What I described in point Fourth was the perception and the reactions of the people. It’s how they feel, be it wrong or right. Politicians, on the other hand, are mostly part of the rich, college-grad, sophisticated elite, and they don’t care two shakes of a rat’s tail about any of the cultural issues that excite the masses. Their law firms, investment companies, faculties and so on are filled with all sorts of people, or all colors and all faiths, all genders and all sexualities — a real melting pot. I’m part of that world myself and trust me, they don’t really care.

    Sixth, what they do care about is the excitement of the masses, which they can use for political purposes. Those purposes, of course, have nothing to do with the cultural issues themselves. No, it’s about money and power. Who has it, who wants it, and what they might have to do to get it.

    Finally, although all of the above is, IMHO, “just the facts, ma’am,” I’ll end with a little bit that might be little preachy: the powerful, political poobahs may be coming after trans people today, but next they will be coming after another weak or marginal group. Blacks, Asians, gays, women, Muslims, what-have-you … and us. Again, the elites don’t really care about any of these groups, they just find it useful to oppress them … and us. Nothing personal, just business. But anyone in a minority or marginal community must know that all minority or marginal communities are targets for this kind of thing. We’re all in it together, like it or not. It’s like in that poem, “when they came for the Jews, I didn’t speak up, because I was not Jewish…”

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  2. Oh, Pleeeeeze! Is this the best you got? Quoting old tropes from FAUX news? Easily the work of a person with no real education.
    You act as a poorly schooled dog, baying into the unlit night, hoping to get a pat on the head. None here.
    The ignorant person can only foment anger to other ignorants…
    Oh, yeah if you are up to it…
    Google -Political Spectrum as Circular Continuum-
    Velam

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  3. And I used to be a Republican because I do believe in limited government. Until it became obvious that republicans only believe in limited government as it relates to the almighty dollar and want to legislate everything on how people live their lives. It amazes that for a free country we have more people in prison than almost any civilization in history. I believe government is there to provide an opportunity for all people not just the wealthy or Christians,

    The turning point for me was in the Bush\Gore election. My kids had to vote in school and they asked me who they should vote for. We found a website that listed about 30 issues. They went issue but issue picking who they sided with. Gore won overwhelmingly. Then they asked me who I was going to vote for and I said Bush. They looked at me and said but that is not what you taught us. Sometimes children see things so much more clearly than adults. I taught my kids simple to help people, be kind to people, work hard, be responsible for yourself and understand that others may have challenges that you don’t so have empathy.

    As for Covid, I assume you do realize that the restrictions were put in place under a Republican President and a Republican controlled Congress. As a staunch Democrat my wife said it best. She was opposed to mandated restrictions. Her theory was that without the restrictions we would have fewer republicans.

    For the most part I view Republicans and Democrats as Coke\Pepsi. They both understand they control the market by creating conflict and not allowing anyone else in. They get the majority of their campaign money from the wealthy so they govern accordingly. The new Republican party is just full of mean spirited people.

    You mentioned the “Woke people” and “Cancel Culture”. isn’t this exactly how capitalism is suppose to work? You spend your money on the things that you support and don’t on the things you oppose.

    As a finance professional I might not be versed in economics as well as you are. Can you please help me understand what causes inflation?

    As a Democrat I do not want to get rid of free speech. In fact, I want more it. I want every maginalized group to feel unafraid of speaking up.

    i do not want to get rid the Constitution. The beauty of it is that the forefathers had the insight to recognize it will need to change over time. There are some changes that I believe would be helpful but we just have to follow the process.

    I don’t want to be like the communist countries in China or Cuba, nor like the democratic counties of Russia and Venezuela. I feel fortunate to be an American and hope we can get better through collaboration with other great countries like Canada, the EU nations, Japan, Australia, etc. I have traveled to may

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  4. Hannah, I say, you do you. If you want to write about trans issues, you go, girl! After all, there are forces that are mounting that are very reminiscent of a not-so-distant Nazi Germany that would send us back to the day ages. Some may scoff at that comment but just look at what’s going on the asshole-of-the-world (aka Texas) for all you need to know about how close we are to the edge. And to attack young children who are just trying to be who they are makes me sick to my stomach. Speak loudly and proudly., girl!

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