Okay, one more post about *THIS* and I’ll lay off for a bit.
Despite what this looks like, this is not meant to be a Republican vs Democrat post, so please refrain from that type of rhetoric in the comments.
Here are the facts:
The “Don’t Say Gay” legislation in Florida was proposed by Republicans.
The horrifying legislation in Texas was proposed by Republicans.
The military transgender ban from 2017 was proposed by Republicans.
I suppose I could go on but I think I’ve made my point.
There are many, many things that Democrats completely drop the ball on. This post is about the facts about these proposals, as well as who in the government is writing and supporting laws like these. My point is that it seems that all the recent legislation that impacts the LGBTQIA+ community in a negative way has all been proposed and supported by Republicans (and yes, not all Republicans).
And again, the Democrats are not anyone’s saviors. There are instances of Democrats supporting legislation that does hurt the trans community, but I think I’ve made my point when it comes to recent proposals.
The purpose of this post is to not attack Republicans or praise Democrats, so please keep that in mind if you feel you need to comment to defend or condemn a political party. I am not giving credit to Democrats by any means, I am simply pointing out which party wrote the three policies that I cited at the top of this post. Those are facts.
In this day and age of the 24 hour news cycle with countless ways to stay informed of, well, anything and everything that happens on the planet, it’s easy to be aware of every little thing and every big thing that happens, whether it is celebrity gossip or whatever our political leaders are doing.
I live in Minnesota and we have a Democratic governor. I don’t agree with everything he does, but as a t-girl I feel a LITTLE safer, from a track record point of view, having a Democrat leading the state. As I mentioned at the beginning of this post, the Florida and Texas laws were proposed by Republicans and with those states having Republican governors it increases the likelihood of those laws passing (but I THINK the Florida one already did??).
Any sort of state or federal law or school policy that stigmatizes the LGBTQIA+ community is heartbreaking and I can’t imagine how awful it is for parents of trans children in Texas or to be a non-cis gender and/or non-straight high school student in Florida at the moment.
It sounds selfish and cruel to think this and I certainly don’t mean it like this, but when I see laws like these I breathe a LITTLE sigh of relief that I live in a “blue” state. “It can’t happen here, at least not now”, I think to myself.
Oh but it can.
And it might. Probably will. If it doesn’t, it won’t be for lack of trying. Laws like the ones I cited earlier are cruel and create precedent. One state does something and soon another state will follow.
It hasn’t hit the news cycles yet but HF 3843 was recently introduced that states, in part, that “a person’s sex is either male or female as biologically defined.” The proposed legislation is the all too familiar law touching on restroom usage when it comes to gender identity.
Will this law pass? Again, I can sleep a LITTLE better knowing that we have a Democratic governor and because of that, from a historical perspective anyway, it seems unlikely it will, but no political party remains in power forever. An election could completely (and will likely) upend everything.
Regardless of whether or not a law that hurts the trans community actually passes, it’s exhausting to see laws like these proposed even in the first place. It’s depressing to see them get any sort of support.
You may wonder why I think about these laws. After all, I am not transitioning or planning to. Almost all of these laws focus on medical or legal aspects. But they do impact me. If I am out en femme and I need to use the ladies room, a law absolutely impacts me. Even if they didn’t, these laws are cruel and discriminating and for those reasons alone they should be opposed.
And yes, a family restroom is an option, but not every mall or restaurant has them. And that’s not the point. The law is stigmatizing trans people.
Here’s the thing:
WE as a COMMUNITY understand the nuances of gender identity. We know that there is a difference between a dude who wears panties as a kink and a trans woman who has transitioned. We know there are many, many differences among people who do, and can, identify as transgender.
But lawmakers don’t know this. Nor do they care.
It SOUNDS unlikely and I hope it is, but could there be a proposal to ban any sort of action that goes against “traditional” gender norms?
What I mean is that a state could absolutely block any sort of medical treatment relating to HRT. A state could prevent anyone from legally changing their gender. And yes, these laws impact those who are transitioning and may already be in place in certain states.
But let’s go further.
Some states (such as my own) are trying to prevent transgender people from using a changing room that aligns with their gender identity. If you are like me and have no plans to transition and simply like to go out en femme and try on dresses, I wouldn’t be able to do that under certain dressing room laws.
And yes, I suppose I could use the boy dressing room but again, the point is that laws like these stigmatize the trans community.
This law doesn’t care whether or not I am going to, or have transitioned. I am simply transgender so the law would apply to me.
Let’s go even further.
Could there be a law that prevents a man, in male mode, from buying panties? Could there be stores that prohibit someone from purchasing something that the state says is “for women”? This could potentially prevent me in male mode from buying stockings or even picking up tampons for my wife.
Could a state decide that ANYONE who identifies as transgender is potentially dangerous? Could there be a requirement to “register” as transgender? Could this prevent someone who is trans from being near children under the age of 18?
IF that happened, it would make my job in education impossible and I doubt I would ever be able to see my nieces again.
You might think that there’s no way this could happen, but let’s not forget about the internment camps during World War II.
Could businesses like En Femme and Xdress get shut down because a lawmaker might claim they make “girl clothes for boys”? Could Amazon be court ordered to report a man who orders high heels from them? Could Pride festivals and LGBTQIA+ nightclubs be made illegal?
You may be thinking that can’t happen, that this won’t happen. You may be thinking that this sounds alarmist. Does this sound unlikely? Maybe, but it’s sounding less unrealistic with each passing day. I used to think ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ was far-fetched…
The Democrats aren’t going to “save us”. At the most they might reverse a law that was passed or veto proposed anti-trans legislation but I don’t feel super confident that we as a community are completely safe in the short term or the long term, after all, mid-term elections are coming up…
We’re going backwards and I don’t know what we can do.
Part of me wants to stay calm and carry on. That feels naïve sometimes. Other times I think I should go completely back in the closet, erase (as much as one can) Hannah from social media. But that feels a little extreme.
I suppose that’s kind of the point of legislation like this. To push us back into the closet, to cause us to repress our gender identity. To erase us from the rest of the world.
This feels very scary and depressing and I am going to wrap this up.