Trans Week – We All Need To Come Together
By Mila Madison
It has been a crazy year and we have been able to raise awareness of our cause to levels never seen before. As great as this is I have grown concerned by some of the division that has taken place in our community
Just recently Caitlyn Jenner spoke to a group of 1,000 people at the 7th annual Speaker Series luncheon for the Chicago House, which provides social services for those impacted by HIV/AIDS and other LGBT issues. After her speech she confronted protesters on her way out who were members of a group called “I Ain’t Cait”. Though this made headline news the real story here is the division of our community. Let me be honest. The “I Ain’t Cait” group has a valid point. Caitlyn Jenner does live a life of privilege, fame and wealth. The group also points out the fact that many in the community don’t have access to the simple things that Cait and some others do. They have it much harder and that is the reality. The further you go through the spectrum of race the harder it is for some of us. But is Caitlyn Jenner not one of us?
“IF WE CANNOT OVERCOME THE DIVERSITY WITHIN OUR OWN COMMUNITY, HOW ARE WE GOING TO BE ABLE TO GET THE REST OF THE WORLD TO ACCEPT US?”
I’ll admit I was really worried when Cait was about to do her interview with Diane Sawyer. I was worried the interview would set us back a decade if it ended up being a joke. After hearing her speak about her transgender experience I realized she had gone through many of the experiences that we all do. Her story was not that different then our own in terms of being transgender.
This gets to my point. We are a community just as diverse as any other. Though we are transgender we are gay, straight and bisexual. We are Democrats and Republicans. Some of us are Atheists, Christians, Muslims and Jews. We are white, African American, Latina and a myriad of all different backgrounds. We are all these things just like society in general. If we cannot overcome the diversity within our own community, how are we going to be able to get the rest of the world to accept us? We need to do this now. We must all come together regardless of our differences and be the example to the world. This is key to our gaining acceptance. We all must work together.
So is Caitlyn Jenner one of us? I say she is. Is she our spokeswoman? No she is not. We are all the spokesperson for our community. Let us remember that. Caitlyn is one of them. She may have a bigger platform because of her privilege, but that does not make her more important than the rest of us in trying to achieve our common goal. We should all be concerned about the issues the “I Ain’t Cait” group brings up, including Caitlyn. They are 100% valid. Let’s just not divide ourselves in the process.
I want to also send my love and prayers to those we lost, their friends and family. We have made great progress but as I always say we still have much work to do. Please share your thoughts and have a great trans week.
Stay safe and keep fighting for all of us!
Love and Peace,