I’m Tired. I’m. So. Very. Tired . . .
Year after year, transgender individuals like me, their allies and advocates gather around the world to honor, and remember, once again, those in my community we have lost to senseless hate and violence in the past year. It is what has come to be known as the Transgender Day of Remembrance, or TDOR, for short. It was created 22 years ago by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith as a vigil to honor the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was brutally murdered in Boston in 1998. And while it is the gracious, honorable and right thing to do – to recognize our dead – I am weary and yearn for the day when we won’t have any new names to read and candles to extinguish.
It has gone on for far too many years, and far too many lives. . .
A very wise person once said to me, “before you ever get to the answers, you must first get comfortable with the questions.” And I get that, but the nagging, unanswered questions continue to mount as each new murder is reported, or as is the case with many media accounts, misreported by not noting the victim’s preferred name, or worse yet not reported at all. But of all the unanswered questions about this utterly senseless loss of life, the one that stands above all others is: “Why?”
Sadly, my struggle for answers only creates more questions.
Why is it that the transgender community has been repeated hauled out to be publicly flogged in the town square to the delight of those who look to undermine, and yes, eradicate our right to fair treatment in all facets of our lives?