“The trans community is here; we have always been here. Contemporary culture can’t unsee us.”
THE DAY AFTER the election, I watched my brothers and sisters encouraging each other to get their passports and identification papers in order. They shared essential information and resources to prepare for the future, offering support, money, legal advice, an escort—anything to keep each other safe.
The trans community is here; we have always been here. Contemporary culture can’t unsee us. This genie isn’t going back into the bottle. We’re not alone in feeling targeted, and are, in fact, joined by many others. It’s now even more critical to build alliances with communities of color, immigrants, women, Jews—anyone who has been targeted by this new administration. We are in this together, protesting and fighting a shared oppression. This struggle is universal.
We must remember that the path of human rights has lurched along throughout history with all sorts of persecution, progress, and setbacks. There’s a deep chasm in our society that has been exposed, and we’re all now staring into this abyss together. We’re unsure of what to do and what comes next as we grapple with fear, anger, sadness, and despair.
Apathy is not an option. The only antidote for this anxiety is to connect with community: the real-life, here-and-now, in-the-flesh human beings who are our neighbors, coworkers, fellow commuters, baristas, strangers we pass on the street—each person who wanders into our everyday lives. Now, more than ever, we must strive for kindness in our daily interactions.
I’m not going to stop working for LGBTQ rights. I’m going to fight harder. Everyone around me promises to do the same. Now is the time for hope and faith in the essential goodness of community. Together we will—we must—create a future in which art, activism, and freedom flourish.