When I first heard about the “Remove the T” petition, I was slightly confused. We are a part of the queer community, too. But I also thought it made a bit of sense – lesbian, gay and bisexual are sexual identities while trans is a gender identity. The two are not connected – you don’t have to be trans to be gay, or gay to be trans, etc. However, after reading some of the articles in response to the petition as well as the petition itself, I’m pretty disgusted.
In the petition, it states several reasons why transgender individuals should be removed from the LGB community. Here was my favorite (and most ridiculous) reason:
“The infringement of the rights of individuals, particularly women, to perform normal everyday activities in traditional safe spaces based on sex; this is most pernicious in the case of men claiming to be transgender demanding access to bathrooms, locker rooms, women’s shelters and other such spaces reserved for women.”
With this statement, the gay/bisexual men and women writing the petition are saying that trans men and trans women aren’t “real” men and women. Which is not true. We are all “real” men and women. They are also insinuating that all trans individuals are pedophiles/molesters/rapists – which, again, isn’t true. Of course there are individuals who are trans and pedophiles, but it’s the same way there are cisgender individuals who are also pedophiles. Our gender identity does not inherently make us sexual predators.
In the petition they also state that “At the very least, a discussion must be opened up to these issues, which for too long are being suppressed and censored – they are genuine concerns that need to be aired.” This is one statement I can definitely agree with. We do need to start a conversation about why the trans community should remain a part of the LGB community.
When I truly stop and think about the meaning of this petition, I am broken-hearted, upset, and hurt. Why is a community fighting for equality excluding individuals? Why are our cisgender brothers and sisters rejecting us? Why is the feminist movement becoming a trans-exclusive movement? Where is the love? Where is the acceptance?
In the end, I can only speak for myself as a transman living in the United States. I believe in equality and acceptance of all. I believe we should accept one another, flaws and all. I may not agree with everything you believe in, and I may disagree with you on some core beliefs, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t help one another. With that being said, please remember that this transguy is always here for every one of you.
Here are some articles as well as the petition: