Today is Transgender Day!

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Or rather, “Transgender Day of Visibility,” a day set aside to raise visibility of the “T” part of our community. An important day, given that even inside the queer community, transgender men and women are still often treated as second-class, or sometimes no-class by gay men and women who don’t want Ts “hijacking” their own civil rights fight — an argument we find, frankly, ridiculous. And while many of us are self-taught experts on all things gay issues and politics, we’re lacking in our transgender education.

TransGender Michigan founder Rachel Crandall is credited with starting Transgender Day of Visibility. Around the country, there are events popping up here and there.

Explains Wayne State University philosophy professor Dr. John Corvino on the importance of standing alongside our Ts:

Our discomfort around the issue—I know I’m not alone in this—means that we’ve got some learning to do. Bravo to those trans people willing to come out and teach us.

Some gay people wonder why we get lumped with the transgender community at all. Sexual orientation is one thing, they say, and gender identity is another.

That’s true as far as it goes, and perhaps it’s better to talk about our overlapping communities than about a single GLBT community.

Still, the alliance makes sense insofar as both (overlapping) groups suffer from rigid social expectations about sex and gender. Compare “If you’re born biologically male, you should grow up to be a man” with “If you’re born biologically male, you should grow up to love a woman.” The similarities between the two inferences seem to outweigh the differences.

Now all we need is a branding expert to come in, design a logo and a website, and get a spokesperson on Rachel Maddow‘s show.