VIEWPOINTS

Why Everyone Contributes To Transphobia And How They Can Stop

As we recite the names of all those who we have lost to the violent hearts and hands of our fellow human beings, may we remember that these names don’t just represent another statistic in the growing number of people who lost the grace of their lives to the indignity of transphobia. These names represent lives, real lives of people who lived, walked, cried, smiled, and loved among us. These names represent lives that deserved to be treated with nothing less than dignity…

These names represent lives that matter and they should matter, for these names represent people who were somebody’s children, partners, friends, siblings, students, teachers, workers, citizens! So as we recite these names, we are calling on all institutions – from the families to schools to religions to governments, from Amsterdam to Ankara, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe – we are calling on everyone, everywhere to reclaim compassion from hate, to reclaim care from apathy, and to reclaim everyday kindness from transphobia…

Let each name be a monument of courage! Let this courage stir a restless defiance in our hearts – a restless defiance that would urge us to stand up for justice and dignity for everyone, everywhere! Let this restless defiance keep on awakening our enormous strength to face our fears about this world. And let’s keep on awakening this enormous strength so we can keep on touching the hearts and spirits of those who are afraid to understand and accept difference; so we can keep on expanding the field of social inclusion and acceptance; so we can keep on inspiring the minds and hearts that matter to craft social policies that are designed to facilitate the fulfillment of happiness!

– Transgriot remembers Sass Rogando Sasot’s speech during the 2011 Amsterdam Transgender Day of Remembrance.