The Attempted Genocide of Transgender Americans

And why it won’t succeed

Pax Ahimsa Gethen

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Screenshot of the Movement Advancement Project Equality Maps, showing the gender identity policy tally of U.S. states and territories. As of March 2022, 17 states have a negative tally and are shaded in red.

Tomorrow Spring arrives in the Northern Hemisphere, but I am not feeling particularly joyful. Along with worries about war and the ongoing pandemic, I’m watching the attacks on trans people by US legislators and other government officials with a growing sense of alarm and dismay.

As of March 2022, bills are pending or have already passed in numerous states to eliminate trans youth access to gender-affirming healthcare, prohibit trans students from participating in sports or using restrooms that align with their genders, and prohibit teachers from educating young students about gender identity.

Speaking on Democracy Now!, trans ACLU attorney chase strangio stated:

The only way you can stop us from being who we are is by killing us. And that, unfortunately, is starting to feel like the actual objective of these bills.

I can’t help but agree. As a queer trans child of Black and Jewish parents, whose ancestors were systematically enslaved, persecuted, and exterminated, I don’t say this lightly: We are witnessing the attempted genocide of transgender people.

The attempt to eradicate us will not succeed, because being trans is an innate quality that cannot be legislated, “cured”, or prayed away. Preventing trans people from living as our true genders does not turn us into cis — or what trans-antagonists would call “normal” — people. It turns us into depressed, demoralized, despondent trans people.

Some are able to live an outwardly normal existence despite these feelings. Others are not, and might take their own lives as a result. Suicidal ideation and attempts are astonishingly high amongst trans people.

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Pax Ahimsa Gethen

Queer agender trans male. Black vegan atheist, pacifist. Pronouns: they/them/their. funcrunch.org, patreon.com/funcrunch