Wednesday, March 02, 2011


I was reading an obituary of an activist in the Chicago area on Helen Boyd's website ( this morning. The obit reminded me of the many people who paved the way for what we have today. They did in a time when it could cost them everything.

I could not help thinking about Tyra Hunter. Who is Tyra Hunter? In 1995, Ms. Hunter was in an auto accident in Washington DC. The medical staff that was working on her stopped treatment upon seeing that she was a transgender woman. As a result, Tyra died of her injuries. I first read this story a short time after I came out in 2005. To this day this incident still galls me.

I am thankful for my transgender sisters and brethren who blazed a trail so we could enjoy the fruits of their labors. Things are better but we still have a long way to go. Sylvia Rivera is another transgender woman who was at the forefront of the Stonewall Riots in Greenwich Village in 1969. I am so proud of my African-American brothers and sisters who in 1965 staged at sit-in at Dewey's lunch counter in Philadelphia to protest their second class treatment.

I feel saddened a little about the losses incurred though violence and suicide. Inwill always be indebted to them. We must blaze a trail for future transgender men and women. Whatever I do for the transgender community is in honor of Tyra Hunter. It's good sometimes to remember where we came from.


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