Monday, August 31, 2015

Beyond Labels.

Yesterday the LGBTQI ministry, Beyond Labels, at church met to discuss the upcoming year. Last year the ministry branched out to the community and it has been very good. Two areas I'm interested in is social justice and education. I mentioned that I am interested sharing about transgender topics and what it is to e transgender. 

There is an LGBTQI population in my neighborhood. I have seen a few transgender folk, thought they are not always visible. We want them to know that there's a church which is open and affirming if they want to find a spiritual home. There's a another meeting coming up in few weeks so I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Candy Darling

Last night my wife and I watched the documentary Beautiful Darling: The Life and Times of Candy Darling, Andy Warhol "Superstar". It was an interesting look at Candy Darling, a transsexual woman who was part of Warhol's Factory, a collection of artists he filmed. Candy, born James Slattery, was born in 1944. I read her biography.

 My wife said that Candy reminded her of Marilyn Monroe. I saw here as a cross between '30s vixen Jean Harlow and Monroe, blonde siren of the 1950s and early 1960s. Candy believed that she could be a star and she did achieve that in some respects. When the 1970s rolled in Candy was tossed aside along with cohorts Jackie Curtis and Holly Woodlawn.  

I liked hearing Candy in her own voice in some of the scenes. I was in the service in the early seventies. Candy died March 21, 1974, two weeks after I got out of the army.  Her good friend Jeremiah Newton was executor of her belongings after Candy's death. Jeremiah was indeed a true friend. 

Beautiful Darling is a good documentary about the times and creative energy of the 1960s and early 1970s and the people who made it happen. Candy certainly did.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Genevieve's Gems

The only person who is educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change.

~Carl Rogers, Psychologist (1902-1987)

Wednesday, August 26, 2015


Mature love is composed and sustaining; a celebration of commitment, companionship, and trust.

~H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

The subject of companionship came up at my discussion group this past Monday. I'm fortunate that my spouse stayed together after coming out a decade ago. Sadly, this is not true for many transgender women. Dating can be difficult. Would a man want to date a transgender woman? Would she be asked on a second date if she revealed that she is trans? Is the transgender woman resigned to a life of loneliness?

I thought about this over the past couple of days and concluded that no one is resigned to a life of loneliness. I also believe men should NOT be ashamed of dating a transgender woman. We want a mate who will love and respect us as we are. We want to go to a movie, party, or just enjoy a quiet night watching TV. We want to enjoy and live our lives like everyone.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015



Rebecca Foust

                               letter to my transgender daughter
I made soup tonight, with cabbage, chard
and thyme picked outside our back door.
For this moment the room is warm and light,
and I can presume you safe somewhere.
I know the night lives inside you. I know grave,
sad errors were made, dividing you, and hiding
you from you inside. I know a girl like you
was knifed last week, another set aflame.
I know I lack the words, or all the words I say
are wrong. I know I’ll call and you won’t answer,
and still I’ll call. I want to tell you
you were loved with all I had, recklessly,
and with abandon, loved the way the cabbage
in my garden near-inverts itself, splayed
to catch each last ray of sun. And how
the feeling furling-in only makes the heart
more dense and green. Tonight it seems like
something one could bear.
Guess what, Dad and I finally figured out Pandora,
and after all those years of silence, our old music
fills the air. It fills the air, and somehow, here,
at this instant and for this instant only
—perhaps three bars—what I recall
equals all I feel, and I remember all the words.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Many Differing Viewpoints

As a transgender person the view of the world is much different. I see it from the male viewpoint having been born and socialized as a male. I now see life as it from a woman's point of view. The being hit on, the suggestive comments, and how women are viewed in a patriarchal society.

I also see society's viewpoints about transgender people with a more critical eye. Much of society's views from a lack of knowledge, ignorance, hated, and now having to deal with a topic that was once considered taboo in some circles. As a Christian I understand some of the views the church has and why it has them. Is this confusing? I don't believe so.

I feel that I can discuss this with many differing groups; fundamentalists, confused parents, school officials, lawmakers, colleges, civic groups and other groups. Being prepared for such events is very important. I spoke to an adult education class at church a couple of years back about what it is to be transgender. A young woman who had transitioned also spoke (I have not had GRS). Many eyes were opened and minds made clear.

Having several view points allows me to have empathy for those are fearful and afraid. I can also be an encouragement to my trans brothers and sisters because I have face some of the same things they have or are facing. As trans people we have the advantage of helping those who don't understand. We are people people who want the same things everyone has. This is not special rights this is humanity.

Friday, August 21, 2015

Genevieve's Gems

First keep peace with yourself, then you can also bring peace to others.

~Thomas a Kempis

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Be Safe

Last Saturday morning, Tamara Dominguez was killed and run over several times by her assailant. Ms. Dominguez, 36, makes it the seventeenth  transgender woman murdered this year and there's still 3 1/2 months left in the year. I mentioned that I'm not afraid but am concerned. I know a number of transgender women and am concerned about their safety,  

I encourage everyone to be careful where you go and let someone where you are going. Go in pairs  and avoid unnecessary confrontations. There are people out there who just want to start trouble. Have fun and be safe.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Transgender Women Being Murdered

Three transgender women of color were murdered last week. Sixteen transgender women have been killed in 2015 -those that have been reported. Only fourteen were killed all of 20l4. With the increased visibility of transgender people, especially people of color, all the haters were bound to come out. We were alleged reigning on their parade. Well, the time has come for us.

When I will look at the Transgender Day of Remembrance list of transgender women murdered this November, the vast majority of them will be black and Latina. What get me sometimes is the lack of response from some of the major LGBT organizations.  What concerns me even more is the attempted erasure of our contributions to the gay liberation movement some thing that is on record as happening. 

I live in New York City which is tolerant of LGBT people. I haven't had any trouble personally but I'm wary. I am aware of certain situations and what is going around me. I'm not fearful because I refuse to live in fear. I have every right to enjoy all things that everyone else enjoys. In the meantime I will work to improve the lives of all transgender people.  

Friday, August 14, 2015

Genevieve's Gems

Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud. 

~Maya Angelou, Author (1928-2014)

A Nun Helping Transgender People

I read this article today.


Monday, August 10, 2015

Thinking Out Loud

I was browsing over a list of transgender people who have lived across the ages. The list is quite extensive. It goes throughout all cultures, races, religions, and timelines. Here i the United States the transgender issue has come to the fore of numerous conversations in recent years. 

I've taken a keen interest in the Stonewall Riots of 1969 in New York City to make sure that it is historically accurate. Those who are trying to erase the transgender people's participation is something I cannot let happen.  I've read about Christine Jorgenson, Magnus Hirschfeld, Sylvia Rivera, Miss Major, Marsha P. Johnson, the Dewey Lunch Counter Sit-in of 1965 in Philadelphia, Cathay Williams, Janet Mock, Keith Cylar and many other people and events. What this tells me is that we have a very rich history.

When I was in grade school I absolutely HATED history. When I was 35 I had changed my whole view of history. Now that I'm transgender, I find it vitally important, something not to be taken for granted. Seems that I have become a historian not because I wanted to but because I needed to.

Friday, August 07, 2015

Genevieve's Gems

Experience is the teacher of all things.

~Julius Caesar

Demise of the Michigan's Womyn's Music Festival-Self-Inflicted

The final Michigan Womyn's Music Festival began on August 2nd and concludes o Sunday August 9th. From all accounts it was a successful venture. Unfortunately, it will always be remembered for the exclusion of transgender women. It's a shame because leadership had a chance to show the world that they are an inclusion and affirming venue for all TGLBQ folks.

I have always maintained that when an organization is struggling or going down the tubes you have to point to those running the organization. Lisa Vogel and her clan still lived the 1970s and refused to evolve. They consider trans women to be men which, in my ind is an insult to these women. If trans women did go to the festival they could tell anyone that were trans. This point alone would have kept me from ever attending because I absolutely refuse to go in the closet for anyone. 

As the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival winds down those who will blame trans women for ending this 40 year event are barking up the wrong tree. Look at Lisa Vogel and your cronies who still think this is 1978. They refused to evolve. As a result the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival will become a footnote in history. It's a shame because it could have turned out different.

Wednesday, August 05, 2015


About this time nine years ago, an event happened that progressed toward becoming the person that I am today. It was strolling along the Hudson river boardwalk being Gennee. It was a warm late afternoon. A feeling of contentment and peace washed through me. For the first time I felt comfortable in my own skin. 

I never sought it or thought about it much before.When it actually happened, it moved me past the barriers of self-doubt and uncertainty. There would be other barriers that I would come to. Feeling comfortable in own skin allowed me to be who I really was.