Today marks the 11th annual Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR), a day that was created to remember the all too short lives of those who were killed as a result of anti-transgender hatred or prejudice. The memorial day was started in 1998, after Rita Hester was murdered. The case, like most anti-transgender murder cases, has yet to be solved. In addition to being a day to remember and grieve for trans and gender non-conforming people who’ve been killed, the day also acts as a time to raise awareness about the violence that happens against trans people.
In an interview with Glaad blog, Ethan St. Pierre was asked his opinion on what TDOR meant to him. St. Pierre is an FtM transsexual gender activist who has been lobbying Congress since ’91 on behalf of hate crime victims and survivors, and works with the Remembering Our Dead Project as a coordinator of TDOR.
“It means a lot of things. Transgender Day of Remembrance is a day when we come together to remember those that we’ve lost, but it also reminds us of how unsafe we are and how we are targets of violence – and that nobody is really safe from it. If you’re a trans person, especially if you’re an unemployed trans person out on the street, there’s a really good chance you’re going to lose your life.
It reminds me how unsafe we are. And it reminds me how much work we have to do to educate people so that it doesn’t keep happening.”
Every day is a perfect opportunity to learn something new, so if you are unfamiliar with the problems that face the transgender community, the constant threat of violence always knocking at their door, become aware. Become an ally and help make a difference in people’s lives, talk to people and hear their stories, and share your own.
For more information please visit:
Transgender Day of Remembrance Information:
Information on Trans Issues
For Your Entertainment:
In addition to remembering those we’ve lost, it’s not a bad idea to celebrate the achievements of the transgendered/transsexual persons who have made it into our lives through a variety of media. This is by no means a comprehensive list. There are plenty more transgender and transsexual artists/musicians/writers and people out there–please support them in their efforts!