Tidbits; Transgender Day Of Remembrance TDOR
As much as I like to think I am, I’M NOT! I am not immune to the hate that fills those who feel it their right to lash out and hurt those of us on this planet that are different. Those who have chosen to become happy in our own skin. Those like me!
I sit here writing this as a woman who is post-op transsexual having gone through all the procedures necessary for me to become happy. I am a woman inside and out, a woman now comfortable in my own skin, looking and feeling great, loving life, the liberties I fought hard for, and sex, yes sex! I love it, and so do the partners that have, and had the pleasure to share it with me.
I guess you could say I made up for lost time, and well, still am.
I am also a woman that sits here writing this with the memories of the stabbings I have endured, the knife slashes, the beer bottle wounds from being bashed, scars where chunks of flesh have been torn out by teeth from my attackers, the broken bones long since healed that still ache, areas on my head where the hair doesn’t grow back, and probably never will. I am tough, but have learned to be so, not because I wanted to, but because I had to, yes I can fight, but I’m not proud to admit that. I don’t need a hero biscuit!
I was asked a question at one of the lectures I give to the many who are eager to hear on the lecture circuit, schools, and organizations that invite me to come and speak.
The question from a young woman who appeared empowered and confident was; “how do you protect yourself from hate and attackers?”
I answered; “I keep aware of my surroundings, walk tall with my head held high, eyes observing my surroundings, and surround myself with strong, hot men and women who can protect me, and love me!”
The latter was partly true, but mostly it was to create a little laughter and lighten the mood that befell the audience after my disclosure of my assaults. Presented with a smile. As you see, I forgive, but I NEVER forget, and for those that love me and will go that extra step to protect, and YOU ALL KNOW WHO YOU ARE, it’s like water off a duck’s back, I let it roll off to be able to get on with my life.
Recently, alongside the others I work with who are all doing so on bills C-36, and C-279, I recently had a meltdown speech in which I talked of validation and how I am fighting to gain such validation only to have our current Canadian government invalidate everything I am and stand for. In their eyes they would have you believe that I am a nobody, a nothing, but I am a person. I am Velvet Steele, a friend, a lover, a hard worker, and great person to know. At least I think so.
I love happiness, it’s sexy, it’s energizing, and it’s free for the taking of which we all deserve. I love making people happy, smile, laugh, it makes me happy. I have a voice I am proud to use, and use it I do. Especially for those that no longer have a voice in the community I am part of, a community I had no idea or thought existed let alone was to be a part of. I thought my life would be about getting on my merry way after all was said and done and live in a white picket fence world, how wrong I was.
I speak for those that lost their voice, their right, their happiness to be who they are, many close friends, many acquaintances, and many a part of this big worldly family. That makes me sad.
What am I writing about? Have a read here from the folks at International Transgender Day Of Remembrance, it explains it all very well.
The Transgender Day of Remembrance was set aside to memorialize those who were killed due to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice. The event is held in November to honour Rita Hester, whose murder on November 28th, 1998 kicked off the “Remembering Our Dead” web project and a San Francisco candlelight vigil in 1999. Rita Hester’s murder — like most anti-transgender murder cases — has yet to be solved.
Although not every person represented during the Day of Remembrance self-identified as transgender — that is, as a transsexual, crossdresser, or otherwise gender-variant — each was a victim of violence based on bias against transgender people.
We live in times more sensitive than ever to hatred based violence, especially since the events of September 11th. Yet even now, the deaths of those based on anti-transgender hatred or prejudice are largely ignored. Over the last decade, more than one person per month has died due to transgender-based hate or prejudice, regardless of any other factors in their lives. This trend shows no sign of abating.
The Transgender Day of Remembrance serves several purposes. It raises public awareness of hate crimes against transgender people, an action that current media doesn’t perform. Day of Remembrance publicly mourns and honors the lives of our brothers and sisters who might otherwise be forgotten. Through the vigil, we express love and respect for our people in the face of national indifference and hatred. Day of Remembrance reminds non-transgender people that we are their sons, daughters, parents, friends and lovers. Day of Remembrance gives our allies a chance to step forward with us and stand in vigil, memorializing those of us who’ve died by anti-transgender violence.
Note: This page was taken from http://www.rememberingourdead.org/day/what.html
The Remembering our Dead Web Project and The Transgender Day of Remembrance are owned by Gwendolyn Ann Smith, All Rights Reserved
A comprehensive list of events talking place can be found here.
A list of brave souls can be found here.
Beyond that, I am still here to make you listen, learn, and hopefully laugh. If not a lot, then maybe a little?