Yesterday, I posted a few stories on the TransAdvocate about an anti-trans lie that was spread by ideological media outlets. The story goes that in small-town Colorado, cisgender girls were being sexually harassed by a trans teen in the school restrooms. The Pacific Justice Institute, a right-wing organization, had issued a press release casting the easily identified trans youth as a predator, roaming the halls of the school unchecked and endangering the fair woman-folk of the small town. The school identified in these reports has only 1 out trans student. Of course, this narrative played well with both right-wing and tabloid media outlets and soon, this trans kid was maligned by an international media machine.
None of the news outlets did any fact checking and that’s where I stepped in. I called the town’s school superintendent and found out that the story was a lie being pushed in the media by a right-winger with an anti-trans agenda:[soundcloud url="http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/115316153" params="" width=" 100%" height="166" iframe="true" /]
After it came out that the story was a right-wing hoax, some media outlets began retracting the story. The Daily Mail tabloid deleted the story from its site and the Examiner retracted the story and apologized to the trans student.
Unfortunately, Fox News continues to run the lie:
I want to share with you a sampling of the violent intent Fox News’ lie has incited on their site:
I want you to put yourself in the trans teens shoes for just a moment. Think about what she’s going through. What would you be going through if you were the kid’s mother?
There’s a reason the trans population suffers this level of violence. There’s a reason why 51% of bullied trans school kids try to kill themselves. Social violence begins with social oppression. Organizations that facilitate hate by lying about the trans population have very real blood on their hands.
Discrimination and lack of equal civil rights is damaging to the mental health of transgender and gender variant individuals. For example, gender-based discrimination and victimization were found to be independently associated with attempted suicide in a population of transgender individuals, 32% of whom had histories of trying to kill themselves, and in the largest survey to date of gender variant and transgender people 41% reported attempting suicide.
The APA joins other organizations, including the American Medical Association and the American Psychological Association, in endorsing strong policy statements deploring the discrimination experienced by gender variant and transgender individuals and calling for laws to protect their civil rights.
The American Psychiatric Association:
- Supports laws that protect the civil rights of transgender and gender variant individuals.
- Urges the repeal of laws and policies that discriminate against transgender and gender variant people.
- Opposes all public and private discrimination against transgender and gender variant individuals in such areas as health care, employment, housing, public accommodation, education, and licensing.
- Declares that no burden of proof of such judgment, capacity, or reliability shall be placed upon these individuals greater than that imposed on any other persons.
The hate group that started this mess tipped their hand to their true purpose in the last paragraph of their press release:
Apparently the life of this Colorado trans kid is mere fodder in their larger war against Californian protections for school-age trans kids. I guess any harm the Pacific Justice Institute causes to this Colorado trans kid is acceptable when they’re fighting for their right to discriminated against California trans kids. For those who stand against trans equality, apparently this is what adult morality looks like… And let’s be clear, Fox News stands with the Pacific Justice Institute:
Unsurprisingly, Cathy Brennan, opinion leader in of the Trans Exclusionary RadFem movement has, of course, chosen to side with Fox News and the Pacific Justice Institute:
Worse, Brennan volunteers to serve as the mouthpiece of the right-wing organization:
Brennan, an attorney the LGBT Bar Association disavowed…
… links to the original right-wing letter asserting that the trans kid is a predator. In the letter, the anti-gay hate group asserts that the transgender youth is sexually harassing cisgender girls and that the school is part of a trans conspiracy to endanger cisgender women. Brennan has uploaded the Pacific Justice Institute’s letter to her site and is featuring it without noting that the allegations are false or that the news media who’ve investigated the claims have removed the story.
The letter Brennan offers asserts:
- The trans student, “has made sexually harassing comments towards the girls”
- The school has, “threatened students with penalties ranging from charges of hate crimes to dismissal from school sports” for asking that the sexual harassment stop.
Brennan apparently shares the reality in which the Fox News community exists. In their apparent reality, public schools are part of a trans conspiracy to weasel into restrooms where they’ll be free to carry out their nefarious purpose and if you challenge their reality, then you too are part of the conspiracy.
Brennan became somewhat infamous after she outed a trans teen to his parents and school, and attempted to intervene in the medical care of a transgender person she didn’t like. Most recently, Brennan targeted Dana Taylor, contacting and outing her to her employer. Fortunately, Dana was already out to her employer.
Check out this story on:
On Trans Suicide:
2011 study of 6,450 trans people: “A staggering 41% of respondents reported attempting suicide compared to 1.6% of the general population, with rates rising for those who were harassed/bullied in school (51%)… It is part of social and legal convention in the United States to discriminate against, ridicule, and abuse transgender and gender nonconforming people within foundational institutions such as the family, schools, the workplace and health care settings, every day. Instead of recognizing that the moral failure lies in society’s unwillingness to embrace different gender identities and expressions, society blames transgender and gender non-conforming people for bringing discrimination and violence on themselves.”
On Cis Homicide:
In the US: The homicide victimization rate for both cis males and females was at its highest in 1980 was (at its highest 16.1 homicides per 100,000 for males and 4.5 homicides per 100,000 for females. By 2008, the rates for both groups had fallen, reaching 8.5 homicides per 100,000 for males and 2.3 homicides per 100,000 for females. U.S. Department of Justice
On Trans Homicide:
America: “Hate crimes against transgender people tend to be particularly violent. Our best estimates indicate that one out of every 1,000 homicides in the U.S. is an anti-transgender hate crime. This estimation is based on data collected by the national organizers of the Transgender Day of Remembrance and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Organizers of the Transgender Day of Remembrance track the number of transgender people killed each year in hate-based attacks using media articles, community reports and other publicly available data. By this count, they estimate that at least 15 transgender people are killed each year in hate-based attacks, although we believe the number to be higher based on transgender people’s common fear of going to the police and widespread misreporting. The Federal Bureau of Investigation estimates approximately 14,000 homicides in the country each year. Based on these figures, we can estimate that approximately one out of every 1000 homicides in the U.S. is an anti-transgender hate-based crime.” – HRC
Internationally: Even if the Brazilian trans population is 50,000 strong, they would still make up only .0003% of the population. Even so, 1 in 10 Brazilians murdered is probably trans. The trans population in Brazil averages 10 trans murders a month. About 1 in every 5000 cis Brazilian are at risk of homicide. If the trans population in Brazil is actually 50,000 strong, about 1 in every 500 trans Brazilians are at risk of homicide.
1/2 trans folks raped:
- 50%: Courvant, D., & Cook-Daniels, L., 1998. Transgender and intersex survivors of domestic violence: Defining terms, barriers and responsibilities
- 59%: Clements, K. SF Department of Public Health, Department of Public Health. (1999). The transgender community health project: Descriptive results. San Francisco: San Francisco.
- 54%: Kenagy, G. (2005). The health and social service needs of transgender people in Philadelphia. International Journal of Transgenderism, 8(2/3), 45-56. doi: 10.1300/J485v08n02_05
- 46%: Kenagy, G., & Bostwick, W. (2005). The health and social service needs of transgender people in Chicago. International Journal of Transgenderism, 8(2/3), 57-66. doi: 10.1300/J485v08n02_06
1/4 trans folks beaten:
- 37%: Clements, K. SF Department of Public Health, Department of Public Health. (1999). The transgender community health project: Descriptive results. San Francisco: San Francisco.
- 43%: Kenagy, G. (2005). The health and social service needs of transgender people in Philadelphia. International Journal of Transgenderism, 8(2/3), 45-56. doi: 10.1300/J485v08n02_05
- 37%: Transgender Law and Policy Institute’s “Transgender Issues: Fact Sheet”