ALERT: BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS ARE AT STAKE!
What’s going on?
The Trump Administration is moving to exclude transgender people from civil rights protections; defining “gender” as either: male or female, unchangeable, and determined by the genitals that a person is born with.
“The proposal would effectively erase protections for trans people, who identify with a gender different from the one assigned to them at birth, from federal civil rights laws — ensuring that the laws do not prohibit discrimination against trans people in any setting, including the workplace, housing, schools, and healthcare.” – The Vox
“After more than a year of discussions, health and human services is preparing to formally present the new definition to the Justice Department before the end of the year, Trump administration officials say.” – New York Times
How You Can Make a Difference
1. Step up. Show Up. Be Aware.
- Educate Yourself
In any realm of discussion, one can easily be nervous speaking on behalf of something they aren’t fully informed about.
- It’s okay to not know what to say or how to say it.
- Admit you don’t know rather than making an assumption that can be incorrect or hurtful.
- Don’t use this as a crutch!
- It is your personal responsibility to learn.
- We love this list of Tips for How to Be An Ally of Transgender People.
- Learn about the History of Transgender People in the United States.
- Don’t let the intimidation of learning something new prevent you from being a decent human to others.
- Take a few minutes to read about Vocabulary Words to Use and Avoid.
2. Call your local, state, and federal reps & demand legal protections for Transgender people.
- Find out who represents you in Congress by submitting your address here.
- Each representative is listed with a name, address, phone, and fax number.
- Call the number and expect to speak with an office aide before you speak with your rep.
- Explain that you are calling about a specific issue, (transgender rights), and wish to let your elected official know your stance on the matter.
- Some points you’ll want to cover when you get the opportunity to speak to the elected official (or their voicemail inbox):
- Give your name & where you’re from.
- “Hi my name is John Doe; I am a resident of Michigan.”
- Name the issue you are calling about.
- “I am calling to let Rep. Levin know my position on the Trump Administrations considered an interpretation of Title IX; the federal civil rights law that bans sex discrimination in federally funded schools.
- Describe your position.
- I am absolutely opposed to this dismissal of basic human rights.
- Support it with an example.
- The Trump Administration’s interpretation invites 1%-2% of our population to be legally discriminated against in regards to their schools, workplace, housing, and healthcare.
- Ask for action.
- I’m asking you to take action on this. Please, do anything within your power as my elected official to provide legal protection for those who identify as transgender or non-binary.
- Give your name & where you’re from.
- Need more support before making contact? Check out this guide from the National Center for Transgender Equality on educating Congress.
- Organize! Protest! Vote!
3. Reach Out
- ASK friends and family who identify as transgender or non-binary what kind of support they want and need. LISTEN and do those things.
4. Prioritize Trans voices.
5. Talk about this subject with cis-friends, family, co-workers, Etc.
- Help build a safe and respectful environment for trans and non-binary people.
- Share resources you found helpful. This blog post perhaps?
We have no affiliation to any of the following organizations but hope you’ll take time to look into them and consider making a donation.
- @transequalitynow; National Center for Transgender Equality
@glsen ; GLSEN
- @translifeline; Trans Lifeline
- @trevorproject; The Trevor Project
7. Speak up! Set a positive example for your peers.
- No matter how many people are following you on social media, you have the opportunity to use your voice and platform to change the world.
- Share your thoughts paired with graphics such as the ones we’ve created.
- Help spread awareness.
- This also helps people within the trans and non-binary community know they are safe communicating with you.
- Provide resources!
- Linking back to this article for instance.
The CannaSmack team wants to ensure this point is clear: This is a matter of basic human rights. Whether or not you know and love someone who identifies as transgender or non-binary, there are many things you can do to make an impact.
Please tag @CannaSmack #CannaSmack in your permanent and story posts!
We’d love to repost your content in our story because this motivates others to speak up as well!