so much of trans & gender non-conforming acceptance is accompanied by a simultaneous distancing. cis people are ok with accepting “trans issues” as something separate from them, but once TGNC people get too close to home & they have to reconsider their language/practices then we become “too much” & we are put back in our “rightful” place (the stage, the other bathroom, the private) & time (pride, TDOR, history/future never present). the grammar of anti-trans violence is cis inconvenience. our existence requires them to reflect & dream more expansively & that is a terrifying prospect in a world where perception of security comes from conformity. when we speak about our experiences they are regarded as a threat not an invitation to another way to live. we are only allowed to speak about our issues as “trans issues,” when we express them as women’s issues or racial justice issues we are seen as infringing on terrain that is not ours. in the cis imagination TGNC people are already always latent threat: one that requires daily maintenance to keep at bay. so they monopolize the rhetoric of the natural to displace us elsewhere: outside science, outside woman, reason, public, truth. it’s the intimate mirrored institutional: “i accept trans people, but i would never want to look like or be perceived as them.” it’s not enough to only regard TGNC life when it’s convenient. in fact, it’s most important to precisely when it is inconvenient. during groundswells of empathy & action, whose bodies are trampled beneath? what blooms from our submergence?
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