Cautiously Grateful (or, Trans Rights Are Different Everywhere Which Is Why I’ll Never Set Foot in Texas or Many Other States)

Yesterday I mentioned some of the difficulties I’ve encountered while changing my name (to align with my gender identity). When I read what I wrote, it sounded kind of complain-y, and I don’t want to come across that way.

I live in the most queer/trans-friendly state in the country, California, and I’m thankful for that every day. Especially when I remember that a third of the country is not only not queer/trans-friendly, but openly and aggressively hostile toward people like me and our simple quest for the same rights that non-queer people enjoy.

I’d say it’s surprising to me, in this day and age, that there are still so many socially backward regions in America, but it’s not. Look at this map. It’s an LGBTQ rights map, but it may as well be an electoral map.

transgender equality map

If you live in one of those scarlet states, it’s nothing personal. I know you’re cool. It’s your neighbors and legislators who are the problem. If you could convince some of them to be a little more, “Hey, maybe let’s love one another, you know, like Jesus said,” and a little less, “BURN THE WITCH!” that’d be great. Thanks.

But I know we can’t always choose where we live (or who we are). And regardless of the color of the state, I believe with all my heart that people everywhere are good.

I know that if my car rolled over on the freeway in Alabama or Texas, people would still stop and leap out of their cars to help me. That’s just what we do as humans. Our instinct is to love and protect and act without consideration, judgment, or question.

When there’s an accident or disaster, anyway.

But the instinct to love is always there, whether we take advantage of it or not.

And while it’s sad to look at that map and feel the sting of what those colors represent, at least it makes it easier to plan vacations.

Just kidding.

But kind of not kidding.

Hey, you have to laugh sometimes, right? 🤷‍♀️ We’re all absurd in one way or another. I’m pretty sure I’m way more absurd than you are. It’s good to be able to recognize it in yourself.

day 50


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