Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Let There Be Light

Today is the 14th annual Transgender Day of Remembrance; TDOR, which began with a candlelight vigil in San Francisco to honor Rita Hester who was murdered in 1998, has been observed worldwide every November 20 since 1999.

It is a day to remember those, in every corner of the globe, whose lives have been brutally cut short simply for being who they are. Every trans* person is someone's partner, friend, son, daughter, parent, co-worker, colleague, teacher, student. We are all robbed when a trans* person is murdered, or when a trans* person takes their own life as a result of experiencing the isolation and despair that transphobia causes.

This past year, I am thinking in particular of two members of our local community who we have lost: Saige, in whose honour the Saige Community Foodbank was started, and January Marie Lapuz, who had been an executive member of Sher Vancouver, a support group for South Asian gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

It is a dark time of the year, but also one in which the hope of growing awareness and acceptance can spread like the lit candles in the cold, night air.

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