Trans people are not the problem, the GOP is

Tatihn Mellieon, Staff Writer

The latest “culture war” the GOP has begun to wage is one surrounding the transgender community. As a non-binary person, this affects my existence and I’m sure there’s at least one person in your life, whether you know it or not, who will be affected by the 400-plus bills currently being workshopped or implemented in various states. 

But hold on; why does the GOP care, and what exactly would all of these bills do?

Many conservatives say their concern is not in the existence of transgender and gender nonconforming people, but rather in the safety and potential hazard of children being exposed to such identities and perspectives. While this reasoning sounds charitable on the surface to the uninformed, there’s no evidence to prove that trans people adversely affect children any more than cisgender people.

Actually, quite the opposite is true. 

According to the Anti-Violence Project, transgender individuals are four times as likely to be victims of a hate crime in comparison to cisgender people, and according to the Office for Victims of Crime, one in two have been sexually assaulted. So, trans people are far more susceptible to violence than most, and yet republicans nationwide are busy crying over “transgenderism” to even bother with facts. 

While this goes on, the very legislation the GOP passes continues to restrict the rights and existence of transgender people, such as outlawing gender affirming medical procedures, banning teaching of transgender people in school and making gender affirming ID’s impossible to get.

“There’s gotta be a reason, right?” You ask yourself, and don’t worry, I have the grim answer. During the Conservative Political Action Conference, CPAC for short, Daily Wire host Michael Knowles said that “For the good of society… transgenderism must be eradicated from public life entirely.”

And there you go, a face of a mainstream conservative publication just said it in the middle of one of the GOP’s biggest events, something Trump himself attended. They want trans people eradicated from public life, the mere idea of them existing to no longer exist.

As a non-binary person, a group typically referred to in the same if not identical way, there’s a pretty obvious reason why this blatant hatred takes place; and no, it’s not the “grooming” or “indoctrination” the right loves to talk about.

It’s about change, and the fear it brings. The whole point of the Conservative Party is to be conservative, and as such the ideology applies not just to the economy and states’ rights, but also social norms: what is and isn’t acceptable. 

By and large, having a group entirely dedicated to the world not changing is the same one that will react violently to change, hence many of the Trump favoring being labeled reactionary.

This isn’t a new understanding of how things work, in fact this is exactly what led to the AIDS epidemic ravaging the gay community in the 80s. If you don’t believe me, just look up who was president at the time, how long it took him to even mention AIDS and how he’s revered by the GOP today.

We, and by we, I mean the LGBTQIA+ community, have always had to play the game of society with one hand behind our back. 

The structure of which has always existed with the pretense that anything other than heterosexuality was deviant and illegitimate and therefore should be persecuted. Even in today’s “progressive” society, we’re merely less criminalized than we were before and even that’s changing for the worse. 

Perhaps we, as a species, should re-evaluate the society we allow to exist and the limits it can breach before we worry about what people prefer to be called.