Things transphobes say (no. 3 in a series)

“There are so many of them now. It’s a trend.”

This is the voice of cisgender privilege. Privilege means you can trot out your ignorance and other privileged people will accept it as fact. Privilege means you can forget all those years that trans and non-binary folks could not find a job or were fired from the ones they had. It is being blissfully unaware of the effects ridicule, bullying, beating and killing have on a population. They think we weren’t here before because they didn’t see us before. It never occurs to them – or they willfully ignore – that our survival depended on our invisibility. The invisibility we were once forced to endure is weaponized against us now that we’ve become visible.

As with most things transphobic, calling us a trend is to take away our agency. The subtext is clear. You don’t know yourself. You are a dupe to the prevailing winds. There are undoubtedly lost souls out there who don’t have the analytical skills to know who they are. I feel sorry for them, but transphobes see an opportunity in this. In order to protect confused cisgender folks, they push trans people under the bus of their professed compassion.

Children are undoubtedly susceptible to influence, but trans kids know early on who they are. They are willing to endure abuse, bureaucracy, medical frustrations and the relentless challenges of transgender living to be able to live as they see themselves. Contrary to what many cisgender people seem to think, it is not an easy road and kids who are not trans will find it difficult to maintain the commitment. They may declare themselves non-binary instead, but why should that be a reason for alarm?

There is a website in the UK called Transgender Trend. The people behind it claim they aren’t transphobic. They are only there to save the children. They sent out “information” packages to schools that were branded “disingenuous and deceitful” because they claimed with no factual evidence that it was better not to affirm trans children. In 2018 they had to apologize for producing anti-transgender downloadable stickers for parents and suggesting kids could decorate their notebooks with them. Nice folks. It is hard to maintain a facade of virtue when your heart is impure.

Transphobes don’t want to see us. Their philosophy is we need to oppress them or there will be more of them. Preservation of the gender system is more important to them than the well being of trans and non-binary people.