All the trans news that fits! (and some that never will)
Today is the Transgender Day of Visibility.
Sage Smith is a Trans Woman of Color who police now say was murdered in Virginia 2012. The police won’t explain why, but four-and-a-half years after she was determined to be missing at the age of 19, the police have decided to reclassify Sage’s case as a homicide. I don’t like that so many news outlets insist on printing these “before-and-after” photos of murdered TWOC.
You can read the story here: Missing Charlottesville transgender woman’s case reclassified as homicide
What is clear is that for many Trans women, the choice to be visible so you can provide for yourself is balanced with the decision to remain invisible hoping that no one kills you. I’m not saying that is the case with Sage, but the reclassification of her case from missing person to homicide victim is a reminder that we have no idea how many trans women are being murdered in this country because they are misgendered and deadnamed by lazy police departments and incompetent news companies. We’ll never know the choices the nameless victims of Trans hate made and didn’t make, or the options that were taken away from them.
We must love those we’ve lost, especially those whose names and lives are kept from us. I celebrate the invisible and love them all the same because I know they exist. I don’t imagine the unnamed slain to be shadows at the edge of a dark forest; but rather they exist in my heart like a faint memory of barely visible spirits wavering in the slowly rising mist at the edge of a field, suspended in the final second before dawn.
I love them because I don’t know what else I can do.
For many, the choice to be visible is talking to your parents and friends or having your selfie photos everywhere. But, too often and for too many Trans people, the choice to be visible is a choice between life and death . . . . and visibility isn’t a celebration of one’s life, but a decision to risk one’s life.
Is it any wonder that so many Trans people remain invisible even after they are murdered?
She was beautiful through and through and her name is Sage. Say her name out loud. Don’t let her remain invisible. We owe at least that much to her.