Worst Gender Reveal Ever: Black Bruins React to Feds Move to Define Gender

Mignon Combs News, U.S.

The past few days saw an outcry as people across the nation reacted to news released by the New York Times that the federal government is moving to define gender and sex along narrow and disputed boundaries. A memo from the Department of Health and Human Services reportedly states that gender should be qualified as “unchangeable, and determined by the genitals that a person is born with,” according to reports from The Times. Nommo staff asked Black Bruins on campus, as well as representatives from BlaQue, UCLA’s Black Queer student organization, to respond with their reactions to the news.

“The president is trying to erase an entire community of people with a memo, but what he doesn’t realize is that it isn’t that easy. He’s tried to do this in the past with the military ban, but he can’t make people stop existing no matter how hard he tries. Making the dictionary definition different isn’t going to change the people’s definition. If this is a “free” country, people have the right to define their own existence in any way that they want.”

Simone Walker

“As many of you know, The Department of Health and Human Services under the Trump administration has called for federal action to redefine gender through biological and pseudoscientific terms. In doing so, this administration is attempting to erase the narratives and lives of trans, intersex, and gnc (gender non conforming) bodies. However, it is important to remember that such motives are not new. We can see one example of these motives in the ideologies of TERFS, or Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminist, who have promoted similar ideologies that serve to invalidate and erase trans women’s identity as women. For years, trans, intersex, and gnc bodies have been left within the margins. Not only is this not the first political attack against our bodies, it likely will not be the last. That being said, we highly encourage cisgender “allies” to step forward and use your privilege to challenge the current administration, transphobic feminists, and even your friends. Between supporting marches, donating to grassroots organizations (The Sylvia Rivera Law Project), or directly donating to and housing trans people, there are many avenues for cisgender people to step forward–and to keep stepping forward.

In the words of Audre Lorde, Revolution is not a one time event.”

Zi Todd and Nyla Carbado of Blaque

“I think the Trump’s Administration’s attempt to erase trans folks from Civil Rights protections speaks to the need for federal legislation that explicitly prohibits discrimination based on gender identity. More importantly, this attack on trans folks is emblematic of the bigger issue of White cisheteropatriarchy that is not only erasing them theoretically, but literally. 2017 was the deadliest year for transgender women, especially for trans women of color who make up over 85% of those murdered every year. And with the Trumps Administration’s rhetoric against the LGBTQ community, communities of color, and women, we will continue to see a social climate where homophobia, transphobia, racism, and sexism collide to target trans women with precise incision.”

Robert Garner

“It’s bullsh*t, all of it. It’s a f*cked up attempt by this f*cked up government to basically try and erase the existence of millions of lives. This will have dire impacts on the LGBT community & human existence period. They’re basically saying that our perception of who we are, what we decide to define ourselves as, doesn’t mean sh*t. It’s the same bullshi* government tactics used to disenfranchise Black lives. They’d rather perpetrate hate & discrimination toward people they don’t understand than pay attention to the distinct line between sex & gender. Black transgender women are killed on a f*cking daily basis & no one is f*cking paying attention. And if you think that this doesn’t concern you or doesn’t impact you whatsoever, you’re wrong because if this sh*t passes & becomes law, what’s to stop them from making the next move toward a different, unrecognized community? The transgender community exists and despite how much the world wants to scream at them that they don’t, they will not be erased. If you give any f*ck about basic human/civil rights, then you should be outraged & if you’re not outraged then you’re not paying attention. #WontBeErased”

Aseniq Shahid-Williams

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10/24/18

The original coverage by Nommo failed to acknowledge that in addition to trans and non-binary people, intersex people will also be affected should government agencies adopt the proposed definitions of gender and sex.