Candace & Caitlyn: A Double Whammy for a Black Trans Guy

Somebody on Tik Tok said that “Caitlyn Jenner is to Trans people what Candace Owens is to Black people” and I don’t think it could have been put any better. When I first read that, my initial reaction was light-hearted in that I kind of chuckle-grimaced before the weight of all that’s going on and reality set back in. It’s so true and I’m not writing this to bash them, (even though both of them spend an inordinate amount of time bashing us), I’m writing this because of how I’m feeling and doing in our current political and societal landscape. I’m writing this so that for every time a kid sees a post or video by Candace or Caitlyn, I want them to also be able to find this – to find me – and to know it’s ok to find themselves.

Being a Black Trans guy is interesting you know – you probably don’t; it’s like I finally got what I wanted but I also got a bunch of other stuff too that can be tricky to navigate. I’ve talked about the difference between being a Black woman and a Black man; there definitely is a big difference. Walking around as a Black man, I know and can feel people think things about me automatically; people of all races. Since I had to live for 36 years presenting as the other gender, I am keenly aware of the difference my presence makes when entering a space. On the flip side of that though, in certain spaces being able to walk in as me also comes with more confidence, a larger presence, the good assumptions (some) people have about Black men, all of that. The thing is though, that I was Black before I knew I was Trans. I’m proud of it. I do a whole public speaking thing that’s called ‘Black, Trans & Proud‘, you can read it on my blog.

I’m saying this to say that being Black means even more to me now that I’m walking around everyday in my truth. I’m more connected with myself than I’ve ever been. So to have someone like Candace Owens, being a Black woman, decide to actively join the other side on all of the issues that matter and to actually claim to be representing the Black voice, it’s laughable – and unfortunate. You are Black; nobody can take that from you but I just wish you would also remember that and what your platform means. I wish you would see the world we are living in. The world where Black and Brown people, who look like you, are being killed, discriminated against, and will never be ‘one of them’. You will never be one of them either. Never. They won’t pick you if it came down to it. Because you are one of us. Because you’re Black. I don’t follow Candace Owens on social media but because of the nonsense at Twitter, I get delivered her stuff all the time. And it’s clear to me that her main objective is to say things that are inflammatory and meant to spark outrage and further division. What she’s really doing though is hurting people, a lot of people. The people who believe her lies and the people who are the victims of her lies. And most of those victims are kids. FYI – gender and sexuality are different. Maybe the reason you chose to go over to that side is because the people who listen to you are dumb enough to believe what you say. 🙂

I was in therapy the other day (BECAUSE THERAPY IS GOOD FOR YOU) and I was raging and ranting about how much negative attention Trans people are receiving, the misinformation and anti-Trans legislation coming left and right, and the blatant attacks on just our existence when we make up such a small, SMALL portion of the population and my therapist said to me: one of the main reasons people have a problem with Trans people is because you have the AUDACITY to be brave enough to live your truth, to be your authentic self, to say I don’t care what anyone else thinks – I want to be me and that’s something they can’t do. And I really needed to hear that. I needed to remember that, because what’s going on and what’s been going on over the last few years has 100% had an effect on my mental health. 100%! I’m happy, healthy, great family and friends, good job – but everyday there’s a new anti-Trans bill or someone calling for the ‘eradication of Trans people’ in general and it’s a lot. It makes me feel bad because how is my existence hurting anyone? It’s not. It’s f*cking not. And to all of the people I meet out at bars who think I’m such a cool bro – yeah, I know. I am. I’m a cool Trans bro who has the privilege of passing. To think that Trans women who are early in their transitions or who don’t fit into the box that society wants to put them in are treated totally different than I am is infuriating. Trans is Trans man – I’m telling you that. We all have our own journey and story and unique things that have happened but at the core – it’s all the same.

The way you don’t know what it is that feels off to start; the way that you never connected with the gender you were assigned at birth; the way that things you were supposed to do felt foreign; the way that you disliked yourself and your body and couldn’t understand why. The pain, the confusion, the fear, the anxiety – all there for all of us. This is what makes Caitlyn such a disappointment. And that’s being nice. I love Trans people. LOVE. But not her. Because how dare you Caitlyn. How f*cking dare you? WE KNOW WHAT YOU WENT THROUGH. WE KNOW HOW HARD IT WAS. WE KNOW HOW BRAVE YOU HAD TO BE. WE KNOW. AND YOU KNOW. And you should do better. I almost hate you for the things that you have said and are saying. I almost hate you but I won’t because like Candice, you want to be one of them so bad and don’t realize that being you is enough – maybe so much more in the climate we’re in.

You use your platform and say that you aren’t part of any alphabet mafia community: NEWSFLASH. Yes, the hell, you are. HA! Like, yes, you absolutely are. There is a ‘T’ smack dab in the middle of that acronym and that’s you babe. You’re one of us. Don’t you ever forget it because they haven’t and they won’t. I can’t even say “must be nice” to have had your career and made money and have the resources and means to have surgery and live the life you want because I know the truth girl. It isn’t all nice and to transition in your late 60’s – that’s a lot. A lot of pain; a lot of hiding; a lot of lying to yourself and others; a lot of depression and anxiety about not being yourself; a lot of worry about if people would accept you. You remember – you did it for the majority of your life so far. So how dare you try to take that from someone else? HOW DARE YOU TRY TO DENY THESE KIDS THE LIFE THEY WANT AND DESERVE? And to lie while doing it. You know good and goddamn well “kids” aren’t being mutilated and forced to be Trans. Being Trans isn’t something you can just do – otherwise you maybe woulda done it a little sooner right?

Bringing this back around; that was me being a little angry and offended and disappointed and worried. I’m here though, and I’m going to keep speaking up and out. I’m thankful right now to be in a state that values people as humans. That doesn’t take away women’s rights; that believes in gender-affirming care; that wants to fight for common sense gun reform.

For any Trans people or kids out there – I love you. I’m amazed by you and your bravery and your resilience. What a tough time this is. I’m sorry about it. I’m sorry that not only do they not want you to be able to participate in sports – they want you to hate yourself and maybe not participate in life. What they don’t know is that you already kinda do – you strongly dislike the self you have to live in right now. I understand – it’s ok and will be ok – there is a path forward, we will keep fighting for that and WE NEED YOU HERE. There are therapists and doctors and resources who can and will help. You aren’t alone. You are worth everything and you have something special and unique that the world needs. Don’t give up on you – I remember when I had been on T for a few years, maybe 3, and I finally saw myself in the mirror. The me that I always should’ve been. You will see it one day too.

Just remember, every time you see something online or on TV, or someone in your life tells you that you’re bad or shouldn’t be here or there’s something wrong with you, hear me saying to you: YOU ARE GREAT – YOU SHOULD BE HERE – NOTHING IS WRONG WITH YOU.

Be well.


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