SolidariTy is a joint initiative by LGBT Noise and Transgender Equality Network Ireland. It’s all about getting cis people- in particular LGBs, but straight cis people should get their butts on board too- to stand up and be counted and support trans people’s rights. They’ve just released a video (yep, that’s me in the blue). Check it out:
I love that something like SolidariTy is happening. It’s not enough for cis people to give quiet thumbs-up to our trans friends and then go on about our lives. Trans people in Ireland don’t have the same rights as cis people do. Trans people are at terrifyingly high risk of being fired from their jobs, having an even harder time than the rest of us actually getting work in the first place, ostracised from families and communities, denied necessary healthcare, and of suffering from mental health difficulties, self-harm and suicide. Trans people are denied legal gender recognition in this country, and the government’s proposed legislation to remedy this is outdated and damaging. That legislation would force people to divorce, it would force trans kids and teenagers to spend years with documents that don’t match their identities, and it would enshrine the idea that to be trans is to be mentally ill.
That’s no way for our country to treat its citizens, and no way for our society to treat its members. If you’re here in Ireland, keep an eye on SolidariTy to see how you can help change things.
Okay, I’ll show my ignorance: WTF is a cis person?
No problem- that’s an easy one for me to answer. Also, I get to gush about origins of words to explain why it’s used 🙂
Cis, in this context, simply means someone who isn’t trans. It’s from the same Latin origin as ‘trans’- where trans was a prefix meaning ‘across from’ or ‘on the other side of’, cis meant “on the same side of”. So when it comes to gender, where ‘trans’ means you’re on a different side to what was assigned to you at birth, ‘cis’ means you’re on the same side. Clever, eh?
Oh! And as I’m on this topic: You may be wondering why the term had to be coined in the first place. Basically, not having a nice simple term for people-who-aren’t-trans got awkward. It was a bit like not having a word for straight people when you’re talking about queer folks- there’s an inherent imbalance in having a word for one phenomenon but not the other. It just doesn’t work, y’know?
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