This essay from a transgender 5th grader has been traveling around the trans spheres online and I just had to share it with you. It captures so simply why we fight for equality. In case you can't read it, I've transcribed it below:
Sadie's Dream for the World
The world would be a better place if everyone had the right to be themselves, including people who have a creative gender identity and expression. Transgender people are not allowed the freedom to do things everyone else does, like go to the doctor, go to school, get a job, and even make friends.
Transgender kids like me are not allowed to go to most schools because the teachers think we are different from everyone else. The schools get afraid of how they will talk with the other kids' parents, and transgender kids are kept secret or told not to come there anymore. Kids are told not to be friends with transgender kids, which makes us very lonely and sad.
When they grow up, transgender adults have a hard time getting a job, because the boss thinks the customers will be scared away. Doctors are afraid of treating transgender patients because they don't know how to take care of them, and some doctors don't really want to help them. Transgender patients like me travel to other states to see a good doctor.
It would be a better world if everyone knew that transgender people have the same hopes and dreams as everyone else. We like to make friends and want to go to school. Transgender people want to get good jobs and go to doctors like they are exactly the same. It really isn't that hard to like transgender people because we are like everyone else.
It takes a lot of courage to come out in elementary school. I know I didn't have that kind of courage, and my hat is off to Sadie for being true to herself. (I'm not certain of which pronouns Sadie prefers, but will use female pronouns because of her name.) Sadie's take on transgender life is heartbreaking in many ways. Just this short essay gives me a picture of a child who has been told by several adults that her very existence is a problem. Principals, teachers, school administrators, doctors, these are the adults that children trust to have their best interest at heart. Instead, they've pushed her away. While I can understand the parents of cis children being confused, it's obvious they never considered the loneliness their attitudes have caused for a child who is about to enter middle school (which is a whole other can of worms). So even though we might rejoice in Obama's mention of the LGBT community in his inauguration speech, never forget that this is what we are fighting for. Until every kid can feel safe in their school, we're not finished yet.