I was aware of a sense of urgency in the drafting of the letter by Out and Equal urging the Dallas County Commissioners to include transgender protections in their newly amended non discrimination policy.
My take on it is that Out and Equal is very concerned about holding their LGBT workplace summit in a county that expressly does not have equal protections for the entire LGBT population. I think it would be prudent for the Commissioners to consider how serious this matter is for OUT and Equal. I would also hope they make a performance based decision when they consider the 8 million the OUT and Equal gathering generates.
My testimony April 5th 2010:
Good Morning Commissioners, My name is Kelli Anne Busey. I am a former resident of Dallas County now living in Tarrant County. I am a nationally recognized blogger and activist. I would like to commend you on amending the Dallas county non discrimination policy to include sexual orientation. However, it has come to my attention that gender expression and identity was not added to to recent amendments.
It has also come to my attention that the reason transgender people were not included is because you thought transgender people and gay people are the same and transgender people would be protected by adding sexual orientation. That is simply not true.
So I am here to help you to understand who we are are in hopes that you will include transgender expression and identity in the Dallas county non discrimination policy.
I will address some areas that transgender people have been recognized.
Transgender people have steadily increased the number places we have protections in. Currently there are 13 states + DC plus 109 counties and cities for a total of 122.
A couple of common arguments that transphobic people use to defeat our efforts to be included in protections is that we are relatively new as a minority and the bible condemns us. Both are falsehoods.
In the Old testament transgender people were recognized as Eunuchs as we still are in the subcontinent of Asia.
Old testament in Isaiah 56 The lord promises a special place for eunuchs.
Mathew 20 Jesus tried and help his disciples understand who transgender people are and promises a place in heaven for us.
Acts 8:26 An angel summons a successful minister to leave his conjugation to travel on a desert road south of Jerusalem. The purpose becomes clear when the minister is brought to a Eunuch who had been rejected by the church in Jerusalem and was later baptised by that same Minister.
There are numerous Professional transgender people in Texas working in law enforcement, medical, legal, and many more like myself a former business owner now religated post transition to poverty.
The question your are wrestling with, the definition of transgender, the one you have asked your legal office has been asked over and over again while we struggle for equality.
The truth is a definition of transgender people is as allusive as a simple definition for humanity in general. I can suggest this to you though. In the cities, counties and states where transgender people have been included in non discrimination policies there have been no instances of any transgender people abusing these rights.
What there has been is a increase in the city’s county and state revenue as transgender people are allowed to live up to there potentials.
I hope the Commissioners Court acts quickly to amend its non discrimination policy to include Transgender people.
Kelli Anne Busey