You can well be sure that there will be anti-trans bills introduced in legislatures across the country in the first few months of 2017. They will be billed as protecting women and children. They will be billed as protecting religion. They will be billed as protecting everyone.
    Kansas will be right there too, undoubtedly introducing our particular brand of cowardice pretending to be courage.
    The perpetrators of these publicly committed hate crimes will smile as they openly deny that their bills are further discriminating against some of the most marginalized people in our country - those of us who happen to be transgender and gender non-conforming (TGNC).
    They will deny the science of gender identity and the scientific recognition of organizations like the American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the American Medical Association, and the World Professional Association for Transgender Health.
    They will conjure up fears about safety where all evidence clearly shows those fears are not supported, and they will dispute or ignore the real fears and well-documented violence faced by TGNC people throughout the country every single day.
    These snakes in legislative clothing will attempt to convince their misled minions that these bills are designed to protect them. All the while, their bills add horrifying invalidation to TGNC youth, for whom invalidation is the single most significant contributor to suicide risk, substance abuse, homelessness, and other negative outcomes.
    You might wonder why more people don’t know about these legislative attacks on already vulnerable adults and children. Unfortunately, mainstream press far-too-often finds more value in selling newspapers than they find in saving the transgender teens whose lives are nonchalantly tossed in the trashcan.
    You might wonder what can be done. The answer to this question is both complicated and simple. The simple opportunity to make a difference is coming soon. The date with difference is Nov. 8. The United States will elect a new president. And across the country, states will be electing new legislators.
    Here in Kansas, every single legislative seat in the state is up for election. Citizens of Kansas will have the opportunity to replace a significant number of Brownback-supporting, anti-equality, truth-denying, trans youth-attacking legislators. There is one highly important consideration. Equality-loving, youth-protecting Kansans must vote like transgender children’s lives depend on it - because they do.
    If you want to  know more about which candidates care about saving the lives of TGNC teenagers, contact Equality Kansas - l

StephanieMott-7Stephanie Mott is a transgender woman from Topeka. She is the executive director of the Kansas Statewide Transgender Education Project, and a commissioner on the City of Topeka Human Relations Commission. Reach her at [email protected]

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