Amend the Reporting Guidelines, to be more Transgender Protective.
This petition had 520 supporters
Samantha allowed herself to become vulnerable in effort to raise awareness over early testicular and prostate cancer detection, and then people shamed her.
On March 30th, 2014 I wrote an article acknowledging the invisibility of trans* women/yn and the continued gendering of cancer, in the #cockinasock viral photo trend. The campaign, though transgressive and highlighting how important early detection and screening is for testicular and prostate cancer, seemed to have forgotten another at-risk population entirely, transgender women/yn.
I highlighted a Canadian trans* woman named Samatha Lauzon, who courageously posted a photo to Instagram and Facebook wearing only a sock over her genitals, offering the abovementioned alternate perspective.
You can see it here: THE #COCKINASOCK CAMPAIGN AND WHO THEY’RE FORGETTING
To be fair, and with almost 35,000 reads and shares over the past 3 days, there have been thousands of positive responses, mostly standing in love and solidarity with Samantha.
But, as with any marginalized group- there are those who will do anything to keep them oppressed. Hate groups such as Gender Identity Watch, headed by TERF (Transgender Exclusionary Radical Feminist) Cathy Brennan, and trans* phobic people alike have attacked her, misgendered her, and reported her photo to Facebook as 'pornographic'.
HERE IS THE PROBLEM: Thousands, if not millions at this point, of cisgender men have posted the same type of photo and have been praised for doing so. None of their photos have been blocked from Facebook, which begs the question: Why are we so afraid of trans* bodies? Why is a cisgender male's nakedness okay, while a trans* woman's is 'pornography'?
Facebook has been on the forefront of trans* visibility since expanding its options to include over 50 gender identities for its users to choose from; this should be no different. After all, equal should be entirely equal, not partially.
We must continue to confront the very things that make us uncomfortable, for the sake of equality and fairness. When a mind changes or when it becomes less racist, sexist, homophobic, or trans* phobic, the life of the one who’s marginalized also changes. They begin to feel less alone, that people care and that people are willing to stand up for them, even when they are standing alone.
You don't have to agree with who she is, or even understand what it means to be transgender, (I do invite you to explore it, though. There are many excellent resources online: GLAAD & HRC are great ones) but if you believe in a world where inequity based on Race, GENDER, Sexual Orientation, Socio-Economic Status, Ethnicity, or anything else that keeps humans separate is worth your attention and action: I invite you to #standwithsamantha.
In petitioning Facebook to amend their policies as it refers to harassment and reporting, especially when people abuse the reporting policy as a form of harassment and discrimination, you will be acknowledging that Samantha, or any trans* person, should receive the same treatment and respect that the millions of cisgender users enjoy every day.
The human body displayed for a public health campaign is not pornography. A trans* body is not pornography by virtue of its existence; it’s just different- no better, no worse.
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