Leelah Alcorn: My Promise To You
Your death is truly tragic, yet even in that final act you gave a gift to the world. You asked that your death mean something. I promise that in my words and my actions, I will do my absolute best to make this happen.
You chose to end your life because you were murdered; by the lack of love and understanding from the two people who should have been your bedrock; by the crushing of your spirit as it sought to become the beautiful butterfly you would be; by the unthinking mass of people who by their very inaction and ignorance perpetuate the wall of silence you were forced to live behind; by the knowledge that your life, however true and honest you are, would be hard and painful and marginalised; by humanity’s inability to recognise the first five letters of that word are all that defines the physical person.
Parker Malloy wrote her pledge to you, as a transgender-identifying sister. I write this pledge to you as a cisgender-identifying sister and I hope with all that I am that others will choose to make their pledge too.
I promise to try, at all times:
* To never to stop fighting for acceptance of all those who identify as transgender and struggle to fit within the narrow confines of our current limited society.
* To never to cease my work to be an ally: to listen, learn, understand, follow, and never to let my privilege blind me.
* To shout loudly and often and never shut up about the truth.
* To be a person whom my brothers and sisters can come to in peace and safety, for whatever safe harbour they may need.
* To make your name a byword for hope.
* To be what I am needed to be and to be open to being wrong.
As long as one single person on this planet feels that they are not good enough to live on it, I will keep fighting to eliminate the prejudices and fears that make them feel that way.
There is good in the world. There is hope. The news is filled with horror and tragedy because that binds us together in caring and wishing the same will not happen to us and those we love and co-exist with.
But that horror and tragedy is not the reality for most of us. Most of us are simply blind to the macro world. Most of us don’t see the suffering right within our societies simply because it is not us suffering. That is what privilege bestows. I hope that all cisgender people reading this will make a resolution, a pledge, to you.
You asked, in your final gift to us, that “ My death needs to mean something”. With love to you Leelah, and with hope for the future for all of us, this I promise to you. Your death does and will mean something.
United States of America – http://www.translifeline.org/
United Kingdom – http://gendertrust.org.uk/directory/support-organisations
New Zealand – http://www.agender.org.nz/
Canada – http://www.gendermosaic.com/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Transgender-Support-World-Wide/210713025610380?sk=timeline