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The Bayhawk Bearer

The Bayhawk Bearer

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International Transgender Day of Visibility

Delia Giandeini
two people walking side by side, one of them is wearing a trans flag

The International Transgender Day of Visibility, celebrated on March 31st annually, is fast approaching. However, the time to put some extra effort into celebrating trans peers is already here.

For the longest time, there was no day dedicated to the happiness of trans people. In 2009, the only event commonly observed by trans communities annually was the brutal stabbing of Rita Hester, a Black trans woman, in 1998. Rachel Crandall-Crocker, the creator of the Trans Day of Visibility, was tired of the focus on the hardships endured by members of the trans community and wanted to set aside a time to celebrate the lives of trans people, rather than simply mourning their deaths.

The Trans Day of Visibility also allows for the media portrayal of trans people to be re-examined. Historically, trans people have been stereotyped and mischaracterized in all forms of media, and that inaccurate depiction of trans people leads to a lot of hate. In 2023, more than 400 anti-LGBTQIA+ bills were passed, many of which targeted trans people. This is just one example of why it is so important to have a day like the Trans Day of Visibility, because it not only allows for members of the trans community to reaffirm that they are not alone in their experiences, but also works to deconstruct the mischaracterization of transness that leads to bills like the ones passed in 2023.

“America is founded on the idea that all people are created equal and deserve to be treated equally throughout their lives.  We have never fully lived up to that, but we have never walked away from it either,” said President Joseph Biden during last year’s Trans Day of Visibility, “As we celebrate transgender people, we also celebrate every American’s fundamental right to be themselves, bringing us closer to realizing America’s full promise.”

Bellingham too, is deeply intertwined with the LGBTQIA+ community. The city’s vaudeville culture from the 1890s to the 1910s featured drag performances heavily, and there are a plethora of city events honoring various members of the community today.

BHS’s GSA club reminds students that they are dedicated to providing a safe space and welcomes students to join them for meetings on Wednesdays after school in room 135.

“Anyone’s welcome. You don’t have to be queer; you don’t have to be trans; you don’t have to be LGBTQ+,” says GSA President Jaxon Mull-Knutti, “You have to be nice and respectful.”

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About the Contributor
Jones Walther
Jones Walther, Editor in Chief
Jones Walther is one of the founders of Bellingham High School's student run newspaper, the Bayhawk Bearer. She and Skyla Otto began planning for the paper in 2021 during their Sophomore year, and when it took off in their Junior year, both of them took up the mantle of Co-Editor in Chief. Jones is an avid cat lover and hopes to pet many cats before she reaches old age.