My Transgender Agenda

Angus B. Grieve-Smith
August 29, 2004

Sometimes I get frustrated. I see nonprofit groups that serve the transgender community talking about "transgender needs" and sometimes I don't see anything there that would benefit me. Sometimes they focus on hormones and surgery, which is helpful for transsexuals, and sometimes they mention HIV/AIDS prevention, which is helpful for people who have unprotected sex with multiple parters, but neither of those are true for me. I'm all for helping transsexuals and populations at risk of AIDS, but often I think "What about me? Why aren't they looking out for me?"

The answer, of course, is that in order for them to do anything for me, they first have to know what I want. If I don't tell anyone what I want, I shouldn't be surprised if no one tries to help me get it. So here's my agenda. It applies only to me. I don't claim to know what "transvestites" or "transgendered people" want. No one has done a representative survay of the transgender community, so no one really knows that anyway. But it's my hope that others will put together their own agendas, and some of their goals will overlap with mine, and eventually we'll have a consensus.

There are, of course, some organizations that are doing things that fit with at least some of my goals. I'll list some of them here soon.

What I Want for Myself

I live in New York City, which is a relatively accepting place for a cross-dresser. I've been out in public cross-dressed several times, and so far (knock on wood) I've never been attacked, or denied entry to any facility. I've been able to get good work, even though lots of people know about my cross-dressing, and it's up on this web page for anyone to see. But I hear stories, and the fear is there. Here's what I want for myself:

What I Want for Posterity

As I said, I feel pretty comfortable in New York, and I've felt similarly comfortable in Paris. But growing up in a small town (even if it was Woodstock, New York), I never felt comfortable enough to come out of the closet. In the two years I lived in Albuquerque I avoided going out in public, and in the year I lived in small-town North Carolina, I avoided even telling people about my cross-dressing. I'm sure there are kids growing up in similar situations, and I want to do what I can to help their lives be a little better. So here's what I wish my life had been like:

A Work in Progress

You may have noticed that all of these are "ultimate" goals, meaning that they're all things that will have a direct effect on my happiness as a cross-dresser. So how do I plan to work towards things like "freedom from fears of violence?" I'll discuss that soon, but I wanted to put this up here relatively quickly. Check back here soon for more "proximate" goals.

What's Your Agenda?

As I said before, this is what I want, for myself and for those who come after me. If you're a transvestite or cross-dresser (or even if you aren't), I'm sure you've got your own ideas about what you want. If you feel that they're not being adequately addressed by any existing organization, why not make up your own agenda? If you agree with any of my goals, feel free to use them. If you have a transgender-related agenda on line, please feel free to send me an email (grvsmth at panix dot com) and tell me about it.
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