Tuesday, May 22, 2018

It's Texas Primary Runoff Election Day!

It's Texas primary election runoff day!   So rise and shine and handle your business at your regular precinct if you didn't do so.

There were 33 March primary races in which the candidates didn't get more than the 50% they needed to declare victory and move on to November,  Those candidates who advanced to this runoff want and need your vote.  There are two runoff candidates, one from each party, who are incumbent state House reps.

So starting now until the polls close at 7 PM CDT (7 PM MDT for you peeps in El Paso and the portion of West Texas in the Mountain Time Zone), you need to handle your electoral business.

Bring your yellow voter registration card and your photo ID.   There are some races I'll be watching after the polls close .
Image result for aronoff montiel runoff
The big one is the Democratic gubernatorial one between Dallas County sheriff Lupe Valdez and Andrew White. 

The US House District 7 battle on the Democratic side between Laura Moser and Lizzie Pannill Fletcher. to see who takes on the incumbent Rep John Culberson in the fall.

Image result for fran watson
I'll be watching to see if Fran Watson gets a step closer to becoming only the third African American woman ever elected to the Texas Senate as she faces off against Rita Lucido in the TX Senate District 17 race.   Winner will take on incumbent transphobe Joan Huffman (R) 

I'll also be watching the US House District 22 race between Sri Preston Kulkarni and Letitia Plummer and the San Antonio area US House District 23 race between Gina Ortiz Jones and Rick Trevino

Image result for aronoff montiel runoff
On the Republican side, I'm watching the US House District 29 battle between the beauty queen and the transphobic bigot.   Phillip Aronoff is taking on former Miss Venezuela Carmen Montiel, with the winner facing off against TX state senator Sylvia Garcia. 

I want to see if the pattern continues of Republican candidates who deploy transphobia in their primary races end up losing them.

The US House District 2 race to replace the retiring Rep. Ted Poe has gotten contentious between state Rep. Kevin Roberts (no relation) and former Navy SEAL Dan Crenshaw. 

Image result for roberts crenshaw runoff
Roberts was the frontrunner on March 6 with 33% of the vote, but Crenshaw leapfrogged several GOP candidates with longer political resumes by capturing 27% of the vote.

And he's making the GOP establishment supporting Roberts nervous

While Roberts has the backing of longtime conservatives Steven Hotze and Terry Lowry, Crenshaw picked up the endorsements of influential Houston conservative talk radio host Michael Berry over the weekend and former Texas governor Rick Perry.

We'll find out what happens after the polls close later today.   But no matter what party you support, go handle your business



Monday, May 21, 2018

Paulette Jordan Wins Idaho Democratic Governor's Race Primary

We have never had in the history of the United States a Native American governor of a state.

38 year old Paulette Jordan is seeking to change that.   She's a member of Idaho's Coeur d'Alene people, a member of its Tribal Council and an Idaho state representative.    You can also call her a trailblazer. 

Image result
Jordan beat in a landslide the candidate much of the Idaho business community and the Idaho Democratic Party backed in A.J. Balukoff, who had previously run for Idaho governor in 2014. 

While Balukoff was campaigning as a pro-business candidate, he was also dogged by his controversial donations to Mitt Romney's 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns and ties to business groups. 

Image result for paulette jordan idaho
Jordan was the favorite candidate of progressive groups, ran a populist campaign and called out his and the Idaho Republican Party's ties to big business groups. 

She blew out Balukoff by nearly 20 points on May 15 to become the Democratic nominee for governor, but now faces the task of winning in a deep red state that Dolt 45 won by 30 points two years ago as she challenges Idaho Lt. Governor Brad Little (R) to replace the retiring Gov. Brad Otter (R). 

If a Medicaid expansion gets placed on the ballot, it might help Jordan's chances of pulling off that upset.

Related image
 If she does, she would become not only the first ever Native American governor of any US state, she would also become the first female governor of Idaho.

Another interesting race that will be on my radar this November 6, and definitely hope it goes Jordan's way. 

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Denny's LA Trans Fail

One of the questions still resonating from Jazmina Saavedra's gleeful harassing of a trans woman using the restroom in a Los Angeles Denny's is what was Denny's reaction to it?

Here's their statement about the incident:

We are extremely disturbed by the incident that took place at our Los Angeles restaurant this week. At Denny’s, we do not tolerate discrimination of any kind, inclusive of gender identity and sexual orientation.
Image result for Denny's Vermont and Wilshire
We are dedicated to providing a welcoming dining environment for all our guests and believe that our transgender guests and team members should be allowed to use the bathroom of the gender they identify with. Our restaurant teams attend training which covers our policies against discrimination and promotes respect for all guests. 
In this case, the video of this incident does not tell the full story. Our manager was approached by a guest complaining that a man was in the women’s restroom. Once a female team member checked that no one else was in there, the manager entered. 


Before seeing the guest, the manager observed drug paraphernalia on the floor near the guest and asked the guest to leave based on that observation, and not on her gender identity.
 There is no place for discrimination of any kind in our restaurants. We apologize to our transgender guest and others in the restaurant that had to endure another customer’s disrespectful behavior.
-Denny's


Image result for Transgender woman harassed at denny
Yeah right,  Denny's.   I am skeptical about the all too convenient allegation that the trans woman was being thrown out for 'using drugs' in the restroom. 

What about your failure in throwing the person out (Saavedra) who instigated the incident, possibly committed several crimes and violated the human rights of this trans person peacefully using the restroom while doing so? 

Why wasn't Saavedra thrown out as well?

And naw Jazmina, you have a long ugly history as the spokessellout for Latinos For Trump of parroting anti-LGBT slurs, so spare us the 'I'm not a transphobe' rhetoric, because you ARE what we say you are and happily demonstrated it for the world to see.  In addition, your reputation as an unrepentant homophobe and transphobe precedes you. 

So don't get mad conservasnowflake because we are expressing as a trans community our First Amendment rights to call out your reprehensible behavior.

We're tired of peeps like you dehumanizing us.   Our humanity and human rights are not up for debate or discussion.  Neither are we tolerating anti trans bigotry being aimed at us.  We have no problem calling it and you out for being a transphobic jerk.
Transgender Rights
Hoping that Saavedra will be punished at the ballot box June 5 for her behavior.  The LA trans and gender non conforming community will have their say tomorrow at a peaceful protest being organized and sponsored by the Transgender Rights Movement from 11 AM -5 PM PDT at the Denny's located at 635 S Vermont Ave. 

It appears to me that some trans sensitivity training is needed and necessary so that Denny's actions match the lofty words in this statement.

Introducing The Duke and Duchess of Sussex!

Image result for Prince Harry and Meghan markle wedding
Back in 1981, I got up before the crack of dawn to watch the royal wedding of Prince Charles and Princess Diana. 

Overslept this morning, and wish I hadn't for the wedding of Prince Harry and our sis Meghan Markle aka the Duke and Duchess of Sussex at St. George's Chapel.

Meghan Markle's Mother, Doria Ragland, Royal Wedding
As to why this is a BFD, anytime a sister gets married to a British royal for the first time since the 18th century, it is to the point that even ESSENCE magazine was covering it

And yes, Meghan's mom was slaying.

In case you're wondering, the last Black woman to marry into the British royal family was Queen Charlotte to King George III, and historians are still arguing about just how Black Charlotte was.

Queen Charlotte BTW, is who the city of Charlotte, NC was named after. 


Here's the full video of it for those of you who slept through it like I did



Interestingly enough, they are only the second royal couple to ever have the title, and the original Duke of Sussex campaigned for the abolition of slavery in the British Empire

But because King George III didn't approve of the Duke's two marriages and ruled them unlawful, that meant the Duke's two children weren't in the line of succession to the throne. 

All that to say that  when Markle said, "I do", she will officially become the first ever Duchess of Sussex.

Image result for Most Rev Michael Curry royal wedding
Back to the wedding.  The sermon from the Most Reverend Michael Curry just before the Duke and Duchess said their vows to each other was all that and ten bags of chips. 

It quoted the Rev Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr  in talking about the redemptive power of love

     


Curry is the first Black leader of the American Episcopal Church and an avid campaigner for social justice  and racial equality.  Reverend Curry basically gave the world a taste of what it's like to go to a Black church.

Congrats to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex!   Going to interesting to watch their marital journey from this side of The Pond. .

Friday, May 18, 2018

Shut Up Fool Awards- Do You Know The Way To Santa Fe Edition?

Image result for santa fe high school
Just south of me in the exurb of Santa Fe, TX in Galveston County another school shooting happened today in which so far 10 people have died and 10 others have been wounded.

My condolences to the families and friends of those who lost their lives in this preventable tragedy.

A nice kid whit identity extremist, 17 year old Dimitrios Pagourtzis has been arrested and charged with capital murder and aggravated assault on a police officer in this terrorist attack 

Now it's time to put some peeps on blast in my weekly TransGriot Shut Up Fool post.

In their zeal to absolve their NRA paymasters for the blood they have on their hands for their inaction in banning AR-15 assault rifles, once again GOP politicians and conservative pundits have either gone radio silent or let something stupid come out of their mouths.

It's time to hand out this week's TransGriot Shut Up Fool Awards

Honorable mention number one is the fool who tried to put up a fake Facebook trying to connect the right wing Santa Fe terrorist to Antifa and Hillary Clinton 

Naw player, he's your radicalized terrorist.  Deal with it

Honorable mention number two is Cali US House candidate Jazmina Saavedra, who proved that the only people getting harassed in women's public restrooms are transgender women by GOP politicians and other conservafools.

The Trump troll not only gleefully harassed a trans woman in a LA Denny's, she may have violated several California state laws to do so.

Honorable Mention number three is Tomi Lahren, who once again opened her lip glossed mouth and let something ignorant fly out of it. .  Xenophobic Barbie let fly some anti-immigrant comments she got dragged about. 

Honorable mention number four is to 2018 SUF of the Year candidate Paris Dennard for once again cooning it up fo Trump and being a real life Uncle Ruckus.

And my shero Angela Rye calls his azz out on it 



Honorable mention number five is Rudy Giuliani, who tried to get mad when he went on CNN to do an interview with Chris Cuomo and got busted when a clip was played of him saying 'presidents need to obey subpoenas'

Laughing my butt off watching it.    Dude, you keep digging that legal hole for Trump and making it too easy for the inevitable Mueller Time legal hammer to come down on Dolt 45.  . 

This week's Shut Up Fool loser winner is none other than Texas Lt Governor Dan Patrick, our 2017 TransGriot Shut Up Fool of the Year winner.

Potty Dan opened  his mouth and let something stupid come out of it while commenting on the tragedy by claiming that  too many entrances and exits lead to school shootings.

“We have to look at the design of our schools moving forward and retrofitting schools that are already built... there are too many entrances and too many exits to our over 8,000 campuses in Texas,” Patrick said in an afternoon press conference. 
“There aren’t enough people to put a guard at every entrance and exit...maybe we need to look at limiting the entrance and exits into our schools so that we can have law enforcement looking at the people coming in through one or two entrances.”

You are aware you idiot that those multiple entrances and exits in a school help facilitate the quick exit of thousands of people out of a burning building in the event of a fire, right?

And if your idea had been in place at Santa Fe High School, far more people would have died in the terrorist attack.

It's time Texas to #FireDanPatrick this November

Dan Patrick, shut up fool!

Cali GOP US House Candidate Peddles Transphobia In Her Race

Image result for Jazmina Saavedra
The Republican Party seems to think that peddling transphobia in this 2018 midterm election cycle is the way to primary and general election success . 

They need to talk to former North Carolina governor Pat McCrory, former South Carolina state senator Lee Bright, and former Texas state representatives Debbie Riddle and Gilbert Pena about the wisdom of that strategy.

All of them tried to peddle anti-trans legislation in their various states and paid the ultimate political price for it.   

We have Phillip Aronoff trying it in his runoff election for the Texas 29th US House District Republican nomination against Carmen Montiel, and now I am hearing it being taking to another disgusting level in California

Meet Jazmina Saavedra.   This GOP transphobe and Nicaraguan immigrant has drunk the Trump Kool-Aid.   She is running for the same 44th Congressional District seat held by freshman Congresswoman Nanette Barragan (D) that Stacey Dash was originally vying for. 

Dash suspended her campaign after it became clear no one was supporting her in the Los Angeles County congressional district that includes the cities of Compton, San Pedro and the Watts neighborhood.

02 Bathroom Stall 0
Saavedra took to Facebook Live to film, misgender  and harass a trans woman trying to handle her bathroom business in a Los Angeles Denny's ironically on the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT)

05 Escorted Out
Saavedra is filming as the Denny's manager is outside the stall for the trans woman.   As the trans woman is humiliatingly being led out of the restaurant located at Vermont Ave and Wilshire Blvd by the manager, the Trump sellout supporter is going on an anti-Obama and anti-trans rant.

The Denny's in question is less than five miles from the LA LGBT Center, and while they commented on the disgusting discriminatory display, Denny's hasn't issued a statement as of this moment. .

Image result for darrell cummings LA LGBT Center

"Ignorance is not the sole province of one party or political perspective," Los Angeles LGBT Center Executive Director Darrel Cummings said in statement.

"But the current Administration has emboldened people to express their ignorance and hatred in a way that is so odious and shameful that we are required time and again to actively resist. That a candidate for Congress can express such outrageous and callous disregard for another human being clearly demonstrates that she is not fit for public office." 
"But just to be clear in case Ms. Saavedra does not get the message, ignorance, fear-mongering and harassment have no place in a country founded on principles of equality and mutual respect. On this International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia, let this candidate’s disgraceful behavior be a rallying cry for us all to stand up for what is right."
Related image


Congresswoman Barragan also released a statement reported by The Daily Beast concerning what happened at the Denny's to the still unidentified trans woman in question.

"I was appalled by the treatment that this woman received for simply trying to use the restroom. Everyone has the right to their own identity, and the right not to be discriminated against for who they are," said Rep. Barragan.

I'm appalled as well Rep. Barragan.  The trans woman in question is owed an apology by Denny's.

I hope that my LA trans siblings protest not only that Denny's if that apology doesn't expeditiously happen, but unfit for any political office GOP transphobe Jazmina Saavedra's campaign headquarters

May Saavedra 
discover on June 5 like Jeanne Ives did in Illinois that transphobia is NOT a winning campaign strategy.  
Image result for Denny's Vermont and Wilshire

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Suspect Arrested In Carla Pavon Murder Case

Image result for Carla Patricia Flores Pavon vigil Dallas
That was fast!    A suspect has been arrested in the Carla Pavon murder case.

24 year Jimmy Eugene Johnson III of the Houston suburb of Seabrook, TX has been arrested and charged with  murder.   He was detained by Dallas detectives during a traffic stop in Walker County, and investigators found items belonging to Flores-Pavon in his car. 

He was arrested, taken to the Walker County Jail and held on $500,000 bond.  Once the paperwork is completed, he will be taken back to Dallas County to face the legal music from his crimes

Johnson had been corresponding with Pavon online and it was confirmed that he was the person spotted running from her north Dallas area apartment in the Citadel at Preston Complex

Pavon emigrated to the US from Honduras seeking refuge from anti-trans discrimination in her homeland, and had been in Texas for five years .

We are now one step closer to receiving justice for Carla, and seeing that Johnson doesn't serious time for murdering our sister.  . 

BTWI Statement On The Trans Murders In Dallas and Atlanta


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 17, 2018
Contact: Monica Roberts BTWI Media Chair
Carmarion Anderson  BTWI Founding National DirectorDee Dee Watters BTWI Board Chair 
855-255-8636 Ext 11
media@blacktranswomen.org

We at Black Transwomen, Inc are dismayed and saddened about the murders of our trans siblings occuring in our headquarters city of Dallas, TX and in Atlanta, GA where we have a BTMI chapter.

Our condolences and warm thoughts go out to the friends and families of Carla Patrica Flores-Pavon, the still unidentified Black trans sister whose body was pulled out of White Rock Creek on May 12, and Nino Fortson.

The Dallas County Medical Examiner's Office is still working to ascertain the cause of death for our unidentified sibling, and once that is determined we will pass that information along as quickly as we receive it.

We also mourn the untimely passing of our Latinx sister Carla Pavon, and thank Ana Andrea Molina and the Organizacion Latina de Trans en Texas (OLTT) for the opportunity to be present at the vigil organized by OLTT for Ms Pavon at the Cathedral of Hope on May 13.

Ms. Pavon was the ninth trans person we have lost to anti-trans violence in the US, and we join OLTT in expressing our desire for the swift capture, prosecution, and punishment of the person who killed Carla so that justice can be served for her family and all who loved her.   

BTWI leadership has been working in close cooperation with the Dallas Police Department to help get accurate information out as expeditiously as possible in these cases.  We are diligently working to ensure that we identify our sister so that the investigation into her death can commence and the perpetrator can be brought to justice. 

In Nino Fortson's case, there are many members of our Atlanta BTMI-BTWI family who knew Nino  personally and are devastated after hearing the news of his tragic May 13 murder.

Fortson was unfortunately the tenth trans person and first trans masculine person killed in 2018, and we mourn his loss as well.   Our transmen also face anti-trans violence aimed at them, and his murder is an unfortunate reinforcement of that reality. 

We at BTWI along with our BTMI brothers in Atlanta and beyond are hoping that the perpetrator of our fallen brother's May 13 murder is swiftly captured and punished for his crime.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

A Historic Graduation For Keo!

<a href="https://twitter.com/Saint_Keo" target="_blank">Keo Chaad O’Neal </a>in his graduation attire, captured by
Needed some positive news to talk about after writing about several trans murders, and this is coming from the ATL

Since Spelman changed their policies to allow trans people to matriculate on their campus,  been wondering when would witness our first trans graduate from the first liberal arts college for African American women. 

Turns out it's May 2018. 

Image result for spelman college
Meet Keo Chaad O'Neal.   It's apropos that the 21 year old O'Neal is graduating with a degree in history because he is making it as the first openly trans masculine graduate of Spelman College.   

When the South Plainfield, NJ native first enrolled on the Spelman campus he identified as non binary and used they/them pronouns.    While O'Neal loved Spelman, he didn't feel at the time he would be able to become themself, so O'Neal transferred to a predominately white institution (PWI).

While at the PWI, O'Neal transitioned, grew and developed on that campus, but missed Spelman.

"I came back to Spelman in my junior year because although I could flourish in my queerness, I felt like I was denying my Blackness.  I was nothing more than a body to those folks," O'Neal said.

O'Neal returned to Spelman for his junior and senior year  and says he faced some backlash from current students, their parents and alumni.    He came out during a on campus convocation for Spelman aluma and author Alice Walker who was visiting as ana artist in residence. 

Image result for spelman college
As to what is next for O'Neal.  While he has been accepted into a PhD program in the fall, he wants to take a few years to establish himself before returning to school.

While it was a tough two years, he also had a message for his supporters.

Image result for Keo Chaad O'Neal
"I could not have made it this far without the encouragement of others, O'Neal said. "It truly takes a village.  For everyone who played a part in my successes, this is a win for all of us."

And in a week full of bad news for our trans community, it's a win we sorely needed.

Congratulation Keo! 

Number 10- Rest In Power and Peace Nino Fortson

We have lost our first trans masculine person  of 2018 to anti-trans violence in what is turning out to be a deadly week.

36 year old Nino Fortson was shot multiple times during an argument early in the morning of May 13 at the corner of Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway and Woods Dr NW

As you probably guessed, the initial news report on CBS46 misgendered our brother.

According to the misgendering CBS46 report, Atlanta PD was executing a traffic stop nearby, heard the gunfire and rushed to the scene where the mortally wounded Forston was spotted.   He was taken to the nearby Grady Memorial Hospital where he died from his wounds.

Crime Stoppers | Atlanta Police FoundationFortson is the 10th trans person we have lost to anti-trans violence this year, the sixth Black person and the first in Georgia this year   

APD is looking for Fortson's killer.   If you have any information on this case you are urged to call Atlanta Crime Stoppers at 404-577-TIPS (8477)

If there are any vigils being planned, I'll pass that information along as soon as I receive it.

Rest in power and peace Nino.   You were taken from us far too soon, and we won't rest until the person who killed you is swiftly arrested, convicted and justice is served in your case.

 

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Number 10? Deceased Black Trans Woman's Body Found In Dallas

Image result for dallas skyline
Turns out while I and Ana Andrea Molina were in Dallas over the weekend for Carla Pavon's vigil, a few miles away from where I was staying on Saturday they were fishing the body of a deceased Black trans woman out of White Rock Creek 

At 7:30 PM CDT on May 12 a kayaker called Dallas PD to report a body in the creek near the 6900 block of Merriman Parkway in Lake Highlands that Dallas Fire- Rescue officials pulled from the creek.

The person in question was 5'3' and weighed 130 pounds.  Body was in a severe state of decomposition, and wearing a black t-shirt and black scrub pants with no tattoos or identifying marks on the body

Image result for dallas Carla Pavon vigilDallas PD is seeking the help of the public in identifying this person since the body didn't match the description of any current missing person's cases. 

If you have information regarding the identity of this individual, please call Detective Chaney with the DPD Homicide unit at 214-671-3650

The death is currently classified as an unexplained one pending cause of death determination from the Dallas County Medical Examiner's Office.

It has not been classified by DPD or a Dallas County Medical Examiner as a homicide yet. 

If that happens, she would become the 10th trans person we have lost to anti-trans violence in the US, the sixth Black trans person we've lost in 2018 and the second in Texas this year.

And yes, Texas Republican Party, your anti-trans rhetoric is responsible for this happening.

First let's get this sister identified as expeditiously as possible, so that we can then focus on the task of obtaining justice for her .

RIP TyJanae Moore

Image may contain: 1 person
While I was doing a Google search to find the TransGriot post I'd written about her back in November 2010. was shocked to stumble across an obituary for her from last year.

TyJanae Moore was in the news back in November 2010 when she was unjustly arrested for simply using the bathroom in the downtown Houston Public Library after a Black cis female security guard called the cops on her. 

The obituary I stumbled across doesn't mention a cause of death, and as you probably guessed it deadnamed her

She was also just 33 years old when she died.   Not only is the question on my mind how did she die, I'm also wanting to know where.  I know thanks to the bare bones obituary when it happened, on November 15, 2017 and I know it happened in her residence in Killeen.

That was a mere 28 days after she celebrated her 33rd birthday on October 17.

The funeral home handling the arrangements was in Copperas Cove, TX,.   So if you know anything about the backstory concerning how she died, let me know.   

Obituary of Nathaniel Moore (AKA TyJanae)

Rest in power and peace TyJanae