Transgender day of visibility spotlights hate, spreads love

GSA's table is covered in the transgender colors, pink blue and white, from the table clothe to the snack.

Isabel Saavedra-Weis

GSA’s table is covered in the transgender colors, pink blue and white, from the table clothe to the snack.

Pink, blue and white is everywhere. In the hallways on posters, on a flag draped across a table, on little ribbons safety pinned on shirts and sweaters, even in meringue form, in honor of Transgender Day of Visibility. Although the main focus was to promote the idea of giving people the freedom of expressing themselves, a light was shed on the sadder and more violent side of transgender history.

One main way to express both the triumph and losses of the transgender community are the posters found hanging around the school walls.

“Half of them are about famous trans people who are doing really cool work, with examples of Skylar Kergil and Laverne Cox. The other half are people who were murdered last year for being transgender. We wanted to show that the reality is not only that trans people do really incredible things, but also that trans people are at an extremely high risk for violence, and that 2016 was in fact the deadliest year for trans people on record,” GSA president and senior Leo Bukovsan said.

According to the Human Rights Campaign, 22 transgender people have been murdered in 2016. Although the statistics for last year are harsh, there are still things happening this year that are pending and could have major impacts on transgender students.

There is going to be a call of dialogue and making sure that people understand and to ask questions if you don’t understand things.”

— Leo Bukovsan

“There are some bathroom bills going on in Minnesota State law that would potentially be detrimental to trans students, as well as things on the federal level. We wanted to make sure that SPA is a safe and welcoming environment for all trans students.”

But whether looking on a national level, local level or communal level, Bokovsan’s goal is consistantly relevant.

“We wanted to start conversation in the school. With the times are now, sexuality is less of a taboo thing than it used to be, but gender is still very much a taboo things. […] There is going to be a call of dialogue and making sure that people understand and to ask questions if you don’t understand things. We just want people to understand and know, and if that means more education, than that’s really the goal of this day.”