International Transgender Day of Visibility
Unless you made it through your day yesterday without using the restroom, you probably noticed something was different. It wasn’t an accident that the bathroom was chosen by McCann Q as the site of activity for this year’s International Transgender Day of Visibility. Before using the restroom, an undertaking that is unremarkable for most of us, McCanners were asked to consider what it’s like for a trans person to “balance their identity, the comfort of others and their own safety” every time they enter one. Inside definitions affixed to the mirrors clarified the confusion surrounding words like “queer,” “transition” and “drag queen” while a set of statistics provided a snapshot of the state of affairs for trans people in the US.
During the panel discussion Ask Angie, the 23rd floor atrium was filled with laughter and enlightenment as our panelists shared both the amusing anecdotes and travail of their lives. Angie joined us from IPG, AJ is an associate professor of mathematics and Allie is a stylist. AJ articulated the financial burden he faces to be viewed by the state as the legal parent to his own child and had us all roaring with laughter when he talked about what it’s been like to compete first in female and now male athletics. When asked about using the correct pronouns Angie answered “if you’re unsure, don’t use one – just talk to the person” and Allie described her transition as “the best decision she’s has ever made.”
Amazon’s original series Transparent was screened in the afternoon. It stars Jeffrey Tambor who we meet as a divorced father and grandfather and the story of his family as they come to know him as Maura. “Boy is it so hard when someone sees something you do not want them to see,” says Maura to her daughter, a succinct summation of both the manifold issues that swirl around trans identity and a line that we can all identify with.
The day closed with a special Watch and Discuss happy hour where attendees enjoyed their beers and popcorn while taking turns watching a series of videos set up on computers at HK’s. The videos spawned small group discussions and were the perfect end to a successful series of events. Thank you to McCann Q and Truth Well Brewed for all of your hard work in putting this together and to everybody who helped make the day such a success.