Still and forever a Democrat

Still and forever a Democrat

I understand some of the rhetoric. I've been there. Heck, I'll be 68 in 22 days. How could I not have been where you feel you are now.

When I was 18, I was a McCarthy supporter, but was deemed too young to vote. One might think that would be enough to put me off the whole concept of voting right there.

I backed McGovern in 1972. We know how that worked out.

1976 found me in grad school and a shitload of possible nominees to choose from. Personally, I thought Carter was too openly religious. Living in Oregon like I did, most of the 15 candidates were out of the race by the time of the Oregon primary. Governor Moonbeam (Jerry Brown) filed too late to be on the ballot in Oregon, but he was my guy anyway. Didn't win. Neither did Morris Udall. So I was stuck with Carter and his "sinned in my heart" mentality.

I was for Teddy in 1980. But I was disenchanted in the end...and voted for Anderson. Not a good choice, it turned out. It was the only time in my adult life that I did not vote for a Democrat.

I was for Hart in 1984 and 1988 until the extra-marital affairs drove him out. Biden was a plagiarist. Sen. Paul Simon didn't last to Oregon. I ended up voting for Jesse.

By 1992 I was living in Arkansas and by the end of the year I was transitioning. I voted for Clinton in the primary...and was proud of that vote.

The rest is relatively recent history.

This year I'm voting for the Democratic Party. The California Democratic Convention was last month.

This year the platform includes

Protect the right of all people to use facilities and participate in all aspects of society consistent with their true gender identity, regardless of the gender assigned them at birth.

As the National Center for Transgender Equality states:

Transgender people face extraordinary levels of physical and sexual violence, whether on the streets, at school or work, at home, or at the hands of government officials. ... More than one in four transgender people has faced a bias-driven assault, and rates are higher for transgender women and transgender people of color.

While their recent action was a positive stride, it’s just the beginning. As Californians, we cannot stop until transgender people are treated equally in all parts of life—a mission that’s worth fighting for.

--Kris Hayashi, Transgender Law Center and Rick Zbur, Equality California

Vote your pleasure in the primaries. I will not try to sway you about which candidate is better for trans people. But when the general comes, there is no choice, as far as I am concerned.

Some of you may be thinking "Life will go on" with a republican president. Your life may go one...but for some of us, that's somewhat in doubt.

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