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The Trump administration has taken its hardest swing at the transgender community thus far, but trans people and their allies are fighting back even harder.
The Department of Health and Human Services is circulating a memo stating that it wants to legally define gender under Title IX, a federal law against sex discrimination, as "a biological, immutable condition determined by genitalia at birth," as reported by The New York Times. This will roll back protections the Obama administration protection put in place for transgender people.
Since news of the mrmo was leaked, there have been protests and use of the hashtag #WeWillNotBeErased, and now the Human Rights Campaign has put together a letter from 1,500 parents of transgender, nonbinary, and gender-nonconforming children, and it is directed to Donald Trump and Mike Pence.
"As the parent of a beautiful and bold transgender child, our families deserve the full and equal protection of the federal government and our nation's civil rights laws," Jodie Patterson, a member of HRC's Parents for Transgender Equality Council, said in a press release. "Our government has an obligation to assist and protect young people, not to erase them. I'm proud to join with other parents across our nation in condemning this Administration's proposal, and our families need all fair-minded voters to turn out between now and November 6 to make sure we elect leaders who will defend the rights of our children."
HRC national press secretary Sarah McBride added, "This Administration has heartlessly targeted the rights and wellbeing of transgender young people since their first days in office, but Trump and Pence should know that families and friends and allies of all ages will not stand by or be silent. This November, they'll be hearing from all of us on Election Day."
The letter, released Friday, starts off strong, letting Trump and Pence know that the parents will "fight like hell" to protect their children's identities, rights, and access to health care. The letter stresses how dangerous it is to be a transgender, nonbinary, or gender-nonconforming person in the United States, detailing the harrowing rates of bullying, self-harm, and discrimination experienced by people who are not cisgender.
The letter ends with the parents' plan for fixing the future: voting. "This November, we are voting to protect that future, and together, we will make your hateful agenda a thing of the past. "
Read the full letter here.
If you are transgender and need someone to talk, to contact the Trans Lifeline online or by phone at (877) 565-8860.