SEATTLE, WA, January 15, 2019 — January can be a difficult month for individuals due to job or life transitions, death, loss and even depression about the past or future. Sometimes those challenges are more prevalent in transgender communities, which are experiencing a surge in violence against them.
Transgender advocate, educator and poet, J Mase III, aims to change the course of history on transgender issues. ”Trans people shouldn't have to deal with violence simply because others are insecure or transphobic. We exist whether or not you believe in us,” said Mase.
Mase, a transgender male, speaks all over the country, educating communities, organizations, institutions and companies on how to decrease the violence against transgender individuals, update their inclusion policies, and improve the overall culture surrounding those who may not fit into the dominant paradigm of gender.
A Detroit pastor was recently charged with the murder of Kelly Stough, a 36-year-old transgender woman who was found shot dead in Detroit on December 14, 2018. Albert Weathers, 46, was charged with open murder and use of a firearm in commission of a felony. And while the nature of Stough's and Weathers' relationship remains unknown, Mase warns that unless faith communities take a firmer stand on such violence that the violence will likely escalate.
“During this time of year especially, people will use their limited knowledge of religion to protect their rights to be violent against trans people. To think the same language that people use to stand in their faith can be screamed at a trans person being attacked, means folks are not using their faith for love – they're using it for power and violence,” said Mase.
BOOKING INFO: Mase is available for interview, speaking, training and education opportunities online and offline. Reach out to [email protected] to begin conversations.
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