Voter ID Laws and Trans People

So, my big coming out here, in public as not a left winger or even a Democrat is here… I was interviewed by a reporter for The Daily Beast. Of course, on a trans issue as it relates to possible Voter ID laws. Never had a problem myself with ID and voting, even when I was earlier into my transition. I think I say it best in the article, and it is toward the end.

For Max Wolf Valerio, a transgender man, the political transformation from a Democrat to a Republican was more daunting than transitioning from female to male. Valerio, author of The Testosterone Files, a memoir about his transition, said obtaining a state ID is part of every adult person’s life in the U.S. and not an additional challenge. “Trans people are not hothouse flowers who wilt at the slightest obstacle or pressure. We are resourceful, resilient, and often, extraordinarily strong people,” he said.

While I fully support educating poll workers for the possibility of trans people being ambiguous, if there are Voter ID laws established, just as they would be educated for any oddity or stray possibility, I honestly believe that this issue is being blown way out of proportion. I mean, trans people use state issued IDs for getting jobs, buying booze, entering a nightclub, traveling, picking up an airline ticket — and well, driving a car. Many things… in many states, it is not that difficult to change your F to M, if you have a note from a doctor. In some states it is a bit more difficult, and name change is more difficult. But, we manage. There are trans advocacy organizations that are fighting to make these laws more reasonable or to liberalize them. I support these efforts by and large. I do NOT agree with the trans guy, the lawyer speaking in the video, Dru Levasseur, who states that it is a “privilege” to be able to have an ID congruent with your gender, the gender or sex (actually) that you change to. If that is true, it’s news to me… Anyone who reads my memoir would know… I was mostly unemployed and certainly without savings,living hand to mouth, when I got my ID and name changed on my California State ID in 1989. And, that was way before “FTM” had any credence as hip or trendy. Things were far more difficult then. Listen, if I can do it, just about any one can. Yes, California’s laws are fairly liberal but even so… This hysteria over Voter ID, and this painting of trans people as victims, well – it doesn’t wash. I hate and despise this constant portrayal of us as weak, inept victims. We can manage to get IDs, we are adults, we’ve been doing it for a long time now…

Further, please, Democrat party, please stop using us for your ridiculous political agenda! In this case, being against people showing an ID at the polling place! It is not that big of a deal, really… trans people can manage, yes — we can! To borrow a slogan.

I say it better in the article…