I would like to organize a formal rally and potentially a march on this day regarding the issues related to title IX and transgender students’ gender identities being accepted by all. This rally is extremely important and relevant because while the state of Connecticut has decided to side with transgender students on the issue regarding bathroom use, not all states have. We are extremely fortunate to have been able to continue to progress but not all have been as fortunate as us. We must stand with transgender students across the nation in support of their cause, as they deserve equality. We must show that we stand with them and that their identification is entirely valid.
While this topic is controversial, and at times seems to be distant from Berlin, there are students within our high school who are affected greatly by these issues. It is important that these students, along with the rest of the transgender community, know we are here, standing up with them at such a difficult time. Looking at some statistics, transgender individuals are at an extremely high risk for suicide. According to an article from the Washington Post, “Forty-one percent of transgender people surveyed in Injustice at Every Turn said they had attempted suicide, compared with 1.6 percent of the general population” (Quigley). Similarly, according to an article on Bustle.com, “A 2014 analysis of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey by the Williams Institute found that more than half of people who have been bullied at school due to anti-transgender bias had attempted suicide” (Rutherford-Morrison). Since these people are already at such a high risk of suicide, taking away such simple rights as using the bathroom they identify with, will only increase this risk. The school and state officials denying these people such a natural right are the bullies with an anti-transgender bias Rutherford-Morrison refers to.
While one voice can seem small and insignificant, a mass of voices standing in their support says something. It would show that their lives do matter, and that their identification does matter, and is valid. Maybe by standing up for these people, we could save a life.