TRANSform is a new student movement comprised of Trans* students and allies at Butler University. We formed in mid-march of 2016 in response to the lack of response and initiative from the University regarding the needs of Trans* students. Having spent months in fruitless conversations with administrators regarding gender-inclusive restrooms, pronouns, gender identity, names, and so forth it became apparent that unless action was taken, and a movement initiated, that there would be no meaningful change on Butler’s Campus- as it is whatever changes they are implementing are of low priority and will be implemented too late to benefit those of us who are graduating this coming may.
TRANSform exists to say enough is enough, we are planning a series of actions on campus that are intended to grab Butler’s attention and shake them out of their private cis-privilege worlds.
Why are Trans* Rights important? Because Trans* people are people too and too often we are assumed to not even exist. Everyday one will hear the phrase “men and women”, which even if the speaker intended to include binary trans folks, erases those of us like myself who either identify as Non-Binary, Third Gender, or Agender.
Simply waiting for a culture shift to take place is hugely problematic. There are real people being erased everyday. There are real people living in depression everyday. There are real people dying everyday. And while we at Butler do have it much better than many in America, we are all housed for one; the attitudes of people on campus who don’t believe we deserve to be considered human are not being challenged and they are going to leave this school with hostile attitudes towards their fellow earth-inhabitants. Not. Cool.
Why Now? Because this is often a matter of mental and physical health, with varying levels of severity. Because I have friends who won’t come out publicly as trans for fear of reprisals both personally and in the professional world. Because Trans Rights are Human Rights and a school like Butler University, famously founded by an abolitionist, one of the first three US universities to admit women, and to graduate both white women and black men and women, needs to get back to its roots as a radical institution that challenges systems of oppression and power.
~TRANSform Your Expectations