Sylvia and Marsha, Best Friends is here. Get your copy!

A day I have been working towards for years is finally here: my picture book Sylvia and Marsha, Best Friends is available for purchase. Order your copy now!

4

Image: Sylvia and Marsha walk arm in arm down Christopher Street

Finally, A Picture Book about the Trans Women of Color who Started Pride

Through lush illustrations and sizzling prose, Sylvia and Marsha, Best Friends tells the story of Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson, two trans women of color who sparked the modern LGBTQIA2 movement.

Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson meet in 1969 as homeless transgender girls of color.  Sylvia longs for change, saying, “Someday we’ll be able to wear whatever we want.  People will call us by our chosen names and we’ll never go hungry.”  Together, they make history during the Stonewall Rebellion, kick-starting the movement for acceptance of queer and trans youth.  Sylvia and Marsha help transgender girls by sharing what they have in abundance: friendship. Today, they are still remembered, showing that best friends can change the world. 

Sylvia and Marsha, Best Friends is a picture book perfect for children, their parents, and any trans person who didn’t get to see themselves reflected in children’s literature. It’s not too late to read the stories you deserve and share them with the kids you love.

Get your copy by backing our Kickstarter now. We only have 30 days to make this book a reality, so don’t delay. We need your help to share this story with the kids who need it.

Rainbow Rant: Stop lecturing millennials and start supporting our movements

“Millennials don’t need a guilt-trip. We are already politically active, and we’re acting out of an understanding that older people should heed: It takes more than voting to change an oppressive system.

Queer and trans people know this truth deeply. At times when neither party fought for our interests, queer and trans people created new ways to effect change. We “zapped” politicians, held die-ins, built underground networks and took care of each other. These tactics are just as important today as they have been in the past.”

Read the whole thing here!

Rainbow Rant: Incarceration is an LGBT issue and now is the time to act

Big announcement!  I am writing an opinion column for Columbus Alive newspaper.  I’ll be writing about LGBT topics twice a month.  My first column is about the National Prison Strike.

Striking prisoners are demanding an end to prison slavery, which is legal under the 13th amendment; increased access to rehabilitation services; the reinstatement of Pell grants; an end to racial disparities in sentencing; the reinstatement of voting rights for former prisoners with felony convictions; the redress of grievances local to individual institutions, and more. These demands are not only reasonable; they address some of the most pressing forms of racism in our country.

Read the rest here.

New article: Neville Longbottom and Anti-Racist Disabled Solidarity

As a disabled person who can “succeed” in an ableist world, I am offered a similar bargain.  Ableist ideologies and power structures now hail me as “valuable,” and encourage me to separate myself from other disabled people.   As I have learned to navigate my own disability, I sometimes “pass” as able-minded and able-bodied.  When I do, I find similar acceptance.  I’m able to access this privilege in part because my disabilities are invisible, but a wide variety of disabled people are offered the opportunity to be gatekeepers for other disabled people whose disabilities are perceived as “more severe” than our own.

In non-profit organizations and schools, disabled people with education and other privileges are recruited to work in programs designed to serve other disabled people, particularly those with intellectual disabilities.  Too often those programs are designed to provide “care” rather than collective liberation.  Neville’s story is an opportunity to examine those moments in our own lives – and these are moments many disabled people experience, whether we want to admit it or not.

Read the rest of this article on the Geeky Gimp!

New writing: Tomatoes – Heritage or Hate

I just published a new essay on Ruminate.  It’s about racism, family, and gardening.

“We eat the stalks, not the leaves,” he said, explaining that those big green leaves were poisonous. I was surprised that part of something could be good, full of vitamins and tasty enough to sit beside strawberries nestled underneath Grandma’s handmade pie crusts, while another part can kill. I have no better metaphor for being raised white in America.

I hope you’ll check it out!