RNC, Targeted Police Brutality, and Ableism
September 6, 2008
I’m feeling too upset to really cover the RNC in any detail, but there’s some stuff I need to say. So:
1a)the medics have been fucked with and specifically targeted as such. As with journalists, except it’s even more inhuman and frightening. This is brutality for the sole purpose of making other brutality have a greater impact.
b)These people are my friends. I talk with them, I organize with them, I perform with them, I medic with them, I have sex with them. No one deserves this, not even the one who does seriously not ok things, but I can’t help feeling especially upset for my friends. This, more than anything, makes me upset about my own
paralysis* inability to act, failing the people I love.
c)Several of them are trans. ’nuff said. I don’t think this can be separated from their being targeted as medics.
d)You can donate to their legal fund here.
2a)I am not there. I made the right decision, but that hurts, too. And I am scared for and amazed by all the trans people who went anyway.
b)I am not there not only because I’m trans but because I’m disabled. Because if I was in jail and denied medical care, if my medications were taken from me, I would be fucked way more hardcore than just not taking hormones. To say nothing of the usual trans people in jail woes, I could develop a permanent seizure disorder, which would, in turn, make me unable to take a related med in the future. Not only that but it would give me debilitating headaches and suicidal depression. In a totally unrelated disability, I would be in constant and increasing pain without my meds, and after five days I basically can’t function. My medications are fucking expensive and two out of these three are not covered by my current insurance. And, of course, since I’m not only trans but “crazy,” they’d be pretty fucking unlikely to believe me, and since I’m not only trans but “crazy” there’s yet one more way they could fuck with me (psych wards), especially if I were too uppity, and yet one more way my experience of police brutality would be erased, I’d be making it all up and they’d have free fucking reign. (stop forgetting intersectionality, ok? And when you’re advocating for trans folks’ treatment in prisons, isolating that struggle from struggles against ableism, racism, etc in the prison system not only weakens the movement but rips my body in half.)
I presume you can see why targeting medics might be especially frightening for me.
If you ever need an argument about how white trans and/or disabled folks benefit from ending racism–this state control through violence is facilitated, erased, naturalized, and justified by racism.
3)The targeting of support personnel (journalists, medics), bystanders, protesters doing completely legal actions, etc means that people who can’t afford to get fucked with by the cops (trans folks, immigrants, PWD, POC, people who are two or three or four of those, to name a few) can’t participate (or will be less likely to). Which then furthers our erasure and exclusion within “radical” politics.
*EDIT: go me using ableist language in a post about ableism.