These Transphobic Parents in Oklahoma Are Leading by Example

A middle school in Achille, Oklahoma was shut down on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week after potential threats to a 12-year-old student were made online—by other parents. The student, Maddie, had been allowed to use the staff restrooms for some time since she initially was accused of trying to peep at other students in the restroom.

For the last couple of years, Maddie hadn’t experienced any other issues, until attending a recently re-opened school where she wasn’t informed of the location of the staff restrooms so she used the girl’s room. According to KXII-TV, a parent found out of the transgender student using the girls bathroom and took to the private Achille ISD Parents Group on Facebook to sound off in outrage.

According to reports, parents began referring to Maddie as ‘it’ and ‘thing’ while others suggested she should be stabbed or beat up. Another person in the group said it was ‘hunting season’ for transgender people.

The Washington Post reports what some of the parents have been saying online:

Jamie Crenshaw:

Heads up parents of 5th thru 7th grade girls. The transgender is already using the girls bathroom. We have been told how the school has gone above and beyond to make sure he has his own restroom yet he is still using the girls. REALLY . . . Looks like it’s gonna be a long year.

“We have made school board meetings over this situation last year but nothing seems to be changing,” the post continued. “This is the same kid that got an [sic] trouble as soon as he transferred two years ago for looking over the stalls in the girls bathroom. Enough is enough.

Another post read:

Why are parents letting their kids be transgender? Parents and Churches need to shut this down, the Bible says God created man, and woman . . . not any transgender bs. Hell with new laws and new rules, this is what our future is if WE don’t stop it.

And another:

If he wants to be a female make him a female. A good sharp knife will do the job really quick.

Maddie’s mother, Brandy Rose, said:

That's a threat against her life--that's scary. These are adults making threats-- I don't understand it.

She's an awesome kid. To see any fear in her, I can't explain how bad that hurts me for them to hurt her.

She's been living as female for years-- she started at Achille as Maddie. We had no problems when we first started.

As a precaution to Maddie and other students and staff, Bryan County Sheriff decided to close the campus on Monday and Tuesday of this week. The superintendent of schools agreed, but shared that he and the school cannot control what others post on the internet.

Rose has filed a protective order against one of the parents in the group, but the FBI is looking further into the postings to see if they can validate a hate crime.

The Facebook group has since been deleted.

A demonstration in support of Maddie will be held on Wednesday morning outside the school.

h/t: KXII-TV, The Washington Post

'Montana Locker Room Privacy Act' Fizzles And Will Not Appear On November Ballot

An initiative requiring people to use public restrooms and locker rooms according to the gender designated on their birth certificate fell far short of the support needed to qualify for the November general election.

In Montana, supporters of Initiative 183, dubbed the “Montana Locker Room Privacy Act”, appear to have gathered only 8,079 of the 25,468 signatures needed to qualify for the November ballot. The deadline to submit the signatures was June 20, then verification would last until July 20 and then send them on to Montana’s Secretary of State Office.  Looks like those final steps will not need to happen.  To that we say, "YES!"

Non-Discrimination Ordinances (NDO) have failed in Montana in recent years, for example, in the state's largest city, Billings.  The failure was attributed largely because of the efforts of the Montana Family Foundation,the sponsor of Initiative 183.

The bathroom debate in Montana and other states has been going on for a few years now. A law similar to the initiative failed in the 2017 Montana Legislature, as well. Opponents countered that the Montana Family Foundation's concerns were absurd and that the initiative threatened the civil rights of transgender people.

For more on this story, head over to billingsgazette.com.

NYC Pride and GLAAD Host Incredible 'Game Changers' Series

SVA Theater played host to a very memorable evening this past Friday in New York City, where NYC Pride and GLAAD partnered up to launch an event called Game Changers that featured some of the top transgender talent on television today. 

Award-winning journalist Diana Tourjée moderated a discussion between three of the most prominent actors and actresses on TV. This included Brian Michael Smith (OWN’s Queen Sugar), Amiyah Scott (FOX’s Star), and Jamie Clayton (Netflix’s Sense8).

The four of them bounced off one another beautifully during the hour long discussion of transgender images in the media and its progression over the past several years. One of the major takeaways from that night included Jamie wanting transgender talent to simply be referred to as the character they are playing and not as someone who is playing the role of a trans individual.

Another noticeable moment discussed how long it took for each of them (including Diana) to find any sort of inspiration on television when it came to seeing an actual trans individual. The sentiment was that there are doors that have been knocked down, but there are still plenty more that need to be broken into for the trans community in the entertainment industry.

For more information on NYC Pride, please click here. For more information on GLAAD, please click here.

Opinion: Should 'RuPaul's Drag Race' Really Be A Men's Only Competition?

I love RuPaul dearly, but honey... we gotta talk.  During an interview with The Guardian, he mentioned that he would “probably not” let a trans woman on the program, adding: “You can identify as a woman and say you’re transitioning, but it changes once you start changing your body.”

He backtracked on his original comments, but the damage was done as it ignited a major firestorm and debate on and off social media regarding what is drag and what isn't.  With all due respect to Mama Ru, and he has definitely paid his dues and then some, saying something like that just "drags" us all back into the closet a bit.

Over the almost ten year history of RuPaul's Drag Race, several queens on the show started transitioning after their stint was over.  This includes Gia Gunn, Sonique and Carmen Carrera. Monica Beverly Hillz was the first contestant to talk about being trans on the show, and Peppermint was the most recent queen to speak about transitioning on season 9.

What is so frustrating to me is that drag, at least in my opinion, has become more of a state of mind similar to what a "daddy" can be in our community.  It is so much more than a look, its a persona.  RuPaul's show has successfully done what many other shows have failed at: uniting the LGBTQ community and our supporters, with a big focus on the T here and I don't mean "spilling the tea."

I would've never thought I would see the day where actual straight men are talking about their love of this kind of show, when even ten years ago a good portion of the gay community found drag queens to be freakish and ones they would never date let alone say that they know.  Now, that's done a complete 180 for all the queens who have been on the show, including the trans ones who have seen major success for themselves both professionally and personally.  So why make such a comment?

It also comes across as backhanded to Peppermint and Monica who spoke so eloquently and openly on the show about their experience, that hearing Ru's comments almost makes it feel as if their storylines were just part of getting larger ratings and not about what's really going on with them.

We have come so far as a community for acceptance that we often forget how much of a unified front we need to be.  Sure, there is shade and all of that, but at the core of it we are all in this as one, and this includes anyone who wants to pursue whatever kind of career that is out there. 

If someone is trans, regardless of what stage they are when it comes to their transitioning, they should be able to do what they please without ridicule.  Having one of our own, especially someone that powerful, make such comments only hurts our progress and pushes us back a little.

In other words, Shante, you stay should be for all of us... not some. 

This list was created by one of our Contributing Writers and does not reflect all of Instinct Magazine's taste.

Trans High School Athlete Claims His Coach Outed Him

OutSports has reported that a trans high school wrestler has quit his team and he claims his coach not only outed him but humiliated him in the process. 

Aiden Pogue-Krabacher, who is a freshman at Wilmington High School about an hour Northeast of Cincinnati, claims his coach, Kerry Tolliver, humiliated him and forced him to change in a guest women’s locker room.  Him doing this caused Aiden to feel alienated in the process.

According to Aiden, Kerry made it clear that he didn't want him to change in the men's locker room and insisted he was a girl.  After being kicked out, he was forced to change in the girl's locker room.

The Wilmington School Board confirmed that this incident is under investigation. “We don’t discriminate against anyone,” said Wilmington Schools Board President Marty Beaugard. “That’s all I can say right now because everything is still under investigation." 

His mother claimed that some of the other guys on the team starting bullying Aiden when they found out that he was trans.

“Not only did Coach Tolliver announce to the entire team that Aiden is transgender, he publicly humiliated him in front of his classmates with privileged, medical information is had no business sharing,” she said at a school board meeting Monday.

Trans wrestler Mack Beggs went through something similar when he won the Texas girls’ Class 6A 110-pound (49kg) division for the second time.  He was viciously booed after the final pin.  

Aiden's story is developing...