Family, its your favorite queer radio personality Anna DeShawn with our queer news for today. Now, I want to make you a promise. We will continue to bring you the latest in queer news, culture and politics: 7 minutes a day, 5 days a week. So, if you are digging our intersectional take on the daily, consider joining the QCrew.
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Now for the news.
BG has been wrongfully detained for 139 days. Our efforts to raise awareness have been working. I’m grateful to be part of the Win With Black Women initiative where I pen’d my name alongside 1,150 other Black women. You can read the letter and an article by the Washington Post that talks more about it in the show notes. Have you signed the petition? If not, do it today. If so, share it with someone today. Y’all know it’s in the show notes. And as always, we have more updates on BG in a bit.
Kitty Monroe, a black transgender woman, was killed in Cordova, Tennessee, near Memphis early last Wednesday. This marks the 18th time this year that a trans, nonbinary or gender-nonconforming American has been murdered due to violence against them. We won’t be silent. Next up, Singer Macy Gray went on an anti-transgender rant on Piers Morgan Uncensored Monday Night, Oh and I didn’t forget about Bette Midler and her transphobic tweets. Let’s get into it.
Family, our leading story for today is coming out of Cordova, Tennessee which is near Memphis where another one of our trans sisters has been killed. Her name is Kitty Monroe and she died on June 29, after being shot 6 times at her home. Police have arrested Samuel Ward Jr., Kitty’s ex, and charged him with voluntary manslaughter, then set his bail at $10,000. She deserved better. Here’s his account of what happened that day: he told police he’d been inside Monroe’s home when she told him to leave and allegedly pulled her gun on him. He said they got physical as they struggled and fell down a flight of stairs, at which point Ward took out his own gun and shot Monroe several times according to a police affidavit. What’s strange is that he left the scene after shooting Kitty and called the police from another location. It’s almost every other week we hear stories like this. The safety of Black trans women is in short supply right now, so lets stay vigilant and do all we can to ensure we get justice for Kitty Monroe and every other trans woman taken from us too soon.
Macy Gray went on an anti-transgender rant on Piers Morgan’s show Uncensored Monday night, where she said a woman is someone “with boobs,” complained about pronouns, and said that trans women aren’t women. I want to read you an excerpt from the interview. Macy says, “like if you want me to call you a ‘her,’ I will because that’s what you want. But that doesn’t make you a woman just cause I call you a ‘her’ and just because you got a surgery.” And, you guessed it, the singer faced swift backlash with Trans writer Raquel Willis tweeting “Chiiiile … Macy Gray was right about one thing. Surgery didn’t make me a woman. I was one long before I even had access to my medical transition and even if I never had it, I’d still be who I am.”
Oh, and Bette Midler decided to join in on the anti-trans hate with her latest Twitter post. The Hocus Pocus star who has been pretty liberal in the past wrote that the “women of the world” are being erased with more inclusive terms like “birthing people” or “menstruators.” Family, don’t fall for any of this manufactured anti-trans panic nonsense. No one is erasing women. Some healthcare organizations concerned with inclusivity are now using trans inclusive language where appropriate. Which is a major leap for trans and nonbinary representation. That’s all.
Now, if you tuned into yesterday’s episode, you heard me bring you important updates on BG’s trial in Russia which began on Friday, July 1st. On the 4th of July, BG delivered a heartfelt letter to President Biden urging him not to forget about her. In her letter, she expressed fear that she “might be here forever.” That’s because 99% of people who face charges in a Russian court get found guilty. And, to make matters worse BG is facing up to 10 years. The reality is that Brittney is both Black and queer, which is an identity that faces erasure and violence daily.
Cherelle Griner said her wife’s words should be taken seriously. Cherelle told CBS News “she is probably the strongest person I know, so she doesn’t say words like that lightly. That means she truly is terrified that she may never see us again. You know, I share those same sentiments.” BGs wife also said President Biden hasn’t responded to the letter she wrote him on Monday. Adding, “I still have not heard from him. And honestly, it’s very disheartening.”
Family, the letter has done one thing very well: and that’s add fuel to the fire to bring BG home. For example, yesterday nearly 1,150 prominent Black women upped the pressure by signing their own letter to President Biden urging the administration to secure Brittney’s release. This response was honestly brilliant and shows that people are willing to speak up and support a fellow Black woman that under different circumstances could have been them thats on trial in Russia. Among the women who signed the letter were Bernice King who is CEO of the King Center and the daughter of Martin Luther King Jr.; actress Anika Noni Rose; singer Ledisi; And University of South Carolina women’s basketball coach and three-time Olympic gold medalist Dawn Staley; as well as numerous players, coaches and executives from the WNBA.
When asked about the letter, Dawn says “the letter is support — support from a group of Black women who are trying to save another Black woman. It’s as simple as that.” Then she said something that really resonated with me: “I think about Brittney throughout the entire day, everyday. I try to put myself in her shoes, and I’d want somebody fighting for me — people who won’t shut up.” We will not shut up, family. Not until BG is back home safely. And even then we got some questions for whoever had a hand in her wrongful detention of 139 days and counting.
Let’s close out the podcast with a word from Janelle Monet that reminds us to love what makes each of us special. “Embrace what makes you unique, even if it makes others uncomfortable. I didn’t have to become perfect because I’ve learned throughout my journey that perfection is the enemy of greatness.” Till tomorrow family, peace.
Black transgender woman Kitty Monroe fatally shot in Tennessee