Today, like every day, is trans day of something. This one is remembrance. Tomorrow is biceps and the next day is wood lice.

Cllr. Peter Kavanagh, Mayor of South Dublin County Council, paid tribute today to the county’s Transgender community and spoke about how they were disproportionately affected by the global Covid-19 pandemic. Mayor Kavanagh raised the Trans flag at County Hall in Tallaght to mark Transgender Day of Remembrance, when the victims of transphobic violence are commemorated.

Trans people are disproportionately affected by the pandemic? Really? More so than mothers of small children, people with no money, homeless people, mothers of slightly bigger children, people who lose jobs because of lockdowns, people with health conditions that make them more vulnerable, teachers, nurses, doctors, migrants, prisoners? What makes trans people disproportionately affected?

“Trans people, especially young trans people, rely on their community for support. Lockdowns and restrictions have meant that accessing these communities hasn’t been as easy, and has disproportionately affected trans people who don’t get to be themselves outside of their community,” Mayor Kavanagh said.

But people who aren’t trans also rely on their community for support.

Is he saying that it’s worse for trans people because they don’t have such a receptive audience for their gender performances? Because if so, that’s an incredibly boutique luxury opulent gold enamel form of being disproportionately affected. It doesn’t stand out compared to having to take children out of school and figure out how to keep them safe while you’re at work, or having a parent or child or spouse die alone in an ICU, or being locked up with hundreds of other prisoners all hoping they won’t infect each other, or being a nurse or doctor worn to a frazzle and seeing patient after patient die gasping for air.

Mayor Kavanagh also cautioned against the rise of transphobia in the media, saying, “I’m old enough to remember the debates around decriminalisation of homosexuality, and it’s upsetting to see the same tired talking points coming to the fore in Irish media today. Since 2015, trans people have had the legal right to be who they really are, and we don’t need to ape other countries and platform discrimination and hate under the guise of concern.”

One, they’re not the same “talking points.” Two, trans people claim to be what they really are not, so it’s stupid to frame the issue as being about “who they really are.” Three, talk to some women. If men can take over everything set aside for women on the grounds that the men “really are” women despite the obvious and salient differences.

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