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April 9, 2018 | by  | in Opinion UniQ |
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UniQ: The Queer Agenda

31 March was International Transgender Day of Visibility. Why is this day necessary? Recent years have led to a heightened awareness of trans people and our issues, so it may seem as though visibility has already been attained. However, it is important to consider the danger many trans people still live under. Trans Day of Visibility still has its twin and flipside in Trans Day of Remembrance.  While Trans Day of Visibility is about highlighting the lives and struggles of trans people, Trans Day of Remembrance is a vigil dedicated to the lives we have lost to transphobic, primarily transmisogynistic violence.

Visibility for transgender people is important because it means visibility for the whole queer community, and for the people and their achievements that have gone before. Trans people reveal the permeability of the barriers between “acting” male and female, show how little hold corralling someone into a social position really has, and undermine ideas about what a man and a woman should look like.

The inability to conform to cisgender heterosexual standards of interaction and presentation is at the heart of all kinds of queer oppression. Trans people are the bedrock of queer solidarity and at the front lines of this oppression we become hyper visible.

Despite society’s heightened awareness of trans people in recent years, we still need a day of visibility, as it is a simple yet distressing fact that though the presence of transgender people in this world is hyper visible, the humanity of trans people, and our actions, are often not. This is attempting to erode queer history, delegitimize our community, and isolate trans people from any sense of connection and community. Trans Day of Visibility is an outpouring of presence, on our own terms, before we become the subjects of Trans Day of Remembrance.

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He Tāonga

:   I wanted to write this piece, in order to connect to all tauira within the University, with the hope that we can all remind ourselves that we are a part of an environment which is valuable, no matter our culture, our beliefs or our skin colour. The ultimate purpose of this