Is Lil Duval truly living his best life,  really? This is what he says in the lyrics of his hit song. It has to be hard to believe that living your best life is a possibility when you have said harmful and hateful things regarding transgender individuals who have been targeted by society and most recently by the Trump Administration throughout his presidency. The transgender community is trying to live their best lives, but it has been hard to do so when the Trump administration has threatened to roll back the civil rights of transgender Americans.

 

AshleyGregory“The Department of Health and Human Services is leading an effort to establish a legal definition of sex under Title IX, the federal civil rights law that bans gender discrimination in education programs that receive government financial assistance.”(New York Times, 2018) The agency’s proposed definition would define sex as either male or female, unchangeable, determined by the genitals that a person is born with, according to a draft reviewed by the  New York Times. This new definition would take away federal recognition of the estimated 1.4 million Americans who recognize themselves as a gender other than the one they were born into. This is terrifying because it excludes the transgender community from civil rights protections.

 

We are living in a country where high ranking government officials want to turn their backs on transgender individuals. We are living in a country where trans women of color continue to be murdered at an alarming rate without care or concern. In 2017, there were reports of at least 29 deaths of transgender people in the United States due to fatal violence, the most ever recorded.  This year we have lost the lives of at least 22 transgender people fatally shot or killed by other violent means. As a community, the memories of Ally Steinfeld and Kiwi Herring are still fresh in our memories.

 

It is important to acknowledge that Lil Duval's Nov. 18th show at the Ambassador will be taking place two days before Transgender Day of Remembrance; a day to memorialize those who have been murdered as a result of transphobia and to acknowledge the continued violence endured by the transgender community.

 

Transgender people will not be erased and continuing to support performers such as Lil Duval invalidates the lives and threatens the civil rights of  the trans community who, in reality, just want to live their best lives as well, but can’t because the world will not let them LIVE.

 

Let’s tell Lil Duval he must acknowledge his hurtful words and the effect they have on lives and societies' views of transgender people. Let’s tell Lil Duval he is canceled in St. Louis for the second time because transgender St. Louisans can live their best lives without him here.

 

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