Culture

How the media uses trans people to fearmonger

There are, however, far more examples of completely fake "anti-trans" policies that have supposedly taken place in the last four years.

Blaire White Los Angeles
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The politicization of transgenderism is something that seems to increase every year. For a group of people that make up less than 1 percent of the population, there seems to be an overrepresentation of hot takes by both sides of the political spectrum in regards to transgender people.

The media has figured out that despite the small size of the community, the emotions and passion from those within it and those who care about it translates into massive amounts of clicks and political leverage. Based on the amount of articles constantly being published about trans rights and happenings, there has been a very small amount of policy changes by the Trump administration that regard trans people. The trans military ban, for example, left the country split.

There are, however, far more examples of completely fake "anti-trans" policies that have supposedly taken place in the last four years. Every few months, a new headline will hit that sends the trans community into an uproar. Here are some examples of scary trans headlines that turned out to be complete lies.

Lie: 8 trans kids commit suicide on Donald Trump's election night 2016

A lot has happened since then, but you may remember headlines the morning after the 2016 election that eight transgender kids committed suicide in response to Trump's win. Almost every prominent transgender influencer or celebrity ran with this story, including Laverne Cox and Gigi Gorgeous, who made a video which received hundreds of thousands of views. The problem? It was FALSE. Snopes and GLAAD came forward and discouraged people from sharing the story, as it was unproven. Almost no one corrected themselves however, and many people may still even believe this story.

Lie: Trump orders CDC to ban the word "transgender" from all documents

You might remember this headline. As it was reported in The Washington Post and countless other publications in 2017, apparently Donald Trump ordered the CDC to ban words like "transgender," "fetus," and others from all of their documents. Once again, the trans community flipped out and the "fearing for our lives" narrative was sparked again. But once again, this story was false. CDC Director Robert R. Redsfield has since come forward to state that it was a media lie. The fear lingered, however, within the community. The problem with fake stories is that the correction usually receives a small fraction of the virality of the original story. Many trans people may still believe these words were actually banned.

Lie: Trump legally defines trans people out of existence

In 2018, The New York Times published an article titled "'Transgender' Could Be Defined Out Of Existence Under Trump Administration." Once again, every prominent trans influencer and advocate believed this at face value, and determined that Trump was removing the right to legally change one's gender on birth certificates and other legal documents. Trans Youtubers like Stef Sanjati and others leaped at the opportunity to put out another hysterical headline that terrifies the community, but as usual, this wasn’t true. While trans people are subject to different processes and laws in each state as it regards to changing their gender on documents, this is a right that was not taken from them.

Lie: Trump Administration Erases Transgender Civil Rights Protections in Health Care

This headline came just in time for Pride Month 2020 and was yet again proven to be fake. I previously debunked it in an article here on The Post Millennial. Essentially, the narrative was that Trump was repealing transgender healthcare protections. The problem is that those protections were never actually put in place. They were proposed and struck down before he even took office. He had virtually nothing to do with them at all. The media, however, couldn’t pass up an opportunity to milk the fear-porn clicks that this headline would produce. Everyone freaked out within the community for a week, and then the story disappeared. The residual fear lingers despite the story being completely fraudulent.

If you’re interested in the perspective of a trans woman on Trump’s actions and feelings toward the trans community, you can watch my entire Youtube video on the subject below.

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