Recently a death threat surfaced once again! It’s a never-ending barrage of unwelcome email. This time it’s from someone who goes by the name of “JIM-BOB. How redneck is that? He even went so far as to post a recommendation for my business in Georgia that was forced to shut down in 2004, stating that I am a con-man (a male transgender) giving the address for my business as my former home address as the office in Covington, Georgia. For those of you who know me know that my former design business and fine art gallery was on Main Street in a suburb of Atlanta, Tucker and that it was closed in 2004 after tabloid articles surfaced revealing my gender status which destroyed the business. He claimed that I couldn’t build to code but never stated whether he was a former client .It’s on the internet and you can decide for yourself just by reading the comment, Tell me what you think?
You also know that I was the Senior/Designer of the now famous Alan Avery Gallery (former Trinity Art Gallery,) in Buckhead, Atlanta’s Beverly Hills.) In 2004 ten years after my highly recognized position as designer and contractor I was also listed as Designer/Architect in all of the press prior to opening, Trinity went on to greatness including special recognition by Architectural Digest. There should be no doubt as to my competency with building codes in my beloved business. This is not only a slur on my reputation and a deliberate attempt to further destroy my credibility after many years of hard work, it is also another attempt to cause me to live in constant fear and more transphobia. Bring it on Jim-Bob, because you can’t frighten me. Been there, done that………………………………
Jim-Bob, were you a client of mine or are you someone who just wishes to attack me further? Are you the one who also left another death threat on my voice mail this past week?
What saddens my heart the most at this place and time is the destruction we can place on another human life. Do you just not get that we are connected indefinitely to one another as the ultimate creation? We are brother’s and sister’s despite what your sense or belief of humanity is all about.
Hate and bullying destroys the self-esteem of everyone victimized, especially our children and teenagers who are the most vulnerable. Discrimination and hate are taught beginning in the home. Of course we always believe our parents when they tell us something and then we carry that belief throughout our lives. What ever happened to thinking for ourselves.
During my life I had someone relate a story to me that I feel addresses this issue. A friend was an invited guest at dinner into the home of another friend for Easter dinner. His inquisitive mind caused him to ask the lady of the house why she prepared her ham the way she did and her response was, “because my Mother made it this way.” He wasn’t satisfied with that answer and asked where her Mother learned to make it that way, and her response was, ” she learned to make it from my Grandmother.”
We pass many of our actions from generation to generation never giving thought to why we do what we do or where our stuck belief systems come from. If we were to take some time and examine why we do what we do and perceive why we perceive, it’s quite possible we would quickly learn that these are not our true thoughts which cause our own actions.
I will be at the 1st Unitarian Universalist Forum as a guest speaker on November 20th at 9:45 am where I will represent the San Francisco LGBTQ Speakers Bureau to address bullying in our schools. Although I am a volunteer with the Bureau I get very little time to represent them these days and I am flying in just for this near and dear to my heart program and am grateful for the opportunity to speak on the subject.
During the civil rights movement of the sixties, I marched, and at the Stonewall Inn in June of 1969 I threw bottles, and fought back against discrimination. I will never acquiesce, even now. There are days when the pain in my heart is almost unbearable yet even today at 61 I refuse to stop working towards equality and to speak out wherever and whenever I can to put an end to bullying and discrimination.
Our children are our future and deserve the same opportunity as all children. Each time I read about another youth who has taken their life because of bullying I am deeply saddened and will continue to speak out with the experience of my own pain remembering always how I felt as a child, teenager, and adult under attack. I use my own pain as the necessary fuel to say enough is enough.
For many years of my own life I lied to create the life I dreamed of because I was so afraid I would have to relive the pain of my early years and the shame I felt as a transgender female. Because I was considered a beautiful woman and for 28 years it was never questioned. I lived a lie, in the closet so to speak. I was not my authentic self. This has all changed and today I am finally able to speak out and stand proud as the woman I’ve become. Bound Between Love was the most difficult story to tell because in my own story I had to also recount my own errors in life. Many of which I would have preferred to not tell but if the book was to be an honest recount of my life, honesty had to prevail. This was a 15 year work in progress with much self-evaluation, tears, and shame to heal from. I am proud of what has been created.
I am putting the finishing touches on my autobiography and writing three transgender novels, and a spiritual transformation book on spirituality with memories of my own death experience at 17 years old after a suicide attempt. Stay tuned on the release of all of my books. According to my agent Jennifer you should see Bound Between Love in your book store in the spring of 2013 with the feature film right behind the book.
I would also like to take a moment to thank so many for your positive comments on this site, for the journalists who I have granted interviews, those who have posted, and tweeted the recent articles for your support by spreading the news. I am truly grateful for my dear friends, family who support the work I’m doing and the new friends I meet everyday as my authentic self.