Amber Nicole, a Denver trans woman was severely beaten by unknown attackers outside a bar in the LoDo area of downtown Denver, one of the city’s oldest–and presumably safest–districts on Saturday night, April 27th.
Apparently not so safe after all. Amber’s face was smashed; her jaw broken in several places with (hopefully temporary) nerve damage to the entire side of her face. Her jaw is wired shut and we may presume that she’s on a liquid diet, it hurts like hell, and she’s going to be a long time in recovery.
Before the attack, she looked like this:
When she was brought to the hospital, she looked like this:
She has a GoFundMe account:
Diffidently, I suggest that we all drop a little bit into her fund. Even a dollar is good.
But I have to note something quite significant: no one stepped in to stop it. According to Amber, there were several witnesses present who not only failed to intervene, but faded into the night when the cops showed up and started asking questions. Amber was in no shape to answer at the time as you can see from the above photo.
Is this something we should all expect? Is this another example of MYOB–even if someone, anyone, is getting their face stomped in? Must we in the trans community expect this as the cost for being in public as ourselves? It’s never really been safe for us out there except for some areas for distressingly short intervals, but are we going to always have to travel in groups, perhaps armed, tense and on our toes, looking around us, judging each person we see–just as they might judge us and attack us?
That’s certainly what our enemies want, isn’t it? They want us terrified and cowed into submission, they want us to be fearful and stay at home where they don’t have to look at us, they want us to be terrorized, for this was a terrorist act, a hate crime, a bloody intimidation.
I say no to that. I say that if we allow ourselves to be terrified, they’ve won. I say that if we allow ourselves to be intimidated, they’ve defeated us.
Travel in groups if you feel safer. Carry a weapon as long as it’s not illegal and fully authorized by law enforcement. Stay alert and don’t get too hammered if you’re out with your friends and having a good time.
But for the sake of all of us, for the sake of your own honor and dignity: walk tall. Be proud of who you are. Never let them scare you, intimidate you, terrorize you.
Because if any of us are forced into that position, then everyone of us who ever lost their lives or shed their blood because of who they are (and were!) has done so in vain.
That’s every bit as much a tragedy as a young trans woman suffering the agonies of a horrible beating with no one stopping to help her.
Donate to Amber’s fund. Stay sharp and be very careful out there.
Categories: Transgender, Transsexual, Trans