I don’t know how many Canadian readers I have here, but if you’re Canadian, please support Bill C-279. Call your MP (or whatever they’re called in Canada), tell your friends on Facebook, etc. Natalie has a post on this, but I also think she did a really good job of explaining it in an e-mail she sent out to the Freethought Bloggers (which she gave us permission to quote):
Normally I wouldn’t directly ask for a snork, but this one is something I feel is really important.
See, in a couple weeks, Canadian parliament is going to be debating Bill C-279, the “trans rights bill”, that will (if it passes) add gender identity and gender expression to the list of things protected under the Canadian Charter Of Rights And Freedoms.
Unfortunately, our parliament currently has a Conservative majority, and we’ve got a Conservative Prime Minister. This means the bill is very unlikely to pass.
The only way it stands any real chance is if the trans community (and their allies) can kick up enough of a fuss that it would embarrass a few Conservative MPs to support it. At present, the Canadian media has COMPLETELY IGNORED IT. The vast majority of Canadians have no idea this bill is even on the table, and don’t even know that trans people aren’t presently offered equal protection under the law. They don’t know that trans people can be turned down or fired from jobs, kicked out of shelters, barred from businesses, etc. simply for being trans. And that trans-targeted harassment and violence do not qualify as hate crimes.
Yeah. Let that sink in for a second. Trans Canadians do not have basic human rights, and nobody even knows this is happening, or know there’s a bill about to decide the issue.
If it fails to pass, it will be YEARS before the NDP are able to pull together enough support to actually get another one of the table. Years in which a lot of people will fall through the cracks of the system, a lot of people will end up on the streets, and a lot of people will die.
And again, nobody even knows.
So long as the media ignores it, and the majority of Canadians have no idea this is happening, the Tories can quietly shrug the bill off, to a complete and total absence of outrage or anger. It is ONLY by making enough noise, and getting enough people informed, such that it would politically dangerous to oppose the bill that it has ANY CHANCE of actually being passed.
So yeah… it is SUPER FUCKING IMPORTANT that as many Canadians as possible see this post, and/or know this is going on. It is super fucking important that there’s a national conversation on this. Now, I know most of you are Americans, and most of our audiences are Americans, but the more people hear about this, the more Canadians will.
So please please please try to help me spread the word. Here’s the post:
The lives and human rights of every transgender Canadian are at stake in this. MY human rights are at stake.