‘Why Not Treat Us As Human?’
(16 Nov 17)
Dear Reader, I shall begin this post discussing violence.
One aspect of the ‘Me too!’ debate personally hit home recently – realistically literal more than figuratively.
Okay, my event hardly approaches the pain and suffering of those much worse instances of ‘Me too!’. I am empathetic to them and their plight. I understand their silence in my own way – I rarely spoke of the abuse, beatings, and bullying that I endured from my parents and others when I was a child; people would demean me when I told them of the physical and mental attacks.
Shame on you, Clint!
Dear Reader, I shared with that now former ‘friend’ many years ago one way my dad cared for me while he was alone with me when I was a small child. My dad tied me to a chair and stuff a handkerchief in my mouth while he snoozed on the sofa. Nope, my dear ol’ dad who cried crocodile tears could not be bothered to do something – anything – with his ‘son’. We did not play ball or catch, we did not go for a walk, he did not supervise me playing on our backyard swing-set.
Now another event came upon me and my first reaction was my own silence, my fear of speaking out – til I collected my composure. I now want to join with the others to make this known, though minor in comparison.
It began when I went to my nearby grocery store last Friday evening (10 Nov 17) to buy food and then use their free wi-fi for an hour or so; they provide free wi-fi as a service to their paying customers.
I was working on my computer, reading and replying to your e-mails and Messenger texts, browsing your various Facebook sites – minding my own business as were the others at the wi-fi area. A man arrived, sat down at the next table, and shortly thereafter began taunting me, bullying me.
That jerk first made these rude, misogynistic, anti-female comments at me:
- ‘Look at you! You look like a man in a dress. What are you?’
Patriarchal men take a certain seedy pleasure when they demean women by calling them a man. I ignored the creep hoping that he would shut up or go away. I learned later that evening that he would not go away, that he perceived my ignoring him as hostility toward him and his haughty ‘male privilege’.
Then he verbally attacked me with a different topic:
- ‘You stole that computer. Yeh, you, you just keep typing on that stolen computer.’
Maybe you tell me that I should have departed the store, maybe should have gone home. Why should I leave? I have every right to be there peacefully. I am a regular, frequent shopper at this store; I am a paying customer, unlike that antagonist. I was minding my own business, I was not bothering any other customer.
- What if I did depart that store? I had to walk to the bus stop.
- What if that creep followed me to the bus stop?
- What if he attacked me with a concealed lethal weapon in the dark along the way to or at the bus stop where there would be no witnesses, no security agent, less lights, less safety?
I continued ignoring him throughout his rant. I was not watching the clock, I had my work to do rather than reply to his tirade that lasted from perhaps 15 minutes to 30 minutes.
Maybe I should have tried making friends with him?
No one says that I needed to tell him that I am transsexual. I simply could have approached him at his table, asked to sit and talk with him in a respectfull manner.
- I could have shown my Passport picture to him and let him see that the document shows me as Female.
- I could have shown my computer sales receipt to him.
Maybe all he needed was my kind word rather than my ignoring him?
Maybe we both blew it?
The ‘What ifs’ of life.
I noticed that he got up; I hoped that he was finally leaving.
He suddenly lunged at me. I held my computer tight, attempting to protect it, to no avail. He pushed me back where I sat in my chair, grabbed my computer from my grasp, and threw it perhaps 15 yards down the hallway where it crashed and broke.
I arose from my chair and began walking toward the security agent calling out ‘Get security!’. Looking in 20 / 20 hindsight, maybe I shoulda coulda woulda been better getting security the first time that that creep opened his filthy mouth. Lesson learned!
I was making my way around the corner from the store’s wi-fi tables. I noticed that that creep was following me – stalking me, taunting me – as I was approaching the front of the store where there were the security agent, several check-out clerks, and numerous customers all as witnesses to his crimes. I felt a sudden, violent hit against the back of my head. I fell forward but had some presence of mind to raise my arms to protect myself from hitting the corner of the walls. He struck me two times: that first blow to the back of my head, his second caused scrapes on my back at the base of my neck.
Security saw me; he was joined with the store’s ‘Courtesy Clerk’. That criminal persisted taunting me with his threats while the security agent called 9-1-1; dunno why that creep stayed, but he did. Then the creep began to depart the store; the security agent (talking to the 9-1-1 Operator), the clerk, and I followed him out the store and down the street to the extent of the store’s property; the criminal continued his ravings the entire time until he disappeared too far for the store’s agents to follow him.
The city police arrived about the time we three (the security agent, the clerk, and I) returned to the store. The police asked questions, took a few pictures of the scene and my wounds, and told me to expect nothing from either the police or the prosecutors – they did not consider the assault and the destruction of my computer of any importance to be investigated or prosecuted. I sent a text message to my friend Alana and told her what happened. I told the police that I ride the bus, that the last bus for the day had passed by then, and that I now had no transportation to go home because of the attack by that creep; they drove me home.
I arrived home, settled inside, tried to find my self-composure, began to write down the events of that evening, described my injuries. I sent another text to Alana, then I called her; we talked more than 90 minutes. Kapung khaf, my friend!
I had to attend Saturday’s Trans Spectrum meeting the next day. Alana came to pick me up Saturday morning and go to the meeting with me.
I shared Friday’s events with a member of the TSAZ board, but I told her that I did not want to tell anyone else what happened to me. I felt embarrassed that I was the target of a vicious felonious attack against me.
Alana and I spent the rest of Saturday together – first she took me to the Urgent Care center to be examined (the doctor confirmed that I am suffering from a concussion among other injuries).
Here are my injuries from this attack (so far):
- head throbbing – at temples, at the back, behind my eyes
- neck hurts including whenever I rotate it, tilt backwards
- blurry vision – letters on the computer, TV, Obama-phone occasionally appear fuzzy
- experienced a tightness in my upper chest not long after the beating
- had to bend forward, I felt as though I was about to vomit 15 minutes after the creep hit me
- could not take a deep breath for a time following his assault
- right shoulder feels strained
- ears are ringing real loud
- pressure against my eyes
- normal street sounds of traffic are now excruciatingly painfull
- every bounce on the city bus ride makes my head hurt
- can’t sleep well, I awake throughout the night-time, I am drowsy all day
- experiencing memory trouble – keep forgetting where I put things, forget why I went into a room
- clumsy, spilling food on myself, not sure of balance on my feet
Alana and I visited, talked, shared a meal at our fave Souper Salad; she brought me home that evening. I am sorry that we did not get a chance to go to the gee-tar store that night; let’s do that next time.
Over-night Saturday to Sunday was restless again – awake, asleep, awake, asleep. I managed to stay mostly awake through Sunday morning’s news interview shows (6 am to 9.30 am). I dozed a short while afterward, then awoke with a changed commitment.
(Up-date – 29 Nov 17: Medical examination #1)
That’s when it dawned on me that my reluctance to talk about this event is similar to women who delayed reporting crimes committed against them. The sexual assaults against others are far worse than what I endured, it is that our reactions are comparable.
- We are embarrassed.
- We somehow internalise that we are at fault.
- We fear that we were the ones who did something wrong.
Thus, I began to realise that my problem of this code of silence is the same as so many others:
- my reluctance to speak, say anything to others about what happened to me,
- this persistence that I was somehow to be ashamed for what that creep did to me.
Notice the similarity to the ‘Me too’ movement. Those people who were subjected to vicious assaults and sexual intrusion also felt that they needed to keep their events secret, don’t talk about them, tell no one. They held their experiences private for years, decades; I realised that I must tell, must not keep quiet, must break this code of silence imposed upon us by some vague, insidious culture demanding our silence.
I had the good fortune to share my experience with another member of TSAZ at Tuesday’s meeting. She is cis-female. She gave her insight to me. Ya know, Dear Reader, that I have been female self-identified my entire life, may not have been raised as cis-female, yet my actions seem to conform to our American society’s stereotypical female responce:
- I said nothing, remained silent, when that creep began assailing me with his verbal taunts, bullying, abusive antics
- I allowed him to persist when instead I should have gone straight to security the first time he began bullying me.
Dunno what will be of this. I now see that I must not remain silent.
I questioned my self whether to tell Kathy; there was that code of silence pressing against me such that I hesitated sharing this with her when the normal reaction should be the need to share, let it all out. I figured the worst would be a few minutes wasted time typing the text message. Yep. I sent my text to my sister, she replied with a few curt questions, and I responded with additional details for her to know. That was Tuesday; I am not expecting any further word from her. Maybe I should cherish what she sent; she rarely replies to my correspondences. Her reply of a few words was more than enough for her to muster; she must be exhausted by now.
Yet as you, Dear Reader, have read here, Kathy is also self-imposed to this pernicious code of silence. She refuses to discuss how our father molested her when she was a small child. She denies anything happened to her. My empathies remain for her.
I began working on this blog Sunday morning; it came the time to post it here at my web-site.
I shall present this at Spectrum, PFLAG, Mary’s, TDOR.
I worked on my statement, wrote my narrative that I shall send to the Police Chief, Mayor, County Prosecutor, all the local TV and radio stations that run news operations. I must put the onus on as many agencies as possible – force them into action. I must press both the Police Department and County Prosecutor for action, legal justice, and recompense for my losses. They are run by Republi-cons; as one lone person I expect nada from the bunch. Ain’t that a pathetic expectation from our local civil service destroyed by Republi-cons.
But I will not stand silent.
We all must never remain silent!
May the peace of the Baan Siri Dragon come to our aid.
Thank you, Dear Reader, for bearing with me this post.
Thank you to all who come here to visit.
A great big Kapung Khaf thank you to ‘T-Central’ for picking up this blog as reference:
Please return soon when I hope to present another entry for your dining and dancing pleasure at the resort atop Mount Cucamonga.