Letters to the Editor

03/17 What you’re saying: Lou Meyers, and Vivian Taylor

Redirect assault

Before winding up in the wrong hands, massacring more school kids, church members and movie goers, let’s repurchase these weapons of war from our citizens, then ship them onto the battlefield where they belong.

We currently spend billions arming Syrian rebels and Kurdish forces in the struggle against global terror. A substantial portion of this funding could be diverted into a national assault weapons buyback program. Once taken off our streets, these military grade weapons could then provide the necessary firepower for our allies, maintaining our commitment to these brave fighters ... so no additional costs would be incurred.

Let ISIS and future terror groups be the ones staring down the barrels of these human slaughter machines ... not our precious children and other innocents.

Lou Meyers


Where are the trans women?

I’m a grad student at Duke getting a dual masters in Divinity and Public Policy. While not directly involved in the recent protests at the Divinity School, I support my fellow students.

The issue is that while Duke advertises itself as inclusive, Duke refuses to employ trans women. I did this research at Duke’s pubic policy school; it holds up. If you go through the arguments that legislators made in favor of HB2, the anti-trans bathroom bill, you’ll see every argument was essentially “trans women are men who are sex predators.” That’s it, trans masculine people and non-binary lesbians were never mentioned.

When HB2 was passed the N.C. economy lost $2 billion. HB2 made us look like backwards hicks. In response LGBT organizations, universities, large businesses, institutions of all kinds in North Carolina hired trans people to show how inclusive they were, that although they were in North Carolina they weren’t a part of HB2.

Here’s the twist: none of those jobs went to trans women. Only trans masculine people were hired as diversity hires. HB2 was an attack on trans women, and the “helpful” response was so transmisogynistic that only trans masculine people got the help.

Trans women’s “allies” were just as willing to lie and cheat us as the conservatives. No LGBT institution, nonprofit, nothing, employs a single trans woman, but they all employ trans masculine people.

Duke University, the largest employer in Durham County with 37,000 employees, does not employ one trans woman. They still advertise themselves as inclusive, showing off a big pink and blue trans flag in the window of their Gender and Sexual Diversity Center.

Last fall I went to the center’s director. I was told that they did not need to employ any trans women because two trans masculine people had been hired, “one white and one black.” When I said that trans masculine people were not adequate replacements for trans women, I was told that I just needed to make the most of what was there.

This lack of trans women Duke employees has real effects. The only trans content in Duke Divinity School’s theoretically LGBT inclusive “Gender and Sexuality Certificate” curriculum is an untrue narrative that all cultures in ancient world and in Church history exclusively viewed trans feminine people as “deformed men” or “unmen.” That narrative leaves out the many ancient trans people like the Emperor Elegabulus. It excises trans women from history, and then uses that excision as an excuse to exclude trans women in the present.

Duke needs to do better. Duke needs to begin hiring trans women and including trans people in its theoretically inclusive curriculums.

Vivian Taylor