Give me (and by me I mean the cause of trans liberation) a present for my birthday!

I’m twenty today!  When I was a little kid I used to say twenty was when I’d be a grown-up, so according to eight-year-old Stephen, I am now an adult.  I share this birthday with gender warrior Goblin King David Bowie and sex-positive warrior and inventor of the striptease Gypsy Rose Lee.  (Also, Stephen Hawking! And the guy who wrote the words to Mexico’s national anthem!)  It is also the date of an unsuccessful slave rebellion (1811), the only day in America’s history we’ve ever had zero national debt (1835), and the day Bush signed No Child Left Behind (vomit).

I don’t want a lot for my birthday, internet. I just want the end of oppression in all its forms.  I’d like that to start with giving gifts to people close to my heart who are doing good and important work.

As a birthday present to me, please donate to Trans Youth Family Allies today.  They save the lives of gender-variant children.  I’m not exaggerating; I have absolutely no doubt that without the work TYFA does for their kids, plenty of those kids wouldn’t be alive.  They save trans kids from bullying and harassing, both from their peers and from adults, sometimes even from authority figures like teachers.  They save trans kids by getting them the medical care they need.  They are doing some of the most important work I can think of.  (They also have a store, by the way, if you long for some TYFA-themed boxers, which, I’ll be real with you, I kind of do.)  You can sign up for a monthly donation at a fixed rate if you want, or you can do a one-time donation.  I highly recommend the monthly!

But you always love the guest at the birthday party more who gives two gifts, right?  You’re a little bit nicer to them the whole party because you can see that two gifts are wrapped in the same paper with a note from them on top.  That’s why you should also donate to my friend Kevyn’s top surgery fund.  Kevyn is an activist.  We co-run an organization at our college; zie co-runs The Circle, an organization focused on getting resources to trans folks, with Ira Gray, and really zie is just a lovely sweet person who deserves health care.  It would be a big present to me if you could help hir get that.

Nineteen was a weird as hell year, man.  I mean, to begin with, there are people reading this thing now, whereas before it was like, folks from my community who knew me because I did activist stuff there and read my poetry at readings and shit.  (I’m definitely a real writer; did you see that last sentence?)  But now you’re all reading this, and I feel a responsibility towards you because of that.  I’m trying hard to produce quality posts only and not to be too silly on Twitter.  I hope I’m doing a good job.  If I’m not, let me know.

8 Responses to “Give me (and by me I mean the cause of trans liberation) a present for my birthday!”


  1. 1 David January 8, 2012 at 10:12 am

    Happy Birthday! Thank you for all you do. I encourage anyone reading this to join me in sending support to TYFA and Kevyn.

  2. 3 Marta January 8, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    FELICIDADES, beautiful boy!

  3. 4 Ms Winston Smith January 9, 2012 at 12:07 am

    Happy Birthday, Stephen. And thank you for helping me to improve my understanding of trans issues. Reading your blog helps.

  4. 5 Kristen January 10, 2012 at 1:47 am

    Happy Birthday…though I may be late. Don’t pressure yourself about quality work for the strangers you picked up along the way. You’re a smart, insightful, compassionate young man who is spreading a little light into a world that doesn’t understand things that are different. I thank you for that. I thank you on behalf of my kids who need people like you in the world as well as their friends who need people like you. Just by being you, you have done so much already.

  5. 6 Sig January 10, 2012 at 3:04 am

    I’m so late to the party! Happy belated birthday! I like your birthday gift ideas and it’s kinda good you got popular, maybe someone “important” will consider making a donation. Don’t worry about content, you’re a marvellous writer, you put me to shame by being so intelligent and being able to put your thoughts into words (silliness doesn’t hurt😉, I love a healthy dose of sarcasm and humour for breakfast) . Sharing birthday with Stephen Hawking is badarse (I admit, my favourite saying of his was about US vs. UK health system) !

  6. 7 Kim Pearson January 23, 2012 at 6:38 am

    Thank you so much for thinking of the kids on your own birthday day Stephen! It is a wonderful gesture on your part and I know we will make the most of any donations that come our way. Hope your birthday was as fabulous as your writings.
    Namaste,
    Kim Pearson
    Executive Director
    TransYouth Family Allies


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