Atlanta Black Pride

Welp, it’s that time of the year again in Atlanta. Dragon Con, The Decatur Book Festival, and Black Pride. I haven’t been to Dragon Con in years, and am not going this year. Same with the book festival. The one thing I have never been to is black pride.  Hell, I don’t go to pride events anyway,  but it seem like I should go to black pride.

Unfortunately, when I see the breakdown of events, there is nothing for my trans brothers and sisters. But even if there was, is it something that I would go to?  I don’t know, dear readers of the page. All of my friends, you see, are white, or not specifically african american. My mother says it has been a long time condition – but here’s the thing. It has always been hard for me to find black people who didn”t think I am  an alien, or trying to act white. I can’t help the things I like.

There was a short time, while at College of Charleston, that I had a truely eclectic group of friends. Different cultures, colors, and beliefs. It ws, in short, utopia. But like all utopian societies, this was just temporary, and I moved to the white side of the color spectrum. I loved The Smiths, alternative music, tattoos and piercings before they became mainstays of black culture. I had a black girlfriend, but things didn’t work out. She and I were the same. Or, at least what people called us: oreos. You know, black on the outside but white on the inside.

And as much as it pains me to admit it, I had a lot of internalized racism to get over myself. I did go through a period of hating myself because of my sin color That’s all people could see. They couldn’t see the geek inside, the girl who loved Buffy the Vampire Slayer like it was gospel, and other fandoms. Sure, I had friends of different nationalities, but the overriding color of my group of friends was white. I just couldn’t find any commonality among my black sisters and brothers.

Both of my sisters didn’t seem to have this problem, as they went to hbsu and rushed greek life. Now, don’t get me wrong, I had ZERO desire to be a greek,  but I was also intimidated by black people, in general. I just wasn’t exposed to the amount of black culture like my sisters. That was all my fault. All the things I liked when I was younger were things that white people did. My sisters found their niche and grew into a sisterhood that lasts until this day.

So, here I am at {age redacted} and I only have online black friends, and those are tenuous, at best. I am more open to meeting black people, but now there is another elephant in the room. The trans elephant. Even with black trans people that I see online, I don’t really have much in common with them, just our skin color (well that, and 400+ years of oppression). For once, I want to find a collective of black people that love BtVS and Angel, that love dance music and hip hop. Black people who were into tatts and piercing before the rest of the black population jumped on the bandwagon. I dyed my hair blonde back in 2000, and I was the only black person walking around, at that time with blonde hair. I got a lot of stares, but I was conscience.

I’m definitely rambling, so let me try to bring this back. It would be great to go to a black pride event, or not necessarily go to an event; rather it would be great to have some black friends to shoot the shit with. But I’m old now, and it is hard for me to break out of my old person’s shell. I’m caught between two worlds – one, where I am comfy in a white person’s setting, but I still recognize the stares, and I know it would take a minor incident for there to be a major incident. I don’t know if this is something my white friends can understand. My guess is that they cannot, simply because they have been in their comfort zone all their life, meaning surrounded by white people all the time.

It’s like taking a white person to see a black movie, and having to explain most of the jokes to them. I don’t want this post to sound divisive. It is more about my sadness that I didn’t form some close bonds with one or two black people, who would still support me through my transition. That is the great thing about my Friends (who are ALL white , btw). They support my transition 100%. I don’t fear violence from them. Truthfully, I wouldn’t fear violence from most educated black people either.

And you gotta love it when old friends say things like I am being militant just because I speak up on black issues. yes, this has happened to me more than once. Fuck em all!!

I want my utopia back. I want to be friends with artists, poets, and mad men and women. I want a rainbow tribe in both senses of the word. I want a gay Family, a trans Family (because both would be fabulous, and I wouldn’t be on my own) and I want my Family to expand to include people of color. We may not have to like the same things, but damn, the blacker the berry, right?

In short (hahahaha funny, right?) I would like to put myself out there, without getting myself killed. Part of the fear of putting yourself out there, is that there are a bunch of crazy fucks who would want to see me dead just for being trans, and that makes me want to stay in my safe bubble…


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