The Trans Panic Epidemic: The Daily Show

The Trans Panic Epidemic: The Daily Show


So, what is it
that scares so many people about transgender communities? And what’s it like to live
as the focus of that fear? Jessica Williams finds out. WILLIAMS:Iowa’s most famous
for its cornfields,
butter sculptures, and butter
sculptures of cornfields.
Until last summer, when
transgender woman Meagan Taylor
tried to check in to the Drury
Inn in the city of Des Moines.
We sat down with Taylor herself
for an exclusive tell-all.
I could tell when I checked in to the hotel that it was…
it was…Shh. I got this,
real Meagan Taylor.
It was July 12, 2015.You presented your I.D.
to the hotel manager.
Hi. I have a reservation.But she was onto you.Fearing for her life,
she took immediate action.
WOMAN:And that’s when the cops came
and all hell broke loose.
But let’s rewind here.What triggered the cops
to respond?
You pull out a gun,
and then the cops come
and you’re arrested? None of that happened. Well, did you pull out a knife? ♪ ♪ No.Well, did you do drugs?Nothing of the sort. Well, then why the hell
were you arrested? Um, I got arrested because
I was a black transgender woman.Specifically, cops held her
because she didn’t have
a prescription
for her hormone pills.
And this is 2016.What were you doing in Iowa? I was there going to a funeral. -You were there for a funeral?
-Yeah. And did you get to attend
the funeral, -at least? -I didn’t get
to make the funeral at all. How long were you in jail for? I was in jail for eight days. I’m sorry. I… It’s terrible. Take your time.Ugh, I thought it was tough
being a black woman.
But compared
to a black transgender woman,
I might as well be
a white frat dude
at a Dave Matthews concert.Transgender women get arrested
all the time, especially
black transgender women, just by walking down the street
or anything.And by anything,
she means literally anything.
Because of discrimination
and profiling,
at least 47%
of black trans people
will have at some point in
their lives been incarcerated.
Let’s underline, bold, and set
fire to that
(bleep)graphic,because it’s 47%.You think there’d be laws
to correct this.
But instead, this year alone,state legislatures
have introduced
175 anti-trans bills.Many make it legal
to discriminate based solely
on religious beliefs.And then you have
these bathroom bills.
REPORTER:It would fine
and imprison transgender people
who use public restrooms
that don’t match
the gender
on their birth certificate. WILLIAMS:That’s what’s really
triggering this trans panic.
Just listen
to Colorado representative
and Elmer Fudd look-alike
Gordon Klingenschmitt.
Should we fear
the transgender community? Well, they not only want
to be confused about their own identity, but they want the rest of us
to be confused with them. Now they want the government
to join them in that pretense. -They’re making us into liars.
-Wow.Okay. I met
with these so-called liars
to find out
what their evil intentions are.
There’s a notion that
trans people are perpetrators in some way, that we’re sneaking
and trying to trick you for the purposes
of having sex with you. And that’s not the case at all. People just want
to see male and female, like it has to fit in one
of those two boxes, and if it doesn’t,
it makes people uncomfortable. -And it’s surely not a choice.
-That’s all you need to know.Well, not according
to Klingenschmitt, who thinks
that we’re all going to
get attacked in the bathroom.
A man can go into a ladies’ room and assault you
and your little girl.Especially in
our most important bathrooms.
Next time, ladies,
you go out to Olive Garden, watch out who’s gonna be
in the bathroom. There’s no reported incidences
of any trans person ever raping or assaulting anyone
in any bathroom ever. If anything, trans people
are the ones getting assaulted.These people are up against
some bull(bleep).
There must be some small way
I can help them out.
Give me some offensive comments
or questions, and I’ll give you
some good answers that you can use
in your day-to-day life. Why are your feet so small? Oh. You think my feet are small? -You have a (bleep).
-Wow. Whew! Okay, that’s guns a-blazing
on that question. Um, I don’t currently
have a (bleep), so… -How much?
-How much for…? -Sex.
-Oh, (bleep). Uh… -How do you have sex? -So,
are your parents ashamed of you? -What’s the gender mark on your
ID? -When do you tell them that -you’re really a man?
-I don’t know. When it’s appropriate? Do you have cadaver tits? -Don’t tell me what that is.
-What’s your real name? -Yeah. I just want to know.
-Yeah. What’s your name? -Tell us.
-Did you chop it off? Do straight women date you, -or gay women?
-How much would it cost? -(overlapping chatter)
-Do you like to suck (bleep)? -(overlapping chatter)
-What’s your real name? WILLIAMS:The transgender
community is more oppressed
than I could have ever
imagined,
so why does Gordon feel
so threatened?
Have you ever been attacked
by a transgender person? Is that why this is happening? No. Have you ever had a traumatic
experience with a trans person? I wouldn’t call it
traumatic, no. I-I… -Devastating?
-Yeah. No. You haven’t?So why does he feel this way?Dressing like a woman,
and he’s not a woman. WILLIAMS:Wait a second.
This guy’s a preacher, too?
And he thinks what?It’s not just
a psychological disorder. It’s actually a demonic spirit. WILLIAMS:
Okay, so now they’re possessed?
Go on.I would be comfortable talking
about religious freedom, but I’d have to change
into my alter ego if you’re okay with that. You have to change
into your alter ego? Who are you, Lady Gaga?
Go on ahead and change.Okay, hold up.
Is everybody seeing this?
I am actually waiting
for this man to transition
so that he can feel
more comfortable
during our interview.Oh, and also, hey, heads up.I am not judging him
for his personal choice.
Until he took out his phoneto judge others
for their personal choices.
And Deuteronomy 22:5 says, “A woman must not wear
men’s clothing, “nor a man wear women’s clothing for the Lord your God detests
anyone who does this.” I don’t remember that part, -but there is a part
about shellfish… -Mm-hmm. -…or stoning people to death.
-Mm-hmm. Getting tattoos. But what about their sincerely held
religious beliefs? They can go (bleep)
in their (bleep) hand, -because we have separation
of church and state. -Mm. Because we believe
in our constitution. WILLIAMS:Nevertheless,
these bathroom bills
are being passed,and Gordon is doing everything
he can to make it happen.
Get used to the idea of having your women
and children share bathrooms with cross-dressing men who are going to expose
themselves to you. Do you, for whatever reason, associate being transgender
with being a pervert? I mean, that is perversion. It’s people who label themselves as transgender for the purpose
of getting that access to violate the rights of others. Is it fair to say
that because you’re a priest that you’re a pedophile? Well, of course not. Why is it, “of course not.”?
Why? Because some people
are criminals, and some people
are not criminals. Could you take that logic and apply that
to the transgender community? They’re apples and oranges.
I think… By apples and oranges,
do you mean apples and apples?Unfortunately, a lot of people
think like Gordon.
So how can we end
this transphobic epidemic?
Hopefully, they can understand
that we are striving towards becoming a more
authentic version of ourselves, after a lot of soul-searching
and a lot of thought, and sometimes a lot of trauma
and tragedy. Passing these bills is
absolutely going to just add fuel to the fire
and ignite trans panic.Trans panic, panic, panic.WILLIAMS:They’ve existed
since the beginning of time.
They are not
who people think they are.
Girl, you know
we need to elevate that leg. WILLIAMS:
They come out at night.
-Stop! No!-Or during the day
depending on their schedule.
You forgot your hat. WILLIAMS:
They have an appetite.
When they’re hungry.You’re really gonna love
this salad! WILLIAMS:
This summer, get ready for…
the most boring movie everwhere transgender people
cause… transpanic!
(yelling) Lights went out again. WILLIAMS:Even though they’re
just like the rest of us.
What else is on Netflix?