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Day of Remembrance Honors Victims of Transgender Violence [Photos]

About 250 people participate in the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance, held in Plummer Park's Great Hall after heavy rains forced the cancellation of a planned parade.

Heavy rains did nothing to dampen the determination of those who came to remember the victims of transgender violence on Sunday afternoon.

West Hollywood’s annual , part of a worldwide observation, went on despite the wet weather. Although the planned parade was scrapped, the observance moved to 's Great Hall where almost 250 people attended.

The 90-minute event featured speakers, entertainment and a reading of names of people who have been killed due to “transphobia.”

The day was especially somber due to the  on Thursday night of a transgendered woman, Cassidy Vickers. Mayor Pro Tempore Jeff Prang called the murder “absolutely intolerable” and vowed, “We are not going to rest until we get this guy.”

Coco LaChine, chair of the city’s Transgender Advisory Board, which hosted the event, called for people to demand justice.

“Discrimination, hate and violence comes in many forms,” said LaChine. “Whether it’s verbal, physical or psychological, violence is violence and we need to get angry about it.”

Councilman John Heilman noted how much things have evolved in the past two decades.

“Twenty years ago, these kind of crimes largely went unnoticed," Heilman said. "No one cared. No one came out to protest. No one demanded rights. There’s been a dramatic change in the last 20 years. The kind of violence and brutalization that just went unnoticed and uncared for 20 years ago is no longer going unnoticed.”

Councilwoman Abbe Land said she looked forward to the time when the Day of Remembrance will be remembering victims from the distant past rather than from three days ago.

“I hope that this rain can just begin to wash away some of the hate that people have in their hearts,” Land said.

The theme for the day was “We Are the Change.” Several speakers said the change starts when each individual begins speaking up.  

“The future is now,” said Drian Juarez, vice chair of the Transgender Advisory Board. “There are many advocates doing work to educate law enforcement, shelters, government, family, friends, school systems. Our youth, our future, are coming out at much earlier ages, changing the hearts and minds of parents, school, family and eventually the world.”

Councilman John D’Amico commented how West Hollywood is a place that encourages transformation and community for all people. He advocated securing rights for transgender people.

“We need personal rights,” D’Amico said. “Rights around rebirth, naming rights and rights we don’t even know yet because the transgender community needs to teach us about them.”

While happy about the progress that has been made, lawyer and transgender advocate Kyle Broadus noted how much education still needs to be done, especially within the LGBT community.

“Unfortunately, there are still so many people who don’t understand who we are,” said Broadus. “They are a lot of the L, a lot of the G and a lot of the B.”

The parade down Santa Monica Boulevard that was canceled due to the weather will be rescheduled sometime in the next two weeks, event officials promised.

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Wendy November 22, 2011 at 05:24 AM
There is a criminal element that WeHo ignores. You have the drug addicted prostitutes that stand on Lexington and Vine along with Santa Monica and LaBrea. They will steal a sucker from a baby or anything that is not nailed down. They live in a vicious world. The ones standing near Shakeys on Mansfield will kill you if you pick them up. A very dangerous group indeed and they have been there for 35 years now. The transgendered world is 50 percent prostitution. In fact many transsexuals attack other transsexuals. There was a case about 8 years ago in front of the Yukon MIning co Restaurant where porn star Sylvia Boots shot another transsexual deader than a doornail. A lot of transsexuals who engage in street prostitution try to rip off their Johns. In fact they all do. No such thing as a nice innocent street level prostitute.
Paul November 22, 2011 at 06:59 PM
Wendy is right. These TS people or whatever they want to be called?( I call em freaks) These people do not need protection for themself because they manage street life VERY well. We the community need protection from them. They are a scary, dangerous group. The media is painting them as these people who are stuck in the wrong body. I don't by that. They are guys that like making themself into women to meet innocent men who are mislead into to believing they are real ladies. There is a small segment of the population that likes chicks with dicks and the TS community prays on these people in order to survive. None of them want to work or contribute to society. They just steal and kill.
Wendy November 23, 2011 at 12:48 AM
I saw in the news today that they gave a 14 year old boy a 25 year sentence for murdering a fellow student that was sexually harassing him with his transgendered agenda. I have never heard of such a stiff sentence on a child in my life. Where is the humanity? If the school would have stopped the sexual harassment the straight kid may have not flipped out. We do not allow boys to sexually harass girls but a TS can get a free pass on sexually harassing everyone. The whole thing is unfair.
Maxwell Rotta December 11, 2011 at 04:42 AM
you speak of TS people as being, mean, drug users, theives,low class and freaks. well, what about the jock in high school who took it to far one night with one of your friends, or sisters and assaulted her? was she not a victim? yet, he got called a stud the next day, and she was forever known as a slut for the rest of her high school years. is that fair? did that guy not get a "free pass" that you speak of? or what about the people all over the world who get bullied because there too smart, or too short, or come from a lower income family by all of the "normal people" in school? are they very nice people? what made the kids at columbine take in guns and massacare half of a cafeteria full of students? they were all straight middle class kids who were harrassed by the other straight normal jocks, yet, they killed mindlessly. or what about all of the high powered politicans and corperate owners who have killed country's of woman and children over the years just to make more money, or have more power? were they not high class normal people? think about all of the straight woman/girls out on the street addicted to drugs, and living the only way they can because of abuse, neglect and trauma. do they survive the same way the freaks do? do they steal and husle as much as they possibly cant to survive? actually they do more so, the ratio of straight woman, to TS woman on the street in 1/4 so how many of your normal, descent people you speak of actually out number the freaks??
Wendy December 11, 2011 at 05:53 AM
When I was in Fairfax Highschool I saw a TS person go Bezerker. What happened was he hung out with the chicks as he dressed like a woman. One day he picked a fight with female in the 12 th grade. He yelled at her that I heard you have been talking shit about me. He/She weighed 210. The 17 year old girl he started beating weighed about 95 pounds. Anyway it was horiffic and out of control. A total explosion out of nowhere as the t-s student had always been in a good mood. Fortuanately the PE Coach was guarding the front of Fairfax High during the morning recess. He put the TS in a headlock and stopped the beating. The cops came and I never saw the TS again. I still to this day have not seen such explosive rage in a 17-18 year old student. I did not make any of this up either. Both parties were black and the coach was white. This is when Busing started at Fairfax years ago. Anyway who said anything bad about TS people in general. If someone wants to go around as a woman who looks like a man more power to them. Recently there was a problem in Ventura? where a 14 year old TS student was sexually harassing a 14 year old straight boy. The straight boy flipped out and shot and killed the TS classmate. Unfortunately they prosecuted this case as a hate crime and they want to lock the 14 year old boy up for the rest of his life. They prosecuted him as an adult when he is only 14.

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