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I thought I should draw your attention to a forum post that has just appeared on Crossdresser Heaven. I’m repeating some of the thread here, but if you are able to go the original post then there are some links to the original story. I make no apologies for the repetition; I think it’s something that people need to be aware of.
Belladonna Bluest wrote a forum post drawing attention to the tragic suicide of Brittini Blaire Summerlin (aka Rev. Bubba Copeland), the mayor of Smiths Station in Alabama and pastor at First Baptist Church, Phenix City. This happened yesterday.
“Our fellow cross dressing sister Brittini Blaire Summerlin / Rev. Bubba Copeland (1961-2023), has taken her own life after being outed by the media. Her photos (which were taken by her wife) were posted online. She released a statement on Thursday, before taking her own life on Friday afternoon. It is very unfortunate and sad, her statement fell on deaf ears: “What I do in private life has nothing to do with what I do in my holy life,” Copeland said. “Does this have any effect on me being mayor, that I sometimes put on a dress or sometimes put on makeup? Does that have anything to do whatsoever with me being mayor or being a pastor?”
In one of the responses to that post, Lauren Mugnaia said ‘It is so hard to read about this tragedy. I am emotionally moved and have to say to all my sisters, be careful out there, it is an increasingly dangerous place’
I found myself wanting to know … well, is it? Is it increasingly dangerous?
So I did a bit of digging about the situation here in the UK. The most obvious place to turn to was the National Crime Statistics.
*Spoiler alert: Yes … it IS an increasingly dangerous place*
In the year ending March 2023, the figures show that there were 4,732 hate crimes against transgender people in the UK, which is a rise of 11% on the previous year. I don’t want to get political, and I hope no-one will wade in and try to make this about politics in any way, but the Home Office report on the figures said that: “Transgender issues have been heavily discussed by politicians, the media and on social media over the last year, which may have led to an increase in these offences”. The report also states that transgender-based hate crimes are less likely to result in a charge or court summons than other hate crimes.
The LGBQT+ anti-abuse charity Galop pointed out that the increase in anti-transgender hate crime is ACTUALLY far higher, since the government’s own research indicates that over 90% of anti-LGBQT+ crimes go unreported.
So, thank you Belladonna for highlighting this tragic story. I’m going to quote what she said at the end of her post, since it bears repeating:
We are not doing anything illegal, violent/directly harmful to any living being. We are literally playing dress up. The same way actor/actresses do in movies and theatre plays. It is unfortunate for a human life to be lost because of the shame and guilt of cross dressing. Our hobby/craft/lifestyle is no different from someone who builds model train sets in their home. We have nothing to fear or be ashamed of. In fact, many of us should be proud of who we are as people, contributing to this big melting pot called life and how good we look en femme.
I’m so glad that younger people are much more accepting of our community than their older counterparts, but the positive effect of that is going to take a good while to filter through into wider society.
Stay safe, girls.
Hugs to all
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