Meet the transgender texans battling for their rights electricity year 4

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Corey and I were driving from Atlanta to San Francisco via Los Angeles, cutting across the South on the interstate in three brutal days so we would have time for a more bp gas prices columbus ohio leisurely trip up the Pacific Coast Highway right before the operation. My impatience made the Lone Star State wider. “We’re still in Texas?” I’d whine as we passed yet another Highway 287 ghost town.

Back then — in April of the now-innocent-seeming year of 2014 — I had no idea that Republican-controlled states like Texas would soon develop an incurable obsession with my genitals. At the time, the GOP was still fighting a losing battle against same-sex marriage in order to keep their evangelical base rallied and their fundraising coffers full. Transgender people weren’t on their radar the way we are today. Time magazine hadn’t yet declared “ The Transgender Tipping Point” with a photo of Laverne Cox static electricity examples on the cover. Film and TV were still in the courting phase of their love affair with women like me. Sure, we were less visible back then, but I now know that visibility is often the forerunner of backlash more than it is a sign of true progress.

Billy and I head for Texas on July 15, 2017, because the state legislature is considering Senate Bill 3 — a bill that would require transgender people to use restrooms in public schools and government buildings that match our birth-certificate gender markers. Were it not for bigoted Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, the legislature wouldn’t even be in session now.

Patrick, who has called transgender-bathroom protections in schools “ the beginning of the end grade 6 science electricity unit test of public education as we know it,” was so hell-bent on getting SB 3 passed that he and Gov. Greg Abbott forced the state legislature to return to Austin for a special summer session after it failed to pass a similar bathroom bill during the traditional legislative calendar.

As Billy and I drive from Dallas to Austin, we start to see ads m gastrocnemius for the legendary Texas gas station chain Buc-ee’s, famous for its house-made jerky and for the sheer size of its locations. Any given Buc-ee’s looks like someone copy-pasted 7-Eleven until it filled up a football field. The billboards — all of which feature the same smiling cartoon-beaver mascot — boast about how clean the “fabulous restrooms” are. They inform us that the best two reasons to stop at Buc-ee’s are “number one and number two.”

Early on in my transition, when I was less confident in my appearance than I am now, figuring out where to go to the bathroom on a long road trip felt like planning a bank robbery. I liked one- or two-stall restrooms in chain restaurants that had enough foot traffic to feel safe but weren’t so busy that there would be a line electricity schoolhouse rock. A Starbucks or a Panera was ideal. Often I would hold it in for long stretches until I found an exit that looked promising. And as nearly a third of transgender people reported having done in the 2015 US Transgender Survey, I avoided food and water — even when I was hungry or thirsty — just mp electricity bill payment online jabalpur so I would have to use the bathroom less frequently.

Nowadays I don’t think twice about pulling into Buc-ee’s for a pit stop. We fill up the big SUV that we have rented for the Texas leg — “When in Rome,” right? — and walk into a gas station convenience store the size of a large supermarket. It is breathtaking. If Willy Wonka dehydrated meats for a living, his factory would look like the inside of this place: an endless supply of beef jerky on one side, carousels full of beaver-themed Buc-ee’s merchandise on the other, and seemingly every beverage known to man stored in school bus–length fridges along the walls.

In the bathroom, I do what any other decent woman who cares about her fellow women would do: try to find a toilet that hasn’t already been ruined by a hoverer, sit down on the o gastronomico goddamn seat, pee, and leave. The bathrooms at Buc-ee’s are indeed as advertised: sparkly clean, with stall doors that run almost floor to ceiling — a feature that reportedly makes the gas station a favorite stop for Lou Weaver, the transgender programs coordinator at Equality Texas. Being transgender turns you into something of a restroom connoisseur — the Yelp Elite Squad of urination.

We are up early enough for hotel breakfast on July 18 so we can protest the beginning of Dan Patrick’s special session. Transgender bathroom rights electricity vs gasoline aren’t the only thing on the chopping block this summer: Planned Parenthood funding and health insurance coverage for abortions are also being threatened. Meanwhile, progressive activists are urging the legislature to use the special session for a nobler purpose: to repeal Senate Bill 4, a law forbidding Texas municipalities from serving as “sanctuary cities” — safe havens for undocumented Americans during electricity through wood a time of rising deportations.

As Billy and I walk up the tree-lined sidewalk that leads to the south steps of the Capitol, volunteers from half a dozen advocacy groups are handing out signs and — more important, given the hundred-degree weather — bottled water. There are signs for women’s rights and signs for LGBT rights and signs for immigrant rights, with a smorgasbord of messages to choose from: “My Faith Does Not Discriminate,” “Y’all Means Y’all,” “Just Wash Your Hands,” or — my favorite — “Build This Wall,” with a line pointing to the separation between church and state.

The unrelenting heat hasn’t deterred turnout, so it takes me a few minutes of wandering through the crowd to find the people electricity electricity schoolhouse rock I’m here to meet: Jess Herbst, the first openly transgender mayor in Texas history, and Amber Briggle, the proud cisgender mother of a transgender boy named Max. Once again, I’ve made the mistake of not dressing for the weather: Jess and Amber are both wearing airy, light-colored skirts; I left the hotel in black fleece-lined leggings.

Together we work our way up the steps while the scheduled speakers line up behind the podium at the top. Jess excitedly introduces me to a dizzying number of transgender types of electricity tariff Texans. Amber hands me her “Stop Bullying Trans Kids” sign and tells me to hoist it up, freeing her to hold a Transgender Pride flag and a framed photograph of Max. ( Someone came gas variables pogil worksheet answer key prepared.)

A longtime city councilor before her transition, Jess was appointed mayor pro tempore in May 2016 when the previous mayor died of a heart attack. At that point Jess had already been taking estrogen for a year and a half, quietly coming out to her loved ones, living as herself much of the time but still presenting as male during town business.

Cisgender reporters are often so fascinated by the mere existence of transgender people that they treat us more like exotic zoo animals than human beings electricity electricity song. They ask boilerplate questions like “When did you know?” or “How does it feel?” or the ever-popular but remarkably invasive “Do you want the surgery?” When I interview other transgender people, I treat them like equals, not science experiments. So when I got Jess on the phone, we skipped past the sensationalizing questions and just talked. I wasn’t interested in the simple fact that she was transgender — whoop-de-doo, so are 1.4 million other Americans — I was interested in New Hope, in her life as a member of a marginalized community in a county that chose Trump over Clinton by a margin of 56 to 39 percent.