Transgender Day of Remembrance 2013

It’s late, and there is not much left of November 20 as I write this (at least, not where I am writing from), but I could not close down my computer without recognizing this day, which was established in 1999 to commemorate those transgender persons who have been murdered in the past year (I understand it is well over 200 globally this year). Especially, here in Jamaica, I would like us to remember Dwayne Jones, a gender non-conforming teenager who was murdered (chopped and stabbed to death) by a mob on July 22 this year after party-goers discovered he was wearing women’s clothing. Young Dwayne had aspirations to become an entertainer.

Transgender teen Dwayne Jones was murdered in Montego Bay in July. (Photo: AP)
Transgender teen Dwayne Jones was murdered in Montego Bay in July. (Photo: AP)

So far as I know, we have had no recent updates on the investigation into Dwayne’s tragic death.

Below is a link to a message from the White House in recognition of the day, which notes: “This day is an opportunity to remember those who have lost their lives to violence and injustice because of their gender identity or gender expression,” and quotes former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice‘s words: At the United Nations, the United States is standing up for the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals and fighting to ensure that their voices are heard and protected. The United States was proud to co-sponsor and adopt an historic resolution at the UN Human Rights Council condemning human rights abuses and violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity.” Where was Jamaica?


Related links: Transgender Day of Remembrance: Huffington Post Marking Transgender Day of Remembrance: White House Transgender teen Dwayne Jones murdered by mob in Jamaica:



10 thoughts on “Transgender Day of Remembrance 2013

  1. Reblogged this on Spirit In Action and commented:
    Thank you for posting this! I’m sorry to all for posting this a day late but I was too ill most of yesterday and today to keep up with my reading and posting. 2years ago I lost a transgender friend to unnecessary death. Tho her death was not by violence, but rather by the all too common medical practice of ignoring the patient which delayed critical care until it was too late. Her loss still haunts me because it was such a ridiculous waste of a beautiful creative young life, whuch would not have happened had she remained the “he” she was born as. Our societies need to wake up to love and compassion for ALL. I’m pretty sure we can safely leave the judging up to God.


    1. I do hope you are feeling better today… Thanks for the reblog! So much. I am so very sorry to hear about the death of your friend, due to neglect (discrimination?) So sad. I agree that we need to try, somehow, to create more caring societies. Compassion is certainly in short supply.


      1. Thank you. I am better. I feel that what we are doing with our blogs and local activism, connecting across boundaries whether physical like distance and oceans or ideological is helping to make a more compassionate, fair and functional world.
        Oppression of anyone only serves the agenda of the top down control freak fascists.
        So as more people learn to accept one another the colonizers sick structures disintigrate.

        My friend was taking birth control pills as changing-over hormones because she was not able to afford the normal medical assistance. She got a blood clot in her lung which is apparently a possible side effect of taking estrogen.
        She told the paramedics when she called 911, and when they arrived but they said if she had not been injured while exercising or something that it couldn’t be a clot.
        They refused to give her the medicine to dissolve the clot so when it hit something critical before she got to the hospital it was too late.
        I have experienced the same sort of purposeful ignorance as a patient so I am unsure if it was due to her female look (it happens more here to women), because she was trans(born male) or just plain stupid obnoxiousness but it was wrong.
        Racists, sexists and homophobes don’t seem to realize they are harming themselves as well as us. But I feel the tide is turning for us all.
        Love and compassion will be the new normal. Selfish hateful behaviour will be widely condemned instead if cheered and copied ( as in Rush Limbaugh and similar).
        The patience to get thete is the hard part!


      2. Yes, I hope we are having an impact, even in a small way. (I am feeling better now, too – after a seemingly endless battle with a severe strain of influenza! It has just about gone now but it has been very hard to overcome and I consider myself a reasonably healthy person for my age!) Your friend’s story is absolutely tragic. What an agonizing and LONELY struggle she must have had. It is painful to read… Your phrase “purposeful ignorance” strikes me. Yes, we encounter this in Jamaica too – and, sadly, took, even quite often in the health sector among trained professionals who should know better. And I totally agree – these people don’t seem to understand that the hatred and bigotry they nurture in their breasts turns in on them and warps their whole relationship to the world. They are bitter, unhappy people. Let love prevail! Hang in there… We need to keep pushing our way down that road!

        I really, REALLY appreciate your thoughts and your support. Please keep reading and commenting! Warm wishes to you from Jamaica…


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