Trans right to life

Rachel Saunders
5 min readJun 6, 2024
Photo by RDNE Stock project: https://www.pexels.com/photo/fashion-sunglasses-people-woman-7035402/

If all morality starts from a position of subjective understanding of the world, that there is no absolute universal moral standard, then the right to exist as yourself in the world is a paramount right. Yet, this right is always clipped and abrogated because every other person in society has the same right to exist as themselves. As such, we exist in a ongoing negotiated conversation with others and broader society to ensure that our personal good life is maximised along with everyone else’s. Yet, across most societies the trans right to exist as ourselves is clipped back far beyond most others, our very right to life is subjective to others normative standards. To be trans is to be perceived and treated as something lesser, our deaths can be explained as panicked responses upon discovery, our marginalisation an autonomic assumption based on gender norms. To be trans is to lead a lesser life precisely because people project their own subjective moral understanding onto us.

There is no excuse for murder, even less excuse for killing someone because you discover their body to be different than the one you expected. In no ethical or moral code should their exist trans panic defences. Likewise, in no moral or ethical code should there exist the shaming of trans people simply for existing as themselves in the world. We like to assume that our normative understanding of the world encompasses infinite diversity in…

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