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HRC Apologizes for Mistreatment of Trans Activists and Undocumented Queer Immigrants at SCOTUS Marriage Arguments: VIDEO


The Human Rights Campaign today posted an apology for its mistreatment of trans activists and undocumented queer immigrants during last week's Supreme Court marriage hearings.

Writes HRC's Fred Sainz, Vice President, Communications and Marketing:

In the midst of a tremendously historic week for our community, two unfortunate incidents at the United for Marriage event at the Supreme Court last week have caused pain in the community.  In one case, a trans activist was asked to remove the trans pride flag from behind the podium, and in another, a queer undocumented speaker was asked to remove reference to his immigration status in his remarks.

HRC joined in a coalition statement on Friday apologizing for these incidents and the individuals involved have personally offered their apologies to those affected.  But to be perfectly clear, HRC regrets the incidents and offers our apologies to those who were hurt by our actions.  We failed to live up to the high standard to which we hold ourselves accountable and we will strive to do better in the future.  Through both our legislative and programmatic work, HRC remains committed to making transgender equality a reality.

HRC's statement, which follows apologies from the United for Marriage Coalition (HERE) and a statement from GetEQUAL (HERE) comes after reports of the two incidents surfaced on the internet. The blog Transition Transition demanded an apology for the flag removal incident, and the Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project (QUIP) posted a video asking for one as well.

Watch it, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. FIRED the people responsible for the removal of the flags!

    Posted by: Ant | Apr 1, 2013 12:40:02 PM

  2. I am sorry, but this is ridiculous. It isn't transphobia, it's marketing the message. The day was not about trans issues, or immigration issues or anything else. Trying to insert your particular cause into the day is equivalent to trying to hang a pro choice banner from the podium, or any other political cause. The "trans" community fell all over themselves criticizing the New York marriage bill, and complaining that same sex marriage was making progress, what right do they have to insert themselves there? My unfortunate experiences with trans activists are that there is no concern for end result, no ability to stay on message, and no ability to understand that politics requires discipline.

    Posted by: Chris | Apr 1, 2013 12:44:53 PM

  3. we're stronger when we all unite. duh

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Apr 1, 2013 12:45:03 PM

  4. Is this an April Fool's Day joke?

    Posted by: Larry | Apr 1, 2013 12:53:52 PM

  5. "two unfortunate incidents" Talk about an understatement! "It's very sad when ignorance rears it's ugly head in our own community. H.R.C should be ashamed that they allowed these incidents to occurr. What was the reason they gave for wanting the flag removed and for the speach to be modified?

    Posted by: Erma E Diaz | Apr 1, 2013 12:56:25 PM

  6. Why would this surprise anybody? HRC attacked the people who filed the original court cases that are now before the Supreme Court that will end up getting us marriage. They attacked the people that filed the original cases in places like MA and Iowa. They attacked gays a few years ago telling us all to sit down and shut up and stop bothering our "Friends" in Congress while they voted against us. They said that these people were our friends but gay issues were too dangerous for them to support so we needed to allow them to vote against us. They attacked DAn Choi and Get Equal and any other group that seemed to be making any kind of progress...

    And now, after ALL that, they seem to be trying to claim some kind of credit for those cases before the Supreme Court even though they had nothing to do with it....

    No, this story doesn't surprise me at all.

    Posted by: Cam | Apr 1, 2013 12:56:58 PM

  7. This is ridiculous. Apologize?

    We're trying to accomplish something huge here, and throwing another separate and polarizing issue into the mix (illegal immigration) DOESN'T help our cause.

    Sorry you or your parents came here illegally, but it's not our problem ("our" being legal US citizens who are trying to get equal marriage rights). Throwing in other issues is just a thorn in our side.

    (Now cue all the screaming, hysterical queens who will say I'm a racist or something.)

    Posted by: sean | Apr 1, 2013 1:09:42 PM

  8. There should be a law against LGBT people calling other LGBT people "queers", but especially undocumented LGBT people. Isn't it bad enough that they're stigmatized as "aliens"? This eagerness of certain sex and gender activists to identify with the oppressor and appropriate his insulting language makes me sick to my stomach!

    Posted by: Stuffed Animal | Apr 1, 2013 1:14:38 PM

  9. I'm glad that you are able to recognize your own bigotry SEAN. It shows that there's hope for you yet.

    Posted by: Marc C | Apr 1, 2013 1:15:28 PM

  10. chris - "same-sex" marriage doesn't just impact the ability to GET MARRIED. if that lovely queer immigrant is unable to marry their special person, they are subject to deportation. and there are many, many examples of trans* individuals having their marraige dissolved by the state because it was ruled a "same-sex" marriage.

    HRC has a piss-poor track record for any issue that isn't marketable to a wide audience. anything that threatens the homogenous status quo (queers, trans* folks, POC, etc).

    Posted by: mechaboy | Apr 1, 2013 1:15:45 PM

  11. for the record, trans people can get married. gays and lesbians cannot.

    Posted by: brian | Apr 1, 2013 1:21:12 PM

  12. This is the usual bad strategy of the trans community. They ruined enda for us years ago. Now we're supposed to let everyone and their second cousin grandstand on this issue.
    Queue the name calling from the self-righteous crowd who know jack about political strategy.

    Posted by: Wilberforce | Apr 1, 2013 1:22:44 PM

  13. @brian - you do realize there are gay and lesbian trans people right? if two gay trans men want to get married, it is still very much illegal for them to in many places.

    please educate yourself.

    Posted by: terrence | Apr 1, 2013 1:28:29 PM

  14. actually, transpeople are not to blame for ENDA not passing. do you know why the path to Equality is taking so bloody long in the USA? because so many of you gay men are such pathetic little cowards that you don't have the spines to actually stand up, speak out, unite TOGETHER and work for a good of all.

    anti-trans gay men: screw you wimps. you deserve every ounce of the misery that makes up your lives.

    whether it's that Jesus-freak Stuffy with his usual "don't say queer!" nonsense, to the nameless, faceless anonymous crowd that spew anti-trans b.s. from behind their internet burqas - you guys are the reason progress is going so slowly.

    you're so whipped by prejudice that you can't even be a real man and stand in solidarity with others who are being discriminated against.


    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Apr 1, 2013 1:47:58 PM

  15. Cant Trans people get their own freaking movement and let us go back to being gay instead of ABCDEFG....

    @Kiwi.. it isnt prejudice. It simply has NOTHING to do with me. Just because we are gay doesnt me we instantly care more about trans issues than anyone else. I support many women's issues but lots of them just arent one of my priorities. That doesnt make me anti woman.

    Posted by: Homo Genius | Apr 1, 2013 2:20:29 PM

  16. i am putting my faith in chad griffin, who formed AFER that worked so smoothly, and who himself had run-ins with the old leadership of HRC. he took the position with a clear idea of the changes needed in HARC and set about to make them. the unqualified rapid apology seems to me a good example of new leadership in action.

    Posted by: bandanajack | Apr 1, 2013 2:21:22 PM

  17. I bet you the same Gay men that blame ENDA not passing due to trans language and that want them dropped from the LGBT family are the same Gay Men that believe black people should support our community because they've suffered the same indignities that we have suffered yet can't see the irony. United we stand. Divided we fall.

    Posted by: sugarrhill | Apr 1, 2013 2:21:37 PM

  18. Homo Genius - you prove me right. your kind always does.

    so you only care about things that directly pertain to you? congrats - your parents failed you and your lack of empathy, compassion and cojones are duly noted.

    time and time again, anti-trans gay men reveal themselves to be the scum of our community.

    Posted by: Little Kiwi | Apr 1, 2013 2:25:13 PM

  19. What trans flag? I thought we were all to be forced to do everything together in unison. No?

    Fine by me. Separate flag; separate employment discrimination bill. Let's go!

    Posted by: Skeptical Cicada | Apr 1, 2013 2:32:59 PM

  20. u self-serving homos make me sick. for the record, THIS homo is proud to stand with the LGB *and* T. we can't forsake the T. trans people are "the least among us" and i dont get my rights by forsaking those of my brothers and sisters.

    Posted by: redball | Apr 1, 2013 2:54:09 PM

  21. and people who dont know how to do INTERSECTIONALITY activism (look it up) need to stay on the sidelines. most people embody multiple marginalized identities.

    Posted by: redball | Apr 1, 2013 3:01:07 PM

  22. When a bigot wants to insult a Gay man what slur is the most likely one he'll use? F.ggot.

    When a bigot wants to insult a Transwoman what slur is the most likely one he'll use? F.ggot.

    We have something in common.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Apr 1, 2013 3:02:00 PM

  23. Resentment and hatred towards gay people by the "trans community" is really what this all about. They have not supported gay marriage equality and have tried to usurp the movement for their own ends (to become "normal" heterosexuals).

    Posted by: Francis | Apr 1, 2013 3:07:57 PM

  24. Francis,

    how is that usurpation? trans people should be able to marry too. this is not either/or. we need to do both/and.

    Posted by: redball | Apr 1, 2013 3:10:34 PM

  25. That is a different Francis that just posted, isn't it? Not the same Francis who comments regularly, and I believe is from the Washintion DC area.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Apr 1, 2013 3:13:56 PM

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