Momentum is building as the hearing and trial for CeCe McDonald approaches in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The community is encouraged to attend the hearing scheduled for April 24. CeCe was the victim of a violent transphobic and racist assault during the summer of 2011. Since, she has been incarcerated and the only person in the altercation to face legal action, even though her aggressor lacerated her cheek with a drinking glass during the heated exchange. CeCe face charges of “second degree murder” for an act of self-defense where she was injured and her life threatened. Hennepin County Attorney General, Michael Freeman has the authority to review CeCe’s case and drop the charges on the rationale of self-defense, but has yet to do so.
Too often, the trans community is subjected to violence, which at times has ended fatally. Laverne Cox, transgender reality television star and advocate wrote in the Huffington Post:
“This case highlights how even when trans people, particularly trans people of color, are lucky enough to survive the brutal violence that is a part of so many of our lives, we are all too often victimized all over again by the criminal justice system.”
Cox makes a striking commentary here that suggests the imminent and cyclical dangers enmeshed in the lives of transgender persons of color. Hate crimes and death affect people of color at alarmingly higher rates disproportionate to other racial groups of the trans community.
The Free CeCe Support Committee established a web site and blog where supporters can stand in solidarity and become involved in various capacities. On the site you can learn more about the attack and receive updates on CeCe’s legal battle and road to justice. In the coming days, the hearing and trial will take place; and the movement for equality of trans people needs your help.
On April 24, 2012 supporters are encouraged to attend the hearing and evidentiary motions at the Hennepin County Government Center, 300 6th Street S, Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The hearing will begin at 9 am. CeCe’s trial is scheduled to follow on April 30 on the 13th floor of the Hennepin County Government Center.
You can also show your support for CeCe by signing the petition, which was organized by the Free CeCe Support Committee.
GLAAD urges the media to tell CeCe McDonald's story and the continued discrimination transgender people--particularly transgender women of color--continue to face when trying to participate fully in their communities.