Bias Watch

The right wing thinks there are more trans murderers than trans murder victims

The right wing thinks there are more trans murderers than trans murder victims
This Aug. 17, 2015 photo provided by Randall Jenson, lead advocate of the Kansas City Anti-Violence Project, shows an altar made by the friends of Tamara Dominguez during a memorial service for her at her home. Dominguez was run over multiple times and left to die on a Kansas City street. Photo: Randall Jenson, Kansas City Anti-Violence Project via AP

One thing you can guarantee about the right wing: When it comes to LGBTQ issues, it has an uncanny ability to turn reality on its head. The latest example is typically offensive. According to a new bogus report, the problem isn’t transgender women getting murdered. The problem is that they are much more likely to be murderers.

The website National Justice describes the epidemic of anti-trans violence as a “myth” created by “the controlled press” as a result of “transmania.” The site argues that because only 24 cases of trans women being murdered have been documented by activists, the actual rate of homicide is less than half than that of the average American.

Of course, just because there are only 24 known cases doesn’t mean there have been only 24 murders. (In fact there have been at least 25, and those are just the cases that we know of.) Police often don’t identify a victim as transgender, so there’s no way to capture an accurate tally of the victims. Moreover, there’s no national database from which to draw accurate information. Finally, some cases simply go unreported.

But in its quest to score points, the right is happy to dismiss murder victims. “The low murder rate transgenders enjoy [!] is thanks to the plethora of specialized public and private employment, health, housing and other services they have in big cities, which average people have no access to,” the report says.

All of which will comes as a big surprise to trans people who experience just the opposite on a daily basis.

Having identified the low, enjoyable murder rate, the article turns to the real problem: trans murderers. The report collects anecdotal stories about trans people committing crimes and somehow arrives at the conclusion that trans women are 58% more likely to be murderers than be murdered.

It’s true that some murders are committed by transgender people. It’s also true some murders are committed by clergy. People from all kinds of backgrounds commit murders.

But that’s not the point for the right. The point is that the bigots are the real victims. Hence, the conclusion of the National Justice article:

“The fact that a man is six times less likely to be killed if he takes female hormones and wears women’s clothing is proof positive that it’s normal people who are in dire need of advocacy.”

While it might be easy to dismiss an alt-right website as just another example of lunacy, the fact is that the lies those sites promulgate end up in places like Fox News. In a media environment where nothing is too crazy or too wrong to be repeated, don’t be surprised if this bogus claim ends up in the national conversation all too soon.

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