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April 23 2013 | To Love & Ruckus, an evening of spoken word

TUESDAY // APRIL 23, 2013

8 PM – 9:30 PM
To Love & Ruckus, an evening of spoken word with Kay Ulanday Barrett

Featured nationally and internationally, and recently honored as one of Chicago’s LGBTQ 30 under 30, Kay Ulanday Barrett is a poet, performer, educator, and martial artist. Navigating life as a pin@y-amerikan trans/queer in the U.S. with struggle, resistance, and laughter, Kay turns art into action. This performance is part of Asian Pacific American Awareness Month.

Sponsored by the Fields Center, Frist Programs Office, LGBT Center

Location: Frist Campus Center, Cafe Vivian 
Department: LGBT Center

Liberation doesn’t leave people behind:  Speech 2012 Trans day of Action, NYC.

Liberation doesn’t leave people behind: Speech 2012 Trans day of Action, NYC.

K. speaking at 2012 Trans Day of Action  with Stephanie Maria and Lucia Leandro Gimeno.
K. speaking at 2012 Trans Day of Action with Stephanie Maria and Lucia Leandro Gimeno.

Liberation doesn’t leave people behind:
ableism, transphobia, classism, & racism
contribution by Kay Ulanday Barrett

[insert chant] — when i say TRANS you say POWER,
TRANS (power)!
TRANS (power)!

i want to first say that we are here due to the hard & strategic work by trans women of color, many of whom have mental/physical disabilities and chronic illness. this work continues to be done. as a trans masculine ally, i need to know my place, move down.

i want to ask you to pay close attention to who can be here to today, who can literally march, who can move, who can do so painlessly, who can speak, who can “stand up!”

TRANSJUSTICE asked me to speak on ableism and the trans community. i keep wondering what can i share that is different than what i said last year.

let me start with the things that are the same:

*a life as a brown trans physically disabled crip person, is judged by all systems—- the government systems that give harsh pity in public “assistance,” the police who use more than billy clubs to enforce their brutality, the doctors who steal our agency of our own experiences, the employers, the public transportation, all at once like an open wound warring with double the sting. racism, ableism, transphobia, classism.

*trans disabled people of color face shame/guilt from all systems plus our loved ones. we are left out, left behind, we are too sick to be real man or woman, forgotten, not invited to the party, seen as a burden, our own decisions made for us, resented, told to get better, told to just work harder, told we have to change, or get fixed. trans disabled people of color don’t need any fixing. but, we can fix this inaccessible transphobic, racist and ableist ways of the world.


here are new thoughts i’ve learned from my crip queer trans brown community:

*a person’s limitations are not the problem, it’s a strength to know your own magic. if one can’t walk too far, moves a certain way and that makes you uncomfortable, THAT is your problem about how you’ve been taught to see humanity. just like how non-trans people tell trans people they are freaks, disabled trans people are freaking dope and the world is fearful of us because we don’t suite to standards, we alter/shift/break them.

*when it comes to access and love— love with friends, lovers, chosen family, children, comrades, we are all learning how to be aware. it’s not only about ramps, interpreters, holding a bag or bringing medication, it’s about meeting people where they are at and moving with us, struggling with us without shaming, guilt, belittling, resentment. we will make mistakes on our way to being whole. not whole like unbroken, but whole as in complete with our flaws, our hard truths, our complexities. we want a world that is whole and complex!

*real love is possible. for us to call and move with one another we must realize that able-bodied supremacy breeds racism and transphobia. the way we make decisions, the way we love, organize, socialize, invite, give support, the way we see our gendered and raced bodies all connect! this is how we will transform not just systems that harm us, but the systems that we let harm and limit our hearts, our spirits. please remember, liberation doesn’t leave people behind. liberation tries, liberation transforms, and liberation shows up.


[insert chant] — when i say TRANS you say FORM,

[insert chant] — when i say SHOW you say UP UP UP,
SHOW (up up up)!
SHOW (up up up)!




April 19, 2013 | NYU Ally Week Closing Event

April 19, 2013 | NYU Ally Week Closing Event


FRIDAY // APRIL 19, 2013
5:00 PM – 6:30 PM
NYU: NYU Student Diversity & LGBTQ Student Center
Closing Ceremony: Allyship Beyond Ally Week 
Kimmel Center | Shorin Auditorium – Rm 802

Join us as we celebrate and reflect on the commitment to allyship. We will mark the end of NYU Ally Week 2013 with spoken word performances, music, and, of course, Ally Week photos! Featured artists include Kevin Nadal, Kay Barrett and Tonya Ingram of the NYU Slam Poetry Team. Light refreshments will be served.

RSVP online at: