Blossom also spoke about keeping issues for people of color in mind. She stated that the rates of diseases, such as HIV and AIDS, are much higher in the people of color community. She also stated that this could be due to the rates of homelessness and individuals involved in sex work in order to survive. She also spoke about transphobia specifically in the black community. She mentioned the example of Charlamagne from the radio show “The Breakfast Club,” who once had a transgender woman appear on his show to tell her story, only to have another individual a short while later come on the show and make a joke about killing someone for finding out they are transgender. She feels as though a conversation needs to be had between him and several transgender women of color to discuss the issues that the black transgender community faces on a daily basis, in a neutral space. Unfortunately for many, statements like this are a real fear rather than a joke. So far this year, 15 transgender women have been murdered. Blossom says with sadness, “We’re told to tell them. In retaliation, they kill us.”
“I am living with HIV. Your party wants to take my medication away. How can you help me?”
Blossom also spoke of the Politicon protest she took part in. She spoke highly of her sister, Ashley Preston, who was also involved in the protest, along with Patrisse Cullors (cofounder of Black Lives Matter). “She goes behind the scenes to protect trans folks.” She then spoke about a recent LGBTQ panel that she witnessed speak. She discussed the lack of transgender representation in events such as these, considering there was not a single person on the panel. She also addressed a conservative speaking the most about transgender issues as part of this disparity, “I am living with HIV. Your party wants to take my medication away. How can you help me? You’re using trans people of color’s issues to make yourself look good on the panel.”
Blossom still considers herself a “rookie activist,” and aspires to become more involved in her community (we think she’s doing a pretty great job). For anyone out there feeling discouraged about the potential of family rejection, remember that Blossom grew up in what she describes as a strict household with a sort of “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. Despite this conservative family environment, her mother embraced her when she came out. There is hope for the future, just as long as we continue to have individuals like Blossom, who will be on the front lines of transgender rights movement and other worthy causes.