Spelman College is a historically black college for women located in Atlanta. At least, that’s what the college’s website says.
But the black college is not just home to women — quite the contrary — it’s also a place that many trans people call home.
— Miah (@miahtheleadah) November 29, 2016
In an article that originally appeared at beingtheboy.com, Laura Eley and Miah Hardy writes about a day in the life of the trans-Black man at an historically black college or university (HBCU), and in particular at Spelman.
When Keo Chance O’Neal, a self-proclaimed Spel-Man, got to campus at Spelman during his freshman year, he said that it “was really hard trying to deal with my identity and just the Black community in general and not being accepted.”
“Not everyone was as aware of pronouns and preferred name,” O’Neal added. “…I got called my legal name a lot and I went by she/her pronouns because no one could understand the concept of they/them pronouns.”
Spelman College’s Fitness Coordinator for the Wellness Center and LGBTQIA advocate Makeba Reed-Johnson said that Black people “should be so sensitive to discrimination, but we’re not.”
“We’re sensitive to it when it’s directed against us, but when other marginalized groups are discriminated against, we don’t have that same level of compassion,” Reed-Johnson said.
Recently the black college made quite a bit of news announcing that the school is considering making a change to its admissions policy. In 2011, Marybeth Gasman praised Spelman for leading all other 100-plus HBCUs in creating conversations about the needs and concerns of students like O’Neal.
— The Maroon Tiger (@themaroontiger) December 5, 2016
“There’s a lot that needs to go into meeting the needs of queer students, queer students that are already here and queer students [Spelman’s administration] plans on accepting,” O’Neal said. “I think that part of being a Spelman student is changing the world, so why can’t I change the world while also bringing Spelman along with me?”
Head over to beingtheboy.com to read more.