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The Queer Life radio show Ep 75 – Charlize Veritas

Thank you to Kaiya Kramer of The Queer Life in allowing me to be a guest on her show. I only hope that something I said helped in some way.

(Click here to be taken to the recording of the broadcast.)

Talking about being transgender can be tricky as we all are different people with our own opinions. I know I have my triggers and so must others as well. I did my best to be respectful of all people while on the show.

Episode 75

I am most grateful to Kaiya for allowing me my first experience to tell my story in this medium. Honestly, I was curled up in bed the whole interview, but by the second half I felt more at ease. I really enjoy Kaiya and having a conversation with her is always refreshing. Perhaps it’s because we are both transwomen, or perhaps we’re just good people.

Thank you Kaiya!

 – Charlize <3

Cover image credit: The Queer Life logo

When I Finally Understood That I have White Privilege

The moment I realized I had white privilege didn’t come until I started driving a BMW.

Let me first explain, I grew up poor. My friends were poor. We lived in poor neighborhoods and eventually moved up to a modest one.

Due to systemic racism, many people of color are poor. So growing up, I had friends of color. To me it didn’t mean anything. I was a child. They were children. We all wanted the same things but couldn’t afford it. We all played in the same parks. We all related to each other because we were poor.

That’s what bound us together.

So I didn’t grow up racist. People were people and they all had struggles. That’s what I saw.

As I got older I started to realize. We’d get in trouble and I was told to go on my way. I didn’t grow up thinking people of color were any different. I didn’t understand.

Then one day I was driving my BMW like greased lightning down the highway when after passing a beater of a car, I saw the cop on the side of the road radaring everyone.

Now I’m thinking, “Great. This is the last thing I need” as I see him hit the lights and come towards me in pursuit.

But he doesn’t pull me over.

He pulls over the beat up car with two Latinos inside.

You know, the car I went flying past?

That’s when it really hit me. I was doing 10 more than him easy but because of their race and the car they were driving, they were profiled.

That was the moment I first felt sick to my stomach because I was white. But not so much that as the fact that because of something completely outside of someone’s control, they were being oppressed and I was allowed to go.

I have a deep seeded sense of right and wrong. Of Justice.

I still think to myself, “You should have pulled over. You should have said something. But you didn’t.”

It’s going to take all white people to put back what we did wrong and the first step is just to admit it.

 – Charlize <3

Cover image credit: Unknown

The Post Office – A Transgender Experience

I had to go to the post office to send a rather large package to California. As I walked up to the door with it, a kind gentleman who worked there opened up the doors for me and said, “Let me get that for you miss,” and carried my package up to the front desk as well. These are the kinds of things I can get used to.

Now last time I was at the post office, working behind the main counter was a man. He gave me free tape, a free label and took care of everything. Again, these are the kinds of things I can get used to.

Unfortunately, the counter clerk this day was a woman.

“Ah crap,” I thought to myself.

“Hi! I need to send this to Cali,” I said to her.

“I need a zip code,” she replied.

I gave it to her and she looked up the costs and gave me my options. I took the cheapest one of course.

Then she says to me, “Before I can send it, you’ll need to tape it up and put a label on it. We sell those right over there,” and pointed to the wall behind me.

“Oh ok. Thank you,” I said as I secretly thought, “Damnit! I knew it!”

I get the tape and the label. I wrap the box up securely and place the label upon it. Then I take it back to the counter.

She scans my purchases first then we go through the whole shipping choice thing once more. Again, I took the cheapest one of course.

“Will this be cash, debit or credit?” She asks.

Now this is the part I dread in life. I couldn’t use the debit because even the cheapest shipping for that heavy package wasn’t cheap at all. The money won’t transfer from PayPal till Monday probably, so I had to use the credit card and to use a credit card, you have to show ID. For people like me, this is not a pleasant moment. It’s something that, personally, I’d rather walk through fire then show my ID to anyone.

“Credit,” I say begrudgingly.

“Ok,” she replies, “I just need some ID.”

I dig through my purse, take out my wallet, and remove both my CC and my ID.

As I hand them to the clerk I tell her, “That really is me. A lot has changed since then.” By now some people are in line behind me and I’m trying to be as discreet as possible.

She looks at the license. Then she looks at me. Then she looks at the license again. Then back to me, smiles and says, “You’re very pretty!”

“Thank you,” I say blushing and completely taken off guard.

She gave my license another look and says, “seriously, I’m jealous.”

We laugh, she rings me up, I sign, she gives me one last compliment I honestly only half understood and then we smiled and said goodbye to one another like friends waving and all.

When I left the post office, I felt a spring in my step and all it cost was a roll of tape and a small label. What I got for those two insignificant things was priceless.

– Charlize <3

Cover image credit: Hamed Ehsani (Pinterest)