"You Are My Hero"

[Content Note: Transphobia; outing; transphobic tropes.]

There are a lot of problems with this NBC News story about transgender high school science teacher Karen Adell Scot, who is beginning her transition after 24 years of teaching at the same school. Like: Her former name is irrelevant, and so is her shoe size. And: Photos of a trans* woman engaging in her beauty routine, especially the ubiquitous "trans lady shaving" image, are the equivalent of the "headless fatty" photos that accompany articles about fat people.

And there is a lot to talk about regarding the way that Scot was outed, likely by a colleague passing on her notification of transition to the local paper, and a lot to talk about regarding the school's "we're required by law to accept her!" letter to parents, and a lot to talk about regarding fearful parents' ignorant alarmism.

Basically, a lot of the adults are behaving terribly. But (lots of) the kids are full of love:

image of a handwritten note from a student, reading: 'You are who you are! Don't let anyone bring you down!'
Students presented Scot with a giant card and cookies in class Monday.

"Ms. Scot: No matter what anyone says you are courageous and beautiful for being who you truly are," wrote student Charlotte Smith. "You are my hero."
Sure, there will be kids who are assholes, some of whom might be assholes because they see themselves in Ms. Scot. And there are kids who will be inspired and validated by Ms. Scot. And there will be kids who are totally indifferent, because, shit, this is the year of our lord Jesus Jones two thousand and fourteen, and they live in a world inhabited by visible trans* people.

Like their science teacher, Ms. Scot. Who still prolly gives too much homework on the weekends, man.

I hope her community can take a cue from her cookie-wielding students. I hope that she remains safe, and appreciated as the award-winning teacher she is and has always been.

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