While much of the world celebrates the recent rise in press regarding the LGBT, feeling like this openness is the start of more acceptance, the LGBT community in Mexico, especially those who are transgender, might feel different.
Since making same sex marriages legal, the Mexican LGBT community has actually seen a rise in violence against them, with experts saying that the majority of it is targeted at trans men and women.
The cause of this rise in violence is, unfortunately, partially linked to the efforts to bring equality to Mexican LGBT individuals. New laws have actually brought more attention to the community, one report stating that,
“Increased visibility has actually increased public misperceptions and false stereotypes about the gay and transgender communities. This has produced fears about these communities, such as that being gay or transgender is ‘contagious’ or that all transgender individuals are HIV positive. These fears have in turn led to hate crimes and murders of LGBT people, particularly transgender women.”
Today, being a trans person in Mexico is more dangerous than ever. As more individuals risk everything to fight for equality, an even more vocal and hateful group works to silence it.
Of course, an entire country can’t be painted with one brush. In certain areas, like Juchitan, a small rural town in Oaxaca, trans men and women are celebrated. Known as “muxes”, this safe haven not only accepts transgender individuals, they are recognized as their own gender, a third gender unique from and a combination of male and female.
This acceptance, however, is criticized at times, with mixes stating that they feel more like they are on exhibit, paraded around, than truly accepted into the community.