After reading the news today, I’m about as livid as I can be. Good CORPORATE citizens Wal-Mart demonstrated their corporate sensitivity by engaging in some good-ol-boy humor for their cigar-chompin’ company muckety-mucks during their company meetings. They did so by using that one last American object-of-derision – the transgendered person in drag – as their fodder for yucks and hilarity! Take a gander at these!
For the record, Wal-Mart forced out and employee of theirs and a friend of mine from suburban Atlanta, Sheila (whose last name I’ll withhold as she – like most all of us – needs to keep working and doesn’t need more disemployment by bigoted employers like Wal-Mart).
They also had a very well-publicized case in New Jersey where they disemployed another employee who they discovered had transitioned from male-to-female.
While I’m happy to have heard they extended their employment non-discrimination policies, and have made outreach to the gay and lesbian community, transgenders were distinctly left out! Their attitude is they could not care less about transsexuals, drag queens, gender-queers, and we can all go to hell as far as they care. No one’s coming back for us.
Furthermore, we now find we’re not only unemployable, but subject matter for ridicule in their workplaces as we see sanctioned from their very top management. Witness their own CEO not only walking a stereotyped crossdresser off the stage but patting her – uh; excuse me … HIM (in their myopic worldview of us) – ever-so-‘respectfully’ with a swat on the ass!
Typically I really don’t give much of a crap about Wal-Mart. Their corporate avarice overrides any need to save a few pennies there.
During my tenure as chair of NTAC (National Transgender Advocacy Coalition) they responded to one of my queries after their initial EEO policy expansion for sexual orientation only, saying they “didn’t feel a compelling need to review” and expand their policy to include us. While I worked on other city, company and corporate policy changes, I decided to let these bigots fade from my radar. These gap-toothed bigots prey upon the most desperate employees possible, and my attitude was that our community could (and should) do better.
Well, now they’ve got my attention again. OUTRAGE!
Not only does Wal-Mart NOT give a crap about hiring trans people and wish us ill, but they also help perpetuate the image of us as ridiculous freaks! Hey, why just beat them down – let’s shove their noses in the shit and kick them some more! That’s being a great corporate citizen in Wal-Mart-land!
Being from Texas, I’m not much of a lawsuit person. But frankly, at this point, whatever you want to do to negatively impact Wal-Mart is AOK with me! Even better now that we’re in a desperate economy!
In fact, I feel like getting in touch with Sheila and the girl from NJ and encouraging them to file suit and sue the living crap out of them! I’ve got a very hungry, very angry transgender attorney (who hasn’t been hired as such herself) who’s just looking for that kind of big-name target!
If the statute of limitations has run out, I hope they go on the media and blast these bastards for their perpetuation of transgenders as comedic freaks!
Would they think of doing Al Jolson blackface parodies at their board meetings? How about portraying the Frito Bandito? Maybe they could do a stereotypical Village People-style flaming gay act to push their Pride Month advertising to the G&L community? Why do they (and other segments of society) still feel it’s AOK to do whatever the hell they feel to transgenders as if we’re completely oblivious and have no feelings whatsoever? “Just give us your money and then get the hell outta here, ya tranny freaks!!!”
Let’s hope they get protests and boycotts for their blatant bigotry! In fact, maybe embarrassing displays inside of their stores ... perhaps some flash-mob style ridicule is in order! Even worse! Whatever you want to do that hurts them and their avaricious bottom-line mentality, I’d be completely in favor of it!
Meanwhile, keep in mind that not all their ilk support this bigotry! Shop the dollar stores – they’re cheaper. Better yet, shop Target! Unlike Wal-Mart, they actually care about transgenders and others as human beings.
As for Wal-Mart, until they realize that we’re all sentient human beings and that pissing off a segment of their customer-base isn’t good for business, let ‘em go to hell.