Janet Mock – Privilege to Pass

[box] “It isn’t enough for us to be the first or to celebrate the first. True progress towards a just world when the first are no longer the only or the last.” – Janet Mock [/box]

Source: Glaad.com
Source: Glaad.com

It is hard to comprehend the humbling words of Janet Mock stating that she has had the “privilege to pass” as a black woman (assumed to be born a female) early in her professional career.  Surely, a trans-black woman as fierce as she has a lot to be proud of in 2014.  However, listening to her experiences working in New York City strengthens the fact that every trans individual is as unique as the story they share with the world.  When Mock discussed the privilege she experienced in the workplace due to assumed belief from strangers and co-workers about her gender identity, I was fast to   rewind the 2013 Out & Equal keynote speech (listen below) below in order to understand more about Mock‘s life.

Janet Mock, previously a senior leader at People Magazine, recently joined the Marie Claire Magazine team as Contributing Editor in June 2014.  Years ago, she was able to share her story growing up in Honolulu, HI with minimal resources provided to someone dealing with transgender needs.   Mock persevered and transitioned during her teen years.  She attended college and graduate school fully transitioned to a confident and beautiful woman.   It is important to understand that no one trans story is the same.  I recently learned and posted about this focusing on the life of Laverne Cox.  Much of her adult years have been explained as being passed over as “one in the crowd.”  What this means is that Mock has had the “privilege” to pass as a woman with no questions asked and thrive in her career with minimal to no discrimination in the workplace.  Well, she definitely is more than just a crowd member.


Ms. Mock’s keynote  from above was given at the 2013 Out & Equal conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  I am considering buying a ticket to  the Out & Equal Conference in San Francisco, CA in November 2014.

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