Before North Carolina legislators introduced and passed House Bill 2 in one day last month — which restricted trans people from using the restroom of their choice and banned all muncipal LGBT protections — ninth-grader Skye Thomson was set to meet with the state’s governor to share his experiences.
While Thomson, a trans boy attending high school in eastern North Carolina, spoke to two of McCrory’s staff members, a promised meeting with the governor never took place.
In light of HB 2’s passage, Thomson wrote an open letter to the governor, pleading with him to actually sit down and meet with him and other trans youth. Read the message below, via the National Center for Transgender Equality.
Dear Governor McCrory:
My name is Skye Thomson. I am 15 years old, I live in Eastern North Carolina, and I am a transgender boy. That means I was born a female and identify as a male.
I was in Raleigh for the debate on House Bill 2 on March 23. I was the only transgender student who got a chance to speak out against HB2, the so called “bathroom bill” that is supposed to keep everyone safe in bathrooms. But it doesn’t keep everyone safe, especially people like me. Imagine yourself in my shoes, being a boy walking into a ladies room. It’s awkward and embarrassing and can actually be dangerous. By putting this law in place you’re putting kids like me in danger.
I’ve dealt with bullying my whole life. And now I feel that my own state lawmakers and governor are bullying me as well. I face daily harassment for being myself, everything from dirty looks to physical assaults. I don’t report them because I know it will just make the other kids bully me more. In schools all over the place transgender kids go through the same thing every day. Because of the constant harassment, I have had more than one transgender friend attempt suicide.
HB2 just gives other students all the more reason to hate us.
After my speech at the HB2 hearing, two people from your staff invited me to a private meeting. They said that you wanted to learn more about the difficulties transgender kids like me face. At the end of our meeting, I asked your staff if I could meet with you in person before you made your decision about HB2. I hoped that if we met you would see that I’m just like any other kid, a kid worth protecting. I wanted to tell you my story, really bad things that have happened to me that I’m not comfortable sharing in this letter and that should never happen to a kid. Your staff said they would try to find a way for us to meet, but we never did. You signed HB2 into law an hour later.
Governor, I would still like to meet with you if at all possible. My friends would like to meet with you too. We think that if you get to know us, you will work on helping to keep us safe in bathrooms and everywhere else we go.
Thank you for your time,