While many states have taken steps to make public spaces more accessible for the transgender community, North Carolina has made a shocking decision against LGBT equality. The state recently passed a law which bans transgender individuals from using bathrooms that match their gender identity – instead regulating them to the gender on their birth certificates.
The bill was signed into law by Governor Pat McCrory, a move that overturned many crucial portions of an ordinance by Charlotte City Council meant to protect LGBT citizens from discrimination. It’s a move considered to by many as act of aggression towards the LGBT community.
As groups stood outside the governor’s mansion on March 24th in protest of the law, which also strips LGBT people any legal protection from discrimination at work or housing, Micky Bradford began voguing. Bradford, a 25 year old trans woman, is an activist who works with the Transgender Law Center as well as Southerners on New Ground.
“I was tired. The most I could do was dance away my anger, frustration, and sadness,” Bradford said in an interview with Fusion.
In a video of her impromptu performance, Bradford dances in front of a cheering crowd as police officers watch. “It’s important to see a black trans woman be unafraid of police and policing,” Bradford says of the police presence.
Bradford also expressed concerned over other portions of the law, including a stipulations against against county’s raising their wages higher than North Carolina’s $7.25 minimum wage. The failure to provide a living wage is also a concern of Bradford, who believes this will directly impact people of color within the state’s LGBT community.
With high tensions of the presidential election and increasing focus on LGBT rights, Bradford’s dance is a potent act of resistance in the face of violent discrimination.