QUEASHA HARDY #SayHerName: Black Trans Lives Matter.

[CONTENT NOTE: murder of Black transwoman Queasha Hardy; murders of transgender people generally and related statistics; misgendering; deadnaming. Post below the fold, because despite what we atheists like to tell you, HELL IS REAL. It is right here, right now, for far too many of the wrong people, and far too often Made In Amerikkka® by members of our own species.]

This morning I learned of Queasha Hardy via Change.org:

Black trans woman Queasha Hardy, 24, was found shot to death on a street in Baton Rouge, La., Monday, July 27, 2020. She identified as a woman, yet her next of kin insist she should be identified as a male, however, SHE is a WOMAN and deserves to be respected and identified as one. As we continue to fight for Justice for our Black Brothers and Sisters, we must recognize ALL of them including black trans people who are disproportionately affected by violence and brutality, with a life expectancy of only 35 years; an age that Queasha didn’t make it to. We DEMAND Justice for her. BLACK TRANS LIVES MATTER. SAY HER NAME.

I signed the Change.org petition to the relevant mayor demanding acknowledgement of Queasha’s correct gender; I urge you to do the same (if you are able to safely do so) here. She deserves dignity in death, since it sounds like she sure didn’t get it from her own family.

This petition is uncharacteristically sparse on detail, so I googled Queasha Hardy to find out more.

Via them (written two days after Queasha’s body was discovered):

Queasha Hardy (Instagram via them.)Queasha Hardy
(Instagram, via them.)

The body of a 24-year-old transgender woman was discovered in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on Monday after the victim allegedly sustained fatal gunshot wounds. Although local media initially identified the deceased by her deadname, community members identified her as Queasha Hardy, a stylist who operated a popular hair salon in town.

Hardy was found in the street in Windsor Place, a residential neighborhood on the far east end of Baton Rouge, at approximately 1 p.m. on Monday. She is reported to have passed away at the scene of the crime, and police have yet to identify a suspect.

According to the Human Rights Campaign, Hardy was the third Black trans woman to be found dead in Louisiana this year. Shakiie Peters, 32, was discovered in Amite City on July 1. And limited information has been provided regarding the passing of Draya McCarty, including the victim’s age; the place or exact date of her death; or whether police are investigating McCarty’s death as a homicide or have leads.

LGBTQ+ advocacy groups have referred to these deaths as an “epidemic.” HRC claims that 22 transgender people — the majority of whom were Black trans women — have lost their lives to violence in 2020. Hardy’s name is not yet on that list.

The piece goes on to recount the stories of other transgender people lost to homicidal violence this year who were not counted in HRC’s total at the time, and concludes with this:

These three deaths would bring the HRC total up to 25 — a figure which does not include the passing of 22-year-old Tatiana Hall in Philadelphia on June 29, which has yet to be formally ruled a homicide despite an ongoing investigation by local police. Two more killings would match the overall trans homicide total for all of 2019, with just over five months still left to go in the year.

There are now 26 names on HRC’s list, including Queasha’s.