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February 29, 2020

Rest in Power, Camila. A Manifesto to the Greatest, Trans-Latina of the 21st Century

By Mitzi Salgado

Hay Camila

Last Friday, the world learned about the devastating news about Camila Concepcion. I am shocked, in disbelief. I can’t believe that she is gone. The co-producer of Genetified. Why? Why did this happen? I can’t fathom it other than that the pain was too great, to the point of death. That is deep. I am hurt and am at a loss. I feel like this solar system lost a large chunk of the sun and now we are all royally screwed because her voice was indispensable to humanity, to us, to nuestra gente, to trans people, to all.

Dear Camila, we needed your voice, your radical authenticity. We needed you in all of your galore. There was so much success for you to experience, you were on the rise. There was so much to learn from you, there was so much you were doing for the world, yes, a world that didn’t deserve you, you deserved better.

I am sorry, Camila. This wasn’t supposed to happen. I wish I had gotten close to you and given you the solution to it all. I wish when we talked about your sexy booty, I could have given you relief from your pain and consoled you with my friendship, support and allyship. I am sorry, the world failed you, queen. We need to do better.

We need to do better for you and for all trans people of color, especially. Who are we? The cis-gendered majority to take anything away from you? The fact that we have to say out loud that the bodies, lives, and experiences of trans people should be respected is ridiculous.  Yet, we are all dying when a trans person dies and when we don’t step up. Toxic internalized sexism burns some of us, but it kills trans people of color. We all play a role too. I can’t think about letting you go until everyone around me, including myself confront our roles that enable this abuse and toxic masculinity that is stripping life away.

A loss is always horrible, but when it’s a loss from the most marginalized women in our society, when the life expectancy of trans women in the United States is 35 for transwomen, the loss is personal, it’s inconceivable.

We cannot be silent; we cannot sit back and accept another defeat. We must raise awareness, mobilize, and advocate for you and for all transwomen, transwomen of color, and trans people. We must show up for trans people, speak up, and use our positions of privilege to protect their lives.

Today was a horrible reminder of what you must have gone through, and your friends, your loved ones, and all of us who know about what happened are responsible to your life to make sure we do better, Camila.

Rest in Power, Camila. La legendaria, la guapa e inteligente Camila. We will miss you and we will never forget you, nor your light. Te queremos y seguiremos la lucha por ti, chula.

Rest in Peace, Camila. 

With love,

Una Hermana. 


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Cómo ayudar a alguien que está en riesgo de tomar su propia vida.