LGBT rights have, as a whole, achieved stunning support within the past few years. But there's still a lot to be done for transgender people who remain one of the most persecuted groups, both in this country and across the globe. Here to teach us a lesson in benevolent acceptance is a Washington chapter of the Girl Scouts that rejected a $100,000 donation to oppose transgender girls' membership in their branch, because it went against their values of inclusivity and diversity.
The Western Washington Girl Scouts turned down the six-figure sum — a large amount by any means, but especially for a nonprofit — from an anonymous donor upon learning that it came with a disturbing catch: They had to refuse support for transgender girls. Looking to raise its own money, the Girl Scouts launched an IndieGoGo campaign called #ForEveryGirl. "500 girls would have received that money," the video created for the crowd fund explains, before asking people to donate. "Send a loud clear message that our community is stronger because we are inclusive."
The response they received was staggering. Within the first day, they raised $100,000. At the time of writing, with 29 days left remaining, about 5,000 people have already raised more than $250,000.
The outpour of support goes to show the growing opposition to discrimination against transgender people, but also highlights the long road ahead to equality for the trans community.
Since 2011, the Girl Scouts of the USA marked itself as one of the leading national nonprofits that support trans rights. It has long reiterated its inclusion of transgender girls, despite the opposition within some of its chapters."There is not one type of girl," Girl Scouts of the USA Chief Girl Expert, Andrea Bastani Archibald, said in a statement after the latest pushback. "Every girl's sense of self, path to it, and how she is supported is unique."
Watch the #ForEveryGirl video here: