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Trans Spirituality July 2022

| Jul 25, 2022
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Rabbah Rona Matlow

It’s hard to feel really spiritual right now, when we are facing huge existential threats in our community. Emboldened by the Dobbs decision of the Supreme Court, overruling Roe V. Wade, the GOP in CONgress, who don’t even have power (yet) are already plotting anti-trans legislation to enact after the midterm elections, on the presumption that they win control of both houses. After the Dobbs decision, Politico discovered that an evangelical group had their political arm wining and dining some of the more conservative justices on the Court, to influence their decisions in cases like this.

Friends, the First Amendment Separation Clause may exist on paper, but in the eyes of the GOP and the evangelicals, it’s a very weak suggestion, not the law of the land. They don’t care about it and they legislate their versions of the laws. Of course, what they are pushing are, in reality, not RELIGIOUS laws. They claim them to be, but as I have discussed before in this forum, they are acts of white supremacy. They will not rest until the only group left with human rights in the U.S. is white Anglo-Saxon Protestant males, who are upper middle class or above, fully able, and with no debts, who are cis/het/binary. The rest of us — women, minorities, queers, the disabled, etc. will all be marginalized to the point of chattel or worse if they have their way.

In Jewish tradition, the act of saving lives takes precedence over all other religious obligations. These evangelicals CLAIM they are acting to save lives, but we know otherwise. They talk about safety in bathrooms in legislating against trans women. Yet the only people who have ever been arrested in large numbers for bathroom misconduct are male GOP congressmen. So, I guess we should ban them! Likewise with the abortion ban. They claim to be saving the lives of fetuses, but in reality, they are jeopardizing the lives of the mothers AND the fetuses when they deny abortions. What they are actually doing is exerting domination over women, particularly women of color.

Jesus said that the most important commandment was to first love God with all your heart, your soul, and your body, and then love your neighbor as yourself. If these evangelicals at all cared about religion they would be acting in a completely different manner. They are acting out of hate and malice, and they are acting in a very judgmental way, violating another one of the huge commandments in Matthew.

What are we to do? The only thing we can do is to stop them at the ballot box in November. Every queer, every BIPOC, every disabled person, every young person, every marginalized person of every stripe MUST get out the vote. We have an obligation to the trans community, to the other oppressed communities in the country and the country itself to flood the polling places with progressive voices, to overwhelm the GOP and make them irrelevant. There is always a huge amount of apathy at election time. Midterm elections are the worst. But our lives LITERALLY DEPEND on our getting out the vote this time.

If you are able, help someone who can’t get to the polls. If you are not able, reach out to someone who is. Register to vote by mail if you can, so you can avoid the polling places. If you are unhoused or don’t have the ability to receive secure mail, contact your local LGBTQ center, homeless assistance center, Jewish Family Services (JFS) or other agency for assistance. All JFS offices help any unhoused people who come in for help, not just Jewish people. Help is out there, but you must ask for it.

We need to stop this scourge, and in doing so, we ARE doing Holy work.

Peace out,


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Category: Transgender Politics


About the Author ()

Rabbah Rona Matlow (ze/hir) is an AMAB NB trans woman. Ze is a retired navy nuclear power officer, permanently disabled veteran and ordained rabbi. Ze is the author of the upcoming book “We are God’s Children Too”, part autobiography and part text which debunks the myths that conservative clergy have been teaching about trans and queer people for millennia. Ze is a communal activist, pastoral counselor and educator. Hir websites are and

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