Did you know transgender women of color are disproportionately affected by fatal violence? Last year was the deadliest year for the transgender community in nearly ten years — according to Mother Jones,“Trans women are four times more likely than cisgender women to be homicide victims” and “84 percent of the victims were people of color and 80 percent identified as female.” It is a state of emergency for the transgender community, especially transwomen of color. Sadly, these numbers are probably higher because many transgender people are misgendered or misidentified in death.
Monét X Change, a New York-based drag performer, decided to make a statement about the murder of transwomen. Using Billie Holiday‘s 1939 song “Strange Fruit,” which was about lynchings in the south, Monét performs her own version of the song, highlighting the death of transwomen.
From the transwoman bleeding red glitter to Monét’s dynamic voice, this is a perfect example of art meeting activism. It is uncomfortable, shocking and emotional. Monét’s “Strange Fruit” is just a small taste of her talent. The performer will be competing on season ten of RuPaul’s Drag Race, which premieres Thursday, March 22. We’ll be rooting for you, Monét!