Yay for the Arkansas State Police (Yes, Really)

I was driving along highway 40 in Arkansas, doing 80-something in a 70 mph zone. I was trying to catch a flight out of Little Rock airport. Had I not been pulled over for speeding, I would have made it. As it happened, I did get pulled over, I missed the flight, and had to stay overnight in a hotel in Little Rock, and fly out the next day.

Getting a speeding ticket isn’t ever fun for me, and in this case was even less so.

I am a 6 foot tall transgender girl, clearly not a genetically integrated girl and clearly not simply male either. My aesthetics have an effect that tends to fluster especially young males, and not in a good way. I take it as it comes but I don’t like it.

When I was being pulled over, I was wearing female clothing, female shoes, female make-up, female jewelry and my driver’s license says “F” as its gender.

Southern States in general, and Arkansas not being an exception, don’t have a reputation for being particularly transgender-friendly. I’d recently seen a video of how a Ranger in Southern California treated a transgender girl in a way that I can only classify as police brutality, and gee, California is supposed to be relatively transgender-friendly. So I wasn’t all that optimistic as to how my speeding ticket experience might play out. But, everything ended up just fine.

In fact, I have some very nice things to say about the officer who gave me that speeding ticket. I even wrote to the Arkansas State Police Public Affairs folks about it. Reason: I appreciate the officer’s approach and professionalism.

Not everyone deals with my situation well. I could go on an on about this.

By contrast, the officer who pulled me over for speeding either has received good training on what transgender girls are and how to deal with us or he was just naturally gracious and savvy.

I especially appreciated how he suggested that I bring a coat before stepping out of the car, because it’s cold. That was thoughtful and nice.

Being a transgender girl isn’t easy but being treated like essentially just one more citizen … I appreciate that.

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