This is largely society's view of trans people. On the surface, when we can "blend" with cis society, we are treated like other humans, people capable of bringing good into the world like everyone else. When we get "clocked", however, when someone realizes we're trans, we are so often immediately transformed in the eyes of others into a monster, a predator here to prey on cis society.
So fuck it. Let's be like the anglerfish. A thing of beauty, a threat to the cultural norms of the day, an incredible multifaceted being capable of withstanding the harsh and unforgiving environment we are faced with every single day for being trans in a cisnormative society.
My sister is an incredible human. Studying for her PhD. in physics, she is a ninja-like Super Smash Bros player, swing dancing, guitar playing, circuit bending person who happens to be transgender. Over the years my sister and I have grown much closer despite the distance of her living in Chicago and I in Oklahoma. We have bonded over music and art and animes like One Punch Man but nothing like the spark of conversation after a new tattoo. My sister had recently got an Anglerfish tattoo and I didn’t question much about it till a couple months later when I saw another person walking the streets with a big ol’ beautifully-gnarly fish on their calf. So naturally, I rang my sister up and dug a little deeper into what this fish meant to her. She told me how it felt to get “clocked” as a transgender person and how the stigma can erase all her accomplishments and accolades in the eyes of a bigoted viewer. How like the anglerfish survives the enormous pressure of the deep sea, so does the non-cis person in a cisnormative society. I think as a community we can all do a little better to recognize each other for our intellect and capabilities. So, I came back to my sister a couple days later with this graphic idea I had, and she loved it. It is a graphic to represent the community we want to build in the new decade. For our first release under this initiative we have partnered with SISU to launch the Anglerfish Project. SISU is a non-profit organization specializing in emergency care and housing for homeless youth and a safe zone for LGBTQ people alike, in hopes that our contribution, no matter how big or small, can positively impact a person in need.
The QR Code on the back will take you directly to Silent Studios website where you can donate directly to SISU and read more about the incredible works that they do or to simply buy this T-Shirt as a show of your support.