My Advocacy Background

I have been a strong advocate for non discrimination since my high school days.
I started seriously in the 60's advocating for African American rights: through my church and working with Saul Alinski.
This continued through to Johnson's civil rights act; I continued working on voting rights for the poor and people of color.
Even though I was in the service, I have been a war protester from Vietnam through the current imbroglios in the Middle East.
For the past two years I have focused on transgender rights and prison reform.

The transgender work includes gaining anti-discrimination legislation in Albany County,
several presentations to local government agencies, and participating in University panels.
I was also an organizer of a transgender workshop in Philadelphia this year.

Finally, I am a co-founder of a Times Union of Albany blog, Transgender Talk and a Facebook page, Affirming Transgender Rights, offering a wide range of transgender topics.

Affirming Transgender Rights

RSS Times Union – Transgender Talk

  • Please don’t conflate sexual assault and sexual harassment October 18, 2017
    The current “Me too” social media campaign engulfed the original “Me Too” movement started by activist Tarana Burke, a Black woman, 10 years ago, particularly for women of color.* “Burke is the founder of the Me Too movement, which aims to do exactly what the recent trending topic has done on social media: unify those
    Byrgen Finkelman
  • Let’s stop being poor allies to our own community (a guest post a trans person) October 17, 2017
    How microaggressions when used by members of the transgender community members and allies affect me. Recently, while advocating for transgender rights, I was on the receiving end of some microaggressions that bothered me.  Now, let me explain, I am not newly transitioned.   I transitioned over 15 years ago, and I have been a member of
    Byrgen Finkelman
  • Impeach Jeff Sessions October 6, 2017
    Jeff Sessions does not uphold his oath, he does not uphold the law. Yesterday US Attorney General Jeff Sessions reversed a Department of Justice policy put into effect by Eric Holder under President Obama.  That policy stated that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color,