The Biden/Harris administration will almost certainly be better for LGBTQ people than the Trump/Pence administration has been. But that is a terribly low bar. Without sustained pressure, the administration will probably do little for the most vulnerable LGBTQ people, including Black trans people and LGBTQ immigrants and incarcerated people. There are also real limitations to what even the best possible administration can do now, given the damage Trump has done.

To assess what will come next, it helps to consider where we are. The federal courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court, have become exceptionally conservative, due to the number of appointments Trump has made. Short of a constitutional amendment or court-packing, that is not likely to change for decades at best. Meanwhile, the Trump administration has specifically attacked trans communities on many fronts, trying to bar trans access to homeless shelters, education, employment, asylum, health care, military service and participation in school sports. And the Trump administration has emboldened extremists who use tactics ranging from physical violence to state legislation to attack our communities.

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