"I knew after my
second visit to the Gender Identity Clinic that my appointments with West
London Mental Health Trust (or 'Charing Cross', as it's still colloquially
known) would feel different now that I had addressed most of the social
challenges of the 'Real Life Experience' (RLE) – and been prescribed female
hormones . . .
My third and
fourth appointments were with my main clinician, Dr Davies. With no
questions remaining about my past, the focus shifted entirely to the
present, discussing how I felt about the slow physical changes induced by
the oestrogen, and whether or not any new social challenges had arisen as a
direct consequence of my living as female.
I tell him not,
as we quickly assess the main spheres of my life – family, friends, physical
and mental health, housing and employment. Over varying periods of time, all
have settled back into normality, without coming out causing me to lose or
leave my job, become more uncomfortable in my living space or be estranged
from close friends or family members. I appreciate that this is not
necessarily usual for transsexual people – these are the kind of things that
problematise transition for some people, resulting in them staying on the
pathway for months or years longer than they perhaps imagined, and my
clinician agrees that I've been very fortunate."
5-18-11: Windy City Times: "ACLU suing IDPH over criteria for trans
Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is suing the Illinois Department of Public
Health (IDPH) for requiring transgender people to prove they have undergone
a series of sex-reassignment surgeries before they can change the gender
marker on their birth certificates.
released a statement May 10, claiming that the State Registrar of Vital
Records had failed to uphold a promise it made two years ago to amend
outdated policies that blocked most transgender men and many transgender
women from updating their birth certificates.
"Illinois is the
only state that requires genital surgery," said John Knight, who directs the
ACLU's LBGT and AIDS Project. Knight said that other states that allow
transgender people to amend their birth certificates typically require a
doctor's letter stating that a person has changed their sex in some way,
even if they haven't undergone genital surgery."
5-17-11: The Commercial Appeal: "Former Memphis officer sentenced to
two years in prison for beating transgender prisoner, tax evasion"
guilty to violation of civil rights resulting in bodily injury of
transgender prisoner Dwayne "Duanna" Johnson, who was being booked into the
Shelby County Jail in February 2008 after being arrested by McRae for
prostitution. A surveillance tape showed McRae wrapping his handcuffs around
his fist and punching Johnson in the head and then using a chemical spray .
prosecutor Steve Parker said McRae deserved prison time, rather than
probation, because his defense attacked and tried to discredit other
officers who provided information against him. "(The officers) did the right
thing," Parker said. "They tried to stop this. The defendant disgraced his
badge and his fellow officers."
mother, Hazel Johnson Skinner: "She was very saddened by the way she was
treated in this case. She got no respect because she was different in
society." Skinner told U.S. Dist. Judge S. Thomas Anderson she approved of
the plea agreement and two-year sentence."
5-17-11: Kickstarter.com (posted 3-15): "Becoming Visible, portraits
of homeless transgender teens", a project by Josh Lehrer (more)
30,000 homeless teenagers on the streets of New York, 35% are transgender -
- - "
[Art as a means
of social change. Stunning platinum and palladium prints ennobling NYC's
fastest growing homeless population. A reminder of how far we yet have to
WBALTV: “Woman Indicted On Hate Crime Charge In McDonald's Attack – Cell
Phone Video Posted Online After Incident” (more,
involved in an assault that was captured on a cell phone and went viral
online has been indicted on hate crime charges.
The office of
the Baltimore County State's Attorney said Teonna Monae Brown, 18, was
indicted Monday on charges that included hate crime and first- and
juvenile faces the same charges, the office said.”
5-16-11: Metro.us: "Federal red tape snags sex change"
transgender New Yorkers, changing their gender is only the first step on the
path to living a new life.
Then comes the
difficulty of showing accurate identification. Although it can be a hassle
to change one’s sex on a driver’s license or passport, the real obstacle
comes with updating Social Security registration, according to the Sylvia
Rivera Law Project, a transgender advocacy group.
accurately registered in the Social Security database can result in the
denial of public services or medical care. It can also cause complications
in the workplace: The federal government may alert employers that a
transgender employee has conflicting identification, effectively “outing”
the employee to his or her boss."
5-16-11: CBS News: "Chaz Bono and Jennifer Elia are engaged"
"With his gender
reassignment surgery behind him, Chaz Bono says he is ready to move forward
in his relationship with longtime girlfriend, Jennifer Elia.
The couple, who
have been together for nearly six years, announced they are engaged on the
"Piers Morgan Tonight" show and said they are hoping to tie the knot "within
5-16-11: Las Vegas Review-Journal: "Fear of violence always on mind of
"The video is
disturbing on multiple levels. A woman and a teenage girl at a Baltimore
area McDonald's beat a transgender woman while others stand by, doing
nothing. The violence was captured April 18 by an employee of the fast-food
giant who can be heard laughing as the woman is pulled by her hair across
the restaurant and then to the ground, repeatedly kicked in the face, the
back of the head, the ribs.
the woman went into a seizure before the violence ended. Nobody lifted a
finger save for one elderly woman, who was punched in the face for her
trouble . . .
incident in Maryland is extreme, people who are transgender live in fear of
violence as they seek acceptance. ""Discrimination is widespread against the
transgender community," said Mel Goodwin of the Gay & Lesbian Community
Center of Southern Nevada . . . They face discrimination getting and keeping
jobs, housing, medical care. They've even been barred from getting help at
emergency shelters," Goodwin said."
5-16-11: Helsingin Sanomat (Finland): "Transvestism is no longer a
disease in Finland – The Institute for
Health and Welfare will remove even sexual fetishism and sadomasochism from
diagnoses relating to sexual behaviour will be removed from the Finnish
version of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and
Related Health Problems (ICD) next year. The number of categories to be
removed from the ICD is five, including transvestism, sexual fetishism,
sadomasochism, and diverse sexual target disorders."
5-15-11: The Toronto Star (Canada): "How transgender United Church
minister Ruth Wood came out to her parishioners"
"The sense of
womanhood that she feels is subtle and difficult to express. “I would not
say I feel like a woman,” Ruth reflects. “I feel I am a woman. It’s not so
much a feeling, it’s an inner sense. I am a woman. Most people have never
questioned it. They have bodies that go with who they are.”
The writer and
former soldier Jan Morris, a father of five who, as a journalist,
accompanied the first British expedition to climb Everest, transitioned
surgically in 1972. In her memoir, Conundrum, she wrote that gender is
insubstantial, not physical at all. “It is soul, perhaps . . . it is more
truly life and love than any combination of genitals, ovaries, and hormones.
It is the essentialness of oneself, the psyche, the fragment of unity.”
“It was a
mystery,” she concluded, “even to me.”
is just as inexplicable to Ruth. “How does someone get to be that way? I
still don’t know, and nobody has specifically said this is how it happens.
For me, it just is. Some are trans and some not. I simply am.”"
5-15-11: Essex County Standard (UK): "Colchester transsexual and
friends fight ‘illegal’ ban"
says her human rights have been breached after she and her pals were banned
from a bar.
46, of Harwich Road, Colchester, and five transgender friends, have been
told by the landlady they are putting other customers off. The group had
regularly enjoyed the live music and karaoke at Ronnie’s Bar, in Clacton,
but were suddenly barred this week."
5-14-11: The Morning Call (Pennsylvania): "Transgendered woman sues
LSI – Lawsuit alleges engineer was laid
off after gender transition"
knew her transformation from a man to a woman would be difficult for some of
her coworkers to understand.
That's why the
former product engineer at
Agere Systems met
in February 2005 with colleagues who knew her as Jim to explain why she had
chosen to change her appearance.
marked the start of a pattern of discrimination by the company, Stacy
alleges in a federal lawsuit. In January 2008, after she had completed her
gender transition, Stacy was singled out to be laid off, the lawsuit says."
Gets Better - Janet Mock Reveals Trans History"
about Janet Mock and her story:
5-12-11: YouTube: "Joy Ladin on Transgender Judaism (part I)
Ladin, new York Yeshiwe, on Transgender Judaism (part I)"
YouTube: "Joy Ladin on Transgender Judaism (part II)
Ladin, new York Yeshiwe, on Transgender Judaism (part II)"
5-12-11: Chicago Tribune: "Transgender people sue Illinois to change
birth certificates - State refuses unless genital surgery is done, lawsuit
"Lauren Grey is,
in all aspects of her life, a woman. Her driver's license reflects that, as
do her name, her Social Security information and her appearance.
Illinois birth certificate says she's a man. She has requested that it be
changed and provided a supporting affidavit from the doctor who performed
breast augmentation and facial feminization surgeries on her. But, according
to a lawsuit filed on behalf of her and other transgender people this week
by the American Civil Liberties Union, the state has denied her request,
saying transgender people in Illinois must have "genital reformation
surgery" to have their birth certificates changed.
"I live as a
female, I feel female and everybody treats me that way, but this document
doesn't reflect that," Grey said. "I know that's not me, but I can't do
anything about it.""
5-12-11: CNN International (re Thailand): "Photo gallery: Thailand
crowns its newest transgender beauty queen"
"There's more to
Thailand's best-known annual beauty pageant than meets the eye. With around
500,000 transgenders -- known locally as ladyboys or katoeys -- Thailand has
one of the highest rates of transsexualism per head in the world . . .
employed in government departments, airline offices, commercial offices and
retail outlets. One entrenched Bangkok adage is that there are more ladyboys
in the Thai capital than there are bus stops. Another states that all the
best looking girls in Thailand used to be boys.
reasonably well accepted as the "third sex" in Thai society, life is not
easy for the nation's ladyboys. Those called up for national service in the
past have had to be classified as suffering from a mental illness . . .
For the past 14
years, the owners of Tiffany's
cabaret show in the eastern seaboard city of Pattaya have been a major
force in promoting the cause and rights of Thailand's transgender community.
The annual Miss Tiffany's Universe beauty pageant attracts a domestic
television audience alone estimated at more than 10 million people."
5-12-11: Montreal Gazette (Canada): "A Transsexual Woman? -
Reflections of a transitional journey to womanhood"
"I suppose it is
a label I will never entirely be rid of: “a transsexual woman.” Not that I
mind it all that much. And considering that I write about trans issues in
two blogs, I can hardly blame anyone for referring to me that way.
though, legally speaking, I am simply a female. There are no asterisks
attached to my newly minted birth certificate or any of the other official
documentation I carry around (ie. driver’s licence, medicare card). I am an
F on those documents, not a *TF (transsexual female).
I’d rather be
seen as just “a woman,” and there are some who see me that way. My late
boyfriend saw me as a woman, though he knew of my medical background. But he
never used the adjective “transsexual” once with me. Nor have other men who
have come and gone in my life."
5-11-11: Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law: Press Release: "New
Study Finds Employment Discrimination against Transgender Residents of
Massachusetts Costs Millions Each Year"
"A new research
study released today by The Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and
Gender Identity Law and Public Policy shows that employment discrimination
against transgender residents of Massachusetts likely costs the Commonwealth
millions of dollars each year. These costs are the result of reduced income
tax revenue, expenditures on public assistance programs, and other costs.
The added cost to the Commonwealth for public health insurance coverage
alone is $3 million annually due to employment discrimination against
transgender people experience employment discrimination, not only can that
have a substantial negative impact on people’s lives, but it also affects
the Commonwealth financially so all Massachusetts residents pay a price,”
said study author Jody L. Herman, the Peter J. Cooper Public Policy Fellow
at the Williams Institute."
5-11-11: Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law: "The Cost of
Employment Discrimination against Transgender Residents of Massachusetts",
by Jody L. Herman.
residents of Massachusetts have reported experiencing discrimination in
employment. The National Transgender Discrimination Survey (NTDS) found that
76 percent of respondents from Massachusetts experienced harassment,
mistreatment, or discrimination in employment. NTDS respondents reported
that due to anti-transgender bias, 20 percent had lost a job, 39 percent
were not hired for positions they applied for, and 17 percent were denied
employment due to anti-transgender bias often means lost wages, lost health
insurance coverage, and housing instability. Therefore, employment
discrimination might affect the budget of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
in several ways: reduced income tax revenues, higher public assistance
expenditures, and other costs . . . This study estimates that the impact of
discrimination is likely to cost the Commonwealth millions of dollars each
year. The added cost to the Commonwealth for public health insurance
coverage alone is $3 million annually due to employment discrimination."
5-11-11: Huffington Post: "The High Cost of Discrimination", by Gunner
discrimination means that otherwise qualified workers are not paying income
tax. It also means that these same workers are forced to seek health
insurance and other assistance through publicly-subsidized programs such as
rental assistance, shelters, and Section 8 housing. The Williams Institute
estimates that the state is losing millions of dollars annually because of
employment discrimination against transgender state residents, including $3
million that's being spent to provide health coverage to people who would
otherwise be privately insured, and additional millions in lost income
5-11-11: Boston Globe: "Transgender bias in workplace costs millions,
study says – State spending on insurance
for jobless is cited"
discrimination against transgender Massachusetts residents is costing the
state millions of dollars each year in increased payouts for public health
insurance benefits and other costs, according to a report being released
The study, by
the Williams Institute for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and
Public Policy, a think tank at the University of California Los Angeles,
found that more than three-quarters of 283 transgender Massachusetts
residents surveyed have experienced some form of employment discrimination,
including losing a job, being denied a promotion, or not being hired at all.
As a result, the state is paying out nearly $3 million for public health
insurance coverage to transgender residents who have lost their jobs due to
bias, according to the study."
5-11-11: Supergoodmovies.com (India): "Narthaki (Touchy tale of
"Call it a bold
attempt. Director Vijay Padma has gathered guts to do a movie on
transgender, often shown in a poor light by directors in Tamil cinema.
Narthaki is an honest attempt to probe into their heart and mind.
transgender, plays the lead role . . . Born as Subbu, a lovable son in a
village in Thanjavur, he slowly develops physical and emotional changes.
Subbu decides to elope from house one day and takes refuge in Mumbai with
transgender community is living. Subbu becomes Kalki. As it happens Kalki
gets social condemnation. But a determined soul, she decides to make a life
of her own and learns classical dance. How she emerges triumphant in the
struggle for survival is what the story is all about."
5-11-11: JoonAng Daily (South Korea): "Progress is slow for Korea’s
"Harisu, who had
sex reassignment surgery in 1997, has became a symbol of overcoming
prejudice among transgenders. Now on the 10th anniversary of her debut,
Harisu wants to do more to help transgenders, who face widespread
stigmatization and discrimination that oftentimes prevents them from
educational and career advancement."
5-11-11: JoongAng Daily (South Korea): "Providing inspiration for
"Among the 20
transgender performers in “The Fantastic Show,” a live song and dance show
launched by Harisu, the nation’s first transgender celebrity, Choi Han-bit
addresses herself as one of “Harisu’s kids” . . .
college senior, who is majoring in dance, said she still vividly recalls
Harisu’s debut commercial a decade ago. “I was 15 at the time. I was
thrilled that I could live like her,” recalled Choi . . . Harisu, Choi said,
was a trailblazer for transgenders in Korea. “She made a great impact, and I
wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for her.” "
5-10-11: Daily Northwestern: "Updated: Bailey's Human Sexuality class
will not be offered next academic year –
Spokesman: 'Northwestern is reviewing how such a course best fits into the
University’s curriculum'" (more,
Michael Bailey's popular Human Sexuality course, which came under national
scrutiny following a controversial after-class, optional sex toy
demonstration in February, will not be offered next academic year,
University spokesman Al Cubbage confirmed Monday afternoon.
Alan K. Cubbage, Vice President for University Relations, May 9, 2011:
University's Department of Psychology will not offer a course in human
sexuality during the 2011-12 academic year. That course was taught
previously by Professor J. Michael Bailey, who will have other teaching
assignments in the coming year. Courses in human sexuality are offered in a
variety of academic departments in other universities, and Northwestern is
reviewing how such a course best fits into the University's curriculum. At
Northwestern University, the dean of a college/school has the right and
responsibility to determine course assignments. "
one academic fiasco after another over the years, Bailey went too far
demonstration. Northwestern finally figured out how to nail him: by
canceling his course. Bailey is now in deep yogurt at NU because he has no
research program and has never taught any other major courses except 'human
sexuality'. Even with tenure, the only way he can now pay his dues to his
department is to take on a heavy teaching and service load. His best bet is
to go find a position at some 'Christian' university, where people will
appreciate his demonization of gender variant people.]
5-10-11: My Fox Chicago: "Transgender Illinoisians Sue State Over
"A class action
lawsuit was filed Tuesday claiming that the state of Illinois refuses to
change the gender on birth certificates of transsexual people unless they’ve
undergone genital surgery . . .
The suit claims
that what is considered necessary medical and psychological treatment for
transsexuals varies by individual and does not always include genital
surgery, which is rarely completed for transsexual men."
5-09-11: The Stanford Daily: "The Transitive Property: Reflections on
a Transgender Childhood," by Cristopher Bautista
"I never met
anyone transgender until I reached college, so when I was younger, I
desperately looked for somebody like me in the books I read, the movies and
TV shows I watched . . .
Though I came
close, I never could find myself in those brave heroines or the gallant
princes that I discovered during my reading and watching excursions. As a
result, I led a lonely childhood, a childhood where I thought I was
completely alone, because there were no other kids like me, not in the
people I met in real life or my imagination. I thought children like me did
not exist, that I was a freak — it was a feeling that sat long with me and
defined my childhood, and the residue of that loneliness still haunts me
5-09-11: China Post (re Thailand): "Student wins Miss Tiffany Universe
transgender pageant in Pattaya"
"A 21-year old
student from Ramkamhaeng University was crowned Miss Tiffany Universe in the
resort city of Pattaya on Friday night.
pageant of the cabaret theatre Miss Tiffany Pattaya features the most
beautiful transgenders and transvestites in the Kingdom. It has attracted
young transgenders — from students to professionals — and has launched the
career of a number of past winners.
communication arts student Sirapassorn “Sammy” Auttayakorn from Bangkok's
Ramkamhaeng University and Suan Dusit University bested 29 other contestants
in a pageant watched by millions of Thais through a live telecast."
5-08-11: Tulsa World: "Becoming Katie"
One: Katie was born at 15. Luke is just a painful memory.
Luke Hill is now
just a memory in the minds of those who loved him, a blue-eyed ghost in a
portrait. Katie Hill is flesh and bone, long hair and limbs, breasts and
eyelashes. A happy 16-year-old who believes it's not her fault she was born
into the wrong body. And by burying Luke and becoming Katie, she has righted
what nature made wrong.
Part Two: After years feeling lost, Katie finds her new identity.
Katie Hill tries
not to take it personally when people don't understand what transgender
means. She didn't know herself for a long time. A common assumption is that
it's something like a drag queen, or a person who likes to dress up in the
opposite gender's clothing on occasion. Except for transgender individuals,
it's not about the costume or outfit. They genuinely feel like the gender
they're born into simply doesn't fit."
5-07-11: Entertainment Weekly: "Candy Darling: A haunting documentary
reveals the most beautiful, and tragic, of Andy Warhol's superstars"
Darling, the haunting new documentary about the Andy Warhol superstar
and pioneering drag-queen transsexual Candy Darling, includes a detail that
may not seem to be that big a deal, but that began to astonish me the more I
thought about it. It’s that Candy, by the early 1970s, after she’d already
become a famous fixture on the downtown scene, was still impoverished,
crashing on people’s couches, eating a can of beans for dinner, and — the
movie strongly suggests — turning tricks to survive. Basically, she was
living the desperate, scraping-through-each-day existence of just about any
anonymous New York drag queen.
On the surface,
of course, this makes total sense. Warhol, who was notoriously cheap, didn’t
pay his actors very much, let alone his hangers-on. (The “pay” was the
privilege of getting to sit around the Factory.) The Warhol productions that
Candy appeared in, like Flesh (1968) and Women in Revolt
(1971), marked the launch of Warhol’s underground-crossover phase as a
tinpot hipster movie mogul, but they weren’t exactly art-house hits that
played for months on the Upper East Side. They were outré curiosities, and
so, in her way, was Candy. So why would I expect that she might have had a
little more money?"
5-07-11: CNN (re Mexico): "Part 1: Mexico's third gender";
"Part 2: The Evolution of Mexico's third gender";
"Part 3: Muxe today in Mexico"
"CNN takes you
to Juchitan, Mexico where what they consider a third gender not only exists
but are integrated into society."
video series on the Muxe of
Zapotec people of
5-07-11: ABC2 News: "Transgender attack victim meets with woman who
tried to help" (with video)
"For the first
time, the victim of a brutal beating has met the woman who tried to step in
and help. The story made headlines around the country and the world. Chrissy
Polis, a transgender woman, was beaten inside a McDonald's in Baltimore
County back on April 18th. Employees stood by and watched, and one worker
recorded the attack with a cell phone.
Now, Polis says
she's recovering but still trying to deal with the effects of that beating.
The woman who stepped in, Vicky Thoms, says she wishes more people would
5-06-11: Canberra Times (Australia): "Transgender people face 'social
intersex people living in the ACT (Australian Capital Territory) are six
times more likely to be unemployed than the rest of the population and have
difficulty accessing health services, a new survey shows.
The Gender Diversity in the ACT survey is the first of its kind and reveals
high rates of social isolation and discrimination among the local
transgender and intersex population.
advocacy and support group A Gender Agenda, the survey reveals 78 per cent
of transgender and intersex people in the ACT have had difficulty accessing
medical care. A further 21 per cent of respondents travelled interstate to
access general practitioner services because local doctors did not have the
knowledge to treat them or refused to provide appropriate treatment.
[general practitioners] I have been to have either been ignorant to
non-binary gender or treat it as a psychiatric condition that needs
curing,'' one respondent said.
A Gender Agenda
spokesman Peter Hyndal said the report was the first documented evidence of
the acute unemployment, homelessness and discrimination faced by the ACT
trans and intersex community."
Medical News Today (UK): "Female-To-Male Transsexual People (Transmen) Have
More Autistic Traits" (more,
"A new study
from Cambridge University, funded by the Medical Research Council, has found
for the first time that female-to-male transsexual people have a higher than
average number of autistic traits. The study has important implications for
the clinical management of biological girls with gender incongruence that
persists into adulthood.
Professor Baron-Cohen, Director of the Autism Research Centre, interpreted
the results: Girls with a higher than average number of autistic traits tend
to have male-typical interests, showing a preference for systems over
emotions. They prefer not to socialise with typical girls because they have
different interests, and because typical girls on average have more advanced
social skills. Both of these factors may lead girls with a higher number of
autistic traits to socialize with boys, to believe they have a boy's mind in
a girl's body, and to attribute their unhappiness to being a girl" . . .
Dr Domenico Di
Ceglie, a world expert on gender incongruence in young people from the
Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust, and a member of the research
team, commented: "The awareness of the presence of autistic features may
help these young people to explore the reasons behind their perceptions, and
help them make more informed decisions about treatment.""
[Here we see yet
another 'scientific study' being exploited to pathologize transgender
children. But where are the numbers? How strong is the evidence? Given that
no correlation numbers are given, we suspect they are merely minor
percentages. Furthermore, there are definitional problems, such as whether
to interpret boy-like behavior in girls as being autism or gender variance.
As usual, however, the pathologizers jump to the conclusion that even the
slightest correlation is causality.
notorious Domenico Di Ceglie of the Tavistock and Portman Clinic (the UK's
version of the Clark Institute) now has a whole new "theory" for justifying
his reparatist treatment of gender variant children. And the story is
spreading widely in the medical establishment, where it resonates in the
minds of many who wish transsexualism could be "explained away."]
5-06-11: The Christian Institute (UK): "Judge allows sex change for
"The boy, known
only as Jamie, had been dressing as a girl for the past two years, and had
been allowed to use the girl’s toilets at school. Judge Linda Dessau, who
has a history of approving sex change procedures for youngsters in
Australia, said she had to make a quick decision so the boy could start
treatment before puberty develops further.
But critics of
sex change operations say that gender dysphoria is a psychiatric problem,
not a physical one, and radical physical surgery does more harm than good.
Doctors from the NHS Portman Clinic – an internationally acclaimed centre –
have stated in the past, “what many patients find is that they are left with
a mutilated body, but the internal conflicts remain”. Many transsexuals
regret their decision to live in the opposite sex. A Home Office report on
transsexualism said: “Many people revert to their biological sex after
living for some time in the opposite sex”."
and Portman Clinic's reparatist methods for suppressing gender variance in
children are widely applauded in the 'Christian' community.]
New York Times: "The Reluctant Transgender Role Model", by Cintra Wilson
"At the Sundance
Film Festival earlier this year, I wheedled a ticket to “Becoming Chaz,” a
documentary about the sex change of Chastity Bono. Having long admired the
Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato World of Wonder productions . . . I
anticipated their usual mix of human interest, alternative lifestyle and
unflinchingly personal film, which will have its premiere on Oprah Winfrey’s
network on Tuesday, details Chastity Bono’s journey from her spangled
childhood in rhinestone pantsuits on “The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour” to a
more recent two years in her televised life: Chastity, now Chaz, invited
cameras to witness the searingly intimate experience of his gender
being a lifelong liberal from San Francisco and friendly with a number of
transgender people, I found the film as unsettling as it was inspiring. I
came away forced to confront a whole swag-bag full of transphobias that I
didn’t know I’d had. So I went to Los Angeles to talk to the filmmakers, and
to Chaz himself. "
5-06-11: LGBTQ Nation: "Hawaii Governor signs transgender workplace
protections bill into law" (more)
Neil Abercrombie on Thursday signed into law House Bill 546, a bill that
prohibits workplace discrimination against transgender people.The new law
bars employers from discriminating on the basis of gender identity or
expression, bringing Hawaii’s labor law in line with similar protections in
the areas of housing and public accommodations.
the 13th state to ban employment discrimination based on gender identity or
5-06-11: Huffington Post: "Sex Crimes In New Orleans, Separate And
Unequal", by Trymaine Lee
wear a scarlet letter -- rather, 11 letters -- spelled out on their driver’s
licenses in bright orange text: SEX OFFENDER. They aren’t child molesters or
pedophiles. Most are poor, hard-luck black women in New Orleans who agreed
to exchange oral or anal sex for money. In doing so they violated the latest
version of Louisiana’s 206-year-old Crime Against Nature law, which carries
a maximum penalty of up to five years in prison and registration as a sex
Opponents of the
law say it is discriminatory and targets poor women and the gay and
transgendered community who engage in what they call “survival sex.” In
March, the Center for Constitutional Rights filed a lawsuit on behalf of
nine anonymous plaintiffs against the state, Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) and a
host of state agencies, calling the law unconstitutional.
“There are a
number of absurd things in the Louisiana laws, and this is one of the more
absurd,” said R. Judson Mitchell, a law professor at the law clinic at
Loyola University in New Orleans. “There are crimes against nature happening
at strip clubs on Bourbon Street every single night. The difference is we
are dealing with women that didn’t have a fancy strip club to go to.”"
5-05-11: GIDReform: "APA Releases 2nd Proposal to Replace GID in the
DSM-5", by Kelley Winters, Ph.D.
and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), published by the American
Psychiatric Association, is the medical and social definition of mental
disorder throughout North America and strongly influences international
nomenclature. There is broad recognition that some kind of diagnostic coding
is necessary to facilitate access to medical and/or surgical transition care
for those trans and transsexual people who need it. However, the current
psychiatric classifications of Gender Identity Disorder (GID) and
Transvestic Fetishism (TF) in the Fourth Edition, Text Revision of the DSM
(DSM-IV-TR) fall short of meeting this need and actually contradict
transition by describing transition itself as symptomatic of mental
Sexual and Gender Identity Disorders Workgroup of the DSM-5 Task Force
released a second revision to proposed diagnostic criteria to replace the
Gender Identity Disorder category in the DSM-5."
5-05-11: Sydney Morning Herald (Australia): "Transgender people most
Rights Commissioner, Catherine Branson, has called on the federal government
to introduce federal laws to protect people from discrimination on the
grounds of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Ms Branson said the
most distressing and egregious examples of violence came from people who
were intersex or who were transitioning from male to female or the other way
A 2010 survey
found that 92 per cent of trans women and 55 per cent of trans men reported
they had been the subject of verbal abuse, and 46 per cent and 36 per cent
respectively had been punched kicked or beaten; almost 40 per cent of trans
women reported having been attacked with knives, bottles or rocks. The
report, Addressing Sexual Orientation and Sex and/or Gender Identity
Discrimination, also heard examples of discrimination in nursing homes, in
the healthcare system, in sporting clubs, and in the use of toilets and
5-04-11: Xtra! (Canada re USA): "Camille Paglia disses Chaz Bono -
Says trans man is 'mutilating her body'" (video interview contains
bizarre transphobic rant) (also on
academic Camille Paglia says Chaz Bono is mutilating his body by going
through a sex-change operation and fears that Bono is bringing the procedure
into the mainstream. Bono is the subject of a new documentary, Becoming
Chaz, which will premiere on the Oprah Winfrey Network."
reader's comment says it all about Paglia's hateful rant. We wonder
how many other academic transphobes have this very same problem:
is a closet trans man: At least, per the
last piece of this video statement, changing sex did cross her mind in a
serious way when she was younger. This might explain why she has a life-long
hate-on for Chaz and other trans people for taking agency over their bodies
in a way that she did not. Not yet, at least. May she find her own peace,
starting with the permanent cease-fire on trans people's sexes." Constance,
Toronto ON; 05/04/11 5:43 PM EST ]
5-04-11: Stamford Advocate: "State Baptist convention gathers in
organization claiming to represent over 80 black churches in Connecticut
took steps Wednesday to be heard, speaking in favor of policies it says will
benefit minorities, while also railing against a controversial bill designed
to protect transgender people from discrimination. . .
disparities between minorities and non-minorities comprised most of the
discussion. One issue, however, the men of cloth -- egged on by a supportive
audience -- said they take particular objection to: the prospect of enhanced
The passing of
an anti-discrimination bill under consideration in Hartford is something
African American Baptists will simply not brook, the speakers said."
5-04-11: ABC-TV (Australia): "Australian churches can discriminate
against gays" (more)
"SYDNEY (AP) --
Religious groups in Australia are allowed to discriminate against people who
are gay or transgender, prompting criticism from gay rights activists who
find it galling that their social service programs receive millions of
dollars in government funding.
to anti-discrimination laws exist elsewhere, but other countries including
Britain and the United States have narrowed their scope in recent years,
limiting them to issues such as the appointment of church leaders."
5-03-11: New York Times: "Transgender Woman Settles Suit Against Two
the transgender woman who sued the L.P.G.A. and the Long Drivers of America
last October challenging their rule that competitors be “female at birth,”
has settled her case, her lawyer said . . .
filed her lawsuit, both bodies
lifted their bans, bringing them in line with several other
international sports bodies that permit transgender competitors, including
International Olympic Committee and the United States Golf Association.
5-03-11: Free Malaysia Today (Malaysia): "Boot camp of discrimination"
"Until the early
1980s, transsexuals were not a condemned lot. They had the freedom to
undergo the sex reassignment surgery (SRS) and amend their identity card to
reflect their post-SRS identity. Quite a few did undergo the SRS, with some
even tying the knot and adopting children, going on to raise a family.
But a fatwa in
1983 changed all that. Transsexuals were regarded as “persona non grata” in
their own home country. The religious edict banned the SRS and
cross-dressing on Malaysian Muslims . . .
With the never
ending abuse on transsexuals having turned into a nightmare, the government
is now targetting boys who are effeminate by nature, derogatorily called
“sissies”. On April 18, the New Straits Times under its heading “Besut
boot camp for sissies” reported that the government would send 66 Muslim
school boys with effeminate tendencies to a boot camp."
5-03-11: France24 (re India): "Joy and pain as transgender Indians
'wed' Hindu god"
""I have been
attending the festival for 15 years," said Jyoti, who lives in Mumbai, where
like other transgender groups she makes money through donations collected at
birth ceremonies and other family occasions.
"On my wedding
day, I always wear real gold earrings, a necklace, bangles, anklets, and
have jasmine flowers in my hair," she said. "I do this once a year."
date, decided according to the Tamil calendar, is the climax of an 18-day
spring festival honouring Aravan. According to Hindu mythology, before he
went into battle knowing he would die, Aravan asked the god Krishna for one
night with a woman. Unable to find a woman willing to be widowed, Krishna
transformed himself into a beautiful woman, Mohini, and spent the night with
resulted in Aravan becoming a patron god of transgender people and, for
hundreds of years, they have been participating in mass weddings with the
deity at the Koothandavar temple in Koovagam."
5-01-11: LGBTQ Nation: "Was it a hoax? The curious case of the
transgender at the Comso hotel at 4 a.m.", by Steve Friess"
I couldn’t get relief from a nagging feeling that there was something awry
about the hullabaloo that erupted regarding a transgender woman named
Stephanie who alleged she was banned for life from the Cosmopolitan after
being confronted recently for using the ladies’ restroom at 4 a.m.
It was a
startling account as rendered by HotelChatter.Com blogger Julia Buckley,
complete with what is supposed to be the document given to Stephanie
informing her that she could no longer come on the property without risking
arrest for trespassing . . .
something was off. It’s dead of night, nobody around and here’s this
dramatic reaction from a security staff that was on their toes to address
something even though there was nobody there to complain. It all seemed so .
. . disproportionate. So I dug. And you’ll never believe what I found. And
after I found it, I interviewed Stephanie. Hang on tight, folks."
5-01-11: The Star (Malaysia): "Torment of being different", by
Rashvinjeet. S. Bedi
admiring boys when she was 13 and wearing make-up when she was 15. This
might seem normal for a teenage girl, except Erin was born male. In harsh
and derogatory terms, Erin would be known as a pondan, bapuk or akua. In
more politically correct terms, she is a Mak Nyah or a male-to-female
Due to her
effeminate ways, Erin was teased and even humiliated. Being stripped by her
classmates during physical education classes was a norm. Unable to take the
abuse, she stopped going to school at 16 but she did sit for her SPM
examination. Things were not good at home as well. Her father and brother
would beat her up when they found her dressing as a girl. The clothes were
thrown out and her hair was kept short. So when Terengganu State Education
Director Razali Daud said that Mak Nyah would face problems later on in
life, he did have a point.
reported to have said this to justify the department's recent boot camp for
66 secondary schoolboys with “effeminate tendencies”. The camp was meant to
help them behave appropriately. “We understand that some people end up as
Mak Nyah (transsexuals) or homosexuals, but we will do our best to limit the
number,” Razali was reported as saying. Mak Nyah do face discrimination,
humiliation and are always a butt of people's jokes. But Razali was
certainly wrong about being able to change them."
4-30-11: Baltimore Sun: "Transgender advocates see McDonald's beating
as a turning point - Rosedale attack could raise support for long-stalled
anti-discrimination bill in Maryland, they say,” by Jill Rosen (more)
call Catherine Hyde's teenage daughter "freak" and "pervert," or "homo."
She's forced to change for gym in a closet and use the teacher's restroom.
Hyde knows her
daughter, who was born male, has had it easy in a world where transgender
people often lose their jobs, go homeless and suffer beatings.
Yet after a
brutal assault at a Rosedale McDonald's on another young transgender woman,
she sees hope. Hyde, and others in Maryland who've in the past failed to
persuade lawmakers to enact a law designed to protect transgender people,
believe the attack and the attention it's drawn to the state will finally
"What does it
take to move the legislature?" Hyde says. "What does it take that we not
discriminate against people who were made that way by God? Lawmakers won't
stand up and do what's right. And it's unforgivable in my opinion.""
4-29-11: U.S. Department of Labor: "News Release: US Department of
Labor announces renewed commitment
to fair treatment and equal opportunity for all of its employees - New
policy statements prohibit discrimination based on gender identity and
Department of Labor today announced its full commitment to implementing
equal employment opportunity policies for all department employees and
applicants. The policies ensure equal protections for all employees and
applicants regardless of race; color; religion; national origin; sex,
including pregnancy and gender identity; age; disability, whether physical
or mental; genetic information; status as a parent; sexual orientation; or
other non-merit factor. New, robust statements signed by Secretary Solis
include updated policies on prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex,
including gender identity and pregnancy.
strongly supports fair equal employment opportunity policies, and creating
diversity and fairness in the workplace."
Dallas Voice: "Trans women talk about how to come out, when, and to whom"
"Perhaps one of
the greatest fears that transgender people face is losing the love and
support of family and friends when they “come out” about their gender
identity. For transwoman Jamy Spradlin, honesty has definitely been the best
4-27-11: Express India (Re Pakistan): "'Transgenders' sex not to be
verified through medical board'"
Supreme Court has directed the national database not to verify the sex of
the trans-genders through a medical board and to amend its laws to declare
eunuchs as she-males. The directive was issued to the National Database and
Registration Authority (NADRA) by a three-judge bench headed by Chief
Justice Iftikhar Chaudhry.
The order was
issued while the bench was hearing a case filed by Muhammad Aslam Khaki, a
lawyer who has been campaigning for the rights of transgender people. Khaki
told the court that NADRA had set a complicated procedure for issuing
identity cards to transgender people and was asking them for documentation
to confirm their gender. Members of the transgender community too have
expressed concern over what they described as NADRA's complicated
verification process . . .
directed NADRA to expedite efforts to issue Computerised National Identity
Cards to transgender people. The apex court also asked all provincial
governments to protect the fundamental rights of transgender people and to
take steps to grant them inheritance rights. "
4-27-11: Las Vegas Sun: "Cosmopolitan responds to backlash over report
on banned transgender guest"
Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas is receiving backlash today after a report
a hotel and lodging blog that a transgender guest was banned for life
from the hotel-casino for using the women’s restroom.
The guest, who
HotelChatter.com identified as a "pre-op trans" named Stephanie, said upon
leaving the women’s room she was taken out of the resort by security guards,
told she was trespassing on Cosmopolitan property and she would be arrested
if she didn't leave. She said she was photographed and told she was banned
from returning to the hotel.
Since the blog
was posted, commenters have flooded the
page with complaints on the reported incident."
4-27-11: Hotel Chatter: "The Wrong Amount Of Wrong: Barred For Life
From The Cosmopolitan For Being Transgender"
"Sin City: a
town where, supposedly, everything goes. The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas: the
newest, coolest hotel on the block which has advertised itself as having
“just the right amount of wrong.”
Ever since it
unveiled its tagline before it opened, last December, people were
speculating on what, exactly, is the right amount of wrong for a town that
prides itself on its loucheness. And now, it appears, we have an answer. Or
at least, we know what’s the wrong amount of wrong.
The wrong amount
of wrong is being transgender and using the women’s restroom."
full details of Stephanie's ordeal.]
4-26-11: Facebook: "Thoughts about McDonald's", by Chris Paige
"I go to
McDonald's regularly with my 5 year old child, who loves chicken mcnuggets.
It will be a hardship for our family. But I don't plan on setting foot in a
McDonald's again until McDonald's corporate office has instituted
protections against discrimination for transgender people that are
comparable to what they *already have in place* for gay and lesbian people.
As trans person who is sometimes read as male and sometimes read as female
and who always uses the women's room, that literally could have been me . .
protections are in place at a corporate level, the corporate offices of
McDonald's are fully complicit in this type of violence and harassment of
McDonald's customers insofar as they have done nothing whatsoever to prepare
their staff to serve the full diversity of their clientele. Their assurances
of safety in my neighborhood McDonald's fall far short of a sensitive or
[Note: I fully
agree with Chris. This vicious incident has finally revealed just how
dangerous it is for trans people to go into McDonald's restaurants in many
of our big cities, where once inside they can be humiliated, mobbed and even
beaten with impunity. The responsibility for the rise of this ugly
"Mac-attack"subculture lies at the very top - with McDonald's senior
management - who have for years tolerated whacked-out behavior by employees
and customers in their eateries.]
BBC News (re Pakistan): "Pakistan allows transsexuals to have own gender
category" (with video)
taken the landmark decision to allow transsexuals to have their own gender
category on some official documents.
Supreme Court has ruled that those Pakistanis who do not consider themselves
to be either male or female should be allowed to choose an alternative sex
when they apply for their national identity cards.
reports from Karachi."
4-26-22: Bilerico Report: "Oklahoma English Prof Denied Tenure at
Public College Based On Gender Identity", Filed by: Dr. Jillian T. Weiss
Tudor, Assistant Professor of English, Humanities and Literature at
Southeastern Oklahoma State University in Durant, Oklahoma for the past
seven years, is an accomplished scholar.
According to Dr.
Tudor, she has been recommended for promotion and tenure twice in the last
two years by the Faculty Tenure and Promotion Committee, based on the
well-known university criteria of teaching, scholarship and service. The
school's rules require the Administration to grant tenure in such cases,
unless there is an extraordinary circumstance requiring denial . . .
"extraordinary circumstance" requires denial of Dr. Tudor's tenure
application by the Administration of Southeastern Oklahoma University, which
according to Dr. Tudor has never before occurred at the school to her
knowledge? And not only that, but rather than being allowed to apply again,
as is usual, a University Vice-President took another surprising step, and
notified Dr. Tudor that she is not even allowed to submit another
application but must leave the school at the end of the semester?
The only thing
extra-ordinary about Dr. Tudor, as far as I can tell, aside from her
excellent credentials, is that she is transsexual. That leads me to suspect
that Southeastern Oklahoma University might be discriminating on the basis
of Dr. Tudor's gender. Let's look at the evidence."
[See also the
help reinstate Rachel Tudor]
4-26-11: Change.org Petition: "Demand that the employees on duty at
McDonald's be held responsible in the beating of a trans woman"
unidentified transgender woman tried to use the bathroom at a Baltimore
McDonald's, two patrons started attacking her in full view of other
customers and employees. These employees can be heard on the video shouting
words of encouragement to the attackers. It's time we DEMAND that justice be
served and that EVERY McDonald's employee involved in this brutal hate crime
be held accountable.
The April 18
assault took place at a McDonald’s location in the 6300 block of Kenwood
Avenue in Rosedale, Maryland, a Baltimore suburb, according to the Baltimore
County Police Department. A 14-year-old girl has been charged as a juvenile
in connection with the assault, charges are still pending against an
18-year-old woman. “The incident remains under investigation and the State’s
Attorney’s Office is reviewing the case,” added investigators.
Not surprisingly, McDonald's lacks standard policies for protecting
transgender individuals, despite a decent record of workplace discrimination
protections for gays and lesbians. And while the company has pledged to
“take appropriate action” against all employees involved in this heinous
event, just one has been punished.
This is not
enough! If McDonald's employees stood by and encouraged this attack, they
should be fired. Please sign this petition in hopes that justice can and
will prevail for this transgender woman."
4-26-11: Washington Post: "Community rallies around victim of
McDonald’s attack” (more,
“The family of a transgender woman who was attacked in a
Baltimore County McDonald's last week thanked the woman who stepped in and
tried to help, as more than a hundred supporters gathered at the Rosedale
restaurant Monday night. The rally drew together representatives of
transgender, civil-rights and faith-based communities in a call to action to
stop violence against all people . . .
protect transgender people have foundered in the Maryland legislature.
Earlier this month, delegates rejected an antidiscrimination measure that
would have prevented employers, creditors and housing providers from
discriminating against transgender people. A clause dealing with
discrimination in public accommodations, which would have included places
such as restaurants, was stripped out of the proposed law even before it
went to a vote said Del. Joseline A. Peña-Melnyk, the sponsor of House Bill
235, known as the Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination Act.
wrote an email Monday to her colleagues in the General Assembly in which she
included a link to the video of the attack, warning them that it is
"disturbing and portrays a horrific hate crime" that had brought "shame to
the state of Maryland for allowing such things to take place." She said that
such incidents "illustrate why the transgender community in Maryland and
elsewhere needs to be protected through antidiscrimination legislation."
4-26-11: NewsOK: "Oklahoma
state Capitol bill updates"
At stake: HB
1397 allows people who get sex changes to change their birth certificates to
reflect their new gender.
Takes effect Nov. 1."
[It appears that
Oklahoma has quietly updated its legal code and will soon allow gender
updates in birth certificates. If so, this is important news those born in
4-26-11: The Daily Mail (UK re France): "British ex-pat becomes
'France's oldest transsexual' aged 60"
ex-pat and former builder who used to be called a 'man mountain' by friends
has become France's oldest sex-change resident, at the age of 60 . . . The
transition is the result of hormone treatment over the past five years in
France, where she moved to in order to start a new life."
4-25-11: Palo Alto Patch: "Speaking the Truth About One Teen's Suicide
– and how the media got it so very
"I was browsing
the local news the other day when I came across this
“Apparent Suicide With Chemicals Forces Evacuation in Redwood City.” It
seemed so innocuous. A small bit, really. Not even worthy of an obituary.
But I knew better. It was what the story didn’t say and what it got so very
wrong that haunts me.
indicated that a 17-year-old boy had committed suicide by inhaling
chemicals. This part was factually true. What it didn’t say was that the
boy, named Geraldo at birth, wanted to be a girl. She preferred to be called
Gennie . . .
situation is not rare. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youths are up
to six times more likely to commit suicide than their heterosexual peers. I
applaud the work of the Trevor Project and celebrate the It Gets Better
Campaign in support of LGBT youth. Unfortunately, it only gets better if
teenagers live long enough to see that it will.
of our children—can whither under the stress of living up to someone else’s
expectations. At the very least, let’s honor them by telling their stories
with respect and honesty.
transgender youth committed suicide” is Gennie’s story, and so much more."
News: "Texas May Strip Away Transgender Marriage Rights" (more,
by Williams, of Houston, and Rep. Lois Kolkhorst, of Brenham, would prohibit
county and district clerks from using a court order recognizing a sex change
as documentation to get married, effectively requiring the state to
recognize a 1999 state appeals court decision that said in cases of
marriage, gender is assigned at birth and sticks with a person throughout
their life even if they have a sex change.
allow transgendered people to get married using a court order that also
allows them to change their driver's license, experts said. Some advocates
for the transgendered say the Texas proposal would not only prevent future
transgendered marriages but also open up the possibility that any current
marriage could be nullified.
"It appears the
goal is to try to enshrine a really horrifying ruling and making it law in
the state of Texas," said John Nechman, a Houston attorney whose law firm
does work for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community."
BBC News (re Pakistan): "Pakistan transgenders pin hopes on new rights"
"There has been
little opposition to the decision by Pakistan's Supreme Court to allow a
third gender category, apart from male or female, on the national identity
card. The BBC's Aleem Maqbool meets transgendered people in Karachi buoyed
by the ruling, but sceptical about whether it can really end the isolation
Remarkably for a
conservative country like this, Pakistan is about to introduce a third
gender category on its national identity cards. "Previously, we were
having two categories, male and female, for registration," says Brigadier
Ehsan ul-Haq, who is in charge of the national database and registration
authority in Karachi. "But this community agitated for a separate identity
of their own. They went to the Supreme Court, the court agreed and we will
4-24-11: Huffington Post: "A Dad Testifies for His Transgender Teen
Daughter", by Joanne Herman
uncommon to see a mom speaking out for her transgender child, but April 12
saw a dad front and center. The scene was a Maine Judiciary Committee
hearing about proposed bill LD 1046, would allow the operator of a restroom
or shower facility in that state to decide who can use which gender's
restroom based upon "biological sex."
sex" is not defined in the bill, nor is the method to be used to verify it.
In my case, I am generally viewed as female wherever I go, and while I have
had genital reconstruction surgery, I still have male chromosomes. Would
this bill allow someone who knows my history to insist that I use the mens'
sponsor, Rep. Kenneth Fredette, implies that I am not the concern. "What
situation do we put young children in when they go into a private place and
then what they perceive to be the person of the opposite sex comes into that
bathroom? That could be quite shocking." Yet this conservative dad's
daughter looks and acts "all-girl" to those who know her and hardly seems
out of place in the girl's room. The problem arose when an adult, who knows
the girl's history, forced her school to deny her access to the girls' room.
I had the
pleasure of meeting the girl and her family a couple of years ago and have
stayed in touch since. After the dad spoke out for his first time publicly
at the hearing, he sent me the full text of his testimony (excerpted in the
Bangor Daily News article). It's worth a read:"
[Please read and
pass on the dad's compelling testimony.]
4-24-11: Irish Times (Ireland): "'I was a husband. I was a father. But
none of it felt right. I struggled'"
successful case at the Equality Tribunal this week, Louise Hannon tells
ROSITA BOLAND about her confused life as a man and her decision to become a
woman . . .
Hannon was in
the headlines this week because, supported by the Equality Authority, she
won a case against her former employer, First Direct Logistics, for
discrimination on gender and disability grounds. She was awarded €35,422.
For the media coverage, Hannon chose to relinquish her right to anonymity.
my anonymity for a number of reasons,” she says. “I thought it would make
employers take transgender people more seriously. I run the Irish Tranny
Group, and I had a strong sense that other people were having the same
workplace problem. I thought it would encourage transgender people to be
themselves.” Hannon smiles swiftly, her eyes glinting. “And I’m also
4-24-11: Baltimore Sun: "Rosedale McDonald's beating goes viral,
victim speaks out" (With new VIDEO,
beaten at a Baltimore County McDonald's spoke out on Saturday, saying
that the attack was "definitely a hate crime" and that she's been afraid to
go out in public ever since. "They said, 'That's a dude, that's a dude and
she's in the female bathroom,' " said Chrissy Lee Polis, 22, who said she
stopped at the Rosedale restaurant to use the restroom. "They spit in my
A worker at the
restaurant taped Monday's attack and created a graphic video that went viral
last week. After the video garnered hundreds of thousands of views on
websites, McDonald's issued a statement condemning the incident, and on
Saturday the worker who taped the incident was fired. The video shows two
females — one of them a 14-year-old girl — repeatedly kicking and punching
Polis in the head as an employee and a patron try to intervene. Others can
be heard laughing, and men are seen standing idly by."
4-24-11: Baltimore Sun: "18-year-old charged in McDonald's beating -
As charges formally filed vs. teen, transgender community plans rally at
County police have named the 18-year-old charged with beating a transgender
woman at Rosedale McDonald's, amid demands from some community members that
the incident be investigated as a hate crime.
Brown of the 2000 block of Kelbourne Road in Rosedale was charged in the
attack on Chrissy Lee Polis. The incident was videotaped and went viral
online late last week, with hundreds of thousands of views on various
websites. The video shows Polis, 22, being kicked and punched in the head by
two people until she appears to have a seizure. While one employee and a
patron try to intervene, others can be seen standing and watching, and some
4-23-11: TMR Zoo:
"Arrests Made in Baltimore McDonalds’ Beating of a Transgender Woman
LGBT group called Equality Maryland confirmed the victim of the Baltimore
McDonalds’ beating is a transgender woman. Lisa Polyak, vice president of
the board of directors for Equality Maryland commented on the video. “It
does appear that the victim was a transgender woman, and she was brutalized
while people stood by and watched,” “There’s no excuse for that violence
under any circumstances, but we would encourage police to investigate as a
hate crime.” Equality Maryland called on state Attorney General Douglas F.
Gansler to investigate the case as a hate crime . . .
It seems that
the fight was over “using a bathroom”. Sadly this could get messy also for
the victim legally. The Baltimore Legislature recently shot down a “bathroom
bill” the bill would have given transgender people the right to chose which
bathroom they would like to choose.
contains a deeply disturbing video of a vicious stomping attack that goes on
and on as bystanders watch. It's a classic example of rage-filled mobbing of
a helpless transgender woman. Be forewarned by this example of the
tremendous hate out there, especially that generated by religious zealots
over the "bathroom" issue. Take care where you venture, and watch your
4-23-11: Bella Maddo.com: "Bella
Maddo" [See also the
"This is an
important project which should serve as an example of the talents and
versatility of the "trans" community.
sociopath compulsively values thinness over caring for her young daughter
and unborn child.
cast the ENTIRE ensemble with
transgender actors (men, woman & children) portraying NON-transgender
characters; with hopes of expanding acting opportunities for trans-people.
This is the first time trans-actors have played such roles.
Cast includes 9 year old
transgender-girl Miss Jazz, who was featured in a Barbara Walters 20/20
special; notable Americas Top Model contestant Miss Isis King, who was
discovered by Tyra Banks, and many other talented transgender actors."
4-21-11: Philadelphia Gay News: "PAC votes to subpoena Morris records"
Advisory Commission decided this week to subpoena Nizah Morris records from
the District Attorney’s Office — setting the stage for an unprecedented
court battle in the city . . .
Morris was a
transgender woman found unconscious on a Center City street, bleeding from
the head, shortly after receiving a courtesy ride from Philadelphia police.
She died two days later, on Dec. 24, 2002, from complications due to a
fractured skull. The homicide remains unsolved . . .
Chuck Volz, who is openly gay, expressed optimism that the subpoena will be
successful . . . “We understand that we can’t interfere with an active
homicide investigation. But that doesn’t mean we just throw up our hands and
do nothing . . . We can’t do backroom deals and expect to have credibility
with the community.”
Padilla, an LGBT activist who has followed the case, praised the PAC’s
decision. “I applaud the commissioners’ commitment to ensuring their review
includes all available information in this very murky case,” Padilla said.
“I’m disappointed the DA chose to force the PAC to subpoena records that are
required to perform their oversight responsibilities.”
4-21-11: Malay Mail (Malaysia): "Religious department firm against
Religious Department (JAIM) is standing by their action against
cross-dressing by 28-year-old hairstylist Abdul Qawi Jamil.
carrying out our duties under the State religious laws," said Jaim
enforcement director Rahimin Bani. "Abdul Qawi was wearing a woman's bra and
panties and we did not strip with the intention to embarrass him." Rahimin
said Abdul Qawi was a Muslim and had to comply with Syariah law. "He may
feel his rights as a person had been violated, but as Muslims we have the
responsiblity to ensure he does not go astray" . . .
"We have to act on complaints by the public. For example, when men enter
women's toilets because these men feel they are more similar with women, we
have to act," he said. "There are people who are not comfortable with
transsexuals. This also has to be respected.""
4-21-11: Village Voice: "Renee Richards: Transsexual Tennis Player's
the fascinating documentary by Eric Drath which is playing the Tribeca Film
Festival -- recounts the story of Richard Raskin, who in his 40s, had sexual
reassignment surgery and emerged as the world's most controversial tennis
son later called this an incredibly selfish act, seeing as he felt betrayed
and abandoned. But Renee became a lightning rod for the public's feelings
toward transsexualism and helped move society forward on that topic, while
enduring all kinds of jeering opposition. In fact, she had to battle to play
women's tennis, validated by a court that decreed she was indeed female and
should be allowed to continue.
But in the
movie, today's Renee, 76, takes a different tack. Says she: "Transsexuals
have every right to play, but maybe not on a professional level because it's
not a level playing field." In her 70s, she now stands for the reverse of
what she represented in the '70s!"
4-21-11: New York Times: "A Warhol ‘Superstar,’ Closer to Earth"
Darling,” James Rasin’s touching documentary biography of Candy Darling,
the transsexual Andy Warhol “superstar,” is a sad, lyrical reflection on the
foolish worship of movie stars. Jeremiah Newton, who is a producer of the
film and narrates the story, was Candy Darling’s closest friend and onetime
roommate who appointed himself guardian of her legacy after her death in
1974 from cancer at 29. The movie shows him arranging her burial beside Mr.
Newton’s mother in Cherry Valley, N.Y. . . .
matter-of-fact truth teller, the writer Fran Lebowitz, who spent time in the
Warhol orbit, remembers the grim era when being a female impersonator on the
streets of New York was against the law."
4-21-11: Downtown Devil (Phoenix, AZ): "Native American transgender
woman lets identity shine"
"Soaking in the
attention from the throng of thousands on the parade route, Trudie Jackson
beams and waves at the crowd. She yells “Happy Pride!” and shows off her
deep crimson Native American dress and her hair tied back with white
ribbons. She is surrounded by several other women, all wearing bright
dresses. Together they create a kaleidoscope of colors
so that the Indigenous Out and Proud entry, a group of Native American
transgender women, is one of the brightest at this year’s Pride Parade."
Pride Source (re Netherlands): "Dutch university gives transgender man new
of the executive board of the University of Amsterdam, Karel van der Toorn,
presented transgender activist and alumnus Justus Eisfeld with a new diploma
reflecting his correct gender April 6 in New York City. Van der Toorn was in
New York, where Eisfeld works for Global Action for Trans Equality, on a
underwent gender transition after graduation from the university. Approval
to issue the revised diploma came in November via a ruling from the Dutch
Equal Treatment Commission."
4-20-11: Malay Mail (Malaysia): "“He ain't heavy, he's my brother”
brother is a transsexual and his life has become so torturous that I cry
with him all the time. Even our parents have disowned him and he lives with
being in a cushy position in society, see him as a liability to both their
jobs and the titles they hold. They were so ashamed of my brother that they
dumped him in my aunt’s home at age 14. He is now 21. At an age when he
should be bright and sparky, he is the reverse and his only friends are
other transsexuals who have been kind and gentle towards him.
He has just
started work in a beauty salon and I am happy for him. But it scares me that
one day what happened to
Qawi, who was asked to undress in
front of religious officers in Malacca, will happen to him as well. Or he
might be confronted by religious officers or the police on the streets and
locked up for crossdressing.”
4-20-11: Los Angeles Times: "Lawsuit asks state to pay for inmate's
Stevens says she is harassed and sexually assaulted by male prisoners, and
needs surgery to be assigned to a women's prison. State officials say they
aren't required to provide that level of care."
4-19-11: In The Life Media: "Injustice at Every Turn (Video)" (more)
transgender and gender non-conforming people are marginalized because of
their gender identity and expression. In The Life Media features the
personal stories of Ja'briel and Michelle, two trans women whose experiences
highlight the findings of the first comprehensive transgender discrimination
study completed by the National Center for Transgender Equality and the
National Gay & Lesbian Task Force.
brings to light what is both patently obvious and far too often dismissed
from the human rights agenda. Transgender and gender non-conforming people
face injustice at every turn: in childhood homes, in school systems that
promise to shelter and educate, in harsh and exclusionary workplaces, at the
grocery store, the hotel front desk, in doctors' offices and emergency
rooms, before judges and at the hands of landlords, police officers, health
care workers and other service providers."
new video. Please distribute widely.]
4-19-11: Global Edmonton (Canada): "Watch part one of transgendered
(Collier)’s series focuses on what 'transgender' means, and the important of
sexual reassignment surgery (SRS) in helping transgendered individuals
Lynn speaks with
Dr. Cameron Bowman, the only trained sexual reassignment surgeon in Western
Canada, currently residing in B.C. Once a budding rock musician, Dr. Bowman
instead turned to plastic surgery, with 25% of his patients being
transgendered. In B.C, MSP pays for SRS bottom surgery for male-to-female
transgendered people done in Montreal. Dr. Bowman does "top" surgery here .
Lynn also speaks
with Cadence Matthews, a male–to-female (MTF) woman in her twenties who told
her parents when she was five that she was a girl. Cadence has had recent
SRS surgery, and has more booked this month, and shares her story."
4-19-11: Pink News (UK): "London transgender conference
cancelled after trans complaints" (more,
"A conference on
transgender issues has been cancelled by the Royal College of Psychiatrists
after a leading gender identity clinic pulled out.
The May 20th
event in London, titled ‘Transgender: time to change’,
angered trans campaigners who said it was one-sided and questioned
speakers’ credentials. They argued that some of the speakers, who included
Julie Bindel, held “offensive” and “outdated” views on trans issues.
Charing Cross Gender Identity Clinic pulled out of the event, citing
concerns about other speakers and “disquiet” in the trans community. The
RCPsych has now cancelled the event . . .
campaigners objected to the conference for a number of reasons, including
the fact that lesbian activist Julie Bindel was listed as a speaker. Ms
Bindel once called gender reassignment surgery “modern-day
aversion therapy for gays and lesbians”. They also complained about the
fact that the conference was organised by the RCPsych’s Lesbian and Gay
Special Interest Group, which they said had no expertise on trans issues.
Dr Az Hakeem, has been accused of “pathologising” trans people."
4-19-11: Trouble in High Heels (UK; posted 3-18): "Cis people telling
trans people how they should feel, be, think, act", by Natacha Kennedy
of the Lesbian and Gay Special Interest Group of the Royal College of
Psychatrists entitled “Transgender: time to change” is another example of
cisgender people telling trans people how they should feel. We all know
Julie Bindel’s views about trans people, “Gender Benders Beware”, and
her Standpoint article
are available for all to see on the internet. She has repeatedly been
asked to apologise for these and repudiate her views. This she has failed to
do consistently. It can only be assumed that she continues to hold these
Az Hakeem, a psychiatrist whose “academic” writing effectively returns
to pathologising and problematising trans individuals rather than placing
the responsibility for the maintainance of an immutable gender binary on
societal processes. In particular his 2010 article appears to me to be an
exceptionally dishonest piece of transphobic research. It continues a long
tradition of dishonesty and disingenuousness in transphobic “academic”
publications stretching back to the appalling and mendacious and
Janice Raymond and ignorant and misogynistic
Germaine Greer . . .
Far from trans
people being the objects of study and problematised, it is transphobes such
as Bindel, Hakeem, Greer and others who should be the subject of study."
posting by Natacha Kennedy provides valuable background on the bizarrely
pretentious and now-cancelled Royal College of Psychiatrists' trans
4-19-11: Irish Times (Ireland): "Transsexual hails equality ruling"
who was awarded more than €35,000 compensation for workplace discrimination
has spoken of her relief that the case ended successfully. Louise Hannon
(50) from Arbour Hill in Dublin, brought a case against First Direct
Logistics in which she alleged she had been constructively dismissed when
she revealed her gender identity to her employer and sought to live
according to it in her workplace. It was revealed yesterday that Ms Hannon
has been awarded a total of €35,422.71 from her former employer after the
Equality Tribunal ruled she had been unfairly discriminated against on
gender and disability grounds."
4-19-11” Pink News (UK re Malaysia): “Malaysia sends 66 boys to gay cure
authorities have admitted sending 66 teenage boys thought to be gay to a
camp to learn “masculine behaviour”. An official from Terengganu state
said the boys, aged between 13 and 17, were identified by teachers as having
effeminate mannerisms. This week, they are being sent on a four-day
“self-development course” in the hope of dissuading them from being gay or
transgender. State education director Razali Daud told The Associated Press
that the camp was designed “to guide them back to the right path in life
before they reach a point of no return. Such effeminate behavior is
unnatural and will affect their studies and their future.””
4-18-11: Malay Mail (Malaysia): “Being Frank: Off with your panties and bra”
“A male-to-female hairstylist transsexual was allegedly
ordered to remove his panties and bra in full view of Malacca Islamic
religious department officials, mostly male, soon after he was handcuffed
and arrested for cross-dressing . . .
He is seeking relief in the Malacca High Court, arguing that although
provisions in Syariah laws forbid his transsexual character, these are
inconsistent with the rights of citizens enshrined in the Federal
Constitution. In his affidavit, he claimed the Islamic department had
infringed on his rights as a citizen to live with dignity and privacy, to
livelihood and to express through dressing.
4-18-11: Religion Dispatches: “Vatican: Gay Rights Opponents are Real
Victims - Catholic bishop says the real victims are those who oppose the
rights of LGBT people”
“Last month the
Catholic Church voiced strong opposition to a UN Human Rights Council
resolution naming the protection of LGBT persons against discrimination and
violence an official human right. The reason, according to Vatican
representative Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, is that ending discrimination
against gays, lesbians, and transgender persons would make those who
oppose such human rights the real victims . . .
likened homosexual behavior to pedophilia and incest: “But states can, and
must, regulate behaviors, including various sexual behaviors. Throughout the
world, there is a consensus between societies that certain kinds of sexual
behaviors must be forbidden by law. Pedophilia and incest are two examples.”
To add fuel to
the fire, he turned the debate away from violence based on sexual
orientation and gender identity to “a disturbing trend in some of these
social debates: People are being attacked for taking positions that do not
support sexual behavior between people of the same sex… they are
stigmatized, and worse—they are vilified, and prosecuted.” He never
addressed the reality of actual violence (killings, torture, rape, criminal
sanctions, violence, bullying) against gays, lesbians, and transgender
persons taking place around the world.
Tomasi is the leading spokesperson for the Catholic Church in international
bodies, his words take on significant weight regarding the Church’s refusal
to accept sexual orientation and gender identity as human rights
4-18-11: Hurriyet Daily News (Turkey): "Transsexual activist attempts
suicide in Turkey's Bursa"
activist and would-be parliamentary candidate in the northwestern province
of Bursa attempted suicide Sunday but was talked out of jumping from the
fifth floor of her association’s building.
Derneği (Rainbow Association) head Öykü Özen previously sent a text message
to her friends and the press, blaming her husband for her decision to kill
herself. While standing at the window of the association’s building, she
reportedly said she had had enough and did not want to live anymore . . .
Mehmet Özen in 2007, following a sex-change operation. The pair had been
fighting due to jealousy issues, the Doğan news agency, or DHA, reported."
4-17-11: Huffington Post: "A New Tool for Treating Transgender
People", by Joanne Herman
week saw the release of a very important new resource for medical providers
serving transsexual and gender-variant patients. The
Primary Care Protocol for Transgender Patient Care is a web-based
resource that goes beyond hormone treatment and surgery options to cover
important topics such as sexual health and fertility, cancer and
cardiovascular disease, patient intake and insurance issues, and harm
The Protocol is the creation of
Center of Excellence for Transgender Health at the University of
California, San Francisco. The Center's aim is to increase access to
comprehensive, effective and affirming health care services for trans and
Since 1979 we have had guidelines
to qualify transsexual people for treatment, but little to help medical
providers care for those who qualify. The
Standards of Care document (SoC), published by the World Professional
Association for Transgender Health, articulates the qualifications for
hormone treatment and surgery and the steps along the way of a gender
transition, but is not a clinical practice guide.
This has left medical providers
somewhat on their own to learn how to treat those who qualify. And, because
of this, transsexual people have come to expect that their medical provider
will know less about transsexualism than the patient . . .
The issuance of the new Primary
Care Protocol is another big step forward. It gives medical professionals
easy access to the consensus of eight physicians with extensive experience
treating transsexual patients. The Protocol also gives doctors a credible
source which can be helpful in responding to inaccurate information patients
may receive through community grapevines or other non-medical sources."
[Finally we see guidelines emerge for transgender health care
that go beyond WPATH's old-time gatekeeping protocols, which date all the
way back to 2001. It's about time!]
Univ. of California, San Francisco: "Primary Care Protocol for
Transgender Patient Care, Center of Excellence for Transgender Health,
University of California, San Francisco, Department of Family and Community
Medicine, April 2011"
"The mission of
the Center of Excellence for Transgender Health is to increase access to
comprehensive, effective, and affirming health care services for trans and
gender-variant communities . . .
The ultimate CoE
goal is to improve the overall health and well-being of transgender
individuals by developing and implementing programs in response to
community-identified needs. We include community perspectives by actively
national advisory body (NAB) of 14 transgender identified leaders from
throughout the country. The collective experience of our diverse and
talented NAB assures that our programs address issues that are timely and
relevant to the community."
4-17-11: Metro Philadelphia: "Gender stickers cause situation for
Greenlee is among those who question the need for gender policing. “It just
seems to me it’s causing problems for people I’m sure are already having
enough problems,” he said. “Unless they can really show or prove they’d lose
[millions of dollars], why do this?”
SEPTA’s other response is that the stickers will be eliminated when the new
fare system is implemented in three years.
But that’s not
good enough for Arcila, a transgender woman who has used tokens ever since
the incident. “I feel like they’re trying to sweep it under the rug,” she
said. “Once they put the smart card [system] into effect that would close
the door on this case.”"
4-17-11: The Jakarta Post (Indonesia): "LBGT group seeks justice for
group Arus Pelangi is pursuing justice for Faizal “Shakira” Harahap, a
transsexual shot dead in a robbery last month, saying transgender groups
were frequently targets of violence. Arus Pelangi program coordinator Widodo
Budidarmo said the coalition had brought the case to the National Commission
on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) on Friday. “We hope the murderer will be
apprehended soon,” he said . . .
killed on March 10 at Taman Lawang in Central Jakarta, a well known
transgender red light district, when two assailants fired shots at a group
of transsexuals gathered there. She was hit in the chest while two friends,
Agus “Venus” Yuliaman and Tantan “Astrid” Setianugraha, sustained injuries."
On Top Magazine: "California Senate Approves Mark Leno's Gay History Bill"
Senate on Thursday approved a bill that seeks to include the historical
contributions of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender Americans in the
state's textbooks, the AP reported. Voting along party lines, the
Democrat-controlled Senate voted 23 to 14 in favor of Senator Mark Leno's
FAIR Education Act . . .
The measure is
expected to be approved by the Assembly and signed into law by Democratic
Governor Jerry Brown, an ally on gay rights."
4-16-11: Gothamist (posted 3-25): "Doctor Must Pay Back $4 Million In
Federal Grant Money Spent On Sex Changes" (more,
"A scientist who
was previously convicted for misappropriating government funds to pay for
his sex change has been slapped with a $4 million dollar bill from the
government to go along with the time she served in a women's prison.
Daniel "DB" Karron
was convicted in 2008 for misappropriating funds from four different
government contracts at his company Computer Aided Surgery, Inc. (CASI) to
pay for everything from food to sex-change operation for himself and three
other employees, according to the woman herself."
4-16-11: The Telegraph (UK): "Case study: 'My son was six when he
first demanded a sex change'"
"By four, Nicki
was telling her mother Sharon, an IT manager, that "God made a mistake by
making me a boy". Two years later, she was already asking for a sex change
operation. It was at this point that Sharon, now 42, decided to attend the
Gender Identity Development (GID) service at the Tavistock and Portman
mental health trust in North London. Shortly after, Sharon also decided it
was time to allow Nicki to attend primary school in female clothes . . . "As
soon as I did that she was so much happier and the other kids understood it
because she looked like a girl now."
But matters took
a turn for the worse when Nicki moved on to secondary school, where she
became suicidal because of bullying . . . With the abuse expected to get
worse as Nicki got closer to puberty, her mother began to look into the
possibility of her daughter being prescribed hormone blockers. She went back
to the Tavistock clinic but was told they were unable to prescribe the
treatment because it was against their guidelines to do any interventions
Fearing that her
daughter may take her own life if forced to go through puberty, she went to
an American expert Dr Norman Spack in Boston. To her relief, Dr Spack, who
runs a Gender Identity Disorder clinic in Boston, agreed to prescribe the
13-year-old Nicki the blockers.
Now 17, she has
had a sex change operation and works as a care assistant. "She holds down a
full time and has been with her boyfriend for 18 months and she is
gorgeous," said Sharon. "I am absolutely positive she would not be here
without the treatment.""
4-16-11: The Telegraph (Australia): "Jamie to become a Janie as boy
allowed hormone replacement therapy" (more)
"A boy, 10, has
been allowed to begin hormone treatment to halt male puberty so he can live
life as a girl.
The boy, named
only as Jamie in a Family Court judgment, began identifying as female when
he was a toddler, insisting on wearing girls' clothes and refusing to use
boys toilets when he started school. His mother told the court she tried to
encourage Jamie to act male but her son would become upset and say, "Mummy,
it's hard trying to be a boy."
diagnosed with gender identity disorder when he was seven. He began dressing
as a girl at home and being treated as a girl by his family in 2008. His
parents moved him to a school that would accept him as a girl in 2009.
The court heard
it was urgent that Jamie be allowed to begin hormone treatment before
elements of male puberty such as a deep voice, an Adam's apple and facial
4-16-11: Star Observer (Australia): “WA trans men head to High Court”
state matter wouldn’t be dealt with at a federal court. “It’s a really
important step because if we hadn’t been granted leave that would have been
it, all over.”
The saga began
in 2008 when the WA Gender Reassignment Board denied the pair gender
recognition. Following an appeal, the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT)
overturned the decision and granted both men their certificates. Last
September, the Supreme Court of Western Australia denied the two men their
gender recognition certificates after the state Attorney-General appealed a
decision by the SAT.
AH said the
decision didn’t guarantee that the pair would or would not win — it meant
that the court believed it was worth looking at.”
4-15-11: Pink News (UK; posted 4-14): "Transgender group furious at
BBC for ‘offensive’ Russell Howard sketch"
comedy Russell Howard’s Good News is under fire from transgender campaigners
who say a recent sketch ridicules a “vulnerable minority”. Trans Media Watch
said that the sketch, based on the story of a Thai airline hiring trans
women, shows trans people as “objects of ridicule [and] physical disgust.”
The April 1st sketch
shows two airline attendants in makeup and women’s clothes
showing their male
genitals to passengers. One passenger vomits at the sight.
Paris Lees, a
spokeswoman for Trans Media Watch, said: “Content like this is the reason
why I ditched my TV three years ago. Watching trans people being constantly
ridiculed as objects of physical disgust for ‘comedy’ is a uniquely
depressing experience. I genuinely fear what effect this can have on the
very high proportion of trans people who consider – and in some cases commit
"Transgender Woman Beaten In SF" (more)
police and prosecutors said a transgender youth was the victim of a hate
crime in a city known for tolerance and diversity . . . The 20-year-old
transgender woman said she was attacked by two men near a food truck at the
BART Plaza at 16th Street and Mission. She asked KTVU to conceal her
identity and call her Mia. She said it was 10 p.m. on a busy Friday night
and she was verbally harassed by two men as she walked by. She said one
grabbed her smartphone, then beat her.
witnessed the attack, "I saw the moment where she was being punched in the
face, very violently and very brutally" . . . Mia says she doesn't want
anyone to feel sorry for her but rather that people treat transgenders with
respect. "I'm from a small town. I came to San Francisco hoping there would
be more safety than I found," Mia said."
4-15-11: The Times of India (India): "An identity at last but the
stigma stays, say transgenders" (more)
is Transgender day'. The day extends the recognition that Tamil Nadu gave
transgenders by forming a welfare board after the Madras high court accorded
them the status of the "third gender". While the board has initiated several
programs to provide authenticity to trangenders, the social stigma
continues, trangender activists say. "There is still very little awareness
about transgenders in mainstream society. Much work needs to be done," they
add . . .
board also finances self-help groups, gives out individual loans and trains
transgenders for small scale industries. Without access to employment and
government schemes, transgenders are often forced to opt for prostitution
and begging. And since, they do not have any legal protection; transgenders
become easy targets for the police. "It is utmost important for the police
to be sensitized on the already ostracized" says Priya Babu. "
4-14-11: Philadelphia Gay News: "Acosta Award winner takes on
leadership, trans issues”
“A local young
transgender woman has made it her mission to help the trans community
triumph over the challenges in their lives. This weekend, the Gay and
Lesbian Latino AIDS Education Initiative will recognize her efforts. GALAEI
will present its inaugural David Acosta Revolutionary Leader Award to
Biancah Melanie Ortiz at its April 15 gala at City Hall, which will run from
Ortiz spoke out
about her experiences at the 2009 Trans-Health Conference while she was
still incarcerated at an all-male treatment facility, marking the first time
in months she was able to dress as a female.
“It was really
hard because I was forced to live as something I wasn’t,” she said. “It was
a hard situation, and I tried to teach people there how to deal with people
in my situation because I was the first transgender person ever there. I
tried to set an example and we worked and grew together, and I helped them
to see how they need to treat transgender people.”
4-14-11: Philadelphia Gay Naws: "Police: Person of interest in Blahnik
the six-month anniversary of the murder of local transwoman Stacey Blahnik,
and police this week announced a possible break in the case. In an interview
with PGN Tuesday, Homicide Capt. James Clark said police have identified a
person of interest in Blahnik’s murder. More details about the individual
could not be made public, but Clark said an arrest is within sight . . .
Clark said he
sympathized with Blahnik’s friends who are eager for justice, but assures
them the case has not fallen off the department’s radar. “I understand
people’s frustrations. But we have some of the best investigators in the
country. Unfortunately, some cases take longer than others, but we’ve
continued to work on this, and I believe very soon we will make an arrest on
4-14-11: The Times of India (India): "Rose votes as a female this
"Former TV show
host and transgender activist,
Venkatesh, voted as a female for the first time in her life. Rose, who
had voted as a male in the last two general elections, had undergone a Sex
Re-assignment Surgery (SRS) two years go. She is probably the only person in
the country to vote as both a male and female till date.
"Two months ago,
I applied formally to change my gender in the voter's list. The government
officials were very indifferent to me at first. Just a week ago, I got an
acknowledgement slip saying the change has been made." The gender in all her
other identity proofs like the PAN card and passport have also been
4-13-11: Croatian Times (Croatia): "Danish transvestite beaten in
from Denmark with Bosnian roots has been attacked in the Croatian town of
Koprivnica after attending a handball game. Adnan Buljubasic – who goes by
Sandra and whose shocking story of childhood abuse has been featured in
Croatian media – was walking back to his hotel after a game when a group of
young men attacked him. They first insluted him verbally and then started to
A driver passing
by saw what was happening and came to Buljubasic’s aid. "Who knows what
would have happened had he not seen what was happening and stopped, helped
me and defended me," Buljubasic said."
4-13-11: Bangor Daily News: "Bill on transgendered restroom use draws
heated, emotional debate" (more,
concerning transgendered people’s right to choose which restroom they use
generated heated debate at a public hearing Tuesday . . . According to
Fredette, his bill would prevent the Maine Human Rights Commission from
being able to find that public and private entities discriminate when they
force transgendered people to use restrooms that correspond with their
biological sex, but not gender . . .
resident Tim Russell said, “[Current law] has created a legal access that
predators can use in order to accost women and children in public
restrooms.” “It is impossible for young children and women to safely
determine whether or not the man — dressed as a woman — is a peeping tom, a
rapist or a pedophile; and to continue to permit such a scenario to legally
exist is unconscionable and inviting disaster,” Russell said."
[Why is it that
religious zealots imagine some sort of 'witches' are lurking in every public
4-13-11: ABC News: "J. Crew Ad With Boy's Pink Toenails Creates Stir -
Social Conservatives Call Ad 'Propaganda;' Transgender Groups Say Reaction
"It began when a
photo of J. Crew's president and creative director Jenna Lyons painting the
toenails of her son Beckett in an ad was sent to customers last week in a
feature, "Saturday with Jenna." "Lucky for me I ended up with a boy whose
favorite color is pink," says the caption. "Toenail painting is way more fun
conservatives reacted with outrage. Fox News' Dr. Keith Ablow ran an opinion
piece on the issue and Erin Brown of the right-leaning
Media Research Center called the ad "blatant propaganda celebrating
4-13-11: Fox News (posted 4-11): "J. Crew Plants the Seeds for Gender
Identity", by Dr. Keith Ablow
feature in J. Crew's online catalogue portrays designer Jenna Lyons painting
her son Beckett’s toe nails hot pink . . . If you have no problem with the
J. Crew ad, how about one in which a little boy models a sundress? What
could possibly be the problem with that?
Well, how about
the fact that encouraging the choosing of gender identity, rather than
suggesting our children become comfortable with the ones that they got a
birth, can throw our species into real psychological turmoil - not to
mention crowding operating rooms with procedures to grotesquely amputate
body parts? Why not make race the next frontier? What would be so wrong with
people deciding to tattoo themselves dark brown and claim African-American
heritage? Why not bleach the skin of others so they can playact at
[This guy must
be profoundly insecure in his own masculinity. Talk about "protesting too
much": check out his ridiculous public utterances on simply seeing a
little boy with painted toe nails!]
4-13-11: Time Out Hong Kong (Hong Kong): "The curious case of lady
" Edgy theatre
company Metro-HoliK takes on transexuality in a new play. Hannah Slapper
discovers how the margins of society can affect Hong Kong as a whole.
The ‘T’ in LGBT
has always been an issue. Why is it there? Transgender men and women aren’t
set apart by their sexuality, like the L, G and B in their collective
defining group, and yet they are often seen in the same light. This
confusion between sexuality and gender is just another rung in the ladder of
ignorance and misunderstanding that lurches from the depths of poor
education up to the heights of enlightened misrepresentation. Yet with
theatre companies like Metro-HoliK addressing serious minority matters,
there is hope that the shackles containing the topics of sexuality and
gender will be released into a more free-thinking Hong Kong."
4-12-11: The Edmunton Sun (Canada): "Catholics want transgendered
teach to vanish”, By Mindelle Jacobs
"You can bet
Jan Buterman, who had the audacity
to inform Greater St. Albert Catholic Schools about his sex change, will
never teach there again . . .
I asked Greater
St. Albert Catholic Schools superintendent David Keohane Monday if the board
considers it unacceptable for an employee to have a sex change . . . “It’s
not acceptable to demonstrably let that be known to the community as part of
your engagement within our organization,” he said . . .
clarification, I asked Keohane if it would be OK for the board to hire
someone who’d had a previous sex change but didn’t speak about it . . .If
that person behaves with students in a manner that’s “being true to our
Catholic faith teachings,” explained Keohane, “that would be absolutely
So it seems that as uncomfortable as the board is about gender switching,
it’s actually more troubled by the fact that Buterman went public with his
case. If you’re doing something the Catholic church disagrees with, for
heaven’s sake, keep your mouth shut and perhaps it’ll get swept under the
rug and no one will notice."
4-12-11: Daily Mail (UK): "'He was ignoring me, it's horrible when a
man you love treats you like that': Malaysian transsexual wife hits back at
why she left caretaker husband after he paid £12,000 for visa"
who walked out on her British husband two weeks after he helped her win the
right to stay in this country has explained her decision to leave.
Malaysian-born Fatine Young – who was born Mohammed Fazdil Min Bahari –
spoke out after her husband Ian told yesterday how the couple split after he
spent £12,000 on helping win the visa battle. Fatine, 38, has defended her
actions, saying she made major sacrifices to move to the UK and live with
the school caretaker, who she claims eventually pushed her away with his
Philippine Star (Philippines): "'Woman Soul': A photo exhibit of Filipina
journalist Sebastien Farcis and photographer Romaine Rivierre, in a team-up
with Alliance Française de Manille and the United Nations Development
Program, recently launched a photo exhibit on Filipina transsexuals called
“Woman Soul.“Woman Soul” is a multi-sensory exhibit that features the images
and voices of transsexuals in the country. It takes the viewer and listener
through the lives of the women as they affirm their sexual identity, despite
the rejection and discrimination of family and society. Among them are Bemz
Benedito, Rica Paras, Sass Rogando Sasot and an entertainer named Britney .
Sebastien Farcis said, “We call these transsexuals lady boys, bading, bakla
and we stereotype them as dancers and entertainers. But what if we start
looking at who they really are? What if we start listening to them? We would
then discover that transsexual women in the Philippines are different from
the usual cliché. We must listen to their stories, because only knowledge
Human Resources Executive Online: "Groundswell Growing against Transgender
some discriminating behavior may be, sexual orientation and gender identity
are still not protected under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. So
how can HR leaders help their organizations navigate through the cross-hairs
of social change? . . .
Even without a
national law, "just as most major companies adopted policies stating they
wouldn't discriminate against people with disabilities well before the ADA
was enacted," Meisinger writes, "growing numbers of companies have enacted
policies protecting their lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender employees."
recently, she says such a movement should be top-of-mind as the ENDA waits
for a vote -- and not just in larger companies, many of which are starting
to "get it."
revising, antidiscrimination policies to ensure workers and job candidates
are not being discriminated against because of their sexual orientation or
gender identity, she says, "should be part of a broader diversity
initiative; as [organizations and their HR leaders] integrate
sexual-discrimination policies into their programs, transgenders should be
integrated too." It's all part of an ongoing reality, she adds: "Employers
are always put in the cross hairs of social change.""
4-11-11: City Paper (Philadelphia): "Students say La Salle symposium
featured strippers, lap dances", by Emily Apisa (more)
University officials acknowledged today that the university has launched "a
full-scale investigation" into "reports regarding an incident which occurred
on March 21" — an incident which, according to two students who witnessed
the event and spoke with CP, involved a professor inviting a team of
strippers to engage himself and students at an on-campus, for-credit
According to the
students, the symposium, hosted at a satellite campus facility in Plymouth
Meeting, was held by La Salle assistant professor of management Jack
Rappaport . . . The symposium's subject, the students say, was the
application of Platonic and Hegelian ethics to business.
As part of the
lesson, they say, three dancers, dressed in bikinis and/or miniskirts and
high heels, had already arrived when the approximately 30 students (two of
whom were female) entered the classroom. During the course of the
presentation, lap dances were administered to willing students — and even
Rappaport — while he lectured.
were "doing their normal job," as one student put it. The mere presence of
these women was not entirely surprising, apparently, to Rappaport's
students, who say that he regularly reminded his classes that the strippers
had been booked . . . "
[Here we see
another faculty member running sex sideshows to attract large numbers of
students to his classes and get high student ratings, as does
Michael Bailey at Northwestern. Perhaps the La Salle and Northwestern
investigations should compare notes about what to do about such scams.]
4-10-11: TS Roadmap: "UCLA demographic report: about 700,000
transgender Americans", by Andrea James
"Dr. Gary J.
Gates, a demographic researcher at UCLA specializing in the demographic and
economic characteristics of the LGBT population, has released a report
estimating that there are 700,000 people in the United States who identify
as transgender. Published estimates (including
by Lynn Conway) suggest prevalence between 1 in 1000 and 1 in 200
Americans. Based on this estimate, trans people have a larger population
than many major cities, including Baltimore, Boston, Seattle, and our
nation’s capital, Washington D.C. If we all lived in the same city, it would
be one of the 20 largest in the country."
4-10-11: Washington Post (poste 4-08): "Gay people count, so why not
count them correctly?", by Gary J. Gates (more)
demographer who studies the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender
community, I’ve been asked how many LGBT people there are more often than I
can count. Politics may still play a role in why the answer is critically
important, but there certainly is no longer a need to prove that gay people
exist. Today, quantifying the population is about documenting how LGBT
people live their lives. How many marry? How often do they have children?
How many are serving in the military? How often do they experience
matter because legislatures, courts and voters across the country are
debating how LGBT people should live their lives. All parties deserve to be
informed by fresh research, not a six-decade-old study. We should be able to
search the standard places where scholars and policy advocates go for
information about the health and well-being of Americans — all Americans"
4-10-11: The Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law (posted 4-08):
"How many people are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender?", by Gary J.
Gates, Williams Distinguished Scholar
numbers of population-based surveys in the United States and across the
world include questions designed to measure sexual orientation and gender
identity. Understanding the size of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and
transgender (LGBT) population is a critical first step to informing a host
of public policy and research topics. Examples include assessing health and
economic disparities in the LGBT community, understanding the prevalence of
anti-LGBT discrimination, and considering the economic impact of marriage
equality or the provision of domestic partnership benefits to same-sex
couples. This research brief discusses challenges associated with collecting
better information about the LGBT community and reviews findings from eleven
recent US and international surveys that ask sexual orientation or gender
identity questions. The brief concludes with estimates of the size of the
LGBT population in the United States."
research brief from the UCLA School of Law.]
4-10-11: Montreal Gazette (Canada): "Substitute teacher who says he
was fired for being transgender rejects settlement" (more)
was born a woman but now lives full-time as a man. He claims he was fired in
October 2008 by Greater St. Albert Catholic Schools, four months after
informing the deputy superintendent he was changing gender and wished to be
identified as Mr. Buterman in the future.
superintendent’s written response informed Buterman he would be removed from
the substitute teacher list because “gender change is not aligned with the
teachings of the Church” and would result in “confusions and complexity with
students and parents as a model and witness to Catholic faith values.” "
4-10-11: New York Times: "A Lawsuit’s Unusual Question: Who Is a Man?"
Urban Treatment Associates in Camden hired Mr. Devoureau as a part-time
urine monitor; his job was to make sure that people recovering from
addiction did not substitute someone else’s urine for their own during
regular drug testing. On his second day, he said, his boss said she had
heard he was transgender. “I said I was male, and she asked if I had any
surgeries,” he said. “I said that was private and I didn’t have to answer,
and I was fired.”
In its January
filing, Urban Treatment said that firing Mr. Devoureau was legitimate,
“since the sex of the employee engaged in that particular job position is a
bona fide occupational qualification” — implying that Mr. Devoureau was not
really a man.
suit, filed in Superior Court in Camden, is not the first job discrimination
case brought by a transgender person, though those remain rare. But Michael
D. Silverman, executive director of the Transgender Legal Defense and
Education Fund, said it was the first employment case in the country to take
on the question of a transgender person’s sex."
4-10-11: Sunday Mirror (UK): "Children of 12 to be allowed gender
drugs to prepare for sex change"
young as 12 are to be allowed drugs to prepare them for changing sex. The
controversial treatment halts puberty, stunting sex organs and preventing
the growth of facial hair and sperm in boys, and breasts in girls.
previously available only to over-15s with gender identity disorder, are
being made available to younger people under an NHS study after pressure
from families and doctors. Doctors admit most children with the problem do
not go on to have a sex change, often turning out to be gay. But blocking
puberty hormones can make surgery easier if they need it."
4-10-11: Sydney Morning Herald (Australia): "'Why did our sister die
in a men's jail?'"
"Two years after
Veronnica Baxter died in a men's jail, her brothers are still asking why.
inquest into Ms Baxter's death last week found she committed suicide at
Silverwater in 2009, sometime between her single-cell door closing on March
15 and when it was opened the next morning.
Greens MP David
Shoebridge said questions remained about why Ms Baxter, a transgender
Aboriginal woman, was put in an all-male facility when she identified as a
woman, and why she was not given hormone medication prescribed to her.
Services policy states transgender prisoners should be put in a centre based
on which gender they identify with - unless there are concerns for their
safety or that of other prisoners. Mr Shoebridge will refer her death to a
parliamentary inquiry with the power to call witnesses."
4-08-11: The European Parliament Intergroup on LGBT Rights (Europe;
posted 4-06): "European Parliament calls for special protection of LGBT
"Members of the
European Parliament voted today to modernise the EU-wide system for
examining asylum claims. Among the measures adopted today, groups of
asylum-seekers with special needs were updated to include people fleeing
persecution based on their sexual orientation or gender identity.
a report drafted by French centre-left MEP Sylvie Guillaume (Socialists
& Democrats), the European Parliament adopted a series of amendments to
guarantee that lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender people seeking asylum
in the EU would receive particular attention.
providing expert advice to asylum officials on sexual orientation and gender
identity; protecting claimants’ privacy; guaranteeing that physical
examinations fully respect human dignity and integrity, for instance in
cases involving minors or transgender people; and ensuring that applications
by LGBT asylum-seekers are not ‘fast-tracked’ for removal to their country
4-07-11: New York Times: Movie Review: "To Die Like a Man (2009) - The
Anguish of Identity"
"“To Die Like a
Man,” a ruminative exploration of gender identity, desire and aging, begins
with a close-up of a young man’s face being daubed with camouflage paint by
a fellow soldier in preparation for a training mission . . .The film’s
unresolved paradoxes are even encapsulated by its title, suggestive of a
macho war film, which “To Die Like a Man” most definitely is not . . .
revolves around the care and feeding of her beloved dog and her volatile
boyfriend, Rosário (Alexander David), a scrawny, much younger heroin addict
for whom she is as much a mother as a lover. Although Rosário is pressuring
Tonia to complete the final stage of her sexual reassignment surgery, she
resists, because to do so would clash with her devout Catholicism.
Knowing that her
shelf life as a drag performer is about to expire, Tonia also has a
deepening awareness of the man inside the woman as the end of her career
coincides with her body’s deterioration . . .
For all its
melodrama “To Die Like a Man” is a not a tearjerker. Its gaze into the void
is as unblinking as that of the H.I.V.-positive 60-year-old hustler in
Jacques Nolot’s even more hard-headed film, “Before I Forget.” Both films
refuse to soften the harsher personal truths faced by aging professional
salesmen of erotic fantasy."
4-07-11: The Sun (UK re Czech Republic): "I’m the Stone Age gay in the
5,000-year-old remains of a man have been unearthed by experts, who say he
was GAY. The male body, dating from 2500 to 2900 BC, was buried in a way
normally reserved for women of the Stone Age 'Corded Ware' culture. It was
found in Prague, Czech Republic, with its head pointing eastwards and
surrounded by domestic jugs - rituals only previously seen in female graves.
Archaeologist Kamila Vesinova claimed he could even have been a transsexual
. . .
In Corded Ware
culture men were buried lying on their right side with their heads pointing
west - alongside tools, weapons, food and drink. Women were buried on their
left sides with jewellery and pottery. Archaeologists also found an earlier
case of a female warrior buried as a man."
4-07-11: Windy City Times (Chicago; posted 4-06): "Cook County Jail
using gender identity to determine housing", by Kate Sosin
"In a Windy City
Times exclusive, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart announced that Cook County
Jail has instituted a policy for housing transgender detainees based on
their gender identity, rather than birth sex. The policy became effective on
March 21. It is thought to be the first of its kind in the United States.
with this issue, we wanted to do it right," Dart told Windy City Times,
adding that "medical and sociological" concerns for transgender people "even
superseded security issues."
policy mandates that transgender detainees be allowed to consult with a
"Gender Identity Panel" of physicians and therapists before being placed
into male or female housing. It also directs correctional staff to allow
transgender people to wear clothing/ own hygiene products consistent with
their gender identity. Further, it requires that corrections staff,
physicians, and therapists undergo gender-related sensitivity training
administered by the sheriff's department. The policy is a far cry from old
standards, which, officials said, were nonexistent."
4-07-11: Sydney Morning Herald (Australia): "Transgender inmate
suicide not preventable"
suicide of a transgender Aboriginal woman in a male jail could not have been
prevented by the Department of Corrective Services, a coroner has found.
Coroner Paul MacMahon said there was nothing to suggest any failure by the
department contributed to the death of Veronica Baxter, who was found dead
in her cell while on remand at Sydney's Silverwater Correctional Centre in
March 2009 . . .
She was held in
the cells at the Sydney Police Centre in Surry Hills for five days before
being transferred to the Metropolitan Remand and Reception Centre, a male
facility at Silverwater. Two days later, the 34-year-old pre-operative
transgender male-to-female used a bed sheet to hang herself from a top bunk
bed in her cell while awaiting classification."
4-07-11: Columbia Spectator: "Barnard looks to address transgender,
gender non-conforming students"
"When Rey Grosz,
GS, entered Barnard College as a first-year in 2007, he was already taking
male pronouns and planning to begin transitioning from female to male . . .
But midway through orientation week, there were already problems. “When I
got there, my roommates were uncomfortable,” Grosz said. “They told the
administration that they didn’t want to live with a boy” . . .
Grosz said that
he asked to be moved to a single and that Barnard denied his request, saying
singles were unavailable to freshmen. Barnard confirmed that Grosz’s request
could not be accommodated. The college has since made two singles available
to first-years, for students with disabilities or exceptional circumstances
. . .
said he wished his situation had been handled differently three years ago,
he emphasized that the responsibility for changing attitudes on campus
cannot rest solely with the administration and policy reforms."
4-07-11: The Mirror (UK): "Dad's
Having A Baby: A Bodyshock Special - C4, 9pm"
"In March last
year, Scott Moore from California became only the world’s second man to give
Not so long ago,
such a feat seemed impossible – now it’s been downgraded to “rare”. So much
so that in this film we also meet a midwife who specialises in transgender
births. Busy, much? You wish somebody had asked her.
Scott was able
to get pregnant because he was born a girl and hadn’t gone the whole hog
with his sex change op. Legally he’s still a woman, which was how he was
able to marry his partner, Tom, who was also born female but who did have a
full sex change."
4-06-11: Sun-Sentinal: "Lake Worth city manager her own worst enemy",
by Tony Plakas (more)
"Lake Worth City
Manager Susan Stanton is losing another important popularity contest.
Terminated from her city manager job in Largo for disclosing that she is
transgender and for announcing her intent to undergo gender reassignment in
2007, Stanton failed to organize enough professional support to keep the
position as a woman, despite successfully filling the role for 16 years as a
man . . .
In 2009, Stanton
semi-nestled into the overwhelmingly challenging but extraordinarily
accepting community that is Lake Worth, a city that gambled all hopes on her
leadership as a great new city manager, regardless of her sexual orientation
or gender identity. We all yearned for someone who could bring together
divided factions and diminish the frivolity that obscures the economic
prosperity and negotiated quality of life we collectively desire in our
paradise by the sea.
Stanton has not semi-nestled, she has thoroughly vexed. And the most
unlikely of allies are making the most frantic of coordinated claims
because, in the end, she is simply not well-liked. It's her style. She
marginalizes herself with her own brashness, a trait she continues to defend
even though it continues to offend — and her stubbornness is not gaining her
any ground. Now, some are questioning her commitment to the diverse
community she was hired to serve, while others are concerned the city is
headed for the same sound-bite-turned-swan-song sung across the state when
she was forced from her previous position."
surprised by these developments? ]
4-05-11: AM New York: "Some transgender youths look to black-market
youths are obtaining hormones on the grey and black markets to help their
outsides match their insides, doctors and transgender youth told amNewYork.
While numbers are elusive, for every transgender kid seeing a physician,
“there are 10 we’re not seeing,” said Johanna Olson, an assistant professor
of clinical pediatrics at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles. Transsexual
people have always faced insurance and cultural discrimination, as well as
other obstacles to good medical care. But even when trans-sensitive care is
available, some youth prefer to self-prescribe, amNY found . . . “The urge
to live authentically is an urge that is unparalleled. It’s so powerful,
people will take their own life and put it at risk,” Olson said."
Matters for America: "Wash. Times Launches Attack On Transgender People"
April 4 editorial, The Washington Times attacked transgender
seeking the ability to change the gender listed on their birth
certificates, writing: "It's fair to ask where all of this is heading. Could
Jocelyn Wildenstein -- famously nicknamed 'Catwoman' for the feline
appearance she achieved through multiple plastic surgeries -- decide after
years of struggling with her identity that she is actually a cat?" The Times
went on to further question the sanity of transgender people, suggesting
that "perhaps these people are just messed up.""
4-04-11: Washington Times: "EDITORIAL: The latest birth certificate
scandal - New York City Health Department confused by gender benders"
accurate sex recorded at a birth “a mistake” is the misleading yet
predictable result of a creeping activist agenda quietly transforming the
country. There is disagreement in confused medical circles on whether
believing oneself to be the gender opposite to that indicated by one’s
physical characteristics and sex chromosomes is a medical condition or a
psychiatric disorder . . .
speaking, none of the scientific (or pseudo-scientific) mumbo-jumbo matters
too much, however, because self-identified transgenders and their allies are
finding success for their radical agenda by merely asserting that it’s a
medical condition and going forward with counseling for “transition”
(purportedly becoming the opposite gender) and radical surgery to “correct”
their organs and sex characteristics. There is no more debate over the
possibility that perhaps these people are just messed up.
Let’s leave alone, for the time being, the question of whether supporting
and reinforcing a mixed-up patient’s desire to surgically mutilate his (or
her) body to resemble a unique perception of “becoming” the opposite sex is
“appropriate” treatment. No matter what, official government identification
documents should not be changed to accommodate the feelings of any group. "
4-04-11: ABC News (posted 3-17): "Intersex Babies: Boy or Girl and Who
Decides? Surgery on Ambiguous Genitals Is Irreversible and Doctors Can Get a
Child's Sex Wrong" (more)
"An estimated 1
in 2,000 children born each year are neither boy nor girl -- they are
intersex, part of a group of about 60 conditions that fall under the
diagnosis of disorders of sexual development (DSD).
hermaphrodites, from the handsome Greek god who had dual sexuality, they are
now known as intersex. Standard medical treatment has been to look at the
genitals, determine the gender and then correct it surgically.
But now, many
are challenging the ethical basis of surgery, knowing that gender identity
is complex, and doctors can sometimes get it wrong, not knowing how a child
will feel about their gender assignment when they grow up. Advocates argue
that surgery is irreversible and can have tragic consequences."
4-04-11: Israel 21c (Israel): "Dana International returns to
“She's the world's most famous transsexual celebrity - now
Dana International is geared up to represent Israel for the fourth time in
the major European song contest.
figure-hugging sleeveless white gown adorned with feathers that would have
made Lady Gaga jealous, Dana was spreading the love she had just received
from Israelis across the country. TV viewers as well as the members of the
Rishon audience at the annual pre-Eurovision competition had just selected
the flamboyant transsexual singer and her frothy song, Ding Dong, to
represent Israel at the Eurovision Song Contest, which is expected to be
watched by upwards of 600 million people during its finals on May 14. "
4-04-11: Irish Times (Ireland): "Application for annulment granted to
wife of transsexual" (more)
for nullity of marriage on the part of the wife of a male-to-female
transsexual, which was heard as a preliminary matter before the hearing of a
divorce application by the transsexual, was granted on the grounds that the
wife would not have consented to the marriage had she been aware of the
reality of her then husband’s sexual identity . . .
considered the medical evidence, Mr Justice Abbott stressed the need for
previous referral letters and treating consultants reports in such cases. He
accepted a diagnosis by the husband’s consultant that he was an
“autogynephilic” transsexual. He also accepted that the wife was not aware
of her husband’s transsexual tendencies before the marriage. “From her
background and life experience and preference, I have no doubt she would not
have consented to marry a person even with . . . a low level of sexual
preference and tendency, much less consent to marrying a gynephilic,” he
4-03-11: SDLGBT Weekly (re UK): "Transgender Pilot to Attend Royal
and Kate Middleton have invited a transgender pilot to attend their
impending nuptials on April 29, 2011. Flight Lieutenant Ayla Holdom is among
the 1,000 people on the ultra exclusive guest list. Holdam is a team member
with Prince William in the military on his Search and Rescue Team."
3-31-11: Los Angeles Times: "Medical records and health studies should
track sexual orientation and gender identity, report says"
"Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender patients have unique
healthcare needs and concerns just as any minority does -- and those
distinctions should be taken into account in studies and health records,
says a new report released Thursday.
The Institute of Medicine report, meant as technical advice
for the National Institutes of Health, recommended that federally funded
studies ask participants about their sexual orientation and gender identity
-- factors that could affect a person's medical profile and health risks
just as aspects such as race and age do.
The institute also recommended that medical professionals
start including data on sexuality and gender identity in people's electronic
[What idiot thought up this idea? If this were
implemented, your medical records would out you during every encounter with
the medical system, subjecting you to lifelong abuse by the many transphobic
"caregivers" out there.]
3-31-11: Salt Lake City Tribune Blogs: "Transgender woman meets with
driver license director"
"The Utah Driver License Division met Wednesday with a
transgender woman who allegedly faced discrimination when she visited the
agency’s Fairpark Office in Salt Lake City. “We did express our apology if
she felt like she had been mistreated in our office,” said Nannette Rolfe,
director of the division. “We want to make sure our employes are treating
everyone with respect and dignity” . . .
Rolfe said Audette understood why she was asked to remove her
make-up to be photographed for her ID, which expresses a male identity, even
though Audette disliked it. Rolfe said Audette, however, thought it was
disrespectful when, after Anderton complained on Audette’s behalf, a Driver
License supervisor loudly stated that Audette was a man, not a woman."
3-30-11: The West Australian (Australia): “WA transsexuals head to
“One of the transsexual men, whose identities have been
suppressed, said it had been three years since he applied to the State's
Gender Reassignment Board for a certificate which would legally recognise
his change of gender and he was anxious for the High Court to grant leave
for the case to be heard.
The Gender Reassignment Board rejected the pair's original
applications for reassignment certificates, but the decisions were
overturned in 2009.
Attorney-General Christian Porter then went to the Court of
Appeal to clarify the law. In a decision handed down in September, the court
found the transsexuals could not have their genders reassigned because they
did not have the physical characteristics which would identify them as men.”
3-30-11: The Daily News Journal (posted 3-24): “MTSU student's film
“A journalism student from Middle Tennessee State University
will show a film chronicling personal Journeys of identity and social
struggle this weekend. "Transmen"
a documentary by MTSU senior Tiffany Gibson, will be shown at 7 p.m. Friday
in the State Farm Lecture Hall of MTSU's Business and Aerospace Building.
This event is free and open to the public.
The film explores the lives of three Tennesseans who are
attempting the process of gender reassignment, transitioning from females to
males, and the social and financial obstacles they face. According to the
http://transmen.tumblr.com/, Tennessee is the only state with a law that
bans gender changes on birth certificates, even after sex-change operations.
Gibson, the filmmaker, is a Cookeville native slated to graduate in May 2011
with a bachelor's degree in journalism.
3-30-11: Philly.com: “NEEDLING THE MEDIA”
"WHEN "URBAN GOTH" transgender singer Black Madam was
implicated in court documents as the person who gave a lethal buttocks
injection to a British woman last month, she was called many hurtful things
online: A man. A thief. A murderer.
But according to a video that Black Madam posted online
Friday, the most hurtful thing she was called was 41. "To tell you the
truth, out of all the stuff that they put out, I was so heated that - how
dare they put that I'm 41!" she said, in the video. "I don't look 41. God
In the video, Black Madam, whom police identified in court
documents as Padge Victoria Windslowe, 42, of Lower Merion, lambastes the
media and talks about how she's handled life since Feb. 7. That was the day
that British tourist Claudia Seye Aderotimi, 20, and a friend received
illegal injections into their buttocks of what they believed was
silicone from the Black Madam at a room in the Hampton Inn near the
Philadelphia International Airport, court documents said. Shortly after
receiving the injections, Aderotimi was taken to Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital,
in Darby, where she was pronounced dead. Preliminary reports suggest that
death could have been due to the injected liquid entering Aderotimi's
vascular system, but police are still awaiting official autopsy findings.”
3-29-11: Afrik News (re Algeria and Lebanon): “Randa: A transsexual is
above all a human being – The Memoirs of Randa the Trans”
“Randa is an Algerian transsexual. She tells her poignant
story in a book, The Memoirs of Randa the Trans, which was recently
published in Lebanon, where she is based. Her is the first documented story
of an Transgender in Arabic. She spoke with Afrik-News.com about her
decision to tell her story in a book.
"Being wholly woman" is a dream that has become reality for
Randa, formerly known as Fuad. Based in Lebanon, where she is allowed to
take the necessary steps to get a sex-change, Randa fled Algeria in 2009
after she was threatened by Islamists. She tells tell her story in a new
book, The Memoirs of Randa the Trans (co-written by Hazem Saghieh, a
celebrated Lebanese political journalist).
The book recounts, with startling brutality, the life of the
thirty-something year-old Algerian: a troubled childhood, first homosexual
experience, suicide attempts, a failed marriage, and, finally, the decision
to become a full-fledged woman. The Memoirs of Randa the Trans has
taken the Arab literary world by storm. It is the first documented story of
an Transgender in Arabic.”
3-28-11: NPR: “Study: Discrimination Takes A Toll On Transgender
Americans – 'Injustice at Every Turn: A Report of the National Transgender
Discrimination Survey'“ (pdf
“More than 40 percent of transgender Americans have attempted
suicide. That's according to a new, first-of-its-kind survey into
discrimination against people who express a gender identity different to the
one with which they were born. Host Michel Martin discusses the findings and
experiences within transgender communities with Jaime Grant and Michelle
Enfield, a transgender woman who was born a biological male.”
3-28-11: Catholic Culture: “USCCB: sexual orientation, gender
identity should not be protected categories”
“The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is
opposing a proposal by the Department of Housing and Urban Development that
would add “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to the list of
categories to which anti-discrimination policies would apply. . . .
“Specifically, the regulations may force faith-based and
other organizations, as a condition of participating in HUD programs and in
contravention of their religious beliefs, to facilitate shared housing
arrangements between persons who are not joined in the legal union of one
man and one woman.”
“By this, we do not mean that any person should be denied
housing,” Picarello and Moses continued. “Making decisions about shared
housing, however, is another matter.””
[As an institution in disarray over rampant pedophilia by its
priests, the Roman Catholic Church diverts the faithful by demonizing and
gay and trans people.]
3-28-11: The Times of Malta (Malta): “Woman who became male wins right
to be recognised as a man”
“A woman who had a sex change operation to become a man has
won the right to recognised as a man by the Public Registry. Judge Joseph
Azzopardi also ordered that the man to be registered as such on his birth
He heard that the said person had had masculine inclinations
since he was a child and his psychological and physical behaviour was
masculine. To get rid of internal conflicts this person underwent gender
reassignment surgery in Serbia.”
3-25-11: Inside Higher Ed: "'An Unwanted Consequence'"
Ben Barres delivered a lecture at the Massachusetts Institute of
Technology, another scientist was overheard making a telling remark. "Ben
Barres gave a great talk today,” the scientist reportedly said, as Barres
related the story to the journal Nature in 2006. “His work is much better
than his sister's."
That colleague didn’t realize it, but when he compared Barres
to his sister, he was actually talking about the same person. Barres, a
neurobiology at the Stanford University School of Medicine, had
undergone a sex change operation, from female to male, not long before he
gave his talk at MIT.
Though Barres’s gender has changed, he says that the quality
of his work certainly has not. But the underlying assumption the comment
reflected -- that women have less innate intellectual prowess or ability to
conduct scholarship, both in science and in academe more broadly -- is alive
and well even as women are gaining a stronger foothold in academe,
according to a recent MIT report on the status of women in science and
engineering . . .
Those attitudes sometimes spill out into the open, as they
did in 2005 when
Summers, who was then the president of Harvard University, posited that
"issues of intrinsic aptitude” may be a more significant factor than
discrimination in explaining why women are underrepresented in the top tiers
of science and engineering. But these views typically surface in more subtle
ways. As recounted in the MIT study, these beliefs find expression, instead,
in offhand comments, including remarks suggesting that women were hired or
promoted because standards were lowered to accommodate them. And, despite
the real gains made in the number of women entering the professoriate,
researchers on the subject say that these biases persist and can do damage
3-25-11: SF Weekly: "Bisexuals Are Neglected in San Francisco --
'Biphobia' Is Real"
"The city's Human Rights
thick report this month that shows just how biphobic San Francisco is.
Despite years of activism, bisexuals continue to be branded as invalid, by
both homosexuals and heterosexuals alike, according to the report.
First, how should we define bisexuality? According to the report, anyone who
has the capacity for emotional, romantic, and physical attraction to more
than one sex or gender -- and would be involved with them is bisexual.
Roughly 3 percent of the nationwide population identifies as
bisexual, yet over the last two years, zero grant dollars went toward
programs and services specifically dedicated to assisting bisexuals. In
short, the needs of bisexuals are being ignored.
"It's certainly groundbreaking," said David Miree, policy
analyst for the Human Rights Commission. "This report acknowledged that
bisexuality is a definite sexual orientation.""
Bailey is proud of
his role in fostering widspread biphobia, especially in the gay and
Connecticut Law Tribune: "Cop Says Bias Prevented Promotion To Canine
"A Hartford police officer’s claim that she was denied a
position because she changed genders from male to female is before the state
The judge said the referee misapplied 15-year-old Connecticut
case law in determining that a transgendered person cannot claim bias based
on a physical disability. The judge also said the referee did not
sufficiently explain why he failed to consider past incidents of harassment
before ruling Peterson was not discriminated against when passed over for a
canine officer position.
In hearings spanning three months in 2008, Hartford Attorney
Jamie Mills presented evidence showing that pornographic images of male
genitalia and female breasts with Peterson’s name were posted in a police
locker room and that a pre-operative picture of her as a male was taped to a
bulletin board outside the department’s Internal Affairs office. Peterson
also testified she was continually referred to as “he” post-surgery by a
police academy officer and that she had difficulty being assigned to a
training officer upon leaving the police academy . . .
“Lieutenant Peterson is the nicest human being and has been
through hell,” Mills said. “She goes to work every day and puts up with a
level of harassment that I don’t know that many of us could stand.”"
Connecticut Law Tribune: "In Transition: Advocates push for stronger bans on
"Rachel Goldberg was working as an attorney for the City of
Stamford when she finally got up the courage to share the decision that had
tormented her to the point of trying to take her own life. Known as “Bruce”
at the time, she was worried how then-Mayor Dannel Malloy would react when
he learned she planned to become the woman she always felt she was.
“Was I fearful? Absolutely,” Goldberg said. “I was at the
same time trying to hide the white gauze bandages on my wrists under my
crisp white shirt. I had tried to slit my wrists.”
As it turned out, Goldberg, who still works for the city,
didn’t have to worry about acceptance and support from the mayor who went on
to be governor. But she knew she was an exception to the rule. That’s why
she testified last week in favor of a bill that would ban discrimination
based on gender identity in Connecticut"
3-25-11: Mail Online (UK re US): "My son, the prom queen: Transgender
student, 16, dresses in drag for big night... and mother does his make-up"
"Tom Komrowski looks pretty in pink for his school prom after
teachers agreed he could dress in drag. The 16-year-old from Rhode
Island, USA, donned a blonde wig and a pretty pink dress before heading to
his school’s end of year party.
And the former tomboy who used to love frog fishing and Star
Wars looked so convincing as a teenage girl none of his classmates even
recognised him. Tom said: ‘I was nervous before I went to the prom but when
I got there a lot of people didn’t even recognise me at first."
3-24-11: Jewish News Weekly (re Isreal): "Israeli LGBT youth share
stories of anguish and renewal"
"Sam Rosenfeld still remembers standing near the edge of a
cliff at age 12, on a trip to the mountains with his family, and considering
whether he should jump.
Born female, Rosenfeld — who, at 18, identifies as a
transgender man — had always felt he was trapped in a girl’s body. Growing
up in a Modern Orthodox family outside of Tel Aviv, he felt depressed,
confused and alienated at the girls’ yeshiva he attended.
“Obviously, I didn’t jump,” he said with a shy smile. “I’m
United States Department of State (posted 3-22): Press Statement: "Human
Rights Council Statement on Ending Violence Based on Sexual Orientation and
Gender Identity", by Hillary Rodham Clinton, Secretary of State
"Today, 85 countries from every region of the world joined
together in a historic moment to state clearly that human rights apply to
everyone, no matter who they are or whom they love. The United States, along
with Colombia and Slovenia, took a leading role on this statement along with
over 30 cosponsors. Countries around the world participated including many
that had never supported such efforts . . .
This statement is an example of America’s commitment to human
rights through dialogue, open discussion and frank conversation with
countries we don’t always agree with on every issue. In Geneva, our
conversations about the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and
transgender individuals with countries where sexual orientation is not only
stigmatized, but criminalized, are helping to advance a broader and deeper
global dialogue about these issues . . .
We will continue to promote human rights around the world for
all people who are marginalized and discriminated against because of sexual
orientation or gender identity. And we will not rest until every man, woman
and child is able to live up to his or her potential free from persecution
or discrimination of any kind."
3-23-11: Bangalore Mirror (India; posted 3-21): "The Majority of
Transsexuals like to be women"
"Apparently, most transsexuals want to identify themselves as
women because it gets them more respect in society. “Earlier, they had no
qualms calling themselves hijras. Now transgenders, who can afford to, are
going in for sex change operations and silicon implants to have some
semblance to a woman. Their obvious aim is respectability and the
empowerment that comes from being a woman,” explained Prakash Raj,
coordinator at Sangama, a NGO that works for sexual minorities . . .
At a time when transgenders are denied vital identity proof
documents — driving licence, voter ID card or a ration card — the UID has
come to their rescue. It is in no small part due to the attitude of the UID
“We had issued strict instructions to registration officers
at Aadhaar centres in Mysore and Tumkur not to ill-treat transgenders or
show unnecessary curiosity. I don’t want to reveal the number of
transgenders registered so far,’’ information technology and e-governance
principal secretary M N Vidyashankar said. He was also not surprised that
the majority of trangenders who enrolled opted for the feminine gender. “It
is up to the transgenders to decide their gender. Majority of them wanted to
be feminine,” he added."
RNZI (Re French Polynesia): "French Polynesia mayor sentenced for opposing
sex change marriage"
"A mayor in French Polynesia has been convicted for abuse of
power after he refused to marry a couple because the woman had had a sex
change. Thomas Moutame, who is the mayor of Taputapuatea on Raiatea, has
been declared ineligible to hold office for a year and fined 5,000 US
Moutame claimed religious and moral objections to the sex
change. In 2007, he refused to officiate despite the couple presenting a
document of a tribunal which showed that it recognised that the bride no
longer was a man."
3-22-11: Wall Street Journal: "As Little Girls and Boys Grow, They
"The NIMH, as part of a 20-year-old brain-mapping project,
has been doing MRI scans of young people's brains, age 9 to 22. By measuring
the thickness of the brain's cortex and how it changes over time, scientists
have found that boys' and girls' brains, on average, differ significantly at
age 9. But by the time the participants reached age 22, the brains of the
two sexes grew more alike in many areas critical for learning. In general,
most parts of people's brains are fully developed by the age of 25 to 30 . .
The findings come as education experts debate the best ways
to approach gender issues in schools. Aspects of the government research
appear to support a push for segregated classrooms of boys and girls,
especially at younger ages when their brains are the most different. But
other educators and scientists cite other parts of the data to reject the
idea of single-sex classrooms . . .
Dr. Eliot cites a neuro-imaging study from last year that
showed the female brain has stronger neuronal connections than the male
brain in certain areas, and vice versa. But in general, the study found that
the male and female brains show more commonality than difference, Dr. Eliot
says. The study, which looks at about 1,100 brain scans, was published in
the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Dr. Giedd of the NIMH says his research also showed there are
exceptions. In about 10% of the young people studied, boys' and girls'
brains were more similar to the brains of the opposite sex than to others'
of the same sex."
3-22-11: New York Daily News: "Transgendered people sue city over
excessive requirements for birth certificate sex change " (more,
"The city is facing lawsuits from transgendered people over
the hurdles they face in changing their sex on birth certificates. The
Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund is challenging the Health
Department's requirement for proof of a sex-reassignment procedure.
"No laws have to be changed," said Noah Lewis, an attorney
for the group. "All the city has to do is treat transgender people like
everyone else and go by the medical documents they provide". . .
"Although we understand the concerns raised by the
petitioners in the lawsuit, the Board of Health should not change its
requirements without assurances that the amended certificate cannot be
misused," said Gabriel Taussig, a lawyer for the city."
3-22-11: TDLEF: "TLDEF
Files Lawsuit Against New York City Over Refusal to Correct Transgender
Birth Certificates" [Link
to PDF of filed lawsuit]
"TLDEF announced today that it has
lawsuit against the City of New York and the New York City Department of
Health and Mental Hygiene challenging the city's practice of requiring
transgender people to undergo surgery before it will issue them birth
certificates with corrected sex designations. This is the first lawsuit to
challenge a surgical requirement for correcting whether someone is
classified as "male" or "female" on a birth certificate. It alleges that the
city's surgical requirement is arbitrary, and that it subjects transgender
people to harassment and discrimination in violation of the New York City
Human Rights Law."
3-22-11: The Sun (UK): "Transgender singer's a web hit"
"A transgender Thailand's Got Talent contestant has become an
internet hit after revealing she was really a he halfway through an
audition. Brunette beauty Nantita Khumpiramon wowed the judges and audience
Thai version of Britain's Got Talent with her stunning voice.
But after captivating the crowd, Nantita dropped to her male voice - causing
the show's hosts to explode into giggles. After tricking everyone to
thinking he was a girl, Nantita finished the rest of Thai power ballad
Unlovable with a deep manly voice."
[British tabloids often refer to transgender women as 'he'
and as 'men'. To better visualize what happened, see the original
3-21-11: Change.org: "PA Transit Company SEPTA Silences Debate on
Gender Identity Discrimination"
"In January, Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority
(SEPTA) greeted the New Year with a special resolution. The company will
continue its discrimination against transgender and gender non-conforming
passengers for up to three more years by refusing to remove gender stickers
from its monthly passes. Please kindly bear with the humiliation, expense
and possible threat to your person while SEPTA makes its upgrades.
All of SEPTA’s monthly passes, including, ironically, the
“transpass,” must have an “M” or an “F” sticker denoting the bearer’s gender
identity. Somehow, the sticker policy is supposed to keep people from
sharing passes . . .
Philadelphia now has the dubious honor of being the only
major metropolitan area in the U.S. that forces monthly pass holders to pass
a gender test before entering the bus, trolley or train. Anyone who doesn’t
present their gender according to a driver’s worldview cannot use their
monthly pass. They can even have their expensive pass confiscated."
3-20-11: Al-Masry Al-Youm (Egypt): "Authorities deny Arab transsexuals
access to Egypt"
"Cairo airport authorities denied two Arab post-operative
transgender passengers access to Egypt on Sunday. Eyewitnesses said a state
of confusion prevailed at the airport when customs officials discovered a
male passenger and a female passenger both carrying passports stating their
Officials noticed a 22-year-old passenger of "outstanding
beauty" embarking from a plane coming from the Jordanian capital Amman,
holding a passport under the name Ahmed. The passenger said she had
undergone a gender reassignment operation and become a female six weeks ago,
but hadn’t yet been able to modify her passport data. Arriving on the same
plane, a 19-year-old male passenger held a passport with the female name
Israa. He said he had undergone surgery to became male, but also wasn’t able
to update his passport.
The passengers were then examined, and their accounts proved
to be correct. However, customs authorities banned them from entering Egypt
and put them on the same plane back to Jordan."
3-20-11: Bangkok Post (Thailand): "Army renames transgender
“Transgender army recruits won't have their feelings hurt in
the coming conscription season . . . Instead of their sexuality being called
a "psychological abnormality" or a "gender identity disorder", they will
simply be referred to as "Type 2" or "Type 3" . . . Type 2 refers to men who
have undergone breast augmentation, while Type 3 comprises people who have
had a full sex change.
The army had proposed replacing the term "psychological
abnormality" with "gender identity disorder" but had a rethink after fierce
criticisms from human rights groups, who were opposed to any term that
suggests abnormality . . . He said the main purpose of the amendment is to
correct the part of the law that states transgender people are exempt from
conscription because they are considered psychologically abnormal."
3-19-11: Montreal Gazette (Canada): "The Debate over Diagnosis”, By
“Expected to be published in May 2013, the fifth edition of
the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) - the
bible of the American Psychiatric Association - has created a firestorm of
controversy in its suggested treatment of individuals who have gender
According to the manual, an individual questioning gender
identity and meeting certain criteria suffers from gender identity disorder,
which is therefore considered a mental disorder. And the new edition, whose
revisions have been in the works for more than a decade, is likely to once
again disappoint the vocal community that has been arguing for years that
being transgendered is not a mental illness . . .
Many medical practitioners and activists argue that the
inclusion of gender identity disorder, even in its likely DSM-5
configuration as gender incongruence, "pathologizes a normal variant of
human sexuality," as Fordham University researcher
Sarah Kamens wrote recently in the magazine of the Society for
Humanistic Psychology. "In the DSM that's currently in use, it's classified
the same way homosexuality was 30 years ago," says
Ghosh, who treats children with gender identity issues at the Montreal
"The diagnosis stigmatizes trans people; it makes it look
like they're mentally ill, and they're not," says
Susset, psychologist and president-elect of the
Canadian Professional Association
for Transgender Health. "Many of the people I see are very high
functioning and have no mental illness whatsoever.""
3-19-11: Queerty (re Brazil, posted 3-16): "2 Trans Murders Rock
Brazil: Priscila + Val Executed In The Streets" (more,
"Priscila, a 22-year old trans woman in Brazil (born Gustavo Brandão
Aguilar), was captured on surveillance camera being shot seven times,
execution style, earlier this month. It is -- and I do not write this
lightly, or with malice -- to be expected in a country where
a LGBT person is slain every other day.
After shooting her, the suspects fled in a car. Police do not appear to
have any significant leads. Her killing was followed, 20 hours later, by the
murder of Valdecir. She was
shot in the head and neck. THIS IS WHAT INTOLERANCE LOOKS LIKE"
(Caution: graphic images)
Petition/Priscila: Help Stop LGBT murders in Brazil!]
3-19-11: Metro Weekly: "Maryland Transgender Activist Exonerated of
All Ethics Charges, Seeks Apology from Montgomery County"
"“In the fall of 2008, Jacobs filed a complaint with the
Montgomery County Ethics Commission against Beyer, claiming that
(Dana) Beyer had disrupted the group's efforts to collect signatures at
a grocery store in February . . .
The Montgomery County Ethics Commission
announced on March 8, 2011 that they have exonerated Beyer of all
charges . . .
While Beyer feels vindicated by the dropped charges, she says
an apology from the Ethics Commission is necessary . . .
"The main problem which has not been resolved to any degree
whatsoever, is that the Ethics Commission did not perform an investigation.
They did not perform due diligence before they chose to charge me. And to
the best of my knowledge I'm the first council staffer ever charged with an
ethics violation," she said.
"I believe, and I will prove this in court if the opportunity
ever rises, that this was a politically motivated attack on me because of my
trans-history ... and that it was all done for the specific reason of
damaging my political career and that of my boss [who] hired me.""
3-18-11: lastofthecleanbohemians (UK; posted 3-16): "For the love of
Channel 4…", by
"Accuracy. Dignity. Respect. Three journalistic principles
which should be upheld in all forms of media production. You’re not meant to
mock people because they’re different, and it’s rather poor form to report
inaccurate facts and figures. It’s illegal. As ascending human rights lawyer
David Allen Green notes, the invasion of trans people’s lives is more than
simply a trans issue: it is a human issue. If a person has an operation on a
part of their body, then that is a private matter between them and their
health professional – not a news story.
I feel like a broken record saying this sometimes. I mean
it’s simple huh? We don’t go around discussing other people’s genitals do
we? You’d never catch me doing that, not even to make a political point
Campaign groups from around the world have contacted TMW with
messages of support telling us we are a model for their own activism. Our
method is to work with and not fight the media. I asked Christine Burns at
the MoU launch if she shared my feeling that something momentous was taking
She should know. She agreed it was zeitgeisty; there was electricity in
[Insightful commentary on these important events!]
3-18-11: Feministing (re UK, posted 3-16): "UK’s Channel 4 signs
agreement to improve coverage of transgender issues" (more,
"I think this is pretty freaking great.
At an event on Monday Channel 4, one of the UK’s major broadcast
networks, signed a
Memorandum of Understanding with
Watch to cover transgender issues responsibly and respectfully. The
UK-based organization provides guidance for media organizations and trans
folks who are thinking about engaging with the media. The MOU, which
download from their website, focuses on four key areas:
•Eliminating transphobia in the media.
•Ending the provision of misinformation about transgender issues in the
•Increasing positive, well-informed representations of transgender people in
•Ensuring that transgender people working in or with the media are treated
with the same respect as non-transgender people in equivalent positions.
While Channel 4 is the first network to sign the MOU,
BBC has suggested they intend to sign on as well, and Trans Media Watch
says ITV is also considering signing the MOU. The document was developed
the organization released research showing trans folks experienced media
portrayals as overwhelmingly negative and linked to experiences of
[Please spread this important story widely as a information
alert to all your contacts in media circles.]
3-18-11: Facebook Group: "Trans Media Watch" (See also
"Trans Media Watch is a campaigning organisation which aims
to ensure that trans people are treated with accuracy, dignity and respect
by media organisatons in the UK. The purpose of this group is to collect
information about instances of transphobia in the media, and to provide
information about the work of Trans Media Watch. We welcome help in
identifying problems and working toward solutions."
Media Watch in the UK has just had a stunning success with their
of Understanding and other important reports. Please join and support
this group and bring their work to all your media contacts; we need a branch
in the U.S. too!]
3-18-11: Trans Media Watch (UK): "Memorandum of Understanding";
"How Transgender People Experience the Media"
[These reports are triggering a huge shift in media awareness
of and representation of trans people in the UK.]
3-18-11: Just Plain Sense (UK, posted 3-17): "Trans Media Watch Memorandum
of Understanding", Podcast by Christine Burns
"On the evening of Monday 14th March 2011 the organisation
Trans Media Watch collaborated with Channel 4 TV to launch a new Memorandum
of Understanding to an audience of media people, politicians and trans
people. The goal of the memorandum is to help eliminate discrimination
relating to trans people in all media by setting out goals that all the
parties can aspire towards. Channel 4 were the first organisation to
subscribe to the principles.
The MOU doesn't call for censorship but aims instead to give
media organisations the tools they need to address endemic problems. Trans
Media Watch say they are guided by the basic principle that we wish to see
transgender people and issues treated with accuracy, dignity and respect.
We were there to capture the atmosphere of the event,
including speeches by the Junior Minister for Equalities, Lynne Featherstone
MP, Stuart Cosgrove from Channel 4 and reactions from the audience."
3-18-11: Pink News (UK, posted 3-15): "Channel 4 signs agreement to
treat transgender issues sensitively"
"Channel 4 has signed an agreement to treat transgender
issues sensitively and accurately. The broadcaster is the first media outlet
to sign Trans Media Watch’s Memorandum of Understanding.
The document calls on the media to use the correct
definitions for trans people, to work to eradicate transphobia and ensure
that positive and realistic depictions of trans people are shown. It also
asks the media to help end misinformation and ensure that trans employees
are treated with the same respect given to non-trans people in the same
3-16-11: Global Post (Thailand): "Thai transgender talent show shocker =
YouTube gold: Thailand's Got Talent contestant steals show with a startling
"This is why humanity created YouTube. The new show
"Thailand's Got Talent" -- can guess the premise? -- may have found its
first break-out contestant. You'll see that singer Bell Nuntita easily wins
over the crowd with her rendition of a typically sappy Thai pop tune. Then,
to the crowd's amazement, she suddenly switches up her pipes and begins
singing like a dude. (The switch-up happens at the 1:04 mark.)
It seems Bell was born male but has transitioned into an
extremely convincing female. The odd dissonance of hearing Bell croon like a
guy gets squeals from the audience. By the song's end, they're going nuts"
3-18-11: Express Buzz (India): "Seminar tells tale of transgenders’
"The seminar organised by students of the department of
social work on the theme ‘Transgender- the forgotten gender” at the D G
Vaishnav College on Thursday, was an eye-opener in more ways than one.
Priya Babu, writer-activist and president of the Tamil Nadu
Aravanigal Association, spoke at length about the family structure prevalent
within the transgender community. She said, “Once people become
transgenders, they are cut off from the society. It is the transgender
community which welcomes them into its fold, with a transgender from the
community taking on the role of a mother to the new entrant, thus
establishing a mother-daughter relationship between two persons”."
3-16-11: Reuters (re Honduras): "Slideshow: Transgender torment"
"Transvestite ('travesti') Tiffany, 19, shows a scar of a
knife attack in Tegucigalpa March 10, 2011. According to leaders of LGBT
organizations (lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders), 34 people have
been murdered in the last 18 months. The U.S. embassy and United Nations
Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) have requested the government to investigate
the murders and safeguard the rights of the LGBT community, local media
3-15-11: Wordpress.com (posted 1-11): "The “Transsexual”
Delusion”, by Dale O’Leary, Catholic Medical Association (more
It is impossible, however, to transition from one sex to the
other. The only transition possible for a person who believes that he or she
is “transsexual” is from a whole person to a person with a mutilated body .
. . Since there is no scientific evidence to back up the belief a person’s
body can be one sex and their brain the other, transsexuality may be
characterized as a delusion . . .
The transsexual delusion (TD) leads to sexual identity
dysphoria – a profound unhappiness with the biological reality . . . They
can become angry to the point of narcissistic rage when their delusion is
challenged, as illustrated by the vicious attacks by surgically altered men
on J. Michael Bailey, author of The Man Who Would Be Queen . . .
Anne Lawrence, a post-surgery autogynephile, described
autogynephiles as “men trapped in men’s bodies” . . . The desire to be the
other sex is a symptom of one of several mental disorders and should be
treated as such, because according to Dr. Paul McHugh — who oversaw the
termination of the transsexual surgical program at his hospital — notes,
providing surgery is “collaborating with madness rather than trying to
study, cure, and ultimately prevent it.”"
Paul McHugh just can't give it up - and are intent on continuing their
outrageously transphobic teachings to the bitter end.]
3-15-11: The Bilerico Project (posted 3-14): "Like a Virgin,
Post-SRS?", Filed by:
"My sex reassignment surgery is two months away, and as you
might expect, I have a lot of things on my mind. Most of them I'm trying not
to think about: complications, pain, infection, how much sensation I'll
have, my insurance pulling a 180 and deciding not to reimburse me....
There is one aspect of this that positively tickles my brain,
however. Essentially, I'm going to be a virgin again. I get another shot at
my first time."
3-15-11: The Stir/Cafe Mom (posted 3-07): "Mom of Transgender Daughter
Shares Big Secret to Making It Work"
"First it was parents who accepted their
gay children who were shunned by society. Now parents
trying to keep life as normal as possible for their
are being called "crazy"
... and worse. But America, the fact is transgender kids
are here. Their parents
don't need criticism. They need support.
Although exact statistics on how many are
slim (in 2002, it was estimated male-to-female
transsexualism in the United States was in the range
of 1 in 500 to 1 in 2,500; female-to-male stats are even
less specific), for every
child questioning their
gender, there's a parent or two trying to be
the best parent they can be.
So The Stir turned to Cris Beam,
a mom to a (now adult) gender-variant daughter who she
began fostering when the teen had nowhere else to go.
Beam spent years working with transgender teens in New
York City and is now author of a new young adult novel,
I Am J, about a female-to-male
transitioning teen. We asked her to share what she's
learned being a mom to
a trans teen and living in a home with a
partner who has transitioned too."
3-15-11: The Stir/Cafe Mom (posted 3-02): "Crazy Mom Lets 7-Year-Old
Son Become a Girl (VIDEO)"
"What if your 7-year-old son liked to wear sequined dresses,
preferred to play with Barbies instead of WWE action figures, and wanted to
be referred to by a girl’s name instead of a boy’s? Where would you stand?
How would you feel?
Lisa Ling's new show, Our America, on the Oprah Winfrey
Network, introduced the country to a first grader in "Transgender Child: A
Parent's Difficult Choice." His parents named him Harry. But when Harry was
5, he decided he wanted to be called Hailey because he felt more like a girl
than a boy. His mom and dad, not knowing quite what to do, indulged his
Now the child has completely taken on the identity of a
little girl. And his parents, a conservative Christian couple who may have
had some preexisting notions about what’s right and wrong from a Biblical
perspective, were challenged to rethink everything they believed about
gender and sexuality for the love of their baby, their second son turned
their only daughter."
[This article is critical of Haley's parents, but it includes
an excellent video interview with her parents that subverts that criticism.]
3-15-11: The Daily Mail (UK): "I was living a lie: The 16st
bodybuilding father who is now a glamorous FEMALE model" (includes
excellent video interview)
"Transgender Chrisie Edkins, 31, had spent hours in the gym -
bulking up to 16stone - in an attempt to convince himself he was a typical
alpha male. But in private, Chris, who is 6ft, had been dressing as a woman
for years - and in 2003, bravely decided to go public with his new identity
and become Chrisie.
A full-time carer to her daughter Chloe, nine, Chrisie has faced a backlash
from outraged neighbours and even been physically assaulted after announcing
she was going to live as a woman. But Ms Edkins, from Southampton, is
adamant that being a woman doesn't stop her from being a good father. She
said: 'My daughter is amazingly understanding of my new life as a woman.
She's only nine but she's so mature for her age - more so than most adults."
3-15-11: Holy Moly: ""Liv Tyler mistaken for a transsexual at New York
party, takes it well"
"We're not sure whether any of you out there
have had your gender questioned, but we can imagine it would be pretty
upsetting. Yeah, that's right, imagine . . . Anyway, it's time to
tell you a story all about how Liv Tyler's life got flipped upside down. It
was at the Ace Hotel in Neu Yoiyk, where she had been celebrating the Target
and Opening Ceremony party recently. She went outside for a cigarette, and a
gentleman followed her out, intrigued at why a man would have such long hair
. . . :
"Oh my GOD, you are beautiful," the
partygoer told Tyler when she stepped outside for a cigarette. After she
politely thanked him, he went on: "You're not a man! I TOTALLY thought you
were a man! You look like a transsexual." Tyler looked a little confused. "I
look like a tranny?" she asked. "Yes, a transsexual from Dubai!" he replied.
"Wow," Tyler said. "I'll take it!"
So there you have it. Apparently even Liv
Tyler looks like a transsexual in the right light . . .
" (see two photos)
Post: "Church's transgender pastor grateful for life "beyond my wildest
Pastor Malcolm Himschoot leads the Parker United Church of
Christ congregation in prayer during his installation ceremony Sunday in
Parker. "We picked him because he was the best fit for our church. We didn't
pick him specifically because he's transgendered. He's new. We could afford
him. It's his first church. It's a great opportunity for all of us," said
Karen Kepner, church deacon. (Photos by AAron Ontiveroz, The Denver Post
)Rev. Malcolm Himschoot knows about profound transformation.
Born female, Himschoot chose as a young adult to become male,
despite fears he would be lonely, unemployable and cast aside by other
Christians. He made the decision, when 21, that he wouldn't take his own
life. To Himschoot, living meant making a leap of faith into gender
He is now the married father of 3-year-old twins and the new pastor of a
mainline, albeit liberal, Protestant church in Douglas County. "I have a
life beyond my wildest dreams," the 33-year-old Himschoot said."
3-14-11: TS Roadmap.com: "Close the CAMH Gender Identity Clinic", by
is leading the way in Canada for transgender youth as experts move away
from "gender clinic" model . . . Quebec
helps ten times more transgender clients in year after ditching harsh
"gender clinic" policies."
[These events in Quebec are a dramatic turnaround from past
practice there, and amount to a total repudiation of
Zucker's trans-reparatist methods at
CAMH for "curing" gender variant children.]
3-13-11: The Montreal Gazette (Canada; posted 3-12): "Gender identity
crisis", by Donna Nebenzahl (more,
"They are transgendered youth, all in their 20s now, from
different backgrounds but with stories that are similar: moments of
childhood clarity when you realize that you're not who you appear to be
turning into an aching discomfort often leading to despair . . .
Counsellors and doctors in Montreal have been seeing a steady
increase over the last five years in the number of young people seeking
advocacy groups, hormone therapy and finally surgery for male-to-female
(MTF) or female-to-male (FTM) changes. That increase is attributed in part
to greater awareness and support within the community, and the fact that
fewer people need to leave the province for sex reassignment surgery.
While some professionals continue to see gender identity
issues as psychological, ongoing research is moving toward the hypothesis of
biological changes that take place in the womb rather than environmental
influences . . .
Ghosh is seeing an increasing number of children between the ages of 3
and 18 who are exhibiting what the professionals call "gender identity
issues." They are brought to Ghosh, a developmental behavioural pediatrician
at the Montreal Children's Hospital, by parents worried because their
children prefer the activity normally seen with the opposite gender - little
boys who love Barbies, little girls who want to play boys' games. "It's more
typical to see 5-to 7-year olds, and what prompts them to come to see me is
the parents feel there's something wrong," he says . . .
In order to give some children time to reflect, with the family's support
and depending on how much the condition is impacting the child, the first
medical step is hormone blocking drugs that will slow down the changes in
the body that signal puberty . . . "
[This major story out of Canada reveals that the Province of
Quebec has been openly but quietly providing supportive treatment for
transgender children at several clinics there - in great contrast to
Zucker's reparatist pathologization of such children at
CAMH in Ontario.]
3-14-11: Czech Position (Czechoslovakia): "Boys (who once were girls)
"Mike Perry’s autobiographical novel, somewhat curiously
titled “Klec pro majáky” (A Cage for Beacons), is the first Czech-language
account of a person’s transformation from being a woman to being a man. The
author, formerly known as Ivana, underwent sex reassignment surgery in his
early 50s, fulfilling a lifelong wish; the book’s title is a metaphor for
Perry’s life experience . . .
“A number of people have asked me, ‘If you liked women, why
didn’t you go find a woman rather than undergoing these complicated
operations?’” he says. “But the difference is that I felt like a man — and
desired women in the way that a man would. And the thought that I could go
out and find a woman in my present physical shape wasn’t satisfying because
I wanted to be the male in the relationship”. . .
Perry’s intimate account of his unusual experience is available at
bookstores across the Czech Republic,
as well as online."
3-13-11: Sify News (India): “Two celebrity transgenders aspire to contest in
TN polls” (more)
"Chennai: It will certainly be a rarity in Indian elections
if two celebrity transgenders are given seats by their respective parties to
contest in the April 13 Tamil Nadu assembly elections and they manage to
beat their opponents. Kalki Subramanian and Rose Venkatesan are in the
opposite political camps with the former a DMK party aspirant and the latter
hoping for a DMDK ticket.
Their camps may be different but their goals remain one -- to
work for bringing the transgender community into the mainstream and provide
them a decent livelihood with suitable vocational training. 'Political
representation is the best route for the welfare of minority communities
like transgenders,' Rose told IANS when asked about the reason for such
3-12-10: The Weekly Standard: "Lower Education: Sex toys and academic
freedom at Northwestern" by
"Because a subject exists in the world doesn’t mean that
universities have to take it up, no matter how edgy it may seem. Let books
be written about it, let research be done upon it, if the money to support
it can be found, but the nature and quality and even the sociology of sexual
conduct—all material available elsewhere in more than plentitude for the
truly interested—does not cry out for classroom study. Students don’t need
universities to learn about varying tastes in sex, or about the mechanics of
human sexuality. They don’t need it because, first, epistemologically, human
sexuality isn’t a body of knowledge upon which there is sufficient agreement
to constitute reliable conclusions, for nearly everything on the subject is
still in the flux of theorizing and speculation; and because, second, given
the nature of the subject, it tends to be, as the Bailey case shows,
exploitative, coarsening, demeaning, and squalid.
Difficult to understand how an expert in the field such as
Professor Bailey missed the obvious analogy, but in the demonstration he
arranged for his students the poor woman is little better than a prostitute,
the students pathetic johns-voyeurs, and he himself, quite simply, the pimp.
A curious role for a university teacher to play, but I guess it’s a living."
3-12-11: Facebook: "Transgender - Time to change" ... or falsely
shouting fire in a crowded theatre?" by
"Some thoughts on
a proposed meeting of the 'Royal College of Psychiatrists' involving
among others busybodies Julie Bindel [yawn] and Az Hakeem . . .
According to Hakeem: 'There is a long tradition of attempting
to understand the trans-sexual condition at the
Portman Clinic'. Apart from the rather obvious questions: Why? What
business is any trans individual's experience of theirs? I'd suggest they
are no closer to whatever understanding it is that they imagine they need
than when they started. How could they be? Given the psychoanalytic approach
which Hakeem promotes, they never will be. Is it necessary to know why
somebody is gay or black or left-handed before you can agree to leave them
alone to get on with their life in the same way as anybody else? . . .
Perhaps there should be a conference to debate whether it's
not time for Az Hakeem and Julie Bindel to change and whether they actually
have the right to make any autonomous decisions or indeed even exist in the
way they imagine they do . . .
Frankly I'm beginning to see this as a freedom of speech
issue exactly analogous to Oliver Wendell Holmes's example of the man who
falsely shouts fire in a crowded theatre ... serving no demonstrably useful
purpose and detrimental to the sense of wellbeing of many already vulnerable
and marginalised individuals. "
Bindel, a notoriously
transphobic lesbian in the UK, is apparently trying to
revise her image in an event she is holding with folks from the
Tavistock & Portman Clinic (a clinic similar to
is also apparently trying to revise their image). Sarah Lake in the UK
has just commented on all this, and in the process has penned insightful
thoughts that are worth very wide quoting.]
3-11-11: Pink News (UK): "Interview: Genderqueer performer CN Lester"
"Genderqueer performer CN Lester, who identifies as neither
male nor female, talks to Paris Lees about sexual harassment, operatic
androgyny and a mutual fear of going blind.
"Well I’m really excited, and so is everyone in the company
as we all feel very strongly about how trans history has been suppressed.
Rebecca and I started our academic careers writing about it and the more the
others get to know me the more they see how the day to day discrimination is
so affected by media issues – and they’re fucking furious about it. Being
able to participate in something which is so groundbreaking – the fact that
people will be signing up to this memorandum – I’m just ecstatic.
Obviously, things won’t change overnight, but it’s such a
huge step forward. We hope to present a more historical perspective, to say
that actually trans issues are not recent phenomena: transgenderism is not
some affliction of the modern age, but just a basic human trait. People
think classical music is really straight-laced and is just for white,
straight, cis people but it never has been, it’s always been full of people
that society marginalises and pretends don’t exist, but there we are, centre
stage, to spread that message.""
3-10-11: The Times Higher Education (UK): "The week in higher
education" (includes a great cartoon)
"An academic faces an investigation over his decision to
stage a live sex show for students involving a sex toy called a "fucksaw".
John Bailey, who teaches a popular human sexuality course at Northwestern
University in the US, held an after-class event for students with a
25-year-old woman volunteer and her 45-year-old fiancé. According to reports
on 3 March, the woman, who is not a student, was "repeatedly stimulated by a
motorized sex toy called a 'fucksaw' on stage". In a statement explaining
the session, Professor Bailey says he agreed to stage the demonstration when
the volunteers suggested it because he "did not wish, and do not wish, to
surrender to sex negativity and fear". In a statement, Northwestern
president Morton Schapiro says he is "troubled and disappointed by what
occurred". He says: "I have directed that we investigate fully the specifics
of this incident, and also clarify what constitutes appropriate pedagogy,
both in this instance and in the future.""
[It's interesting to observe that
Bailey shifted his name to "John Michael Bailey" as reports spread about
his 'fucksaw' demonstration, and that some media now shorten it to "John
Bailey". As a result, many googlers won't realize he's the same Northwestern
advocates homosexual eugenics,
denies the existence of bisexuality and
wrote a notoriously transphobic book.]
3-09-11: Gawker: "There Is a Worldwide Fucksaw Shortage"
"Alert: It is now virtually impossible to buy a fucksaw. I
know; I know. JT's
Stockroom, which is apparently the world's leading and perhaps only
supplier of genuine fucksaws ("You hold it like a gun, and drill into the
ass or vagina with powerful and steady force"), is completely sold out: "Due
to high demand, this item is temporarily unavailable. We apologize for any
inconvenience. Please check back soon!"
We sure will. It seems that
high demand for fucksaws recently."
[Given the dramatic escalation in fuchsaw use, we're likely
to see greatly increased incidence of events such as this one back in 2009:
"Woman Injured In Sex Toy Mishap". I.e., uninformed people will stick
dildos onto reciprocating saw blades leading to terrible injuries as they
rip apart, especially since the "real" attachments are now hard to get.]
3-09-11: The Guardian (UK): "'I knew the process was going to be
slow. I wasn't wrong'", by Juliet Jacques (In the series
"A transgender journey")
"The journey to gender reassignment has felt like an
endurance test, more so than necessary to prove my 'commitment' . . . It
eventually took fifteen months to receive my prescription (for hormones),
and in light of this, I don't find it too surprising that some ignore GIC
guidelines and chance on buying medication online. Remaining within the
approved services, it is possible to mix NHS and private treatment – often
by going abroad for surgery – thus bypassing some of the waits. Transsexual
people can also speed up hormone therapy by paying to see private clinicians
on a one-off basis for a blood test and prescription, without prejudicing
their path through the NHS services: if I'd realised how just long it would
take, I might have made the outlay."
3-09-11: News OK: "Oklahoma
House rejects measure to change birth certificates for transgendered"
"The House sent a clear message Tuesday it didn't like the
idea that people getting sex-change operations could have their birth
certificates changed to reflect the new gender. The House of Representatives
rejected House Bill 1397 by a vote of 71-23 . . .
Cox said in an interview that the change would help those who
had sex-change operations and must produce a birth certificate to get a
driver's license or a passport or in some cases in job interviews. “It
should reflect their present status,” he said. Cox said he was surprised by
the large opposition."
[A sad reflection of the effects of long-term religious-based
demonization in this bible-belt state. For some historical background, see
this news article in the Oklahoman & Times from 1977, about
"Sex Change Surgery Banned at
Baptist" Hospital (cont.)
BBC News (UK re Israel): "Dana International to represent Israel at
Eurovision again" (with video,
"Israel's transgender pop diva, Dana International, has been
selected to represent the country at this year's Eurovision Song Contest,
with a Hebrew-English song titled Ding Dong. The flamboyant singer, who was
known as Yaron Cohen before a sex change operation near two decades ago,
famously won the contest in 1998 with the song Diva. This year's Eurovision
Song Contest will take place in May in Dusseldorf, Germany"
3-09-11: AFP re South Africa): "Sports sex test overhaul urged
after Semenya case"
"The use of genetics in sports to test the gender of athletes
must be revisited in the wake of the controversial case of South African
champion runner Caster Semenya, an expert said on Wednesday. "In the Caster
case, everything went wrong from the beginning," University of Cape Town
academic Ambroise Wonkam said at a conference of African societies of human
genetics . . .
"The number of genetic abnormalities and their complexity...
make this policy of gender testing, at least using genetics, inadequate and
the revision is totally long overdue if not stopped," Wonkam said . . .
"It's not just a medical or scientific issue," said Wonkam. "It's also a
legal, a social, a psychological and a functional issue that is not totally
solved in some cases. Becaues of the variables, because we don't know how to
3-09-11: The Republic: "NYC apologizes to transgender couple over
"A transgender couple has received an apology from a New York
City clerk's office for being snubbed when they tried to get a marriage
license. The incident occurred in 2009 at the city's clerk office in the
The New York Post reports that city Clerk Michael McSweeney
send a letter to Jalea Lamont and her transgender partner, LaShawn Peterson,
apologizing for the embarrassment and inconvenience the incident caused
them. The two have been together for 14 years. According to legal documents,
they were told they couldn't get a marriage license unless they presented
birth certificates. State law requires only a valid government-issued
3-09-11: The Stanford Daily: "The Transitive Property: Epiphanies", By
"I went through a huge life realization this past week. Maybe
it’s because I’m a senior, and it’s about time I made big life realizations
or else I’d be a bit screwed. Or maybe it’s because of this column, which
has made me really think about my life. Or maybe it was because this past
week was Transgender Awareness Week, where I met so many big figures in the
transgender rights movement, and I thought about my own role in the trans
community and what I can do for a movement that’s 30 years behind the LGB
3-08-11: Rune Mirror (India): "Trans-cending borders of beauty"
"Pune gets it’s first beauty salon exclusively for
transgenders in Budhwar Peth, where community members will be trained too.
The ‘Purple Lotus Beauty Salon and Training Academy’ was inaugurated on
Monday afternoon at the Rameshwar Market in Budhwar Peth, in it’s own unique
style. The USP? It will dole out beauty treatments to transgenders! This is
the first beauty treatment centre run exclusively for transgenders in and
around the city.
By the appearance of things, this unique facility will give
transsexuals not only beauty solutions but also their own free space and
mean of livelihood — much more respectful than begging and prostitution . .
. They expected to start out with just a few clients — but within a few
hours Swapnil, a transgender himself, and his two lady staff members had
their hands full."
3-08-11: News3.com: "Transgender Woman Shot & Dragged In
"Investigators with Forrest City, Arkansas Police and the St.
Francis County Sheriff's Department, are searching for clues in a brutal
murder. Tuesday morning, the body of 25-year-old Marcal Camero Tye was
discovered along a stretch of Highway 334. Sheriff Bobby May, "We're going
to be, of course, waiting for the lab results, the pathology reports, but it
appeared to be that he did have a head wound and also that he had been drug
by a car."
May says Tye was wearing female clothing when found, "The
victim was well known in this area as a "cross dresser." Tye was a
transgender female, born male but lived as a woman."
3-08-11: Chicago Sun-Times: "Northwestern chief: Live sex demonstration
doesn’t define school"
"Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro said
Monday he believes that “guided by the light of reason” the university
community will work through recent controversy over an in-classroom live sex
Schapiro’s latest statement, posted at the university’s
website, highlighted several recent events more in keeping with the school’s
reputation as an academic powerhouse, such as a breakthrough in Alzheimer’s
research at the Feinberg School of Medicine and a visit by U.S. Supreme
Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor to the law school.
“Those activities, and the many other wonderful things that
occur each and every day at Northwestern, aren’t likely to attract the same
amount of media coverage that the recent incident has,” Schapiro’s statement
said. “But they define who we are.” "
3-07-11: Northwestern University Newscenter: "Proud to Wear Purple -
President Schapiro's message to the Northwestern community regarding the
"On Saturday at Dance Marathon I got to watch more than a
thousand sweaty, happy and very tired students raise nearly a million
dollars to benefit the Children's Heart Foundation and the Evanston
Community Foundation. I had the honor of speaking to them and pointed out
that they personify some of the finest values of our University --
dedication, perseverance and service.
I met Friday with a recent graduate, Samir Mayekar, who just
received a prestigious Soros Fellowship, making him the latest of our
students to win a highly competitive national scholarship. I also learned of
the significant research breakthrough by Jack Kessler, the Davee Professor
of Stem Cell Biology, that transforms stem cells into a type of neuron that
dies early in Alzheimer's, one of the most horrific diseases of our time . .
Those activities, and the many other wonderful things that
occur each and every day at Northwestern, aren't likely to attract the same
amount of media coverage that the recent incident has. But they define who
[One can only imagine the pain President Shapiro has
experienced as he watched J. Michael Bailey forever link Northwestern's name
with a live "fuck saw" demonstration.]
3-07-11: Gender and Education Association (UK; posted 2-16):
"Supporting Transgender Children in the Primary Classroom: A Reflection"
"Regardless of whether a child is known to be transgendered
or is not open about their identity, their experience of school is still
likely to be improved by curriculum inclusion. This approach could mean
other children – and other adults – become more aware of what it is to be
transgendered and how it might feel to be subjected to negative attitudes.
In turn, this hopefully would lead to a more positive and accepting
classroom community, where all children are aware that different people
identify their gender differently, and these choices should be celebrated.
If teachers cannot – or will not – explicitly include
transgendered identities in their classrooms, curriculae and communities
then they will never be able to adequately support transgendered children in
developing their gender identity. It is ridiculous to argue that teachers
can effectively support transgendered children in this way without first
ensuring they are providing a positive and safe space for their children. It
is equally absurd to state that a teacher could empathise with such children
in order to support their development without challenging the dominant
discourse surrounding gender and transgender identities. The implications
are clear – teachers must look inwards towards their own attitudes to
transgender identities and how these attitudes may affect their practise.
Only by doing so are they likely to be able to move forwards in helping
transgendered children developing their gender identity."
[An important essay.]
3-06-11: Chicago Sun-Times: "Northwestern will be hearing sex show
talk for a long time "
"Two words: Kent State. What comes immediately to mind?
"Shooting, right? “Four dead in O-hi-o.” The National Guard
firing at protesters. That photograph of a teenage girl spreading her arms
in horror over a lifeless body . . . It doesn’t matter the shootings were 41
years ago, doesn’t matter the school wasn’t responsible. Life isn’t fair,
and once your reputation is tarnished, it’s tarnished for a long, long time.
Trust me on that one.
I’m not saying that a sex show is the Kent State shootings,
nor that as the decades unfold, the word “Northwestern” will automatically
draw a bleat of . . . of . . . well, I still can’t say it*, which is
frustrating. The risk is there, however. Northwestern toils under a
perpetual sense of inferiority as it is, and as an alumnus (Class of ’82,
hail to purple, hail to white . . .) I can attest to that sense being not
But I also know the school is home to some outstanding
professors and diligent students, working like plow horses to master their
various fields. Were I advancing nano-technology at NU, or sitting in my
carrel preparing my thesis on Old Church Slavonic, I might look at Professor
Bailey with not a little resentment. Northwestern just made strides fighting
Alzheimer’s, but the news was eclipsed by an unmentionable sex toy."
[*Two words: Northwestern University. What immediately comes
to mind? "Fuck saw".]
3-06-11: Chicago Daily Herald: “Classroom sex demo just the latest
trouble for NU professor”, by Chuck Goudie
“The show-and-tell that has landed Northwestern University in
hot, steamy water really shouldn’t surprise anyone in the administration
office. NU President Morton Schapiro must be feigning outrage that one of
his professors allowed a motorized sex toy to be used on a naked woman as
part of a class demonstration.
Schapiro claimed to be “troubled and disappointed” that
Professor J. Michael Bailey arranged a live sex show for about 100 students
in Bailey’s human sexuality class. Notice that the university president
didn’t say he was surprised by the professor’s behavior, which has resulted
in an official Northwestern investigation (although I’m not sure what there
is to investigate – Professor Bailey admits and witnesses corroborate what
No one at NU should be shocked and awed by Professor Bailey’s
controversy because Bailey has been in the middle of earlier storms and has
previously been under investigation by both the university and state
regulators after allegations of questionable “research.”"
3-06-11: The Advocate: "Sex-Toy Prof Sorry — Sort Of "
"Controversial Northwestern University professor J. Michael
Bailey has issued an apology over the uproar caused by a sex-toy
demonstration for students, but he thinks his critics have not made a
convincing case against it . . .
In the past Bailey has aroused controversy with a book he
wrote on transgender people, which some observers thought offered a
stereotypical portrait of that population; also, some trans people who had
shared their stories with Bailey said they had not given permission to
publish them. He also has come under fire for his claims that bisexuality
does not exist and that it would be morally permissible for prospective
parents to choose heterosexuality over homosexuality in their children if
science made it possible to do so."
3-06-11: Statesman Journal: "Transgender patient alleges
discrimination at Oregon State Hospital - Court case draws federal interest
about supervision and care of patients dealing with status as 'outcasts'"
"Her stay at Oregon's main mental hospital raises questions
about care and supervision provided for a still-evolving, transgender
patient. Behind-the-scenes, the unique case is drawing attention from
federal investigators, who are in the midst of an ongoing four-year-old
investigation of patient care at the Salem psychiatric facility. In another
development, a Marion County judge soon will hear conflicting evidence about
the quality of care provided for Brewis . . . who bitterly complains
about near-constant surveillance.
This story, drawing on hospital records and interviews with
Brewis, retraces her harrowing path to the state hospital. It also looks at
the crux of the legal controversy. Born in Grants Pass, Brewis was abused,
neglected and shuttled in and out of foster homes during a chaotic
childhood, according to reports in her hospital file.
Gender confusion emerged when Brewis was in grade school,
reports show. "Rebekah describes multiple instances growing up as a child
where she did not fit in with her assigned gender," wrote a hospital
therapist in one report. "She did not get along with other children and
started becoming socially more isolated. Fear, shame and anger deepened with
a barrage of insults and bullying Brewis experienced at school.
As a teenager, Brewis repeatedly ran away from school and
foster homes. "Frequently she would run away while she was in high school
and spend time in the woods crying," the report says. Misery morphed into a
cycle of drug abuse, homelessness, suicide attempts, hospitalizations, crime
and incarceration. Brewis spent time in Oregon's juvenile corrections system
for stealing a car and fleeing from police."
3-06-11: Daily Northwestern (published 2-03): "Profile: Campus
sex symbol J. Michael Bailey"
"Since his first introduction into the world of Freudian
psychology, Bailey has tried to adhere to more scientific standards, noting
that he is "first of all a scientist."
Bailey worked on numerous studies dealing with sexual
orientation in the past two decades and is most noted — and most reviled —
for his book The Man Who Would Be Queen about male femininity . . Though
eight years have passed since the initial brunt of criticism fell upon
Bailey, he still hasn't fully recovered . . . Yet Bailey has found ways to
move on. He is researching again, looking at nerves in the brain and
attempting to spread his truth to students — even if they don't want to hear
it — one class at a time . . .
Bailey once again lifts his eyes from his fixed gaze on the
table. "I teach the truth — as I understand it," he repeats. "And the truth
— as I understand it — sometimes conflicts with people's common, everyday
assumptions. That is controversial … but necessary.""
[Published just prior to J. Michael Bailey's recent
notoriety-seeking, this article provides insights into his psyche and his
need for attention - in which he sees himself as a beleaguered scientist
having special access to the "truth".]
[Why doesn't the media ask Bailey whether he has published
any scientific journal articles in recent years? Does he have any sponsored
research funding these days? Does he do any journal-publishable research, or
is he merely teaching Psych 337 as master-of-ceremonies of a sex-sideshow?
And if so, how did he become a full-professor at a major research
3-05-11: NBC Chicago: "NU Professor Apologizes for Sex Demo - John
Michael Bailey says he's not been convinced by arguments that it was wrong"
"Bailey noted that no laws were broken and was viewed by
students of the university and by adults "legally capable of voting,
enlisting in the military, and consuming pornography." He charged those
averse to the demonstration to explain their argument.
"Those who believe that there was, in fact, a serious problem
have had considerable opportunity to explain why: in the numerous media
stories on the controversy, or in their various correspondences with me. But
they have failed to do so. Saying that the demonstration "crossed the line,"
"went too far," "was inappropriate," or "was troubling" convey disapproval
but do not illuminate reasoning. If I were grading the argument I have seen
against what occurred, most would earn an "F." Offense and anger are not
arguments. But I remain open to hearing and reading good arguments.""
[Bailey taunts the NU Administration by publishing a faux
3-05-11: Northwestern University Psychology Department: J. Michael
"There are real, important issues here, including optimal
limits on academic freedom, the effect of sexual attitudes on education, and
sexual rights and responsibilities, among others. A great university, such
as Northwestern University, should be a place where people are not only
free, but encouraged, to debate our most contentious issues. These include,
apparently, the issues raised by the February 21st demonstration.
I am working with undergraduate students to arrange an event
that includes high--level discussion and debate about the February 21st
demonstration and the issues it has raised. I invite President Schapiro to
work with us to help ensure that this event is as intellectually valuable as
it should be."
[Bailey further taunts the NU Administration by scheduling a
media-spectacle to defend his 'fucksaw' demonstration as an exercise in
3-05-11: Daily Northwestern: ""Morty to dancers: “This is the Northwestern
that makes us proud"
“This is what the media should see,” President Morton
Schapiro said, referring to the recent media outbreak over Prof. J. Michael
Bailey’s sex toy demonstration. “This is the Northwestern that makes us
He expressed his gratitude for students’ support, saying “I
just want to say that students of NU inspire me every day . . . ” By the end
of the speech the crowd was chanting Morty’s name . . . ""
[ The Daily NU spears President Shapiro, by framing the
"this" (that the media should see) as if it were a reference to the media
coverage of the Bailey (as if such media coverage were great PR). What
readers miss is the gesture he made with his hands to refer to the crowded
event instead. In that false context, "gratitude for students' support"
appears to be gratitude for support of Bailey.]
3-05-11: The New York Times: "The Transition to My Real Self", by
Brittany Lynn Roche
"Brittany Lynn Roche, 50, a cartographer, had sex-change
surgery in December. She has found kind, though incomplete, acceptance in
her workplace . . . "I’m transsexual. I was born male but knew from an early
age that I was different. I’ve always felt like a female. In 2008, I started
living as a woman in my personal life, and the next year I started going to
work as a woman. It’s been a sea change both for me and for my colleagues,
some of whom knew me for more than 23 years as a man."
3-04-11: The Northwestern Chronicle: "Amid Sex Toy Controversy, Bailey
Invites Students to Drag Show"
"Professor John Michael Bailey invited the students of his
Human Sexuality course to “Hydrag
Revue” at the Hydrate
Nightclub. Hydrate is billed as “Chicago’s Premier Gay Night Club”
on their website. A call to Hydrate revealed that this is not a strip
show, but a “female impersonation” dance exhibition."
[Providing opportunities for further media interviews and for
generating further notoriety.]
3-04-11: Jezebel.com: Higher Education: Professor Fucksaw: “The
Storied Past Of Northwestern’s Sex Professor", by Anna North (more)
Northwestern prof J. Michael Bailey
drew fire this week for treating students to a live demonstration of a
But that little how-to wasn't Bailey's first
brush with infamy. As The Daily Beast pointed out, his 2003 book
The Man Who Would Be Queen drew criticism for its assertion that being
transgender was often a sexual fetish rather than a true gender
identification. His notoriety faded somewhat in the interim, but
a 2003 profile in the Chronicle of Higher Education yields up some
pretty bizarre tidbits. Here's Chronicle writer Robin Wilson's precis of
Bailey's theory on trans women . . . (see
article) . . .
So basically, trans women don't actually have
female gender identity — in Wilson's words, they "are either extremely gay
or are sexual fetishists." Bailey knew this might piss people off, but he
didn't care . . .
Interestingly, Bailey also made headlines in
2005, when he was the lead author on a study measuring men's physical
arousal in response to images of men and women. The study made it to the
Times, which described its findings thus: "The psychologists found that
men who identified themselves as bisexual were in fact exclusively aroused
by either one sex or the other, usually by other men." The headline:
"Straight, Gay or Lying? Bisexuality Revisited." In fact,
"lying" appears to be something of a theme for Bailey.
3-04-11: Now In Gay Chicago: "Controversial NU sex researcher back in
hot water", by Matt Simonette
University professor whose research on human sexuality ignited controversy
in the LGBT community has come under fire from university officials for
including a live sex demonstration as part of an after-class lecture. John
Michael Bailey’s course in human sexuality included an optional
demonstration of a sex toy that he referred to as “The Fucksaw" . . . Morton
Schapiro, president of the university, released a statement March 3
condemning the event . . .
Bailey’s research into male sexuality has also sparked controversy. In 2005,
he attempted to recruit gay men and lesbians for a study that would utilize
home movies from their childhood.
Campus LGBT organizations, as well as others in the community, urged
respondents to ignore the study, citing the 2001 paper “Parental
Selection of Children’s Sexual Orientation,” which Bailey co-authored.
The paper argues that allowing parents to select their child’s sexual
orientation would be “morally
acceptable.” . . .
Illinois–Chicago professor Deirdre McCloskey, one of the activists who
leveled the charges against Bailey in 2004, told the Chicago Tribune March 3
that Bailey enjoys that shock value that often emanates from his academics.
“He is prepared to use people in any way to show how cool he is," said
3-04-11: The Baltimore Sun: "Vigil remembers transgender murder victim
- Tyra Trent's body found in vacant home in Northwest Baltimore last month"
"There was Jana,
and then Chrissie and others. And then there was Tyra. The names were among
those on a long list of local transgender people who succumbed to violence
or drug abuse or homelessness, said Robyn Webb, who rattled them off at a
candlelight vigil Friday for the latest victim, Tyra Trent. While
Webb, 54, never knew Trent, she understood her struggles and knew of her
death. The 25-year-old, born Anthony Trent and known as Tyra, was
killed last month. Her body was found Feb. 19 in a vacant, city-owned home
in the 3300 block of Virginia Ave. in Northwest Baltimore."
3-04-11: The Baltimore Sun: "Howard family pushes for transgender
acceptance - Will Gullucci and his mother want police, schools to be more
"When a photo of
a guy dressed in women's clothing suddenly flashed on the screen near the
end of an intense slide show on teenage drunken driving, Will Gullucci felt
humiliated. Gullucci, a Marriotts Ridge High School senior who had "come
out" as a transgender person just two years ago and is leading her life as a
girl, listened as her fellow seniors laughed loudly. After all the serious
shots of drunken teens and car accidents, the larger-than-life photo seemed
gratuitous to Gullucci.
'Someone better get that photo off the screen, like now,'" Gullucci
recalled. She thought the image was inserted for comic relief. She
approached the county police officer who'd given the presentation to tell
him what she thought of it, Gullucci said, but soon realized she "may as
well have been talking to a brick wall.""
3-04-11: Los Angeles Times: "Not Just For Kids: 'I Am J' by Cris Beam
- Biologically, J is female. But J, a transsexual, feels male."
"Although transsexualism is often confused with
homosexuality, it is really about being born with body parts that don't
match an individual's gender perspective. It is a situation that sometimes
leads to gender reassignment surgery. Invariably, it's fraught with
conflict, as transsexual individuals wrestle with their self identity and
struggle to fit into a society that prefers clear-cut gender roles.
The new young
adult novel "I Am J" by Cris Beam is a wonderful addition to the few novels
that have dared to tackle a subject that has long lived in the cultural
margins. Transsexualism is a natural if unusual subject for young-adult
literature, geared as it is to teen readers whose bodies are already forcing
them to think about budding sexuality. "I Am J" is a tender, surprisingly
relatable story that is at its core about a girl who is struggling to figure
out who she is."
3-04-11: Windy City Media Group (posted 3-02): "Transgender derby
player discusses new league policy"
Outfit Roller Derby League has taken a bold step off the track that will
have a huge impact when it competes within the Women's Flat Track Derby
Association (WFTDA). The Outfit formally voted in a policy to allow
transgender women skaters to join the league, the Windy City Times has
"We've yet to
send out a formal press release regarding this, but we are very proud of the
diversity represented by our league and we're glad that our league can be
one of the leagues to formally create a policy allowing transwomen skaters,"
said Bethany Johnson, who skates as Meg Gyver and is the league's marketing
manager. Meg Gyver also is the league's lone transgender skater."
3-04-11: Daily Northwestern: "Updated: Northwestern copes with
fallout, attention from sex toy demo - Schapiro announces investigations;
ethics claim to be field by fellow scholar" (more,
begins an investigation into an optional, after-class sex toy demonstration
held last week, an award-winning scholar and clinician announced Thursday
evening she will file a formal complaint against psychology Prof. John
Michael Bailey for what she calls "a gross violation" of the American
Psychological Association Code of Ethics.
come in the wake of a statement released Thursday morning by University
President Morton Schapiro that said he is troubled, disappointed and
disturbed about the demonstration in Bailey's popular Human Sexuality
course. In an interview Thursday, University spokesman Al Cubbage said the
impending investigation has been spawned by the "strong reaction from within
and outside the Northwestern community.""
3-03-11: Chicago Tribune exclusive interview: "J. Michael Bailey talks
with Tribune columnist Mary Schmich"
[A tired and
apparently stressed Bailey attempts to defend his live-demonstration and
promulgation of 'fucksaw' use in this meandering video interview.]
Chicago Tribune: "Northwestern
president ‘troubled’ over live sex demonstration"
"Northwestern University President Morton Schapiro
said today he is "troubled and disappointed" by the live sex toy
demonstration on campus last week and has launched an investigation. He
released a statement saying the university is looking into the
appropriateness of the demonstration, where about 100 students in a
psychology class witnessed a naked woman being penetrated by a sex toy.
the decision by Professor J. Michael Bailey "extremely poor judgment."
"Although the incident took place in an after-class session that students
were not required to attend, and students were advised in advance, several
times, of the explicit nature of the activity, I feel it represented
extremely poor judgment on the part of our faculty member. I simply do not
believe this was appropriate, necessary or in keeping with Northwestern
University’s academic mission," Schapiro said.
faculty members engage in teaching and research on a wide variety of topics,
some of them controversial. That is the nature of a university. However, in
this instance, I have directed that we investigate fully the specifics of
this incident, and also clarify what constitutes appropriate pedagogy, both
in this instance and in the future," he said. "Many members of the
Northwestern community are disturbed by what took place on our campus. So am
'fucksaw' fiasco goes viral.]
3-03-11: Now Public (posted 3-02): "Fucksaw: John Michael Bailey Demos
Sex Toy in NU Class"
University Psychology professor John Michael Bailey demonstrated a sex toy
he called a "fucksaw", which was essentially a phallus attached to a
reciprocating saw . . . In a presentation to over 100 students, a female
non-student was brought to orgasm by Chicago tour guide Ken Melvoin-Berg,
who was operating the fucksaw . . . Inevitably, word of the fucksaw
demonstration spread beyond the walls of the classroom, and beyond the
Northwestern University Campus."
[Here we go
again: Notoriety-seeking Bailey launches yet another bizarre controversy,
and sticks it to the Northwestern administration again.]
3-03-11: Los Angeles Times: "Not Just For Kids: 'I Am J' by Cris Beam"
"The new young
"I Am J" by Cris Beam is a wonderful addition to the few novels that
have dared to tackle a subject that has long lived in the cultural margins.
Transsexualism is a natural if unusual subject for young-adult literature,
geared as it is to teen readers whose bodies are already forcing them to
think about budding sexuality. "I Am J" is a tender, surprisingly relatable
story that is at its core about a girl who is struggling to figure out who
Her life is just
more complicated than it is for most 17-year-old New Yorkers. The only
daughter of a Jewish father and Puerto Rican mom whose dreams for her
include college, "a white dress and a three-tiered cake," J was named
Jenifer by her parents, but she knew from age 3 that she was really a "he.""
PrideSource (re Portugal): "Portugal approves pro-trans policiesby Rex
Parliament on Feb. 17 approved a law making life easier for transsexuals.
Within a couple of weeks, those who want to change their name or legal sex
can go to a civil registry office with medical proof of "gender identity
disorder" and officials must process the changes within eight days. There is
no requirement of sex-reassignment surgery as a prerequisite to making the
3-03-11: Q Salt Lake "Utah police to undergo transgender training"
traffic stop lasts no more than 10 or 15 minutes. Especially a routine stop
because of a faulty taillight. However, that was not the experience for John
Smith (name has been changed). “Everything was going fine and normal until
the officer took my information back to his car, where he pulled my
records,” Smith said about the incident, which occurred in 2003.
would have seen on his records that Smith used to have a different first
name. And a different gender. He was not born a biological man and his old
name was obviously female. “That’s where the mistreatment began,” Smith
said. “He grilled me. I was polite and courteous. He was rude and abrasive.
But the mistreatment didn’t start until he had found my records.” Smith said
he was delayed more than hour for a faulty taillight. He did not have any
reason to be detained. There were no warrants for arrest or any other reason
for the officer to suspect him of wrongdoing."
3-02-11: The Times of India (India): "April 15 to be observed as
Transgenders Day in state"
"The Tamil Nadu
government's decision to observe April 15, the formation day of transgenders
welfare board in 2008, as transgenders' day brings cheer on the faces of
many in the community, as this is the first time in the country a state has
taken a major initiative to find space for the community that has been
denied its basic right in the society for long."
3-02-11: German Herald (Germany): "Kims New Album: A Piece Of Tape"
German teenager Kim Petras has unveiled her first EP with four new songs
that she wrote and sung herself in between finishing her A levels at school.
The EP - that goes on release on 11 March but is now available as a
pre-order - was previewed on German breakfast TV today (Wednesday) with a
live performance and followed on from a rave review about her in German
national tabloid Bild at the weekend . . .
Kim, from Bonn
in Germany, faced an uphill struggle first to convince her parents and then
to convince a sceptical medical profession - but eventually she was allowed
to start hormone treatment at 12 and by the age of 16 had completed surgery
to make her physically a girl. Her parents Lutz and Konni Petras admitted
they had hoped it would be a phase but realised eventually that Kim was "a
special child" and had supported her throughout. Kim had even started saving
at the age of four to have the operation.
She is currently
still at school promising her architect dad and dance instructor mum that
she would finish her studies before launching her pop career full time. She
says Lady GaGa, Gwen Stefani and Beyoncé are her inspirations - and Red Bull
that helped her stay awake during the long sessions to writing her music -
recording and finishing her studies."
3-02-11: The Calcutta Telegraph (India): "Betwixt and between - The
absence of legal recognition stands in the way of the social acceptance of
the transgender community."
experts the primary reason for the social discrimination faced by
transsexuals is the lack of legal recognition and the ambiguity related to
their gender identity. “It is a key barrier that often prevents the
transgender from exercising their rights related to marriage, adoption, and
inheritance,” says Alka Narang, assistant country director, HIV &
development unit, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). “They have
little access to public and private health services, use of social welfare
and health insurance schemes, and employment opportunities,” she adds . . .
“We have no
access to public places like movie halls and shopping malls, public toilets,
social welfare and health insurance schemes,” says Kalki Subramaniam,
director, Sahodari Foundation, an organisation working for the social and
economic empowerment of transsexuals in Tamil Nadu. Pushed to the periphery
of society as outcasts, most resort to begging, dancing at social functions
or become sex workers."
3-02-11: Arab Times (Kuwait): "Rising number of youths undergoing sex
number of youths, who want to undergo or have undergone sex change
operations, is one of the most difficult problems that the Juvenile Care
Administration in the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor is currently
facing, reports Al-Dar daily quoting director of the administration
Al-Sinan said the parents of these youths resorted to the administration
after losing control of their children. He admitted it is very hard to deal
with this group of youths and they need special facilities due to the
different types of hormonal change medicines that they have taken, most of
the time in large doses."
3-01-11: The Advocate: "Houston Man Linked to Transgender
"A homeless man
from Houston has been linked by DNA to five strangulation deaths, including
the murders of two transgender women.Lucky Ward, a.k.a. Lawayne Jackson, 46,
has been formally charged in the deaths of Carlos T. Rogriguez, a
40-year-old transgender woman who went by the name of “Gypsy,” and Reita L.
Long, a 52-year-old homeless woman. Houston police say Ward, who has worked
as a day laborer and spent time in jail for solicitation, is a serial killer
who preys on homeless women, women in shelters, and transgender women."
2-28-11: Philly.com: "Transgender riders seek justice from SEPTA"
"The opponent is
SEPTA and the issue is the transit agency's use of M for male and F for
female stickers on weekly and monthly passes. The stickers, in use since
1981, are meant to prevent riders from sharing passes, said spokeswoman
Padilla said that doesn't make sense because "any two women or two men
can share passes." Other major transit agencies, including those in New
York, New Jersey, Washington, and Los Angeles, do not issue gender-specific
passes. But here, each SEPTA employee who sells a pass judges whether the
rider looks M or F, and if a bus driver or train conductor disagrees, the
pass could be confiscated.
fellow organizers at Riders Against Gender Exclusion (RAGE), a grassroots
group formed two years ago, say the stickers make life difficult, degrading,
and dangerous for anyone whose appearance is nonconforming. And a growing
number of young transgender people are intent on identifying as androgynous,
he said, to emphasize that gender distinctions are unnecessary.
case of Charlene Moore-Arcila. In 2006, when Moore-Arcila was transitioning
from male to female, she boarded a SEPTA bus at the end of a long day and
was confronted by a driver who said her appearance did not jibe with the
sticker on her pass. He ordered her to pay an additional $2, and
Moore-Arcila, too exhausted to argue, complied. She complained later,
though, and her case is pending before the city's Commission on Human
Relations. SEPTA contends that as a state agency, it is not bound by the
city's Fair Practices Act."
2-28-11: The Stanford Daily: "The Transitive Property: Why Transgender
Awareness Week Is Important", by
Transgender Awareness Week is important because it’s a reminder to me that
yes, my life has been unconventional, but that doesn’t mean it’s not
legitimate, or that it’s not valid — my humanity and masculinity are simply
a bit different than the standard deviation. A week like Transgender
Awareness Week gives me the opportunity to reflect on myself, to embrace my
own identity. It’s a reminder that the transgender community — a community
that I am proud to be part of — contributes to the richness and diversity of
both the queer and general populations . . .
But how is
Transgender Awareness Week important for you, my reader? It’s an opportunity
to be educated, to learn about a marginalized and often silenced small but
potent slice of the general population. This week isn’t just a week to
become aware of transgender people. To be aware is not enough. If we’re
going to change things, we need to do something about it. We need to take
action and get people’s attention. I have several propositions for you: go
to at least one event (they’re going on all week, so you have no excuse).
Get educated. Start a conversation with a friend. Forward this column to
someone you know."
2-28-11: Leona's Blog (Singapore re Philippines): "The Brave Hender
Gercio challenges Religious Fundamentalism in the Classroom", by
Sass Rogando Sasot
(more re Sass)
"Some may say
that Ms Gercio has a penis and therefore should still be treated as male.
The question is, in which part of the body gender identity is located? Is it
in your genitalia? Or is it in your brain? As what Dr. William Reiner of
John Hopkins Hospital wrote in “To Be Male or Female — that is the
Question,”the organ that appears to be critical to psychosexual development
and adaptation is not the external genitalia, but the brain.”
University of the Philippines has no policy on how to deal with transgender
students, but as an academic institution, it should go beyond the limitation
of its rules regarding this matter . . . Waiting for a court to change Ms
Gercio’s gender before Ms Gercio can be treated as female is inhumane. As Ms
Gercio has said, and as what psychologists can prove, doing so would harm
the psychological well-being of Ms Gercio."
2-28-11: GMA News (Philippines): "Transsexual coed tells UP prof: I am
not a ‘he’"
student at the University of the Philippines (UP) in Diliman, Quezon City
has complained against a professor for allegedly acting with religious
prejudice toward the coed's identity. European Languages student
Hender Gercio, a
self-described “transsexual woman" who had “undergone a gender transition,"
filed the complaint against French language professor Dominique del Corro on
February 7 . . .
According to an
incident report, the professor allegedly ignored Gercio's requests to be
addressed as a female in class. Gercio alleged that the professor said: “I
am a Christian, and this is against my religious beliefs."
“She also told
me that she cannot separate being a Christian from who she was as a teacher.
She then continued that she believed that homosexuality was a sin, and it
was due to this reason that she cannot allow herself to address and accept
me as female," Gercio said."
2-27-11: The Times of India (India): "`Others' column left unfilled by
at the government's recognition of this section of society, some local
transgenders already counted in the 2011 Census confessed that they were
forced to tick the `female' box because of parents and friends. "Our
families are not comfortable disclosing to Census officials that they have a
transgender in the house as they fear that the word will spread and bring
shame to them. So we had to opt for the `female' option," said Sarita (name
changed), a transgender from Secunderabad . . .
But while some
like Sarita succumbed to family pressures, many others deliberately chose
the `female' option on the Census sheet, claiming that it was their real
identity. They said, "For the last 15-20 years, we have been living like
women and that is what we want to be known as and not `hijras'". . .
has disheartened local NGOs that have been for long crusading for the cause
of transgenders in Hyderabad . . . Representatives of the NGO Suraksha, that
works with transgenders, said that the numbers are important as it would
help in building a case for this section of population to seek benefits from
2-27-11: Wales Online (Wales): "Wrexham FC's hopeful owner is
"Stephanie . . .
said the Court of Appeal overturned her one-year sentence and she instead
served 12 weeks community work with the physically and mentally disabled
during her spell at the Askham Grange women’s open prison, in Yorkshire. She
said the experience shaped her attitudes as a businesswoman and she now
employs people with learning difficulties and physical disabilities.
is mounting the bid for the Blue Square Premier club with 67-year-old
husband David, added: “When I came away from there (prison) I volunteered
for Riding for the Disabled and worked there one day per week. Since that
experience I have never stopped helping the physically and mentally
disabled.” Stephanie also spoke of her pride over her sex-change website
transformation.co.uk, which she says guides and helps transsexuals through
[For less lurid
and more relevant reporting on this story, see
Daily Post and
2-26-11: The Express Tribune (re India): "Bringing India’s
transgenders into the mainstream"
"The process of
decriminalising hijras, transgenders and people who want to live in same-sex
relationships has begun. But recognition is one thing, amalgamation into
‘normal’ or ‘mainstream’ society is quite another. Hijras may now be counted
in the Census, or be able to cast their votes, but will they get jobs?
begun to move on this front too — on paper, at least. A recent suggestion by
the chief justice of the Madras High Court that there should be reservations
for the third sex in government jobs and education has been the catalyst for
a discussion on the rights and entitlements of people on the margins of
society. Tamil Nadu is the one state that has pursued an open policy towards
transgender people . . . setting in place a number of supportive measures,
including the setting up of a special state welfare board."
2-25-11: The Journal (Ireland re UK): "The Sun’s transgender quiz
criticised as “offensive” and unacceptable"
of what The Sun newspaper calls “a fun quiz on gender” has been strongly
criticised for reinforcing stereotypes about transgender people. The
quiz carries the headline ‘Tran or woman?’ and features 14 pictures of
“ambiguous beauties”, as Sun writer Dulcie Pearce describes them . . .
The piece tells
readers that “believe it or not some of these lovely ladies are actually
LADDIES“. It says that the pictures feature “ambiguous beauties, some who
were born male and others who are 100 per cent female”.
It then invites
readers to “guess the genders” and give themselves a “Ladyshave Rating for
your girl-spotting skills”."
2-25-11: The Sun (UK): "Tran or Woman"
"This bevy of
beauties are all blessed with good looks, style and figures to die for.
Well, most of
them... but believe it or not some of these lovely ladies are actually
2-25-22: My Fox Houston: "Craigslist Transgender Scandal for
"Chris Lee, the
married New York congressman who resigned after allegedly seeking dates with
women on Craigslist, also sought the company of transgender women, Gawker
resignation on Feb. 9, two Washington, D.C.-area transgender women contacted
the media gossip website separately, alleging that they had exchanged emails
with the two-term congressman."
2-25-11: Bangkok Post (Thailand): "Transgenders offered free sex
association is offering a free sex change for cash-strapped transgender
people to fulfil their dream of becoming a woman. More than 100 transgender
people have applied for free sex-change surgery under the Sister's Hand
project initiated by the TransFemale Association of Thailand. But only five
will be chosen to undergo operations. The project, which is sponsored by the
Preecha Aesthetic Institute, Yanhee Hospital and Discovery Channel, is in
its second year."
2-23-11: Associated Press: "Gov't drops defense of anti-gay marriage
"In a major
policy reversal, the Obama administration said Wednesday it will no longer
defend the constitutionality of a federal law banning recognition of
Eric Holder said President Barack Obama has concluded that the
administration cannot defend the federal law that defines marriage as only
between a man and a woman. He noted that the congressional debate during
passage of the Defense of Marriage Act "contains numerous expressions
reflecting moral disapproval of gays and lesbians and their intimate and
family relationships — precisely the kind of stereotype-based thinking and
animus" the Constitution is designed to guard against . . .
At the White
House, spokesman Jay Carney said Obama himself is still "grappling" with his
personal view of gay marriage but has always personally opposed the Defense
of Marriage Act as "unnecessary and unfair."
Holder wrote to
Boehner that Obama has concluded the Defense of Marriage Act fails to meet a
rigorous standard under which courts view with suspicion any laws targeting
minority groups who have suffered a history of discrimination."
2-23-11: CBS News: "Transgender surgery: should your company pay for
of Americans are grappling with employer-provided health insurance that
covers less and costs more, one surprising group is benefiting as of late -
transgendered people. That's according to an Associated Press report which
found that big name companies like Coca-Cola, Campbell Soup and Walt Disney
have expanded their insurance coverage to meet the needs of transgender
All told, there
are 85 large businesses and law firms that cover the cost of at least one
surgery, according to a 2010 survey by the
Human Rights Campaign,
the nation's largest gay rights group."
2-23-11: The Guardian (UK): "'Is this the right thing to do? The
surgical conclusion to the gender reassignment pathway is irrevocable. But
what alternative is there - and do any regret it?" (Another in the
"A transgender journey", by Juliet Jacques)
transition, one question has stood out for me above the others: is this the
right thing to do? For good reason, of course: any transsexual person, as
well as the attendant medical personnel and friends, family and colleagues,
understands the surgical conclusion to the pathway to be irrevocable . . .
Since the early
50s, when Roberta Cowell and Christine Jorgensen hit the headlines, media
coverage of gender variance has focused on transsexual people, emphasising
(if not sensationalising) the medical aspects of transition. The social
implications of coming out as transsexual (or otherwise transgender) have
received far less attention, but the question of possible regret is just as
pertinent at this point as at any other: telling people that you want to
transition is as difficult to reverse as any of the consequent physical
It's hard to
find any definitive study on how many transsexual people regret surgery (who
is asked, and why?), but
this report from 2009 quotes more than one survey which found
satisfaction rates to be over 95%, and points out that some of that small
minority regretted poor outcomes rather than the surgery per se. It's worth
remembering that people who regret transition are more likely to speak
publicly about this than those who do not. They present more of a story to
media outlets looking for 'unusual' subjects - especially if those outlets
have their own agenda - than either satisfied transsexual people, or those
who did not pursue transition and wish they had."
2-22-11: UA News (Univ. of
Arizona): "Inaugural Lecturer to Address Transsexualism in Iran"
carries out more sex reassignment surgeries than any other country except
Thailand, and transsexuals are increasingly recognized and tolerated by the
Iranian government. Yet the tolerance of transsexuality comes with the price
of vigorously condemning homosexuality. To discuss this and a range of other
contemporary legal, psychological and religious issues facing transsexuals
in Iran, Harvard University professor
Afsaneh Najmabadi will speak during a March 4 lecture at the University
of Arizona. During her talk, Najmabadi will discuss the current visibility
of transsexuals in Iran – how such individuals are perceived and discussed.
acceptability of the category of 'trans' has provided precarious spaces
within which people with non-normative sexual or gender desires and
practices craft their lives and subjectivities, beyond and around the
intentions of the state and the dictates of law," she said. What becomes
problematic are conceptions and practices in Iran that serve to frame
transsexualism as acceptable and homosexuality as "wholly unacceptable,"
said Najmabadi . . . "
2-22-11: Baltimmore Sun: "Transgender victim struggled for acceptance"
"Life as a
transgender woman wasn’t easy for Anthony Trent. Known as “Tyra,” the
25-year-old told family she would sometimes be attacked on the street just
because of the way she looked.
“He was a very
bold person – he wasn’t scared to show or flaunt his lifestyle,” said cousin
and close friend Correll Trent, 18. “People told him all the time, if this
is the way you want to live, we can’t stop you. But be careful, watch
yourself.” Recently, she had been jumped on the street and beaten up, losing
a tooth in the attack. “He came home and cried that day,” Correll said.
someone wandering into a vacant, city-owned home in the 3300 block of
Virginia Ave. in Northwest Baltimore found Trent’s body in the basement. She
had no identification and no cell phone, but an autopsy had shown that she
had been asphyxiated. City homicide detectives are investigating the case.
It took two days to confirm Trent’s identity and notify family. Trent had
been reported missing two weeks earlier, after leaving late at night on a
Sunday and never returning."
2-22-11: The Jakarta Post (Indonesia): "Transgender group wants end to
"A group of
transgendered individuals is asking the Jakarta Public Order Agency not to
use violence during their frequent raids. The Communication Forum for
Indonesian Transgendered Persons met with agency head Effendi Anas on
Tuesday. The group said public order officers often violated human rights
during their raids.
been, for example, beatings and coercion during raids. This mostly happens
in Taman Lawang,” group member Yuli said, referring to an area in Menteng,
Central Jakarta, that is notorious for transgendered prostitution. Yuli said
not all transgendered persons walking in Taman Lawang at night are sex
2-21-11: The Times of India (India): "A census first for third gender"
Mukherjee. Religion: Hindu. Age: No idea. Occupation: Stoic silence. The
team of officials led by Purnendu Banerjee, deputy registrar general
(census), prompt the person shifting self-consciously on the plastic chair.
"Go on, tell us what you do for a living. We have to fill up the column." .
Days of counseling by the local South Dum Dum Municipality had made the
small community living at Gorai and Manashipara agree to these "tedious"
sessions. But the transgenders, used to being shunned by society, were very
suspicious indeed when D-day came on Sunday. Hated being asked "personal"
questions, they wondering if these visits would be followed by police
harassment . . .
"Sir, shall we call them entertainers, then?" wondered Keka Ghosh, assistant
director, census. Rekha lapped up the classification. "Yes, call us
dancers," she said, pointing at the various poses struck in expensive frames
that hung all over the cramped walls, one of which sports a huge LCD
television. Rekha has left her lucrative career as a bar dancer in Delhi to
become a professional eunuch, but still manages to live comfortably. Every
day, she takes a bus to report to her "head office" at Shyambazar, before
moving on to her Baranagar "work area". "
2-21-11: Associated Press: "More US companies covering transgender
Duncan decided to undergo the medical treatment that would make her a woman,
she had plenty to fear. The reactions of her children, her professional
colleagues and friends. How her body would respond to hours on the operating
table. If, at the end of it, she would look female enough so strangers
wouldn't gawk. What the Orlando mortgage banker didn't have to be anxious
about was how she would pay for two of her surgeries. Her employer of 10
years, Wells Fargo, included breast augmentation and genital reconstruction
as coverable expenses under its employee health plan. Duncan was told the
San Francisco-based bank already had had 16 other employees transition to
new genders and assigned a benefits specialist to walk her through the
the author of "Transgender Explained For Those Who Are Not," said both
corporate America and insurers need to understand that genital surgery is
not the be-all and end-all in making a person's appearance match the way he
or she feels inside. For men becoming women, undergoing facial
reconstruction may be even more important because it will affect how they
are perceived and treated in public, Herman said. The same is true for
female-to-male transsexuals and breast surgery. Yet standard insurance plans
typically dismiss both as cosmetic, even though people with untreated Gender
Identity Disorder are at high risk of suicide and those who get treatment
become better workers."
2-20-11: Womens E-News (re India): "Indian Video Activist Puts
Transgender in Focus"
Subramaniam runs the video-making Project Kalki as part of the
Chennai-based Sahodari Foundation,
which she founded in 2005 to provide transgender advocacy. The foundation
runs on the help of a few private donors and Subramaniam's proceeds from her
speaking engagements and awareness programs. "The ultimate aim is to make
sure these girls get jobs as journalists or filmmakers. It will help them
break out their cycle of poverty and abuse," said Subramaniam, who met with
Women's eNews in her combined office and residence . . .
"As the first
openly transgender person in my college, my life was a lot about sneering
teachers and classmates who thought jokes about gender identity were funny,"
she said recently in a phone interview. "But the course taught me to
appreciate the power of the media. Mainstream media has usually depicted us
as depraved creatures to be mocked for our gestures and orientation."
Foundation serves transgender people from all backgrounds in Chennai . . .
Anyone who needs counseling can walk in or call the foundation.
Non-transgender people who want to learn more or participate in ongoing
projects are also welcome."
2-20-11: Now In Gay Chicago: "New initiative highlights T-friendly
businesses", by Gary Barlow
"A new project
organized by Genderqueer Chicago and other groups is giving businesses a
chance to show their commitment to respecting gender identity by signing a
pledge that commits them to allowing gender-variant customers to use the
bathroom of their choice. Businesses that sign up – and already there at
least seven on Chicago's North Side – receive a decal for their door or
window that allows gender-variant people to easily identify trans-friendly
businesses. “We expect this will dramatically improve the way transgender
people experience our city and state,” said Kate Sosin, co-founder of
Genderqueer Chicago and a project organizer. “We want business owners to
understand that under the Illinois Human Rights Act, it is not just their
right to protect transgender people in bathrooms, it is their duty.”"
2-19-11: New Zealand Herald (New Zealand): "TV show happily gender
fashion show that launches the careers of models is making room for
transgender hopefuls to get a start in the industry. TV 3 publicity manager
Nicole Wood confirmed to the Weekend Herald that transgender people
are invited to audition for the third season of New Zealand's Next Top
Model - as they have been for the first two seasons - provided they are
at least 170cm tall and aged between 16 and 25 as at April 15. "We are not
actively looking for transgender models, but everyone is more than welcome
to audition," she said."
2-18-11: Boston Globe: "Transgender state workers get aid from
governor - Activists see order as step toward new law" (more)
Patrick quietly issued an executive order yesterday banning discrimination
against transgender workers in state government, a move that advocates view
as a first step toward passing statewide legislation . . . The order expands
the state’s current civil rights policy by forbidding state government and
its contractors from discriminating on the basis of “gender identity or
expression.’’ The state already forbids discrimination based on a host of
other characteristics, including race, gender, ethnicity, sexual
orientation, disability, and religion."
2-17-11: Huffington Post: "Lea T., Transsexual Model, Sits Down With
Oprah (VIDEO)" (more,
model Lea T. sat down with Oprah for her show on Thursday, and fashion's
rising star talked about her childhood, her newfound fame and the struggles
she's dealt with in between. Lea said she believes in gender identity
disorder and dispelled any rumors that her father, Brazilian soccer player
Toninho Cerezo had disowned her -- in fact, after seeing her walk in
Alexandre Herchcovitch's Fall/Winter 2011/2012 show at Sao Paulo Fashion
Week last month, her dad said, "Now I can die happy." . . .
Check out part
of their interview . . . Lea reveals to Oprah, "I was hoping I was gay. I
was like, ok, I'm gay, because for my family it's less painful....I wish I
could accept my body as a man....I would be a straight guy, having a
girlfriend and a family, daughters, married, a normal life, but it's
something in your brain.""
[Sadly, Oprah makes continual prurient
references to penises, and incorrectly refers to SRS as removing the penis
rather than creating a vagina. Furthermore, Lea T describes her gender
dysphoria as a "disorder" and a "pathology", and is clearly unaware of the
large international movement towards the depathologization of gender
2-17-11: Philadelphia Gay News: "Police release duplicate Morris
"More than eight
years after her death, police have released the homicide file for Nizah
Morris. The file, lost since about 2003, was recently discovered in the
city’s archives unit. The case has never been solved.
Morris was a
transgender woman found on a Center City street with a fatal head wound
during the early-morning hours of Dec. 22, 2002, shortly after receiving a
courtesy ride from Philadelphia police. She died two days later, on Dec. 24,
from the blunt-force trauma to her head. The crime remains unsolved, and the
police and District Attorney."
Swazi Observer (Swaziland): "‘Sex change teacher was a gentle boy’"
"The parents of
sex-change teacher Patricia Dludlu have spoken out for the first time about
the birth, growing up and the ultimate sexual disorientation of their fourth
Dludlu has been hogging the headlines after being arrested for indecently
assaulting at least one pupil and another adult, and being arrested for both
incidences, in a crime that could easily qualify as a first in the country.
He, up until last Friday, was out on bail after appearing in court for
indecently assaulting a male pupil at the school he taught at. He was again
arrested on Friday after he allegedly lured a 25-year-old male into his
residence for a sleep-over, where he allegedly indecently assaulted the man
who then reported the matter to the police."
“The police now
are taking seriously anything said by his accusers just because he now has a
stigma. This is very unfair and I do not like it,” the father said . . . All
this shows that there are some people who are scheming against him and want
to bring him down,” the father said.
'assualt' apparently consisted of an attempt to kiss a male pupil; the
subsequent story has reached near hysteria levels in Swaziland.]
2-15-11: Calgary Herald (Canada): "Transgender people are just like
the rest of us"
"The bill, brought in by NDP MP Bill
Siksay, passed the House of Commons recently, but is predicted to be killed
in the Conservative-stacked Senate. It seeks to make gender expression and
identity part of the Human Rights Act, and to categorize crimes against
transgender people as hate crimes under the Criminal Code. Sadly, this bill
has become known as the Bathroom Bill because its detractors believe it's
all about allowing transgendered men into women's washrooms. Apparently,
these men have been salivating to get into the ladies' rooms of the nation
to sate their voyeuristic desires. If the bill passes, supposedly they will
have the blessings of the Canadian government to do just that.
Blake Richards, MP for Wild Rose, told
the media: "It really is a bit of a slippery slope.... We talk about someone
with their gender identity, and I guess what it boils down to, my take on
the matter is we open the door to pedophiles or peeping toms to use the
washroom of the opposite gender and claim gender identity."
It's sad that the level of public
discourse has to dip so low when a minority group stands to be offered equal
Archives if Pedatrics and Adolescent Medicine, "Management of the
Transgender Adolescent", Johanna Olson, MD; Catherine Forbes, PhD; Marvin
Belzer, MD, Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2011;165(2):171-176.
"Transgender individuals are
people whose self-identification as male, female, both, or neither (gender
identity) does not match their assigned gender (identification by others as
male or female based on natal sex). The phenomenon of transgender is
uncommon, but as more media attention is directed toward the subject, more
adolescents and young adults are "coming out" at an earlier age. Transgender
adolescents are an underserved and poorly researched population that has
very specific medical and mental health needs. Primary care physicians are
in a unique and powerful position to promote health and positive outcomes
for transgender youth. While not all transgender adolescents desire
phenotypic transition to match their gender and physical body, most do. The
process of transitioning is complex and requires the involvement of both a
mental health therapist specializing in gender and a physician. Finding
comprehensive medical and mental health services is extremely difficult for
these youth, who are at risk for multiple psychosocial problems including
family and peer rejection, harassment, trauma, abuse, inadequate housing,
legal problems, lack of financial support, and educational problems. This
review supports and describes timely medical intervention to achieve
gender/body congruence paired with affirmative mental health therapy as an
appropriate approach to minimize negative health outcomes and maximize
positive futures for transgender adolescents."
[An important report - please pass on
Medical News: "Addressing the Needs of Transgender Youth in Primary Care",
by Laurie Barclay, MD
"To minimize negative health outcomes
and maximize positive futures for transgender adolescents, timely medical
intervention to achieve gender/body congruence paired with affirmative
mental health therapy is appropriate, according to a review in the February
issue of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine. . . .
Transgender youth are at increased
risk for multiple psychosocial problems, including family and peer
rejection, harassment and bullying, trauma, abuse, insufficient housing,
legal problems, lack of financial support, and educational problems. "It is
very important for primary care physicians to examine their own feelings,
attitudes, and beliefs about gender-variant persons and consider how these
affect their work with youth," the review authors write. "Using supportive,
affirming language with gender-variant youth, such as using the patient's
preferred name and pronouns, can make all the difference between a
trustworthy physician and one that makes a youth feel misunderstood,
rejected, and unwelcome. In addition, medical professionals can be effective
advocates for their transgender patients' needs and rights in settings
outside of the home, such as clinics and schools.""
[An important article - please pass on
2-15-11: The Copenhagen Post (Denmark): "Kidman to shoot ‘Danish’ film
in Copenhagen – Gender-bender film based on Dane’s life story brings big
stars to city this summer"
"World-renowned Australian actress
Nicole Kidman will be in Copenhagen this summer to film scenes from the
upcoming feature film “The Danish Girl”. The film, based on the true story
of Lili Elbe, a Dane and the first known person in the world to undergo
male-to-female sexual reassignment, will be partly filmed in Denmark . . .
According to Hallström Kidman is perfect for the role of Lili/Einer: “Nicole
looks great as a man.”"
2-15-11: Sydney Star Observer (Australia): "Busy year for Intersex"
"Intersex has a busy year ahead. We
encourage all intersex to participate in the Private Lives survey at
Intersex inclusion will enable us to argue for health resources and fill in
information gaps . . . OII will once again argue against the pathologising
of intersex by medicine
which since 2006
has described it as a disorder. We will continue to seek wider
understandings of intersex as natural differences of sex anatomy and to
argue for broader interpretations of sex so intersex people may have access
to medicine depending on their circumstances without needing to conform to
stereotypical binary roles to qualify."
2-13-11: Sacramento Bee: "Pianist Buechner's career is back after a
major life decision"
""I was startled at how many people go
through their lives with masks on. When you take yours off and show people
your real face, they're really challenged by that." . . .
Buechner had gender- reassignment
surgery in 1998. She never anticipated how going public as a transgender
musician would affect her career. "I made the incorrect assumption that the
classical music world would be strongly supportive," she said. It was not.
Many who had warmly welcomed or booked David Buechner turned a cold shoulder
on Sara Davis Buechner.
And so a robust concert schedule of
50-plus performances over five years shrunk to less than 10. Giving up,
however, was never an option for the Baltimore native who had first taken
piano lessons at age 3. She took on a new manager and moved to Canada, and
her career experienced a resurgence . . .
"Canadians are more accepting than
Americans," said Buechner. She soon started performing with major orchestras
in Canada and performing in a steady schedule of recitals. "I feel people
here really love me," she said.
And now her career in the United
States is on the uptick, with Buechner due to perform with the San Francisco
Symphony in July. Buechner does not regret her decision to live as the
person she feels she is, despite the difficulties.
"Most people go to the grave with
their music still inside of them," said Buechner. "I didn't want to do
2-13-11: Know Thy Neighbor (blog): "MA Transgender Rights Bill
"Here We Are In
February of 2011 And The Commonwealth of Massachusetts Which Was the First
in the Nation to Legalize Same Gender Marriage, Which Defeated Attempts to
Take Away These Marriage Rights Through a Ballot Initiative Process and
Which Has an Attorney General Who is Suing the United States to End DOMA on
Behalf of Its Citizens, Still Has Not Been Able to Pass Legislation
Protecting Transgender/Transsexual People Against Workplace, Housing, and
Public Accomodations Discrimination. So what is going on in Massachusetts,
"The Land of Marriage Equality" with the
Rights Bill which was
re-filed last month with the same language it has had for nearly 3
2-13-11: Houston Chronicle: "Entrepreneur was open about transgender
life - McGuire, who ran for Houston City Council, is dead at 68"
"In a city with more than its share of
true characters, Charles/Kathryn Leigh McGuire may have been in a
larger-than-life league of his own. And hers. Born Charles R. McGuire Jr. on
Nov. 26, 1942, McGuire started a successful Houston construction materials
company, bought a home on the edge of River Oaks, married and raised two
children before longstanding issues of sexual identity led her first to life
as a transvestite and ultimately to sexual reassignment surgery in 1992,
after which she adopted the name Kathryn.
McGuire, who died on Feb. 2 in Palm
Springs, Calif., at 68, was active in Houston society and never
self-conscious about her gender-bending ways as she moved from
hyper-masculine entrepreneur who liked to go hunting to an oversize figure
in pumps who prowled the couture racks at Neiman Marcus, friends said. If
there is a common refrain among those describing McGuire, it is
2-12-11: Hindustan Times (India): "Time to walk the talk"
"Hijras, whose traditional profession
is badhai — to sing songs of congratulation at weddings, births — are often
forced into begging and sex work. Often at the receiving end of the State
and persecuted by the police, an estimated 10-lakh transgender population in
India have almost always been socially ostracised. Forced to live in ghettos
due to social, economic and political exclusion, many take to petty crimes .
According to A Sirajudeen, author of
Transgenders-Social and Legal Dilemmas, hijras have been acknowledged in
Hinduism for thousands of years. Ancient texts such as Manusmriti and
Sushrutasamhita assert that some people are born third gendered as a matter
of natural biology. The Ramayana, Mahabharata, Gita and Kamasutra — all talk
of all talk of transgender characters.
The third sex traditionally enjoyed
privileged position in Indian society. Matters took a different turn under
the British who declared hijras a ‘criminal tribe’ under Criminal Tribes Act
1871;” their behaviour was considered opposed to “public decency”. It
mandated their compulsory registration and strict monitoring. It was undone
in 1952 but unfortunately, the stigma continues even today."
2-12-11: Deccan Chronicle (India): "Transgenders seek new marriage law
"Speaking to Deccan Chronicle,
transgenders expressed their gratitute to the Tamil Nadu government and
chief minister M. Karunanidhi for having implemented welfare programmes like
creating a welfare board for transgenders and ensuring that they received
ration and voters ID cards. “However these welfare measures are not enough
to ensure that transgenders can lead a decent life in a society that still
refuses us basic human rights,” noted activist Kalki Subramaniam.
Subramaniam said a special marriage
law is needed for transgenders, who number around 60,000 in the state and
more than 25 lakh across the country. “With more feminine qualities,
transgenders too have aspirations of women,” she said. “We would like to
have husbands and children.”"
2-12-11: Daily News and Analysis (India): "Boys will be girls"
"When told about the recent national
seminar on ‘Transgenders and the Law’, Rose Venkatesan, speaking over the
telephone from Chennai, says she’s heartened at the development. Then, she
pauses to reflect.“It’s not as easy as it may look, you know, social
inclusion of transgenders… I know how it ‘should’ be. But what is my
reality, in spite of being a celebrity hosting a TV show?”
Rose, 31, tries to answer her own
question, with instances from her life, beginning with the trauma of being
thrown out of her home, rather matter-of-factly, six years ago. In front of
50 relatives, Rose had come out as a transgender at a family function after
her parents announced her engagement to a girl. She was Ramesh then, and
became Rose just a year ago after undergoing a sex change operation. Rose
speaks with feeling about the years, a few of them spent denying her
sexuality and trying to be ‘man enough’, a few more dreading the ‘hijra’
tag, and the rest trying to convince her parents that marriage wouldn’t
‘cure’ her. All her experiences, she says, points to only one reality for
transgenders — that education, with a blind stubbornness to make it, is the
only way out for them in Indian society. Rather, the only way in."
2-12-11: AsiaOne News (Malaysia): "Transsexuals: Cosmetic surgery first,
"Siva was thrown out of the house when
he was 17. He got a job as an administration clerk and started calling
himself "Varsha". Varsha then pursued a foundation course at a private
At 18, Varsha had a sex-change
operation in Thailand for RM10,000 (S$4,195). She removed her male organs
and took hormone tablets. Varsha also started a relationship with a man and
depended on him for money, food, clothes and accommodation. She also stopped
When they broke up, Varsha turned to
the vice trade to earn a living. "I didn't know what to do. I was so
desperate for money and a roof over my head that I was willing to do
Varsha wants to continue her studies
in information technology but she said her cosmetic surgery would have to be
done first as she believed that she would be respected if she had good
2-12-11: AsiaOne News (Malaysia): "Transsexuals: Decent jobs hard to
"Now, Raman is a "she", having had a
sex-change operation three months ago in Thailand. The 20-year-old became a
sex worker because she couldn't find a proper job. "I applied to eight
companies and they all told me that they did not want me because I dressed
up as a woman. They told me they would face problems if they hired me."
Tamana said she would like to have a normal job.
"I don't want to be a sex worker
forever. I hope I will be given the opportunity as I want to move on.""
2-12-11: AsiaOne News (Malaysia): "Transsexuals: The price they pay to
be a woman" (more)
"Lorong Gopeng, off Jalan Nanas in
Klang is where about 100 Mak Nyah crowd almost every night waiting for
customers. They are sex workers, mostly forced into the trade because of
difficulties in obtaining jobs and rejection from their families.
It is the easiest and fastest way for
them to make money for sex-change operations and to live comfortably.
Representatives from the Malaysian AIDS Council and the Women and Health
Association Kuala Lumpur (Wake) as well as several reporters visited the
area recently to find out how the Mak Nyah operate."
2-12-11: AsiaOne News (Malaysia): "Is transsexualism a medical condition?"
"Many studies have been carried out on
the subject of transsexuals (TS), but one question remains - is
transsexualism a biological occurrence or is it just a matter of
cross-dressing? Professor Dr Teh Yik Koon of National Defence University of
Malaysia, who has been studying transsexual issues for more than a decade,
believes it is much more than individuals entertaining their alter egos.She
says various research findings have shown that transsexualism is a medical
2-12-11: Daily Mail (UK): "A VERY modern wedding: Sex-swap ex-fireman
weds a lesbian Jamaican 30 years younger than her (and it's the fourth time
she's tied the knot)"
"In this day and age, when a
thrice-married former fireman who has become a woman meets a Jamaican
lesbian chef online there can only be one outcome – wedding bells! Or,
rather, civil partnership bells. This is 66-year-old Kerry Whybrow, dressed
in a full-length custom-made lilac dress, tying the knot for the first time
as a woman three years after undergoing a sex change on the NHS."
2-11-11: The Bilerico Project (posted 2-09): "What Should Gays and
Lesbians Do to Help Trans People?", filed by: Joe Mirabella
"What can gays and lesbians do to help
their transgender loved ones live in a more just society?
I have several suggestions, but I want
to hear from transgender people. I want you to tell me what I and others can
do today, tomorrow, and over the next year to help create a more just
society with you. Let this small list get the ball rolling. I want to hear
from you. What can we do to help you change the world?"
[This rreport generated tons of
comments. See especially those of Kathy Padilla and Kelley Winters on
Feb 9 -11.]
2-11-11: Washington Post/AP (re Thailand): "Thai airline trains
transsexual flight attendants" (more,
"Four Thai "ladyboys" have been
recruited as flight attendants for a start-up charter airline that says it
will be Thailand's first to include transsexuals among its cabin crew. P.C.
Air, which will fly to several Asian destinations starting in April, had its
first training session this week for 30 recruits, including four from "the
Thailand is known for its tolerance
for transvestites and transsexuals, known locally as "katoeys" or
"ladyboys." An annual transsexual beauty pageant is broadcast nationally,
and Thai doctors' well-honed skills at the snipping and reassembling needed
to switch genders - not to mention bargain prices - have made Bangkok a
sex-change capital. But while katoeys are prominent in entertainment,
frequently appearing on television series and in cabaret shows, other job
opportunities are limited."
2-11-11: Urlesque.com: "Reddit Community Shows Overwhelming Support
For a Suicidal Transgender Woman"
"The Internet often gets a bad rap for
being a breeding ground for hate, but this popular Reddit post proves that,
at least for some people, it's the best support system available.
Reddit user UsagiMimi
posted the photos seen after the jump of her two-year weight loss and
sex transformation with the title, "Two years, some hormones, and 170 lbs
The post garnered nearly 1000 comments
in just one day from various supportive sources calling UsagiMimi "gorgeous"
2-11-11: Daily Mail (UK re US): "Detectives hunt for transgender
'doctor' over death of British student who had illegal bottom injection"
(includes photos and video,
"Detectives are hunting a transgender
'doctor; in connection with the death of a British student who died after a
botched 'butt enhancement' operation.
Claudia Aderotimi, 20, is believed to
have had the illegal procedure carried out by an unlicensed medical
practioner in a hotel room in Philadelphia after meeting her in a plastic
surgery chat room.
The unnamed transgender woman, in her
30s, had a similar procedure herself as part of a sex change operation to
become a woman."
2-11-11: MyFoxPhilly: "Butt Implant Suspect May Be Transgender" (more)
"Police cleared one person on Thursday
in the death of a British woman after a butt injection, but they may be
looking for a fake transgender doctor in the case. Detectives are looking
for the person who administered the injections that led to the death of
20-year-old Claudia Aderotimi.
The Sun also said that the fake doctor
is possibly a transgender, a man living as a woman - who injected silicone
into Aderotimi. Aderotimi, 20, was on her second trip to Philadelphia for
2-11-11: The Local
(Sweden): "Swedish boy, 6, stabbed 'for wearing pink'"
"The newspaper names the boy as Oskar
and reports how his liking for pink clothing, ballet and nail polish left
him exposed to regular bullying from other boys in his playgroup. The
newspaper reported that he had also complained to his parents that he had
been subjected to taunts that he was "gay" and "a girl". He had furthermore
complained of being excluded from the group, and having been dragged from a
2-10-11: Isle of Wight County Press (Isle of Wight, UK): "Support for
"A new support group has been launched
on the Isle of Wight for people undergoing gender transition and sex change.
WightConnect seeks to create an informal support network for those who have
changed, are changing or are questioning aspects of their gender. The group
has a website at
www.wightconnect.org.uk which contains more information about the
group’s ethos and some useful links."
Africa (Africa): "Transgender Rights Not Simply Gay Rights", by Audrey
"In the aim of strengthening their
cause, gay rights activism often compromises the identity and struggle of
transgender people by lumping the two communities' issues together, writes
Audrey Mbugua . . .
But, should we compromise the
transsexuals' right to identity, self-determination and their autonomy for
the gays to support their activism? Any gay or lesbian worth his or her salt
would ridicule this idea because it is simply oppressive. Would it be okay
if heterosexuals told gays that they had to cease being gay for them to
accept them and support their activism for non-discrimination?"
2-10-11: The Sun (UK): "Cindy and Natalie like shopping and doing
their hair together. Nothing odd in that... except that they are BOYS"
"Teen Natalie Brammer is tall and
striking, while best pal Cindy Jackson is a fraction shorter but just as
distinctive. There is just one thing out of the ordinary about these giggly
young women - and that becomes startlingly clear with a glance at their old
photos. For six years ago, pictured with cropped hair and the first hint of
facial stubble, the 12-year-olds were very obviously BOYS."
airline trains transsexual flight attendants
2-10-11: Bay Area Reporter: "The groundhog surveyTransmissions", by
Gwendolyn Ann Smith
"At this year's Creating Change
conference, a new report came out from the National Center for Transgender
Equality and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, which hosted the
confab. The report, titled "Injustice at Every Turn," includes responses
from nearly 6,500 people . . .
It's pretty big stuff – but I have to
admit, I felt an extreme sense of deja vu as I read this report. You see, in
February 2010, at the Creating Change conference, a report came out from
NCTE and the Task Force . . . It, too, was a groundbreaking study,
uncovering just how bad discrimination was for transgender people . . . So
this year's groundbreaking study is last year's groundbreaking study. Just,
you know, with the final numbers. Which also seem to be pretty close to the
preliminary numbers . . .
. . . perhaps these numbers make good
PR, and have now gotten two boosts here at the beginning of the year,
allowing for an influx in media coverage and fundraising dollars for the
organizations that funded it? Certainly it gives them the ability to say,
"we're doing something for you," even if that something is simply number
crunching a survey for a year or so.
Rather, I want to see these numbers . . . turn into something useful .
. . We don't need to waste our time and money on next year's groundbreaking
survey results at Creating Change 2012. Enough discussion: it's action time."
(Sweden): Ångrarna: Mikael och Orlando är två svenska män i 60-årsåldern som
bytt kön och opererat om sig till kvinnor. Men det nya livet i den nya
kroppen blev inte alls så lyckligt som de hade hoppats. Båda två inser att
könsbytet var deras livs största misstag."
Translation of title-lines: "Regret:
Michael and Orlando are two Swedish men in their 60s who have changed gender
and operated on at women. But the new life in the new body was not as
fortunate as they had hoped. Both of them realize that sex change was their
life's biggest mistake."
[This Sveriges Television program note
reveals why these two men made such terrible mistakes. Here's a translation
of the fifth paragraph of the article:
"Orlando is homosexual and made the
change because he thought it would be easier to live with men if he were a
woman. Michael is heterosexual but has never been able to find any woman who
wants him. It was one of the reasons for his transformation. He thought he
could fill the longing for a woman by becoming one himself."
These are classical reasons to NOT
undergo SRS, and almost always lead to regrets. Unfortunately, reactionary
psychiatrists and religious zealots are exploiting such "regrets" stories to
defame and stigmatize transsexual women who transition for the right, and
deeply felt, reasons.]
2-09-11: (Canada re Sweden, orig. posted 2-08): "There, and back
again: Regretters reveals the aftermath of sex reassignment surgery" (more,
"In a black
room, dimly lit and fit with only two chairs and a projector, Orlando Fagin
and Mikael Johansson sit down to discuss their journeys through a gauntlet
of gender bending operations.
"Do you have to
be either a man or a woman? Can't you just be you?" asks Fagin. He and
Johansson are the two subjects of the Swedish documentary film
Both are transsexual, and have either completed, or are in the process of
completing a male to female, and back to male transformation. "I don't know
who I am," says Fagin. "Sounds complicated," responds Johansson. Fagin
replies, "No, it isn't, believe me."
the search for identity, is far more complex than you might think,"
explained Marcus Lindeen, playwright, journalist and director of the film.
"It is certainly not so black and white." Regretters is Lindeen's debut
documentary film, an adaptation of his play of the same name. The film is a
conversation through which we are told the story of two people and their
journey through their lives, questioning gender, identity, and attempting to
come to terms with who they are, and what has brought them to where they are
2-09-11: News1130 (Canada): "Transgender protection bill approved by
Commons - The Senate could be a roadblock"
protecting transgender people from discrimination has been passed by the
House of Commons, but it still has to pass through the Conservative
dominated Senate. The bill C-389 seeks to add protection to Canadian Human
Rights Act and the Criminal Code for those who've changed gender or are in
MP Bill Siksay has been fighting for it for six years. He says it's been
tough to get it through the House, and he's hopeful it will get through the
Senate. Critics bashed what they called the "Bathroom Bill," claiming it
would allow sexual predators to dress up as women to use the ladies
2-09-11: CNN (posted 2-07): "Transsexual golfers prove drivers for
and Mianne Bagger are both professional golfers. Both are legally female,
but they started their lives as men. And both, from their own very different
standpoint, have battled what they see as discrimination and prejudice in
their chosen field.
Lawless is a
57-year-old former SWAT team Californian policeman, who had sexual
re-assignment surgery in 2005. Meanwhile, the 44-year-old Bagger -- a Dane
who grew up in Australia -- eventually joined the golfing paid ranks after,
in her words, "becoming a transitioned woman" in 1995 . . .
Both fell foul
of the American Ladies' Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Tour's "female
at birth" rule which would have prevented them playing on the most lucrative
circuit in women's golf. And both have played a part -- Bagger by raising
awareness, Lawless by reason of a lawsuit -- in the landmark decision on
November 30, 2010 of the LPGA to dispense with that ruling."
2-09-11: The Guardian (UK): "'What sort of woman do I want to be?
'Learning how to live and 'present' as a woman can be like learning a new
language, only without the concrete rules, says Juliet Jacques"
(Another essay in the series "A
"Living 'as a
woman' was just a starting point. As soon as I entered the NHS pathway and
began the real life experience I had to ask myself: "What sort of woman?"
this involved rethinking my relationship with the vague social construct of
'masculinity', and separating those traits which had been a facade to help
me 'pass' as male before transition, from those integral to my character.
Simultaneously, whilst I knew that changing my body carried no obligation to
adopt any socially gendered behaviours, presenting as female made it prudent
to at least consider my ideas of 'femininity', and how 'feminine' I wished
2-09-11: Philly.com: "Murder trial set for transgender hooker" (more)
a transgender prostitute, was ordered yesterday to stand trial on murder,
arson and related charges in the slaying of a Chester County businessman in
a Center City hotel room in October. Burton, who identifies as a woman and
goes by the name Peaches, walked into the preliminary hearing wearing a
quizzical expression, a gray sweat suit under which enlarged breasts were
visible, and tightly braided hair with tiny pigtails on either side.
So violent and
brutal are the facts involving the defendant's alleged beating and
strangulation of Patrick Michael Brady, 49, that the attorneys on both sides
agreed that Burton's police statement would not be read in open court and
that the city medical examiner was not called to testify - both of which
normally happen in murder hearings. Burton, 23, who has been arrested 36
times, was arrested Nov. 4 and charged with killing Brady on Oct. 30 and
setting a fire to cover up the crime inside the victim's eighth-floor room
at the Omni Hotel, 4th and Chestnut streets."
Seattle Post Intelligencer: "ACLU: Transgender woman, ejected from Lynnwood
store, spurs policy change"
transgender woman was kicked out of a Ross Dress for Less store while trying
on clothes, a civil-rights group said the clothing chain has taken "positive
steps" to strengthen its anti-discrimination policy. The American Civil
Liberties Union of Washington said the company has clarified to employees
that gender discrimination includes discriminating against someone on the
basis of gender identity and expression . . . .
"Christy_M" wrote on a cross-dressing forum that she was trying on a
"beautiful sweater dress" in the company's Lynnwood store when a manager
suddenly pounded on the dressing-room door. "You need to get out of the
dressing room now!" the manager is alleged to have yelled. She ordered her
customer to leave the store.
Christy_M quickly put on her own clothes and lost an earring clasp in the
process. She heard the manager tell some onlookers, "There's a situation
going on right now, but it is almost over." She then threw up and cried in
the parking lot. "I felt so embarrassed and disgusted with myself,"
Christy_M wrote. "I have so much shame wearing on me that I can hardly
2-08-11: The Star (Canada): "Will ‘bathroom bill’ get flushed by
"Critics call it
the “bathroom bill.” They say that if passed Wednesday, Bill C-389, an act
to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender
identity and gender expression), will allow sexual predators to dress up
like women and invade ladies’ rooms.
“Imagine a young
girl — your daughter or granddaughter — goes into a washroom and finds a man
there,” warns Campaign Life Coalition national president Jim Hughes. “How is
the young girl to determine whether or not the man in the bathroom is a
‘peeping tom,’ a rapist or a pedophile?”"
2-08-11: Darlington Echo (UK): "Dress as a man to get a job"
"An inquiry has
been launched at a Jobcentre after a sex-change patient was allegedly told
she should dress as a man to improve her chances of finding work. Andrew
Cook, 54, who worked in the construction industry all his adult life, felt
he was trapped in the wrong body from the age of six. Last February, after
decades of cross-dressing, he began gender realignment treatment and is now
in the process of becoming Tina Cook.
As part of the
treatment, Ms Cook, from Darlington, must live and dress as a woman or face
being withdrawn from the realignment programme. After being made redundant
from her construction job 18 months ago, Ms Cook began to claim Jobseeker’s
Allowance. When she was at the Jobcentre in Darlington last week, she says
she was advised to go back to dressing like a man for interviews if she
wanted to improve her chances of securing a job.
“I have been
living in the wrong body for 53 years and have only recently summoned up the
courage to be the way I want,” said Ms Cook. “I have given up so much for
this. My family don’t really talk to me and I have no friends. “How can they
expect me to give it up to get a job? I think it is really insensitive.” "
2-08-11: ABC (Australia): "Artscape: Anatomy: Mind, 10:05pm Tuesday,
February 08 2011"
Emma Crimmings, one of Australia's new talented filmmakers
Mind is the
captivating story of Tom Cho, a 36-year-old Chinese-Australian man. From an
early age, Tom thought he was different and knew he didn't match his
mother's expectations of a good daughter. From the innocently playful
gestures of a tomboy to the irrevocable impact of transitioning his gender,
Mind charts Tom's escalating desire for personal transformation. Using
writing and fantasy as a way of exploring the nature of identity, Tom's wild
imaginings, including images of Godzilla rampaging through Melbourne
suburbia, resulted in a widely-praised collection of short stories, Look
2-07-11: SX: "Walk Like A Man: Through a deeply personal blog, local
actor Andy Guy is sharing his unique experiences as he becomes a man. Inside
one person’s journey through gender transition"
blog The Andy
Transformation Project, upcoming stage performer Andy Guy is hoping
to not only raise awareness on the experience of gender transition but to
also keep his friends and family up-to-date with his personal journey in
becoming a man. Until recently, Andy was known as Anna.
“I’m trying to
make people more aware of what exactly transgender is and isn’t,” Andy tells
“This is part of
my life journey and I really want to offer that up for people to listen and
2-07-11: Typically Spanish (Spain): "Spanish transsexual added to the
Socialist candidate list in Madrid"
Party leader in Madrid, Tomás Gómez, has announced the signing of the
Antonelli to stand for the party. It’s understood she is likely to be
given a high place on the lists for the regional elections to be held on May
22, meaning in all likelihood she will be elected.
Famous in Spain
as an actress it means a return to politics for Carla who left politics and
gay activism in 2007 when the Ley de Identitad de Género was approved, for
which she campaigned by even going on hunger strike. She was also the first
person in Spain to ask for a change of name and sex on her DNI identity
2-07-11: Bay Windows (re Germany): "German court blocks trans
Constitutional Court ruled Jan. 28 that it is unconstitutional to require
transgender people to undergo sterilization or gender-reassignment surgery
before they can be legally recognized as a member of the other sex."
2-06-11: Houston Chronicle: "Obituary: Kathryn McGuire" (Guestbook)
"Kathryn Leigh McGuire, also known as the socialite,
"Charles/Kathryn" died last week in her home in Palm Springs, CA. She was
sixty-eight years old. Kathryn made a splash on the social scene in the late
eighties and nineties as Houston's own transvestite millionaire socialite.
underwent sexual reassignment surgery in 1992 and became simply known as
Kathryn. As a woman, she talked about the trials of a post-operative
transsexual in a stand-up comedy routine she performed around New York City
and on her website zwamp.com. She lived out the rest of her life, happily,
as a full-time woman, a long childhood wish. "
2-06-11: Indian Express (India): "‘Uplift transgendered to integrate
them in mainstream society’"
effective legal intervention to end ostracism of transgendered persons, the
legal fraternity on Saturday advocated granting them greater “social and
political” acceptance to integrate them into mainstream society.
Speaking at the
‘National Seminar on Transgenders and the Law’, the Supreme Court’s second
senior-most judge, Justice Altmas Kabir, pointed out that the Constitution
provides for the fundamental right to equality, and tolerates no
discrimination on the grounds of sex, caste, creed or religion. “The
Constitution also guarantees political rights and other benefits to every
citizen. But the third community (transgenders) continues to be
Styleite: "WATCH: Lea T Dishes On Being Givenchy’s Transsexual Muse"
(with video interview, more)
this for a while, but Lea T’s
interview with Models.com
confirms it: she’s really, really awesome. We can’t wait for the transgender
model’s appearance on Oprah, and Lea’s most recent interview gives some
amazing insight into her life. She talks about how hard it is to be a
transgender woman in Italy, where people openly taunt her on the street, in
contrast to the more accepting attitudes she’s encountered in the U.S. and
in her native Brazil.
Lea also dishes
on her naked French Vogue photos. She says Carine Roitfeld encouraged her to
pose nude, saying: “Why not be naked like the other girls? You have a penis,
but that’s what you are. For me, you are beautiful like the other girls.” .
. . Suffice to say, you really need to watch the entire interview below."
2-05-11: Metro Weekly: "CBS's Craig Ferguson Sketch Mocks Trans
night after the
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
National Center for Transgender Equality released a report about the
widespread prevalence of anti-transgender discrimination, The Late Late Show
With Craig Ferguson on CBS presented a sketch portraying anti-trans
stereotypes and playing off of them for humor at every turn.
featured Ferguson's "half-sister" -- played by a man -- coming out in a
skirt and female's shirt, with an oddly painted face appearing to suggest
significant facial hair. The first "gag" was her apparently showing male
genitalia as she sat down -- to "eww" gasps from the audience.
continued forward, mocking at several points that his "half-sister" was
sexually unappealing, saying, for example, that no one wanted her in a date
auction. There also were repeated negative references to Ferguson's
"half-sister" masturbating. Ferguson also went so far as to include a
"he-she" reference at one point."
[Oh my, if you
thought that NBC's
SNL Skit was
transphobic, wait till you see this one from
2-04-11: Colombia Reports (Colombia): "Transsexual to grace cover of
men's magazine" (video,
magazine, which is targeted at the male market with photos of scantily-clad
women, is demonstrating its open-mindedness by featuring transsexual
Colombian TV and film star
Endry Cardeño on
the cover of the next issue, radiostation
La F.M. reported Friday. Cardeño, who underwent a sex change when she
was 17 years old, shot to fame as a popular star of the soap opera "Los
Reyes" ("The Kings") and has since acted in several films. The transsexual
actress from Cucuta, Colombia, is an icon for LBGT (lesbian, bisexual, gay,
transgender) rights, although she says that love is more important to her
than the legal right to marry. She initially faced criticism from
conservative sectors of society upon first assuming her role in the soap
opera but now enjoys a large following. Soho magazine is considered the
Colombian equivalent of Playboy or Maxim, making Cardeño an intriguing
choice to front the next issue."
2-04-11" Pink News (UK): "US transgender survey finds ‘discrimination
and ridicule at every turn’" (more,
study of trans people in America says that almost every part of social and
legal convention ridicules, abuses and discriminates against transgender
PR Web: "Groundbreaking Study Finds Pervasive Discrimination Against
"A new study
reveals pervasive discrimination against transgender and
gender-nonconforming people in a variety of fields, including education,
employment, housing, health care, and more.
The National Gay
and Lesbian Task Force and the National Center for Transgender Equality
(NCTE) today released a comprehensive new report, “Injustice at Every Turn,”
revealing the depth of discrimination against transgender and gender
non-conforming people in a wide range of areas, including education, health
care, employment, and housing. The study, based on the results from the
National Transgender Discrimination Survey (NTDS), was based on responses
from over 6,450 participants. The NTDS is the first large-scale national
study of discrimination against transgender and gender non-conforming
Americans, and paints a more complete picture than any prior research to
date. . .
Keisling, Executive Director of NCTE: “Reading these results is
heartbreaking on a personal level—each of these facts and figures represents
pain and hardship endured by real people, every single day. "
2-04-11: Hollywood Life (posted 2-02): "Kristen Stewart Swaps Genders
And Murders A Molester In Rumored New Movie K-11!" (more,
"We have the first look at the newest script for K-Stew’s
upcoming movie K11 that was co-written by her mom! It’s racy, controversial,
and downright raunchy . . .This movie is about one of Hollywood’s music
magnates ending up in the K-11 unit of LA’s male prison. K-11 is a unit
sanctioned for gay men and transgendered who wouldn’t be able to survive in
normal lock-up. He is inducted into this strange family unit that’s full of
love, but tainted with rape, drug trafficking, and abuse. Kristen Stewart is
rumored to play Birdy (originally Butterfly), a 19-year-old sweet,
red-headed girl (naturally a boy) who befriends the new member and takes
care of him . . . She is raped by a convicted child molester named Detroit
who likes Birdy because she is little and young, and to retaliate against
the abuse she murders him!"
2-04-11: Indian Express (India): "Nighttime Showstoppers"
set of Ladyboys, a dancing troupe from Thailand, is here to bedazzle the
city with all the right moves. They are called Thailand’s ‘women of the
second kind’, the third sex — transgenders — who have strapped on their
stilettos and danced their way to success for the past 25 years. Known for
their foot-tapping and sensual performances, the troupe comes to India for
the first time. And they are here to entertain. With nine shows slated over
the weekend and a grand finale on Sunday at the Tagore theatre, they are all
set to regale the city audience today onwards with “a mix of music, pomp and
2-03-11: The Bay Area Reporter: “Castro history project selects first
“Fourteen men and six women have been chosen to be the first
group of 20 LGBT luminaries to be honored with plaques along the sidewalks
of the Castro, San Francisco's gay neighborhood, the Bay Area Reporter has
includes the famous, such as the poet Allen Ginsberg and pop artist Keith
Haring, to unsung heroes few people may know, such as Jane Addams, the first
American woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize, and Japanese playwright Yukio
Known as the
Rainbow Honor Walk, the project is aimed at showcasing the extraordinary
achievements LGBT people have made toward human society despite the hatred
and lack of rights they faced due to their sexual orientation or gender
identity . . .
Rounding out the
group are Christine Jorgensen, who in 1952 became the first person to
receive widespread media coverage of her sexual reassignment surgery, and
Alan Turing, who cracked the German's coded messages in World War II but was
later prosecuted for being homosexual and opted to be chemically castrated
to avoid a prison sentence."
2-03-11: Bleeding Cool: "Kristen Stewart’s Sex-Change Prisoner Film To
Shoot In The Summer?" (more)
has long been attached to K-11, a prison drama that was co-written by her
mother Jules Stewart, and which would see her playing a transgendered
prisoner called Birdy. According to Hollywood Life, the film now has a shoot
date of June 6th . . .
The film’s lead
role is apparently that of an LA music magnate who gets sent to the K-11
unit of the local clink. This is the wing for gay men and the transgendered,
created ostensibly for their safety. Just reading the script appears to have
Hollywood Life somewhat. They say it is filled to the brim with sex,
violence, drug use and “vulgarity”, and walk the typical tabloid line
between excitement and disdain."
2-02-11: The Guardian (UK; posted 1-09): "The extraordinary life and
death of David Burgess", by Elizabeth Day
detectives were called to investigate the death of a woman under a London
tube train. But as they traced her final moments, they discovered that she
was, in fact, David Burgess, one of the most brilliant immigration lawyers
of his generation. Here, Burgess's family and friends tell, for the first
time, the complicated story of the loving father, brilliant colleague,
sensitive woman and courageous person they knew. "
story; am posted it now having missed it earlier.]
2-02-11: Vogue (re Brazil): "Catwalk Star"
Brazilian model Lea T made her catwalk modelling debut in her home country's
Sao Paulo Fashion Week. The 28-year-old model, formerly known as Leo, walked
in Brazilian designer Alexandre Herchcovitch's show amongst an army of
models dressed in long black and neon yellow gowns with lace sleeves.
Lea is no
stranger to being in the spotlight: after rising to fame in Ricardo Tisci's
advertising campaign for Givenchy autumn/winter 2010, she soon went on to
conquer the fashion world's toughest critics. Hailed as a muse by Katie
Grand, she stars on the cover of Love magazine kissing Kate Moss this
2-01-11: SDGLN: "Transgender woman fired by Georgia General Assembly
is back in court"
"ATLANTA — Late
Monday, Lambda Legal filed papers in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the
Eleventh Circuit defending a lower court ruling that the Georgia General
Assembly discriminated against Vandy Beth Glenn, a transgender woman who was
fired from her job as Legislative Editor after she told her supervisor that
she planned to transition from male to female . . .
In July 2010,
the District Court ruled that Georgia General Assembly officials violated
the Constitution and discriminated against Glenn by terminating her for
failing to conform to sex stereotypes. Using a lower standard of review, the
court rejected the second Equal Protection claim that Glenn was
discriminated against on the basis of her medical condition. The state
appealed the case to the Eleventh Circuit.
In the brief
filed yesterday, Lambda Legal argues that the Eleventh Circuit Court should
affirm the District Court’s ruling that Brumby discriminated against Glenn
based on her sex because Brumby testified that he fired Glenn specifically
because he viewed her intended feminine presentation as unacceptable. "I am
resolved to see this case to the end. No one should be fired for no good
reason like I was," Glenn said."
2-01-11: Time News Feed (re Thailand): "Thai Airline Actively Recruits
Transsexual Flight Attendents"
""PC Air President Peter Chan, describes himself a pioneer.
He believes his recruitment techniques are opening doors long closed for all
transsexuals hoping to serve in the air. "I think these people can
have many careers, not just in the entertainment business, and many of them
have a dream to be an air hostess," he told AFP. "I just made their dream
come true." . . . Chan hired six transsexuals from over one hundred
applicants. Among the recent transsexual hires is
Jiraphatpakorn, winner of
Miss Tiffany 2007,
a Thai beauty pageant for transsexuals."
1-31-11: Human Rights Watch (re Honduras): "Appeal to President
Porfirio Lobo Sosa to Investigate Recent Murders of Transgender Women in
"In May 2009,
Human Rights Watch published a report that documented a range of violence
faced by transgender people in Honduras because of their sexual orientation
and/or gender identity, as well as police inaction and failure to
investigate such cases. Since then, there have been 34 reported homicides of
members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community,
particularly of transgender women; the latter have been termed
transimicidios (transimicides) by the LGBT community, for the frequency with
which transgender women are being killed.
While these are
not isolated incidents, I want to draw your attention specifically to the
murders of six transgender women in the last two months. In almost all the
incidents, the women had been tortured before being killed-they were
strangled, stoned, stabbed, and burned to death, suggesting that these
crimes were motivated by bias against the individuals. The police have yet
to make a single arrest in any of the cases."
BBC (re Honduras): "Honduras urged to investigate transgender killings"
group Human Rights Watch has called on the government of Honduras to
investigate the murders of six transgender women. The women were killed over
the past two months.
has condemned the killings, but Human Rights Watch says it is failing to
prosecute attacks on transgender people . . . The director of the lesbian
campaign group Red Lesbica, Indyra Mendoza, says the murders have shaken the
entire lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community in Honduras."
1-31-11: MAGNET: "Anti-defamation Group MAGNET Demands Apology from
NBC/Comcast for Dehumanizing SNL "Trans-Face" Skit" (more,
night, Saturday Night Live (SNL) aired the most horrifying and dehumanizing
mocking of women who are born with a transsexual medical condition. The
‘Estro-Maxxx’, ridiculed the medical transition that women with a
transsexual/and or intersex birth challenge go through. NBC/Comcast has yet
to reply to the human rights advocates who are outraged that they would
allow the writers of SNL to create and air this hateful propaganda towards
such an alienated minority group."
1-31-11: The Advocate: "SNL Slammed for Transphobic Skit", By
an apology for a Saturday Night Live skit that mocks the transition of
transgender women. The piece, which aired over the weekend, represented a
fake ad for
a hormone replacement therapy. It featured men with facial hair wearing
dresses . . .
comedy of the skit hinges solely on degrading the lives and experiences of
transgender women,” said GLAAD. “Dehumanizing holding people up for ridicule
simply on the basis of their identity fuels a dangerous and hurtful climate
and puts people in danger, especially given how infrequently the media
shines a fair and accurate light on the lives of transgender people.”"
1-31-11: HRC: "HRC Condemns
SNL’s Anti-Transgender Segment, Calls on NBC to Remove Skit from NBC
Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest civil rights organization dedicated to
lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality, is calling on NBC to
apologize after an anti-transgender skit aired on Saturday Night Live. The
‘Estro-Maxxx’, blatantly mocked transgender people, minimizing the
challenges they face. SNL’s degrading sense of humor also supports many of
the false stereotypes that could be used as fuel for anti-transgender
sentiment, including discrimination and potentially even violence . . . HRC
calls on NBC to remove the skit from NBC.com, all future broadcasts of the
show, and all other NBC platforms such as Hulu.com. "
1-30-11: GLAAD: "GLAAD Demands Action from NBC/Comcast for Transphobic
on an airing of Saturday Night Live, NBC (a subsidiary of Comcast) broadcast
a dangerous and blatantly transphobic segment which they called
‘Estro-Maxxx’ - the punchline of which was the lives of countless
transgender people across the country.
The piece was a mock commercial for estrogen replacement therapy and
featured men with facial hair wearing dresses, meant to represent
transgender women. This segment cannot be defended as “just a joke” because
there was no “joke” to speak of. The attempted comedy of the skit hinges
solely on degrading the lives and experiences of transgender women. Holding
people up for ridicule simply on the basis of their identity fuels a
dangerous and hurtful climate and puts people in danger, especially given
how infrequently the media shines a fair and accurate light on the lives of
transgender people . . . The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation
calls upon Comcast and NBC to apologize and remove the segment from Hulu and
all future airings of the show."
1-30-11: Huffington Post (re Brazil): "Lea T., Transsexual Model,
Takes First Turn On The Runway (Photos)"
model Lea T. has taken her first turn on the runway and -- surprise! It
wasn't for Givenchy. She walked in a long, black dress with ornate sleeves
for designer Alexandre Herchcovitch's Fall/Winter 2011/2012 show at Sao
Paulo Fashion Week, in her native Brazil."
1-29-11: The Times of India (India): "Fashion’s going transsexual"
ramps are celebrating acceptance toward transsexual models - Andrej Pejic
and Lea T. The world's watching... Fashion is all about real people, isn't
it? And so, when firang designers showed growing acceptance toward
transsexual models, everyone around the world slowly and steadily came to
terms with it. Most asked - If the person has the looks, then why not? "
TLDEF: "Important New Information About Obtaining A Passport" (more,
"On January 28,
2011, in response to feedback from TLDEF and other organizations and
individuals, the U.S. Department of State amended its policy for changing
the sex designation on passports. Transgender people can get a new or
corrected passport by presenting a letter from a doctor stating that they
have had “appropriate clinical treatment for gender transition.” Sex
reassignment surgery is not required to change the sex on a U.S. passport.
What constitutes “appropriate clinical treatment” is left to individuals and
their doctors — it is not dictated by the State Department.
Not only is this
welcome news for those traveling internationally, but it also offers an
alternative for showing an official ID domestically. Most notably, when
starting a new job, a passport alone is sufficient to establish your
identity and eligibility to work. In many states, sex reassignment surgery
is required before the sex designation can be corrected on a birth
certificate or driver’s license (two pieces of documentation commonly used
to prove identity when starting a job). However, these federal guidelines
mean that sex reassignment surgery is no longer a prerequisite to obtaining
up-to-date and accurate photo identification."
1-27-11: NPR: "Berkeley's Latest Liberal Cause: Sex Changes"
Calif., is famous for taking on bold, liberal causes, which is why officials
there may not have expected the controversy over a proposal to help city
workers afford sex change operations.
The amount of
cash at stake in Berkeley is fairly small. But it has still stirred up a
debate over how much compassion the city can afford in these tough economic
1-26-11: New Scientist: "Transsexual differences caught on brain scan"
the brain's white matter that clash with a person's genetic sex may hold the
key to identifying transsexual people before puberty. Doctors could use this
information to make a case for delaying puberty to improve the success of a
sex change later."
1-25-11: Sify News (re Thailand): "Thai airline recruits transsexuals
as flight attendants" (more,
launched Thai airline has adopted a policy of recruiting transsexuals as
flight attendants in an effort to offer equal opportunities to the 'third
sex,' company sources said Tuesday. PC Air hired three transsexuals, 17
women, and 10 men in its initial recruitment drive Monday.
quota was set at three transsexuals, but we will consider taking more in the
future depending on their qualifications,' a PC Air spokeswoman said . . .
Jiraphatpakorn, winner of the 2007 Miss Tiffany transsexual beauty
pageant, was among the successful candidates to land a job on the new
airline, which plans to launch flights on March 1."
1-24-11: Radio Taiwan International (Taiwan; posted 1-20): "Intersex:
Hiker Chiu’s story"
Chiu is a Ph.D student in human sexuality at Shute University. At a gay
rights parade in Taipei last year, Chiu held a placard that read “free hugs
with intersex.” On Chiu’s ID card, the word “female” was written in the
column for gender. However, Chiu also has male sexual characteristics such
as adam’s apple. In an interview with RTI, Chiu gave a detailed account of a
long and harrowing experience that was often filled with helplessness,
solitude, confusion, sadness and sometimes even shame. Chiu’s parents were
very supportive, but they knew very little about intersex. Doctors are not
helpful at all because they are reluctant to discuss the issue with their
patient. The social stigma attached to intersex people is so strong in
Taiwan that Chiu had virtually no one to talk to when growing up. In
September of last year, Chiu visited
Organization Intersex International
(OII), the trip later helped pave the way for the establishment of a
Chinese-language website for intersex people."
1-24-11: Los Angeles Times: "Chaz Bono: 'Becoming Chaz' has its
premiere at Sundance Film Festival" (more)
"The film, which
had its premiere Sunday night at the Sundance Film Festival ahead of its
television airing on Oprah Winfrey's OWN Network later this year, depicts
Bono, the child of Sonny Bono and Cher, as a someone for whom a sex change
was the necessary remedy for a life of depression. And unlike the same
decisions by others that end in disappointment or tragedy, this one seems to
have been a wise one: Chaz Bono says he's now infinitely happier and more
fulfilled, even as his transition has created a fresh set of challenges.
"It's the greatest thing I've ever done in my life. It's the only time I've
felt like a complete person," he says in the film, before acknowledging that
"it's kind of a weird time for me.... I definitely feel like I'm in the oven
1-24-11: The Washington Post: "Housing policy and the gay community"
unveiled a series of proposed rule changes that would prohibit lenders from
using sexual orientation or gender identity as a way of determining a
borrower's eligibility. The rule change would state that eligible families
have the opportunity to participate in HUD-based programs regardless of
marital status or sexual orientation.
The new rules,
if adopted, also would prohibit owners and operators of HUD-funded housing
from asking applicants or household occupants about sexual orientation or
gender identity. The proposals must undergo a 60-day public comment period
before formal implementation."
1-23-11: The Guardian/The Observer (UK): "The readers' editor on...
reporting transgender issues: The strong response to our feature about the
death of human rights lawyer Sonia Burgess highlights the need for
sensitivity and respect"
month, the New Review devoted
four pages to a 4,600-word account of the life and death of this
extraordinary person. Last October, Sonia Burgess, first identified by her
railcard, died beneath a tube train at King's Cross station. It was later
discovered that Sonia was biologically male – a man called David Burgess, an
immigration lawyer of international reputation. (A murder trial begins next
piece included this sentence: "Many of Sonia's friends found the media
interest difficult to stomach, especially as some
newspapers used the male pronoun to refer to Burgess in spite of the
fact that he had chosen to live as a woman." This enraged several
transgender readers who felt the Observer had done just that,
ignoring Sonia's chosen identity and referring to her using the male pronoun
and identifying her both as David and Sonia.
I wrote to that
reader after I had spoken to the author of the piece, Elizabeth Day, who, in
my view, had gone to great lengths to approach the subject as sensitively as
possible. I felt that this passage from the piece summed up her dilemma as a
writer: "On the day that Burgess was killed, he was living as a woman and
yet working as a man. He was open about his lifestyle to anyone who asked,
but he also had separate groups of friends: those who knew him as David and
those who knew him exclusively as Sonia. "He allowed only his closest
confidants to see him in both guises." This, I felt, was a simple fact and
one that could not be ignored by adhering to the female pronoun."
1-21-11: Minneapolis Star-Tribune: "Vigil for Minneapolis victim: 'The
killing of one of our own' – More than
200 honored Krissy Bates, hours after a Blaine man was charged in her
Krissy Bates was gregarious and kind, someone who would chat up a stranger
at the bus stop. A transgender woman, she never tried to hide who she was,
they said. And when she told her good friend Scottie Thornton about the new
man in her life, she said things were going so great that she thought he
might be "The One."There was even talk of him moving in with her, Thornton
That man, Arnold
Darwin Waukazo, 40, of Blaine, was charged Friday with killing Christopher
(Krissy) Bates, 45, whose body was discovered stabbed and strangled last
week in her first-floor apartment on the edge of downtown . . .
police confronted Waukazo at his workplace. He allegedly said he began
dating Bates early this month, and he admitted he bought the bottle of
liquor and went to her apartment. He said they had an argument and he
"dispatched" Bates by strangling her with his hands, the criminal complaint
said. He allegedly moved her body to the floor and saw it "jump." He told
police he did not want her to "come back," so he took a folding knife from a
hutch and stabbed Bates several times, according to the charges."
1-21-11: Gay City News: "Victory for NYC Gender Identity Protections -
Judge finds transit authority not exempt; no First Amendment shield for
transphobic employee comments"
"A New York
State trial judge in Brooklyn rejected the New York City Transit Authority’s
argument that city law banning gender identity discrimination in places of
public accommodation is unconstitutional as applied to a claim that a
transit worker directed transphobic language at a member of the public
seeking assistance in using a Metrocard . . .
of bigoted behavior in the public accommodation context contained in [the
law] does not violate the constitutional guarantee of free speech,” he
wrote, finding that the city has a “compelling interest in combating
invidious discrimination,” and that Supreme Court precedents suggest that
the city law as applied in this case “would survive the most exacting
Weekend Observer (Swaziland): "Sex-change teacher causes drama in court"
Dludlu, otherwise known as the sex-change teacher, yesterday caused drama at
the Manzini Magistrate’s court when he asked it to adjourn owing to what he
termed post stress disorder and that he needed counselling. This was just
before Detective Constable Bongani Mbuyisa delivered his evidence in chief
at the court before Magistrate Sindi Zwane as a fifth witness in his case of
sexually molesting a pupil.
public about a sex-change that never was. He claimed he changed his male
organs for female ones. Previously he was known as Patrick and later changed
to Patricia after the imaginary sex-change.
On his arrest
for sexually molesting the pupil police were also confused how to deal with
him as regards booking him in a holding cell. He was exposed when a female
officer was detailed to inspect his private parts. To the shock of the
female officer, she found that Patricia was actually male. He had all what
males should have."
1-20-11: Philadelphia Gay News: "Oversight agency seeks Morris records
members of the Police Advisory Commission are seeking information from the
District Attorney’s Office about the killing of a transgender woman, and
they’re willing to go to court this time. Gathered at the William Way LGBT
Community Center this week, the first time the commission has held a meeting
in the LGBT community, the PAC distributed copies of letters sent to
District Attorney R. Seth Williams and Police Commissioner Charles H.
Ramsey, seeking more information on the incident.
47, was found on a Center City street with a fatal head wound shortly after
she received a courtesy ride from Philadelphia police. She died two days
later, on Dec. 24, 2002, from complications due to a fractured skull. The
Medical Examiner ruled the case a homicide, and it remains unsolved . . .
Kathleen R. Padilla praised the new PAC. She’s a former PAC member, but
didn’t serve on the board when the non-disclosure agreement went into
effect. “As a former PAC member, I’m very encouraged to see a revitalized
commission taking a serious look at the Nizah Morris case, and making sure
they have the entire record before issuing another report,” Padilla told
1-20-11: The Copenhagen Post (Denmark): "Transsexual “freak show”
comments lands journalist in trouble"
journalist is in trouble after referring to a transsexual woman as a man and
using the word “freak show” about people who have had sex change operations.
The Danish National Organisation for Gay Men, Lesbians, Bisexuals and
Transgendered Persons (LGBT) has filed an official complaint to TV2’s
Eastern Jutland affiliate, which broadcast the comments on January 7. . .
As part of a
report about a new magazine for gays titled Proud Magazine, TV2 Eastern
Jutland reporter Søren Ø. Jensen repeatedly refers to a transgender woman (a
woman who used to be a man) as a “man”. During the report, he asked the
magazine’s owner and editor: “When can you stop describing such person as an
affectionate 'woman-man' and start describing them as an outright freak show
with perverted urges?”"
KTVU.com: "Berkeley City Council Postpones Vote On Sex-Change Surgery
City Council Tuesday night postponed a vote on a staff proposal to
appropriate $20,000 a year to pay for sex-change operations for city
employees. Council members on Tuesday decided to delay a final decision on
the issue until Feb. 15.
calls for the city to maintain an annual $20,000 fund for
gender-reassignment surgery, which can cost up to $50,000. In a memo to the
council, City Manager Phil Kamlarz said the city is offering to pay for the
operations, also known as "sex reassignment surgery," because they aren't
covered by its two health insurance providers, Kaiser and Health Net. The
proposed resolution that the council will vote on says funding sex-change
operations is consistent with the city's equal employment opportunity
1-19-11: Digital Spy: "GaGa casts transsexuals for new video"
Lady GaGa is
casting transsexuals for her new music video, reports suggest. The singer,
who is gearing up for the release of her new single 'Born This Way' next
month, is said to have hired a number of transsexual women for the clip.
reports that GaGa's management were spotted at a party in New York hosted by
trans model and porn star Allanah Starr last weekend, where they asked a
number of guests to star in the promo, due to be filmed next week. The star
is expected to unveil 'Born This Way' with a live performance at this year's
Grammy Awards on February 13.
1-19-11: Stage News (UK): "Broadcasters urged to increase on screen
portrayal of transgender people"
are being encouraged to sign an agreement to increase the positive portrayal
of transgender people on television. The memorandum of understanding has
been drawn up by Trans Media Watch, a voluntary group set up to combat
prejudiced and inaccurate depictions of transgender people. It is aimed at
all media outlets - including newspapers and broadcasters - and follows a
conference held last year, at which both the BBC and Channel 4 admitted that
transgender people were missing from television programmes because of
commissioners’ lack of confidence and understanding about the issue."
1-19-11: Watermark (Florida): "Dr. Ferrell honored for years of
service to T community"
In her 25 years
as a gender therapist, Dr. Kathleen Ferrell has seen a lot of changes in the
way the world views transgender individuals. But one thing she may not have
seen is the direct and powerful impact she’s had on the T-community.
But in December,
during a special celebration honoring the career of Ferrell, she heard
first-hand how influential she has been during her quarter-century of
service. Patients spoke about their experiences with Farrell—including her
creation of a free group therapy session that was recently passed onto Dr.
Tristan Byrnes . . .
“I was quite
emotional,” Ferrell said. “I was very grateful that I could be present when
I was eulogized—most people don’t get that opportunity. The individuals I’ve
worked with over the years are amazing people because of course gender
change is the Everest of human change. I think that they are just incredible
people and in the face of a lot of obstacles in society, careers, in their
families, they have persevered and they are just incredible.”
Minneapolis Star-Tribune: "Blaine man arrested in transgender killing"
"A Blaine man
has been arrested in the murder of a transgender woman found dead last week
in her Minneapolis apartment, police said . . . Police spokesman Sgt.
William Palmer said he could not speak about a possible motive in the
slaying or about the relationship between the man and the victim,
Christopher P. Bates, 45, whom friends and neighbors knew as Krissy . . .
last week that Bates had moved to Minneapolis from Kentucky recently and
that while living at the apartment building, Bates had expressed concerns
about safety and had offered to pay for protection. A phone number listed
for Bates matched advertisements on
Backpage.com for transsexual escorts in Minneapolis and St. Paul"
1-19-11: Style Bistro: "Kate Moss Kisses Lea T On Love Magazine Cover
Of ‘This Is Hardcore’ Issue"
unveiled their forthcoming 5th issue, called 'This is hardcore', with a
bang. Out of a total of three covers photographed by Mert Alas and Marcus
Piggot, the first one revealed is a butch Kate Moss kissing the transsexual
model Lea T. The other two covers will be single shots of Kate Moss and Lea
T. The issue, as you might have figured out by now, will be themed around
1-18-11: Tahiti Presse (Tahiti): "Controversial marriage: Thomas
Moutame set March 22"
Mayor Taputapuatea, appeared Tuesday before the Criminal Court for "abuse of
authority by the person vested with public authority and discrimination
because of sexual orientation." In 2007, he had refused to marry a couple of
men, while one of them was officially became a woman after the civil court
decision. Délibéré le 22 mars prochain. Deliberated on March 22.
Taputapuatea (Raiatea, Leeward Islands) was at the helm of the court on
Tuesday morning because he refused to marry Claude Simon and Pero Mareva, a
transsexual, while in 2007, the civil court had formally recognized that
Mareva was now female and not male. "
1-18-11: Just Out:
"Sexual Orientation- and Gender Identity-Inclusive Hospital Visitation
Regulations Effective Today"
"More than a
half-year after President Obama directed Health and Human Services Secretary
Kathleen Sebelius to initiate rulemaking to ensure that Medicare and
Medicaid-participating hospitals respect the rights of patients to designate
visitors — and that participating hospitals do not deny visitation
privileges based on factors including sexual orientation or gender identity
— the new regulations went into effect today."
1-18-11: The Telegraph (Calcutta, India): "Plan panel to hear out
"For the first
time in the history of the country’s planning process, the transgender
community will be heard before the next five-year plan is firmed up. The
Planning Commission is holding consultations with all segments of civil
society groups, including those who work for the rights of Dalits,
minorities, gays and lesbians, in an attempt to make the next plan an
1-17-11: Bay Windows (re Honduras): "Transgender people killed in
transgender people have been killed in Honduras within the past month, with
two of them being set on fire, according to the International Gay and
Lesbian Human Rights Commission. The victims include Alexis Alvarado
Hernández, 23, who was stoned and set alight in the city of Comayagüela;
Oscar Martínez Salgado, 45, who was stabbed and set on fire in her
Tegucigalpa home; and "Cheo," who was found stabbed to death on a
IGLHRC said that
since the 2009 coup d’état, there have been at least 31 murders of Honduran
1-16-11: St. Louis Today: “Missouri dad's story of transgender love
wins award” (more)
Missouri dad wins the second Stonewall children's book award with an edgy
tale of transgender love, and what's the reaction? Cheerful "attaboys." . .
35, a Fort Zumwalt South alum and a librarian in Moberly, jokes that a
little national controversy — like last year's uproar in southern Missouri
over several titles for teens — wouldn't hurt his reputation: "What's a guy
got to do to get his book burned in this town?
30 miles north of Columbia, is a politically conservative area, he says. But
folks are congratulating him on
"Almost Perfect," which won the American Library Association's Stonewall
Children's and Young Adult Literature Award."
1-16-11: Daily Mail (UK): "“Kelly Osbourne's ex Luke Worrall 'cheated
on her with a pre-op transsexual'”
dumped fiancé Luke Worrall when she found out he was having a secret affair
- and it has emerged that the woman in question used to be a man.
Kelly, 26 - who recently confessed to still being in love with 21-year-old
model Worrall - called off her engagement in July when she discovered he was
cheating with Elle Schneider. However, the reality TV star didn't know at
the time that Elle, 21, was born a man and is a pre-op transsexual.
Elle, 21, from
Miami, told the Sunday Mirror that she started life as Reynaldo Gonzalez.
She told the paper: 'I was open with Luke that I was born a boy. He didn't
mind - in fact it turned him on more."
tabloids can't seem to get enough of this stuff. Must sell papers, eh?]
1-16-11: Daily Record (UK): "Stunned ex-lover of jail bird
transsexual says prison changed her man"
"The ex-lover of
Scotland's first transsexual prisoner yesterday blamed jail life for turning
him gay. Heartbroken Karyanne Fraser, 35, claims her world was turned upside
down last summer when convicted drugs dealer William Wallace told her he was
homosexual. She was then hit with a double whammy when the cocaine and
heroin peddler said he wanted to become a woman and change his name to
who stood by Wallace when he served previous jail sentences, was horrified
when he sent her a vile letter detailing his sex exploits behind bars. She
said: " . . . I was so upset I was physically sick on my living room
carpet." She now claims being banged up with other males has led to his
shock sex-swap decision."
1-15-11: On Top Magazine: "Oprah Winfrey's OWN Acquires Chaz Bono Doc
'Becoming Chaz' "
nascent cabler OWN has acquired the Chaz Bono documentary Becoming Chaz,
DeadlineHollywood.com first reported. The film focuses on Bono's gender
reassignment and will premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City,
Utah on Sunday, January 23.
Bono, who was born Chastity Bono to gay idol Cher and the late
entertainer-politician Sonny Bono, announced last June that he was eight
months into gender reassignment.
Writing at his
blog ChazBono.net, Bono called on people to “Do what is right for you.” “I
wasted years worried about what other people would think if I transitioned,
and now I wish I had those years back,” he wrote."
1-15-11: News Online (Portugal): "President vetoes bill simplifying
post-op bureaucracy for transsexuals" (more)
Cavaco Silva has vetoed a bill simplifying the bureaucratic procedure for
transsexuals to change their names and gender at civil registries, sending
it back to the Portuguese parliament.
president announced his veto last Thursday in the Algarve, where he was
campaigning for a second term in the 23 January election."
1-14-11: Just Out:
“Transgender Student’s Request To Live In Dorm Denied”
“A transgender student at a Texas junior college had her
request to live on-campus denied — and has been restricted to only one
bathroom on the campus . . .
Gellar is taking the denial in stride, telling KSAT that “the dorm decision
doesn’t bother me.” However, the bathroom restriction is (rightly) rubbing
her the wrong way; “that may be a violation of my rights,” she explains. The
51-year-old student plans to circulate a petition to override the bathroom
restriction and allow her the same rights as her fellow STJC students."
Minneapolis Star Tribune: "Neighbor: Victim worried about safety -
Authorities said the transgender woman died of "complex homicidal violence."
woman who was found slain in Minneapolis on Tuesday was concerned about her
safety in the weeks leading up to the homicide, a friend and a neighbor
said.The Hennepin County medical examiner's office identified the victim on
Thursday as Christopher P. Bates, 45, whom friends and neighbors knew as
1-13-11: News & Star (UK): "Carlisle woman has spent her life with the
mind of a female but body of a man"
"For 30 painful
years, Kim Oakland lived a lie. As a five-year-old boy, growing up on a
working class Carlisle estate, she spent hours playing soccer with her
mates, but even then she knew there was something fundamentally wrong in her
1-13-11: Pink News (UK): "Transgender drug dealer spared prison" (more)
drug dealer was spared prison after a judge said placing her in a men’s
facility would prolong her “sexual nightmare”. . .
At Bristol crown
court, Judge Mark Horton said that going to prison would damage Morris’
transition to become a woman but warned her she would be jailed if convicted
of any more offences . . . “You have received government funding and if I
send you to prison I would be sentencing you to a continuation of your
sexual nightmare, possibly forever.”"
1-13-11: Fox59 News: "Ohio Univ. to try letting men and women room
together, plan said to help transgender students"
"It's an idea
that was pushed on behalf of the school's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual,
Transgender Center. Center Director Mickey Hart tells the student-run
newspaper The Post the gender-neutral housing will be of particular benefit
to students who identify as transgender."
1-12-11: SDLGN: "First GLBT History Museum in U.S. opens in San
Francisco’s Castro District"
renowned as a center for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender culture, San
Francisco soon will welcome yet another groundbreaking queer institution:
The GLBT History Museum.
A project of the
GLBT Historical Society, an archives and research center established in
1985, the new museum will be the first of its kind in the United States—and
only the second in the world. The grand opening is set for the evening of
Jan. 13, 2011 . . .
Located at 4127
18th St., just a few doors from Castro Street, the space includes two
galleries, a reception area and a museum store."
1-12-11: The Times of India (India): "Transgenders enraged with Censor
Vijayapadma's Narthagi has been given an 'A' certificate by the Regional
censor board and this has upset the members of the
Tamil Nadu Transgender Association.
association's stand, Vijayapadma says, "In an ad placed in a Tamil
newspaper, we'd mentioned that the film has been given an 'A' certificate.
Members of the association, Priya Babu and Kripa, who have also acted in the
film, were upset and called me to find out the reason for which we were
given an 'A' certificate. I told them that the censor board officials had
asked me to mute dialogues in three scenes. These dialogues have featured in
many Tamil films, but I agreed to mute them anyway. I told the officials
that apart from the dialogues, there is no vulgarity in the film. But the
officials felt that they won't be able to explain to their children why a
guy is wearing a girl's costume. They said that 'oru thirunangain vaazhkaye
adults only thaan' (the life of a transgender itself is 'adults only').
1-11-11: Riverfront Times (St. Louis): "Missouri Author Wins Award For
Almost Perfect, has been grabbing attention and awards -- it just
2011 Stonewall Children's and Young Adult Literature Award, for which
he'll be recognized at June's American Library Association Annual
Conference. The book, Katcher's second novel, delves into the experience of
Sage, a closeted transgender girl in high school; and the emotional
roller-coaster she goes through with Logan, her new friend in school, after
the pair kiss and Sage reveals she was born male.
The book is set
in rural Missouri, where Katcher lives with his wife and young child and
teaches school. The Daily RFT chatted with Katcher, home for a snow day,
about improvements in young adult fiction, edgy topics and the beauty of the
1-11-10: AfterElton (posted 1-10): "Have the Lambda Book Awards Made
Themselves Irrelevant?", by Brent Hartinger
Books Awards, given annually to the year's best in children's and teen
literature involving the GLBT experience, were announced today at the
closing of the American Library Association's annual conference. Brian
Katcher's Almost Perfect, the story of a straight boy's relationship with a
transgender girl, was named the winner.
But the most
interesting development may be this year's decision by the American Library
Association’s Stonewall Book Awards Committee of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual
and Transgendered Round Table, which gives the award, to announce it at the
same time as the ALA's other prominent awards . . .
has greatly increased the visibility of the Stonewall Awards (and, perhaps,
their clout), and some are saying this is a direct response to last year's
decision by the Lambda Awards to restrict nominations only to books whose
authors identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender. At the time, I
argued that this was very ill-conceived — that the sexual orientation of an
author was irrelevant to the quality of a book or the "truthfulness" of its
voice, and that, for various reasons, this decision, however
well-intentioned, was an unnecessary slap in the face of our strongly
supportive straight-author allies."
bizarre blunder by the
Foundation. You'll recall that the LLF nominated
Bailey's infamous book
The Man Who
Would Be Queen for a
Award back in 2004 –
withdrawing the nomination and pronouncing the book "transphobic"after
actually reading it .]
1-11-10: The Washington Post: "Transgender vets want military access
for own" (more)
handcuffing herself to the White House fence, former Petty Officer First
Class Autumn Sandeen carefully pinned three rows of Navy ribbons to her
chest. Her regulation dress blue skirt, fitted jacket, hat and black pumps
were new - fitting for a woman who spent two decades serving her country as
Sandeen was the
only transgender person among the six veterans arrested in April while
protesting the military's ban on openly gay troops. But when she watched
President Barack Obama last month sign the hard-fought bill allowing for the
ban's repeal, melancholy tinged her satisfaction.
"This is another
bridesmaid moment for the transgender community," the 51-year-old San Diego
resident said. The "don't ask, don't tell" policy now heading toward history
does not apply to transgender recruits, who are automatically disqualified
as unfit for service."
1-11-11: The Times of Malta (Malta): "Transsexual to resume fight for
right to marry"
Day Joanne Cassar will kick off another phase in her battle to secure her
right to marry a man following her gender reassignment surgery seven years
ago. On the day dedicated to lovers, the 29-year-old will start making her
case in anticipation of meeting the man of her dreams. The submissions will
be made in appeal proceedings initiated by the Attorney General and the
Marriage Registrar, who asked the Constitutional Court to revoke Ms Cassar’s
right to marry after a judge ruled in November that her gender reassignment
surgery should not prejudice her right to have a husband."
1-10-11: Huffington Post: "Should We Introduce Children to the Concept
of Transgender People?", by Joanne Herman
introduce children to the concept of transgender people? The answer is yes
according to an article published in the December 2010 issue of the
peer-reviewed Graduate Journal of Social Science. The article by Natacha
Kennedy and Mark Hellen, entitled
"Transgender Children: More Than a Theoretical Challenge," was developed
from a paper presented at the November 2009 conference "Transgender Studies
& Theories: Building Up the Field in a Nordic Context" held at Linkoping
University in Sweden . . .
have been based on direct observations of transgender children. In this
case, the researchers instead surveyed transgender adults about their
childhoods and then correlated their results with other research. One of the
interesting results is a conclusion that there are many more children who
conceal their non-conforming gender identities through childhood --
so-called "non-apparent" children -- than those who clearly identify as
transgender as children . . .
found that roughly three-quarters of transgender people were aware of being
transgender before leaving elementary school, and there was "an average
delay of 7.5 years between becoming aware of one's transgender or gender
variant nature, and learning any words with which to describe it." This
means "many transgender children go through most, if not all, of their time
in compulsory education knowing their gender identity is different from that
expected of them." On the strength of this finding, the authors argue:
"If a school system tried to coerce any other
group of individuals to become people they are not, to regard an inner core
of their identities as illegitimate, and prevent them from expressing their
identities freely, particularly from a very young age, it would be
characterized as barbaric. ... The [resulting] internalization of
self-hatred, guilt, self-doubt and low self-esteem in childhood affects
transgender people throughout their lives. Any education system, or indeed
society, which allows this state of affairs to continue is neither fully
inclusive nor fully humane." -
Natacha Kennedy and Mark Hellen"
groundbreaking study by Kennedy and Hellen is a must read for all those
interested in helping trans children and their families, and a stunning
rebuke to the
trans-reparatistism foist upon such children by
Natasha Kennedy's report
"My Encounter with Prof K Zucker at the BPS conference in Salford"
in which she exposes Zucker's rather stunned reaction to her research]
" . . . As
you already know, the SSA has no informational publication on its policy
regarding gender data change for Social Security staff to share with
inquiring beneficiaries or the public to access online. The language
used by Social Security employees in the Programs Operations Manual
System (POMS) is technical and is not written for a public audience.
Additionally, POMS does not provide Social Security staff the training
necessary to discuss the sensitive personal and medical information
required to update one’s gender data.
the Social Security Administration’s current public communication l
encourage the Administration to create an easily accessible publication
that provides a plain-English explanation of your gender data change
policy, and that you make this publication available to beneficiaries in
your field offices and to the public online . . . "
1-09-11: San Francisco Examiner: "Patrol Special officer accused of
"The SFPD is
accusing a member of the Patrol Special Police force of picking up a
transgender prostitute and frequenting a Tenderloin bar it says is known for
connecting transgender prostitutes with johns — behavior the department
calls unbecoming of his position.
Assistant Patrol Officer Roberto Ortega has not been charged with any crime,
former police Chief George Gascón filed a complaint with the Police
Commission recommending that he be disciplined and forced to resign."
1-09-11: Deccan Herald (India re Nepal): "Transgender category introduced in
government, for the first time, has decided to create a new category for
transgender people in its latest census which is expected to begin in May .
This is a good
beginning and a positive gesture for the rights of the third sex, said
transgender activist Sunil Babu Panta, who is also the country's first gay
Parliament member. This will certainly help in ensuring rights of the sexual
minorities, he said, adding but we don't have enough preparations to carry
out the census.
Due to lack of
awareness and fear of social exclusion many gays and lesbians may not
express their real sexual identity, he pointed out. The number of sexual
minorities is estimated to be more than two million, said Panta, who heads
Blue Diamond Society dedicated to the
cause of lesbian and gay he said adding but the correct picture may not come
out due to the conservative nature of the society.
But only 350,000
third sex people including 50,000 gays and lesbians have so far been
identified, according to Panta."
[Please join the
Friends of Blue Diamond Society on Facebook]
1-09-11: Sydney Morning Herald (Australia re Tiwi Islands): "At home
on the Tiwi Islands but doing it tough: meet Crystal Love and her
"Love says she
believed she was a woman despite being born male: ''It's like I'm trapped in
something I'm not. And it's hard. It's hard. It's hard, y'know.'' . . .
'That's what I want in my life, y'know, I want to have my sex change,'' she
says, before breaking into song, ''have a husband and some children.''
Love was one of
12 Sistagirls, or transgender Tiwi Islanders, photographed by artist Bindi
Cole during a five-week expedition in 2009 . . .
close-knit community, Cole said the 50-odd Sistagirls were outcasts among
the 2500 inhabitants of Tiwi Islands.
aren't wholly accepted,'' she said. ''It's not something some Tiwi people
want to promote. Not everyone was happy I was there. It's really tough for
them yet they just love the place … and will probably never leave.''
faced by the Sistagirls is illustrated in Eye by Laura, who describes
how her father told her he was going to shoot her dead, as well as three
Sistagirls who committed suicide yet were denied traditional death rites.
of the Tiwi Islands are by no means unique. A similar community exists on
Palm Island, off the coast of Townsville, says Cole."
1-09-11: The Straights Times (Singapore re Malaysia): "Malaysian
transsexual fights for rights" (more,
transsexual vowed to fight for her rights after a court refused to change
the gender on her identification documents to female following sex-change
surgery, her lawyer said on Sunday. Lawyer Wong Kah Woh said the High Court
ruled on Friday it was sympathetic but couldn't declare his 35-year-old
client - who isn't identified for safety reasons - a woman because it has no
jurisdiction to deal with the issue.
surgery is legal in mainly Muslim Malaysia, but transsexuals often cannot
legally change their gender status. Activists have estimated there are at
least 50,000 transsexuals in Malaysia, many who face widespread prejudice
and often cannot find employment."
1-08-11: On Top Magazine: "Transgender Actress Alexandra
Billings Urges Troubled Gay Teens To 'Hang Around'"
"In a new PSA,
transgender actress, teacher and activist Alexandra Billings urges troubled
gay teens to reach out to the Trevor Project, the California-based
non-profit that runs the nation's only 24-hour, toll free confidential
suicide hotline for gay and questioning youth.
Billings first confides that anti-gay bullying drove her to attempt suicide
at 16, before urging gay teens to “hang around.” “There is something you can
do, find an LGBT group in your high school or your junior high,” she says.
“Talk to a couple of friends of yours, talk to your parents – I know that
it's frightening. If that's too hard, write them a letter and read it to
“You can also
call the people at the Trevor
Project. There is someone waiting right now to talk to you. And to
listen. And who understands.”"
1-08-11: Echo (UK): "Gang called me ‘freak’ and started to attack"
believes she has been the victim of a hate crime after being attacked by a
gang. Miranda Lee, whose story about her sex change and battle for breast
surgery has featured in the Echo and national press, was on her way home
from a friend’s house in Southend, when she was pushed off her mobility
scooter and punched in the stomach.
She said: “I was
assaulted by five lads. They said ‘there’s that tranny freak from the
papers’. They bashed up my mobility scooter and gave me a few quick digs.”
Miss Lee, 40, from Southend, said she uses the scooter to get about, after
gender change surgery in 2009 left her with nerve damage around her groin,
making it difficult to walk more than a few yards without being in agony.
The group ran off from the scene in Rochford."
1-08-11: Sydney Morning Herald (Australis re India): "Modern world
plays havoc with age-old livelihood"
India's transgender community are turning to sex work to survive as their
traditional way of life is eroded, writes Matt Wade in Delhi . . .
For thousands of
years, hijras such as Suman have been part of the subcontinent's complex
civilisation. But her implants and her sex work are indicators of how this
unique community is under pressure amid rapid social and economic change in
India . . .
''The traditional function that hijras had in earlier times was singing,
dancing and blessings at auspicious occasions, like births and marriages,''
says Rahul Singh, a community worker and activist who has been involved with
hijra communities for more than a decade.
changing times it has become more and more difficult for hijras to earn
their livelihood through this source of income.'' In big cities, where
hijras tend to live, the advent of high-rise flats and gated neighbourhoods
has reduced their opportunities to collect money. ''People's attitudes have
also been changing; they have become much more indifferent to them,'' says
Singh. ''All this has really hurt the community and they are … opting for
sex work and sometimes begging as well.''"
1-01-11: Gothamist: "Artist Refutes Transsexual Adult Film Star's Bad
Date Story" (more)
"It seems that
there are two sides to every transsexual porn star date-gone-awry
story. Kayla Coxx, a "sultry transsexual porn star from LA" best known for
hocking a video of her hanging with Charlie Sheen, had
called the cops on artist Allan D. Hasty just before New Years, alleging
that he stiffed her on her "date" fee, and that he had live grenades, guns,
and drugs all over his apartment. But Hasty spoke with
Scallywag and Vagabond, and gave his own rundown of the evening in
question, which paints a slightly different picture of Coxx as an
"extortionist meth head tranny porn star.""
1-07-11: The Star (Malaysia): "Man fails to change status to woman in
"The High Court
here has rejected an application to compel the National Registration
Department (NRD) to alter on the identity card the gender of a man who had
undergone a sex change operation.
Commissioner Ridwan Ibrahim, in rejecting the application, said the court
was not ready to make a declaration on the matter as it was not vested with
such powers. The plaintiff, a male, now had artificial female organ.
delivered his decision in chamber, said the best way to resolve the matter
was to have a law passed in Parliament to deal with matters on gender
1-08-11: QSaltLake: "Center hosts playgroup for gender-variant kids"
"Life is often
hard on children who don’t fit neatly into the category of ‘boy’ or ‘girl,’
especially when it comes to making friends. But thanks to a group at the
Utah Pride Center, this aspect of growing up gender variant may be a little
Kids Like Me is
a playgroup for children that the Center calls “gender exceptional,” and for
children whose parents identify as transgender, genderqueer, gender variant
or any gender identity that falls outside of mainstream definitions of
masculinity and femininity. Its purpose, the Center said, is not to shoehorn
children into any particular gender label or identity, but to help them find
friendship and feel less alone."
1-05-11: New York Times: "A Son Confronts Gender Identity and a Mother
"Sharon Weir may
not be happy that her son is openly gay and identifies himself as
transgender, but she will fight for his right to exist in peace."
1-05-11: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention: "Expert Panel
Assembled by AFSP Publishes Review and Recommendations on LGBT Suicide and
Suicide Risk - Calls for Action to Address Knowledge and Prevention Gaps"
"A panel of 26
leading researchers, clinicians, educators and policy experts have released
a comprehensive report on the prevalence and underlying causes of suicidal
behavior in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender adolescents and adults.
The report will be published as the lead article in the January 2011 issue
of the Journal of Homosexuality. The article is
currently available online and will appear in print on Jan. 19.
and Suicide Risk in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Populations:
Review and Recommendations,” the report makes sweeping recommendations for
closing knowledge gaps about suicidal behavior in LGBT people, and calls for
making LGBT suicide prevention a national priority . . .
panel called for revision of diagnoses pertaining to transgender people in
the 5th edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (due out in 2013)
to affirm that gender identity, expression and behavior that differ from
birth sex is not indicative of a mental disorder.
recommendations focus on improving information about LGBT people by
measuring sexual orientation and gender identity in all national health
surveys in which respondents’ privacy can be adequately protected, and
encouraging researchers to include such measures in general population
studies related to suicide and mental health."
1-05-11: Huffington Post (re Brazil): "Lea T., Transsexual Model,
Talks About Her Love Life"
model Lea T. recently spoke with "Veja" magazine about her personal life,
Brazilian site Quem reports (and we translate): "I've never had a girlfriend
or a boyfriend....Sex for me was zero," she explained, saying that she only
became sexually active after 20 years old and claims to have not liked it.
"It was quick, uncomfortable. I was and am still very ashamed of my body,"
1-04-11: Huffington Post: "More Employers To Cover Transgender
Surgery, But New Hurdles Expected", by Joanne Herman
"One year from
now, more employers than ever before will cover transgender surgery as part
of their health insurance plan. While this is much-needed progress for
transgender people, implementation issues will unfortunately create new
hurdles to living in one's true gender . . .
Even with the
most WPATH-compliant coverage, a significant hurdle will be that few of the
current transgender surgery specialists accept insurance. In fact, most
require prepayment of the full cost. Many employees are just not going to be
able to come up with that kind of cash, and it's going to be a while before
the market forces providers to accept insurance.
For those who
can pay in advance, the insurance company's inexperience with transgender
coverage could leave the employee hanging. "
1-04-11: QNotes: "Trans hospital protections go into effect"
Carolina, a statewide LGBT advocacy organization, is praising new changes in
North Carolina’s Hospital Patient’s Bill of Rights. The change, which took
effect Jan. 1, prohibits discrimination on the basis of gender identity. The
group had previously won changes to secure anti-discrimination measures on
the basis of sexual orientation and visitation for same-sex couples"
1-04-11: AFP (re Czech Republic): "It's in the genes, suggests Czech
transsexual 'family'" (more)
"Dominik was a
woman, Andrea was a man, and now after switching their genders they are a
couple watching the son Dominik gave birth to, turn into a woman."
1-02-11: Buffalo News: "Transgender writer returns to childhood home"
Boylan is at ease now in the living room of the Devon, Pa., home where she
spent her boyhood.
She has not
always been comfortable in this place. When she lived here as 13-year-old
James Richard Boylan Jr. and had the whole top floor to herself, she did her
homework with the dead bolt on the bedroom door, wearing the bra and sweater
she kept hidden behind the room's faux wooden paneling, and trusting she'd
hear the stairs creak if anyone approached.
Now a professor
of creative writing at Maine's Colby College since 1988, Boylan, 52, was a
visiting prof for the fall semester at Ursinus College in Collegeville, Pa.
Staying in Devon allowed Boylan cherished time with her mother . . .
groundbreaking memoir, "She's Not There: A Life in Two Genders" (Broadway
Books, 2003), was the first best-seller by a transgender American. It landed
her on "Larry King Live" twice, a Barbara Walters special, the "Today" show,
the History Channel, CBS's "48 Hours" and "Oprah" (four times) . . . "
Boylan spoke to students at the Haverford School, "my allegedly all-male
alma mater," for the first time. "I've spoken at boys' schools all over the
country, but for the longest time [Haverford] didn't know what to do with
"I am the most
visible transgender person in the country," she says. "But Philadelphia,
which is my home, has never claimed me. Just once, I'd like to be a hometown