August 19 2015/ October 19, 2016/ June 28, 2017- edit
.. personal safety
15 June 2015
Why Your Community Needs to Adopt Non-Discrimination policy Inclusive of Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression
“A staggering 41% of respondents reported attempting suicide compared to 1.6% of the general population, with rates rising for those who lost a job due to bias (55%, were harassed/bullied in school (51%), had low household income, or were the victim of physical assault (61%) or sexual assault (64%).” (Grant, Mottet, et al.)
Imagine you are a child, told that your sense of self is a lie from day one. Now you are growing into a teenager, that mental map of who you are starts to conflict more heavily with what is happening to you, a girl growing a beard, a boy growing breasts, perhaps romantic inclination towards partners of the same sex. Even then that shame of your true self instilled by un-accepting parents afraid of society, makes you try to believe their lies, to then try and tell that lie for the world. At this point if you’ve succumbed to another’s will, you start to withdraw; no longer trusting anything anyone says because you know that if their wrong about who you are, they must be wrong about everything else? You do the most freeing and detrimental thing you will ever do, the only thing to do, stop lying. To be honest with yourself and the world, to transition from the ashes of an incorrect designation to the person you have always known yourself to be. You are now technically an adult even though you never learned your social role being taught the wrong script. Abandoned by friends and family, dismissed by everyone who should care; demeaned by so-called medical “professionals”, bigoted employers who will not even give you a chance cause your biologic variance is like a black mark, harassment by those whose job it is to protect you in law enforcement, left homeless unable to utilize a shelter or food bank because your existence conflicts with their personal religious beliefs. Laughed at, violently prodded, and left for dead.
There are those who would argue against allotment of human rights for lesbian, gay, and transgender individuals; claiming it would be infringing upon another’s rights to personal held prejudices or beliefs. We have heard it excused a thousand different ways. One way is to claim, “It would cost too much to rewrite policy and or include Trans* specific healthcare,” for the same reason, “There’s not enough of you people to warrant expenditure of our organizations resources.” Another way outside of pretending there was never an issue in the first place, is to say, “But you are already covered under disability and sex discrimination. We would have to rewrite and list everything under race, religion, etc to be inclusive of everyone. If an ethical person is reading the policy they will find you people in it”, or there is fear, “I see no reason to put our organization in harm’s way opening up to potential lawsuits.” Of course there is always “god hates fags”, at least they are being forthright with their bias as opposed to those above.
Keep in mind as you read this, that sexual orientation does not cover gender identity and expression, they are 2 separate animals. In fact it was multiple federal rulings that found “gender identity and expression” itself to be a form of “sex discrimination”, it was then interpreted to include “sexual orientation” as a form of “gender discrimination” for not adhering to current cultural norms, roles, scripts or expectations, and therefore to also be interpreted to be covered under “sex discrimination” though not as explicitly protected as gender identity is under Federal law. While many states have complete links in the chain of equality, many more do not, instead waste their time grandstanding while creating roadblocks of inequality purposefully meant to bring about the downfall or destruction in whole or in part, of an entire group of people, fitting the UN’s definition of genocide (OSAPG).
For the afflicted that barely exist, without even the basest social protections most people take for granted, these are apathetic excuses from a viewpoint of privilege by not being directly affected. Straw-man arguments easily countered with facts and reason. The cost of providing everyone with transition care is less than 0.03% of overall Medicaid expenses, compared to a lifetime of counseling and medications for depression which is alleviated thru a onetime surgical cost. That a so-called community service would turn away the most marginalized due to an inference of need and numbers is ridiculous, it should only take one to show how the current system does not work. Community means everyone, not just the majority in which one understands; for one to argue there is no need to utilize resources in treating/housing/or otherwise acknowledging a condition they are unfamiliar with, is tantamount to negligence. While it is true that we are covered explicitly under sex discrimination via title VII and title IX and disability thru the Mental Health Parity Act (MHPA) and recent 3rd district federal court ruling allowing us to sue under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), every federal agency that has updated its policies recognizes that simply saying we are protected is not enough and continues to further write in the distinctive phrasing, along with memos to everyone under their supervision and going as far as to prosecute in setting an example. By defining the parameters of what constitutes discrimination and harassment, you leave no room for human error, stemming from someone else’s misinterpretation or prejudice. If you are afraid of opening your organization or business up for lawsuits, it may well be that those left in charge might just be incompetent in controlling your workforce. Never mind recommendations from every major medical board stemming from understandings of biology.
One must never forget why civil rights are allotted; because every minority that has ever needed protections are facing insurmountable odds in social realms, areas of employment, housing, schooling, access to medical care and social services, along with fair treatment in any other realm imaginable not limited to the armed forces, periods of incarceration, or hate crime protections. Realizing that adoption of non discrimination policy is not a cure all fix to society, it does give those systematically marginalized a legal route to fight discrimination; it is not a great leap to imagine the benefits of evading a discrimination suit in the first place. Take race and feminist movements for example; nearly a hundred years since they got the right to vote and these groups still are not equal, but now allowed to work towards their goals and seek a sense of community free of dehumanization through segregation. At this point in time disabled or foreign students have proper routes to do something about bullying, trans* and gay kids do not. We as a sophisticated animal have long taken social strides towards eradication of inequality, not just for the privileged, but supposedly for one and for all.
Really it is a no-brainer once you have removed personal bias from the equation. By defining in federal, state, local law, corporate policy, or mission statements you are effectively creating an atmosphere conducive to attracting and retaining the brightest and most proficient in any realm. Doing so defines that you are inclusive of everyone; you want to create a vibe that is welcoming to diversity. These days a business or town cannot afford to lose anyone, as most everyone knows someone affected by discrimination. Communities need to evolve with the world, not against it. When a group of people does this it attracts every other group, not just their own, opening an influx of new ideas and concepts, essential to the growth of any enterprise. Communities also reap the financial and employment benefits of potential fortune 500 companies that base their locations on an areas ability to allow them to retain that diverse workforce which allows them to soar.
This is why your business/non-profit/justice system/social service/homeless shelter/medical and therapy facility/municipality/city/state/country, should enact a more fully inclusive non discrimination policy explicitly stating protection of LGBT minorities by adding the words “Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression” along with Race, Color, Creed, Age, Sex, Disability, and Nationality. The wording is used by the federal government to exemplify also in use by any progressive area or business that recognizes human rights.
Over the next few pages we will discuss in greater detail the extent of living hell created through currently sanctioned discrimination in each of those stated realms, with the steps that need to be taken to end such systematic marginalization of otherwise good competent human beings. First let us look at seemingly understood terminology as this is all about perception. Some things we may think we understand.
“Transgender: Adjective to describe a diverse group of individuals who cross or transcend culturally defined categories of gender. The gender identity of transgender people differs to varying degrees from the sex they were assigned at birth” (Bockting, 1999). Diverse in this sense, is including but not specifying all the biologic and social constructions that make a myriad of subgroups under such encompassing terminology, one of which happens to be its own umbrella terminology called Intersex or Disorders of Sex Development (DSD): “Congenital conditions in which the development of chromosomal, gonadal, or anatomic sex is atypical.” (WPATH). Transexualism or as it is now known in DSMV, Gender Dysphoria, is experienced by a person in whom the sex-related structures of the brain that define gender identity are opposite the physical sex organs of the body.
Most people have been trained to view the world thru a certain binary lens. “Born a man or biologically female” are terms most wouldn’t take second notice of as it is part of their own continual self exploration of expression and identity. But what if I told you within that misconception lays the root of apathy? Would you be willing to try “assigned sex at birth” for the sake of those having different life experiences? The majority is having a cisgender experience; this paper is about those having a transgender experience. Both Latin sociology terms;‘cis’ as to conform or stay the same, ‘trans’ as to transgress or transition from one place to another. It is human nature to at first apply our own experiences on the world in desperate attempt to understand it.
Even medical associates, use Sex and Gender interchangeably though in reality they are talking about the same thing simply using different lenses. “Sex is assigned at birth as male or female, usually based on the appearance of the external genitalia. When the external genitalia are ambiguous, other components of sex (internal genitalia, chromosomal and hormonal sex) are considered in order to assign sex” (WPATH). A human beings worth is not relegated to an assignment based off the quick inspection of an infant’s genitalia, to be hastily scrawled on a piece of parchment that sets the stage for the lack of human rights faced throughout the afflicted’s existence. Our limited medical history does not define us, nor does any other minority stressors that may be existent in any given age. The definition of sex has been expanded to include gender identity along with external and internal genitalia, chromosomes, and hormone levels; by the American Medical and Psychology Associations, Health and Human Services as well a host of federal intuitions that also recognize discrimination stemming from gender identity and or expression as sex discrimination, not limited to the office of Civil Rights, EEOC, departments of justice and education, as interpreted thru the courts and these institutions own internal reviews after the US received failing marks on the UN’s human rights report card in 2010.
There are innumerable natural distinct genetic variations that comprise an intersex diagnosis found in humans and animals of all species. In humans XX and XY are merely assumptions as none of you have ever had your genome sequenced unless something’s gone wrong and docs had to test certain organs to figure out why you can’t carry child or why a certain drugs are un-reactive. Most people with genetic ambiguity are not known at the time of birth nor is there a box to check undefined in North America. Outside of XX and XY there are XXXY,XXXO, XXY ,XXO, even a single X or O (fun fact the only combination that cannot support life is a single Y) and that’s before you get in to Chimeras and Mosaics; where one can have various combinations of all the above in separate systems of the body. “Those with visually ambiguous genitals are known for .46% of live births, while other physiologic variances account for 1.7% of all live births, as high as 4% can be predicted when taking into context the necessity for more research” (OII). Take for example, AIS Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome, “where the body’s cells are unable to respond to androgen or “male” hormones in genetically XY individuals assigned as female” (ISNA). For cis-gender people, “gender identity and expression are consistent with their sex assigned at birth; for intersex, transsexual, transgender, and gender nonconforming individuals, gender identity and or expression differs from what they were assigned.”(WPATH) While Gender; is “the behavioral, cultural, or psychological traits typically associated with one sex” (Merriam-Webster). The conundrum can be simplified by saying male, female, or “other/X/undefined” are assigned sex organ designations; while masculine, feminine, or androgynous are qualities of gender presentation.
What effect does hormones have on the body? Women with PCOS Polycystic Ovary Syndrome face a disfigurment where the genetically programmed growth of cysts on the ovaries trick the body into producing androgens resulting in masculine features like facial hair treated with the same hormonal therapy and electrolysis as TS/IS patients and post menopausal women. Hormones affect us all on a cellular level directing growth and function, it affects muscle mass and bone structure even the viscosity of our blood
Sexual Orientation: “is the preferred term used when referring to an individual’s physical and/or emotional attraction to the same and/or opposite gender. “Gay,” “lesbian,” “bisexual” and “straight” are all examples of sexual orientations. A person’s sexual orientation is distinct from a person’s gender identity and expression” (HRC). Making, Gender Identity: “A person’s intrinsic sense of being male (a boy or a man), female (a girl or woman), or an alternative gender (e.g., boy-girl, girl-boy, transgender, gender queer, eunuch)” (WPATH). Or ones innate sense of self, ones core identity as a human being, which may or may not correspond to the sex initially assigned their birth certificate. Likewise, Gender Expression: “characteristics in personality, appearance, and behavior that in a given culture and historical period are designated as masculine or feminine (that is, more typical of the male or female social role)” (WPATH). Everyone tends to have qualities some would consider stereotypically masculine or feminine blended in with their daily gender expression to varying degrees; from the above definitions, one can already see how non discrimination policies inclusive of these areas are beneficial to everyone and not “special protections”.
Considering the variation within each criterion formerly used and then expanded upon, what then do we use to define sex if not identity? Does a hysterectomy or military wound make one suddenly not human? No, so then why is this common view held upon transgender and intersex people who apparently don’t have the right to use public facilities as if going to the bathroom at work or a hospital wasn’t a human rights issue, or as if those rights were dependent on which United States you live in. If you cannot relieve yourself you can’t go to school, you can’t go anywhere, this isn’t even about lavatories, it is about legislating gender non-conforming people out of public spaces. We’ve heard this before to excuse racism and even eugenics. While LGBTQIA people are the victims of more hate crimes than any other group, the Christian Reich has long been pushing harmful right to discriminate bills of various nature in all 50 states, on par with the same amount of anti women’s rights bills. And yes, trans women are women, this is a women’s rights issue. In fact there have been at least 9 public restroom cases since the recent spat of anti transgender bills of cis women being barred harassed or removed because their tomboyish, have breast cancer, lesbian or simply having short hair. It’s about enforcing gender roles created to segregate, restrict and deny women full access to society and to punish insufficient femininity or non-conformity to that strict rigid binary that constrains both, even atypical sexes. LGBTQIA people are just the scapegoat to get the masses to fear and vote against their own well being. In states and schools that have had protections for a number of yrs all report that no issues have arose from their implementation. Schools that are resistant to ethical guidance are finding thru the courts that if they want to provide extra discretion to one student they must do so for all students and if you think about it, a little added privacy is good for everyone. So now let us define the technical aspects of official policy for those that may not be aware of what their position is charged with upholding.
A nondiscrimination policy is “a document that outlines your company policies in regards to discrimination in hiring and management practices. As companies grow, they encounter issues that smaller firms don’t. For instance, many employment laws, such as the federal Family Medical Leave Act, apply only to firms of a certain size or larger. As you grow, your employee policy manual has to grow with you. Simply knowing what’s right isn’t enough. When the majority of–or even all–employee supervision was handled by you or one or two trusted colleagues, maybe you could survive on faith in them and them in you. But as your company grows, you’ll hire new employees and new supervisors, and that means you’ll need to commit to writing exactly how employees ought to be treated and the behaviors your company will not tolerate. (small business encyclopedia)
Law is, as ever, further defining itself as we become aware to the needs of sections of the populous left indigent and marginalized through no fault of their own, disparency remedied through self recognition of a systematic failure to guarantee their human rights. Concerns of sexual harassment are steadily evolving, an organizations policies on harassment need to be in compliance. Which brings us too, Regulatory Compliance: “an organization’s adherence to laws, regulations, guidelines and specifications relevant to its business” (weisman); not limited to regulations concerning privacy under the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA) in regards to medical data, and the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act (GLBA) in regards to financial data; workplace guidelines set forth by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC); in school systems the Dept of Education (DoED); police and correctional institutes adhere to the guidelines set by the Department of Justice (DoJ), and so on…
Jurisdictions protect employees who are discriminated against on the basis of appearance or sexual orientation. Your employees may be protected from any retaliation by you because they reported you for violating a law or regulation. Take note of federal, state and local laws regarding discrimination, and make sure their intent is clearly reflected in your employee policy manual. (small business encyclopedia)
This civil rights movement is not a new nor purely western concept. Other cultures have long had social roles encompassing, or at least making allowance for a 3rd, 4th,or even 5th gender or sexuality with varying degrees of social standing, for as many tongues that are spoken there are as many names to describe the noted variance; Nádleehí in Native American now recognized as two-spirit which became a blanketed terminology encompassing differing sexuality, intersexuality, and gender. Same with Burmese slang sisterboys and brothergirls, one might be surprised to know President Obama’s nanny was Mahu in Hawaiian, Kathoey in Thai are relegated to tokens of good luck only useful in dance at weddings, Okule and Akule in African Swahili. The Galea once revered as priestesses in ancient times now rounded up and imprisoned as part of Greece’s recent tourism task force against “undesirables”, to the Secrata of Madagascar raised and assimilated fluidly according to their stated identity from a young age- we could go on to further stress this point.
From a historic viewpoint, cultures appreciated and celebrated diversity, the more peaceful having deities centered around a mother goddess, until the invent of classism through the rise of patriarchal governance; pursuit of wealth and power preceded the eventual exportation of what would become Monotheism, sometimes adopting and changing what they consider pagan culture as a means to appropriate a common sense of spirituality with locals. Women were eventually stripped of positions of power enforcing a more subordinate social role; as well gender and sexually diverse people became demonized as matrilineal inheritance became more predominant as a means to hold onto power. Slavery would become defined as a value, a means to increase control.
In the 1880’s Richard Von Krafft-Ebing began studying the prevalence of gender divergence among the homosexual population. He coined a term, gynandry to describe the phenomenon. The first true pioneer in the field was Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld. As a gay physician, he devoted his studies to the fields of sex and gender. Hirschfeld was the first to coin two of the most popular terms to describe transgenderism, transvestism, and transsexualism. In 1923, Hirschfeld first labeled the phenomenon as what he called “psychic transsexuality”. In 1930, addressing the Association for the Advancement of Psychotherapy, Hirschfeld delivered the first scientific lecture on transsexualism. (tshistory) The 20’s and 30’s would see a sort of medical renaissance with the blooming field of endocrinology which would discover androgens/estrogens and their role in physiology.
It is not until just before the world sees its second world war that social, psychological and medical science takes interest in attempting to treat variances in sexual orientation and gender identity. Magnus Hirschfeld founds the “Institute for Sexual Science” in Berlin where the first clinical and surgical steps are taken concerning sexual and gender diverse people- it should be noted that at this point various therapeutic approaches are introduced to both trans and gay patients, medical castration merely offered in lue of the noticeable practice of self castration for trans patients. Unfortunately within a decade of its construction under the rise of the National Socialist German Workers Party, sexual sciences are condemned, the institute was vandalized and looted by NAZI students, the practitioners who could fled, much of the research lost to a public book burning. The “World League of Sex Research” in Denmark and Norway resume some of the work until folding under the societal pressures in Europe at the time. Meanwhile a sadist by the name of Heinrich Himmler took a position charged with finding an efficient route for the practice of eugenics. Surviving patients and those now branded with a pink triangle signified as the least important in concentration camps, becoming the main source of expendable testing subjects for unspeakable evil. All that was learned here is that you cannot “cure” a person of their innate sexuality or gender orientation. Even so, conversion “therapy” is still held to some regard by the opinionated to this day.
In 1948,“Harry Benjamin is introduced to a “boy who wants to become a girl”, and whose mother seeks a treatment to assist, rather than thwart the child, the following year, he begins treating transsexuals in San Francisco and New York with hormones” (transgender history). Utilizing the first synthetic forms of estrogen introduced; Di-Ethyl Stilbesterol in 1938 and Premarin in 1942 for the treatment of menopause, benefits far outweighed the long standing use of herbal remedies and their estrogenic properties. Upon autopsy, the child now a deceased adult, was found to have always had undeveloped ovarian tissue.
The 60’s would be an age of structural upheaval, seeing the rise and empowerment of feminist movements, race relations having come to a head, that energy perhaps sparking the LGBT community to fight back against overwhelming societal pressures that had forced them into an underworld ever since Henry the 8th first outlawed “buggery” in England in 1553. Bars and meeting houses derived of such similar prohibition were routinely raided in America, the occupants arrested and fined for “lewd acts”; the sharing of affections of love in private, between two consenting adults. The flame ignited at the stonewall inn, New York 1969, by an angels feather named Silvia Reviera, a black trans woman who threw the “shot-glass heard around the world”. The city would riot and burn in places for the following 6 days fueled by long overdue expressions of grief.
A concept called “bodily autonomy” would come under full attack now applied to sexual and gender variant bodies in the 70’s,though contraception and abortion having a long history since 1821 of being legislated out of existence up to this point when the Comstack Act opened doors for the Griswold decision and Roe vs Wade. While feminist movements celebrate a historic repeal of anti-abortion laws across the country they face a resurgence of Christian oriented “Right to life” laws picking at everything from what trimester, remains, and even so far to claim that rape is not sufficient grounds; an attack on women’s bodies that continues to this day. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) also begins chromosome testing athletes barring intersex and transsexual competitors. Important to note that in 2003 the IOC convened with an international gathering of medical doctors developing the consensus that after 2 yrs of hormonal reparative therapy and sexual realignment surgery all bodily systems are equivalent to that of a person’s target gender. A consensus shared by the Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity, even the Mixed Martial Arts has made it very clear that trans competitors have no physical advantage in recent controversy with fighter Fallon fox. The Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association (HBIGDA) was also formed, a grouping of leading mental and physical health professionals from every associated field, who grew to develop the first universal standards of care for transsexualism- an official diagnosis and course of treatment being needed to acquire care. Since then it has grown into the foremost authority, recognized by entities such as the American Medical Association (AMA) and the World Health organization (WHO). These standards have continually been updated in accordance with new understanding, now called the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH). The Standards of Care (SoC) have been revised six times (in January 1980, March 1981, January 1990, June 1998, February 2001,and September 2011). Transition related healthcare from affirming mental healh practices, puberty suppression, hormonal reparative therapy to confirmation surgery are viewed by medical science as an effective and necessary treatment for severe cases of bodily dysphoria.
The early 70’s through the late 90’s would be notoriously known for its clinical harm. Since the 60’s patients had been required to follow exceedingly rigid and narrow definitions of acceptable gender roles in their quest for bodily alignment, those suffering with, what we would eventually realize is an otherwise readily treatable malady, would find themselves locked in mental wards and subject to dehumanization, shock therapy, and all sorts of devilish shame and reward experimental tactics. Eventually the incongruence between facility’s would lead to the development of the SoC. Programs offering treatment included Johns Hopkins, the Universities of Minnesota, Washington, Virginia at Norfolk, Texas at Galveston, UCLA and many others. Dr John Money who oversaw the trans clinic at Hopkins would lose his position after performing a forced operation on a young male mutilated after a botched circumcision at his church, the “patient” John Reimer would continue to identify as Male and later commit suicide; this case would prove beyond a doubt that gender cannot be assigned, even so genital reassignment is still forced on intersex babies before they even leave the hospital rarely with even consent from the parents, forcing those born outside of christian dichotomy into one of two neat boxes society has been thrust into, making it nearly impossible to access such medical intervention later at an age of consent and self definition. The lesson in nature over nurture being completely ignored by his predecessor Paul McHugh, who with the influence backing and favor of the same Christian right organizations attacking a woman’s right to bodily autonomy, shuts down their surgical facility for Trans patients to receive medically necessary care. At the time Hopkins U. was seen as the premier US institution, as it closed its doors so did many of the other university clinics. While one still had few options outside of the US it took a Dr Stanley Biber then practicing in Colorado to step up and fill the void, requesting the original surgical drawings from Hopkins U. he would go on to eventually trained Dr Marci Bowers who is now a world’s leading expert training new surgeons not just in trans medicine but also in reconstruction for victims of Female Genital Mutilation around the world (Bowers). Only recently recognizing advancements in the past 40 yrs has Hopkins recanted and pledged to reopen its gender clinic after McHughs latest attack on LGBT children, while adopting fully inclusive policy of its own. Preceding them a host of other hospitals and schools have taken over surgical care; notably the University of Michigan, Oregon Health and Sciences’ University, the University Hospital of Newark, Mt Saini in New York, as well a plethora of informed consent clinics in most major cities for hormone therapy.
Let us not pretend that the lives lost, broken, or damaged thru inhumane treatments commonly held within society during this “learning curve” did not happen and realize they still happen in most areas to this day. Gender has had far longer shelf life when compared to sexuality within the confines of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual DSM. Homosexuality was released in 1973, in contrast, the American Psychiatric Association listed “transsexualism” as an official disorder in the DSM-III in 1980. The diagnosis was changed to “gender identity disorder” in the DSM-IV. Now “gender disphoria” as it stands currently under DSMV- last revised in 2013. The wording meant to deter pathologisation of gender variance while supposedly allowing a route to even seek necessary medical care, in hopes of reducing the stigma associated with the condition commonly held by untrained medical staff who inevitably encountered the afflicted, thus doing these patients a disservice by not treating a verified condition or poorly treating them, if at all. The World Health Organization (WHO) is poised to release transgender people from a mental health category altogether when it releases ICD11. Children’s Hospital is now on the forefront of early treatment in trans youth; Leelah Alcorns’ suicide has spurred a movement calling for an end to harmful non-evidence based conversion “therapy”, yet to this day we have no protection against this deplorable treatment nor anything resembling basic human rights in Warren County Ohio, her home town. Many states are enacting on their own non discrimination policy not only in employment and access to social facilities but healthcare as well, allowing many a chance to live a fulfilling life. Yet to keep things in perspective, the religious right has attempted to pass nearly 400 anti abortion laws since 2010 of which 288 have become law (stone); in contrast those same religious affiliates have introduced, since 2015, nearly 300 anti LGBT laws, a third specifically targeting transgender children (HRC).
This is a hard concept to comprehend, being born “wrong”. Nerves are very real. Ones endocrine system is misaligned with ones nervous. The central nervous unit has a map of what the bodies supposed to be, but that has gone awry. The affliction due to: the release of stress hormones by the mother during initial phases of pregnancy, exposure to endocrine disruptors such as fertilizer, nondisjunction during the development of sperm/egg by the parent, or all in conjunction with at least one genetic marker; like how a plant under stress will become verilized. The nervous system is receiving signals from the nerve endings in the genitalia and elsewhere that “something’s wrong”, these should not be exposed and vulnerable but safely tucked inside. Through hormone treatment and removal of the main androgen producing glands (practiced since the invention of sharp rocks), said nervous has a respite from the negative hormonal influence, that it had been bombarded by, relying instead on naturally occurring and replacement estrogens for direction. Think fresh water brain that was stuck in a salt water tank. Now with advancements in medical technology, this process has been refined to a point that they can even help the mind that exists by providing proper placement of tissue. It is a corrective, not elective, approach.
While science has steadily evolved, society on the other hand seems to stick its head in the sand. Not coming up to even recognize these people even exist outside of the framework exploited by the media. leaving 92% of American society reliant on that misrepresentation; used as something to be laughed at, a gimmick, a plot twist, an antagonist, perhaps a liar or a thief, hyper sexualized characters in which core identity is traded for a means to “get one over” or otherwise “trick or cheat” the system.
“UCLA’s Williams Institute estimates there are 700,000 transgender people in the United States. But according to a GLAAD/Harris Interactive poll, only 8% of Americans say they personally know someone who is transgender. A recent Pew poll shows that 87% of Americans say they personally know someone who is lesbian, gay, or bisexual. If a stereotypical or defamatory LGB image appears in the media, viewers can compare it to real people they know. But when a stereotypical or defamatory transgender image appears in the media, the viewer may assume that all transgender people are actually like that; they have no real-life experience with which to compare it. (GLADD)
It is no wonder then that this mentality carries on into every aspect of daily life. Despite the overwhelming ignorance we have come to the verge of enlightenment concerning the plight of these people. Businesses are enacting, on their own, non discrimination policy either in emulation of those more successful or in compliance with the growth of local municipal, state, and federal regulations.
Areas of education are a great place to start. In 2011 The Office of Civil Rights within the US Department of Education has released guidelines explicitly stating that,” Title IX’s sex discrimination prohibition extends to claims of discrimination based on gender identity or failure to conform to stereotypical notions of masculinity or femininity and OCR accepts such complaints for investigation”(DoE). Several all female colleges have amended their admission criteria to include ones gender identity, opening their doors to educate ALL women. It is a sad thing that even places of learning need to be told how to treat a human being. While the first introduction of the Student Non-Discrimination Act (SNDA) was killed by a republican run senate, it really is just postponing the inevitable. All schools should already voluntarily enact and adhere to their own guidelines in accordance with the Dept of Educations’ guidance or potentially face disaccreditation.
Employment is a major hurdle when speaking about a minority’s ability to interact with society as a whole. If you are not allowed to work, then you are not allowed to exist. Unable to afford basic nessecitys let alone afford to support themselves, one is seen as unfit for social connections or even attend social events; that lack of support in turn isolates, marginalizes them, ushering these people towards the black market as a means to seek a form of survival.
Four agencies jointly responsible for equal opportunity for federal workers issued a new handbook outlining protections and procedures for addressing bias based on gender identity and sexual orientation. The guide makes clear that both gender identity and sexual orientation discrimination are prohibited under Executive Orders, federal civil services rules, and by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as forms of sex discrimination. It walks employees through the different procedures and remedies available in LGBT discrimination cases. The guide was published jointly by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the US Office of Special Counsel, and the Merit Systems Protection Board. (National Center for Transgender Equality)
While the murders of trans women still go largely unsolved, we can blame this more and more on a lack of support structure and apathy of bystanders than the police states own blatant disregard. Thanks to mandatory competency training by the Department of Justice (DoJ), we see a rise in districts hiring LGBT rights enforcement officers and development of detention facilities own internal revues concerning the cruel and unusual punishment experienced by these women housed in isolation supposedly for “protection” yrs at a time in male prisons or to become rape victims in general population. A systemic failure that devalues their lives, medical condition, and core identity as a human being; setting the scene for routine harassment by guards, medical staff, and other inmates. “Under a federally mandated internal review immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has recognized its own inability to properly house or otherwise be responsible for the safety and health of LGBT populations, releasing guidelines calling for facilities within jurisdiction to have on hand liaison officers and medical personnel competent in their care or too relocate them to a facility that does (Further Guidance Regarding the Care of Transgender Detainees).
Often, Johnson says, she would wake up to find her cellmate touching her breasts and fondling her. She went to report the assault to a guard, but before she could finish, the guard urged her to stop, according to Johnson. The only place he could house her for protection was in the Security Housing Unit (SHU), a solitary confinement cell where she would be locked in for 23 hours a day. In addition to the isolation, the SHU would make Johnson ineligible for the prison’s residential drug treatment program, and the 18-month-early release that went with it. To stay out of the SHU, Johnson realized she had to face the sexual violence by herself. (Sentenced to Abuse)
This deplorable treatment born of neglecting ones very identity (in many cases legal identity) has further been condoned outside of the prison/jail system by an unaware society in public realms as well. Denied access to homeless shelters and food pantries, unacceptable stipulations placed on assisted housing, food stamps, and unemployment assistance that may have kept them from crimes of desperation in the first place. Ignoring ones legally corrected sex/gender classification when directly applicable, subsequently their very name, in favor of the incorrect birth designation assigned them. Recently the Dept of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has issued mandates in correction of such “oversights” to any entity receiving their generous financial assistance.
HUD assumes that a recipient or subrecipient (“provider”) that makes decisions about eligibility for or placement into single-sex emergency shelters or other facilities will place a potential client (or current client seeking a new assignment) in a shelter or facility that corresponds to the gender with which the person identifies, taking health and safety concerns into consideration. A client’s or potential client’s own views with respect to personal health and safety should be given serious consideration in making the placement. For instance, if the potential client requests to be placed in accordance with their gender identity as opposed to their sex assigned at birth, HUD assumes that the provider will place the individual in accordance with that request, consistent with health, safety, and privacy concerns. HUD assumes that a provider will not make an assignment or re-assignment based on complaints of another person when the sole stated basis of the complaint is a client or potential client’s non-conformance with gender stereotypes. (Appropriate Placement for Transgender Persons in Single-Sex Emergency Shelters and Other Facilities)
So how do we define privilege? Everyone has it to different degrees, beyond skin color or nationality, the ability to have hands is something most take for granted. So if cis-privilege is that a person is born congruent, then that means they were privileged not to have to think of medical issues concerning their ability to ever function sexually or how that affects the ability to develop personal relationships. Closest concept most have is as an aesthetic, same reason society forces genital surgery on intersex newborns then turns and denies it at an age-able to give informed consent. Privilege in its basest form is your ability to make your own health decisions free of coercion, which is generally considered a human right. Even in death no one can force you to donate your body to medical science even if it would save 20 lives. Yet whose graves are being disturbed over corporate lust of black dinosaur blood. Is it women or men who don’t have the right to their own organs. Whose very existence is being debated by the unaffected?
So you see, there are various inequalities playing on the basest of needs; this can be fixed if only people in positions of even the minutest influence would take a positive moment of their time towards ensuring human decency. This is why your business, non-profit, social service, housing facility, place of learning, medical establishment, jurisdiction, community needs to adopt non discrimination policy clearly stating inclusivity of sexual orientation and gender identity.
…all [studies] indicate that people who are transgender feel ostracized for their identity; their high suicide rates reflect rejection, discrimination, violence, harassment, and the negative life circumstances that result from such treatment.(think progress)
For further review of these issues and citations please check out:
Opening statement-a federal task forces 2011 discrimination survey
UNs definition of genocide
Disorder of sex development
sexual orientation- HRC
gender identity- bockting 1999
gender expression- WPATH
Bowers, history of sex reasignment
90’s anti abortion laws,roling stone
90’s anti LGBT laws, HRC
non discrimination policy small business encyclopedia
regulatory compliance- weisman
small business encyclopedia
dept of education DoE
OSHA and EEOC
sentenced to abuse