Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Feminine Mystique - CNS News

"Five-minute magazine piece"

Looking Back: A gender for success

Rachael Padman underwent genital surgery in 1982 to become a woman. But, as she tells David Batty, she chooses to define herself by her successful academic career, rather than her transsexualism

August 4, 2004

Rachael Padman says that changing sex did not make her a woman. The Cambridge University lecturer believes that the genital surgery she underwent in 1982 was just another step towards living as the woman she always felt she was, rather than the point at which she became female.

By any measure Padman, the director of studies in physical sciences at the university's Newnham college, is a successful woman. Within the transsexual community her story is widely viewed as challenging negative stereotypes of transsexuals being unhappy and dysfunctional.

Padman, 50, underwent gender reassignment after moving to England from her home country of Australia in 1977. She was assessed and treated with female hormones at the Charing Cross NHS gender identity clinic in north-west London while pursuing a PhD at the then all-male St John's college, Cambridge.

But she encountered no hostility from her peers or tutors when in 1981 she started to live full-time as a woman in preparation for genital surgery. She gained her doctorate just after undergoing a sex change operation, paid for privately, in October 1982.

Although she had an overwhelming desire to change gender from early childhood, Padman believes the main reason for her post-operative success is that her identity is not solely based on her being transsexual. . . .Read More

Book Review - How to Help Children Along the Transgender Journey

October 29, 2008

by Terry Schlichenmeyer

The Transgender Child: A Handbook for Families and Professionals,
by Stephanie Brill and Rachel Pepper. Cleis Press. 252 pages, $16.95.

Did you play dress-up when you were a kid? A box of old clothes, a few nearly tattered hats, some shoes that were way too big for you and a rainy day were the recipe for trying on all sorts of new selves and pretending you were something other than what you were.

But for some kids, there is no pretending. They strongly feel they were born as the wrong gender or they feel they are neither gender. For some of them, the feeling starts almost before they learn to walk. In this new book, you’ll learn about gender, biology and understanding.

In the process of growing up and learning about the world, children naturally try on different identities, “becoming” boy or girl as easily as they become a princess or a pirate. Brill and Pepper say that our society perpetuates acknowledgement of only two genders but that to understand transgender children, we need to throw those old ideas out. Gender is fluid, and many of us are, biologically speaking, a blend of sexes. . . .Read More

Transsexual beauty queen crowned in Philippines



An unusual beauty pageant took place in the capital of the Philippines, Manila, last week. The pageant, Amazing Philippines Beauties 2008, was held to choose the beauty queen among transsexuals and transvestites.

Angelika Santillan, 27, won the title of the most beautiful contestant from 25 other ‘women.’ Santillan stole her crown from her major rival, Rosa Garcia, 19, who came in as the first runner-up. Rianne Barrameda, the 2007 winner of the contest, awarded the crown to the most beautiful and amazing beauty in the Philippines.

Angelika was supposed to fly to Thailand on October 26, where so-called lady-boys are categorized as a separate sex, to represent her country at the international pageant Miss International Queen 2008. However, the visit was later delayed indefinitely due to ongoing riots in the country. . . .Read More

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

halloween memories

". . .a memory long, long ago of a halloween. . ." aire420

Gender Confused Kids

Airs Wednesday - October 29, 2008

Dr. Phil tackles the sensitive topic of children who identify more with the opposite sex. What do you do if your son wants to wear dresses and play with dolls? Or if your daughter tells you she wants to be a boy? Should parents chock it up to be a phase that their children will grow out of, or should they intervene right away? Meet Melissa and Tim, whose 8-year-old son declared himself to be a girl when he was just 3 years old. Now, they allow their child to live as a girl, and wonder if and when they should begin hormone therapy. . . .Read More

Critique, POV, Opinion: “God made a mistake”

October 27, 2008 Opinion of a Minion

I’d think a story like this would put the kibosh on the whole “choosing to be gay” argument. This boy, Brandon, has been drawn to “girl” toys and activities since he was a toddler.

Both Tina and Brandon’s father had served in the Army, and she thought their son might identify with the toys. A photo from that day shows him wearing a towel around his head, a bandanna around his waist, and a glum expression. The Army set sits unopened at his feet. Tina recalls his joy, by contrast, on a day later that year. One afternoon, while Tina was on the phone, Brandon climbed out of the bathtub. When she found him, he was dancing in front of the mirror with his penis tucked between his legs. “Look, Mom, I’m a girl,” he told her. “Happy as can be,” she recalls.

“Brandon, God made you a boy for a special reason,” she told him before they said prayers one night when he was 5, the first part of a speech she’d prepared. But he cut her off: “God made a mistake,” he said.

The article makes it sound like both Tina and her son have the same army father, but I’m assuming that’s a typo.

I don’t know a whole lot about theories on gender and identity. I know it’s been argued that people should resist the urge to segregate their children into “boy” and “girl” toy groups. . . .Read More

Critique, POV, Opinion: Elementary school teaching cross-dressing and transgenderism in the 3rd grade!!

Mass Resistance October 2008
Massachusetts Madness:
A mother confronts the radical edge of the homosexual agenda in the schools - is forced to remove her daughter from school.

Which is the worse horror -- an elementary school using a GLSEN homosexual activist to teach third-graders about cross-dressing and transgenderism, and that men can have operations to become women? Or a parent being harassed and hounded by the school and community activists for publicly complaining?

A pastor in Newton, Mass. writes a scathing column in the newspaper declaring that the "mirage of 'traditional family' is simply idolatry" and that "[g]ender configuration of the parents is irrelevant to what makes a family." Is this what the future holds? What madness is this? . . .Read More

Monday, October 27, 2008

transsexuals - man \ woman


See the lot with Carlotta



CARLOTTA will present her scintillating Priscilla Show at Blacktown Workers Club on Friday, December 5.

Presented in the style of a theatre restaurant, the show will feature all the glitz and glamour you'd expect from this ever-popular performer who's been in show business for more than 40 years.

Not that you'd think so to hear and see Carlotta.

The Priscilla Show has it all, including costuming that can be described only as out of this world. The show takes audiences on a journey comparable to productions staged in Las Vegas.

There will be feathers, sequins, headdresses, bikini-clad showgirls and much more. The lot, in fact. . . .Read More

Ask the Flying Monkey!

by Brent Hartinger
October 27, 2008

Q: I've just watched the pilot of Ryan Murphy's new series Pretty/Handsome and am really impressed by it. Do you know why FX didn’t pick it up? Was it because of the topic? Should a show about a transsexual man still stir controversy after Dirty Sexy Money? -- Tobias, Frankfurt, Germany . . . .Read More

Opinions and Editorials: Transgender Day of Remembrance

By Katherine Boyle - B.O.D.I.E.S

27 October 2008

As it approaches the end of October, some very important national and international dates are coming up quickly; some will be recognizable, and others less known but still significant.

The first of these is November 20 for Transgender Day of Remembrance; this date may not be widely known because the topic of transgendered individuals still seems to be taboo in some circles. The purpose of Transgender Day of Remembrance is to recognize men and women who have been killed due to ignorance and hatred, targeted specifically because they were transgendered. The first such event took place in 1999 in San Francisco, to honor murder victim Rita Hester, who had been murdered brutally the previous year. The 1999 event was organized by Gwendolyn Anne Smith who began the website Remembering Our Dead, and launched the Transgender Day of Remembrance. Transgendered individuals are people who feel that their biological sex doesn’t match with their inner selves, and isn’t representative of who they are. In order to represent the gender that they feel they are, transgendered individuals often make changes through dress, mannerisms, and hair length, or by using or shunning cosmetics. . . .Read More

Sunday, October 26, 2008

TSG7: Transphobia

October 17, 2008. Transphobia. TrannystarGalactica

Transsexual study reveals genetic link

Helen Carter


The discovery of a genetic variation in male to female transsexuals adds weight to the view that transsexualism has a biological basis, the Australian researchers behind the find say.

Their study shows male to female transsexuals are more likely than non-transsexual males to have a longer version of a receptor gene for the sex hormone androgen or testosterone.

The findings from the largest-yet genetic study of male to female transsexualism are published online today in Biological Psychiatry.

Study leader, head of molecular genetics at Prince Henry's Institute of Medical Research in Melbourne, Associate Professor Vincent Harley, speculates, based on cell studies, that this genetic variation might reduce testosterone action and "under-masculinise" or feminise the brain during foetal development.

"Studies in cells show the longer version of the androgen receptor gene works less efficiently at communicating the testosterone message to cells," Harley says.

"Based on these studies, we speculate the longer version may also work less efficiently in the brain." . . .Read More

Senior housing for LGBT community opens in Oakland

By Lucinda Ryan

The refurbished apartments at the former Lake Merritt Hotel in Oakland are now open for retirement living, though residents need not be retired to settle in. Nor do they need to be lesbian, gay, straight or transgender.

They need only to want to live in a diverse community within one building, a community modeled on author Armistead Maupin's fictional series, "Tales of the City."

Maupin's characters all lived in a San Francisco apartment on Barbary Lane. It was a place where homosexuals and heterosexuals — young and not so young — built friendships and camaraderie and no lines were drawn on which lifestyle was acceptable. Everyone was accepted.

So goes the philosophy at today's real-life Barbary Lane Senior Communities, where, say representatives of the 46-unit Art Deco historical building at 1800 Madison St., aging baby boomers can live in a "richly diverse community."

"The conformist generation is diminishing," said Dave Latina, president of Barbary Lane Senior Communities, at a grand opening event held Thursday. He spoke of long-retired GIs who were accustomed to taking directions and not rocking the boat, and pointed out that baby boomers (defined by the U.S. Census as those born from 1946 to 1964) have a far different take on life. . . .Read More

When Frankie Became Fanny

MySinchew 2008.10.25

A father of a 10-year-old daughter has now decided to live the rest of his life as a woman.

Two months ago, a former first sergeant who served 10 years in the Singapore navy sent a mass SMS to all his friends.

It said: “Dear friends, I have changed my name from Frankie to Fanny.”

Some laughed it off as a prank. Others called up Frankie Ler, 34, and were stunned when he told them he had decided to become a woman.

The divorcee and father of a 10-year-old girl told them he had started “transitioning”: He had grown his hair, was taking female hormone pills, and had begun wearing women’s clothes.

“I didn’t want them to get a shock if they bumped into me on the street,” said the administrative assistant, sitting in a Rowell Road Cafe with her daughter. . . .Read More

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pioneers Of Sex-Change Surgery

"Seth Doane travels to Trinidad, Colorado, where the first private practice for gender reassignment surgery, more commonly called "sex-changes," was begun over forty years ago." CBS

CANDLE conference brings focus on gender and sexual identity

By Ben Rubin • The Journal News • October 21, 2008

STONY POINT - "Friend of Dorothy," "butch queen," "femme," "tranny."

Avy Skolnik, from the New York City Anti-Violence Project, wrote the words on an easel pad as a group of about 20 educators called out the terms used by people in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community to describe themselves.

Each of those terms was used as slurs against members of the LGBT community, then later reappropriated by the community to describe itself, Skolnik said.

Skolnik, a transgender man, led a workshop on creating safe places for transgender people and some basics about being transgender during yesterday's 16th annual CANDLE Conference for Professionals who Work with Youth.

CANDLE, which stands for Community Awareness Network for a Drug-free Life and Environment, is a local nonprofit that focuses on youth drug abuse and violence prevention.

The group hosted more than 100 teachers, school administrators, social workers and others at the Stony Point Center for workshops on bullying, gender and sexual identity, communication and technology, and youths. . . .Read More

Antony Hegarty exposes Another World with his London homecoming

Antony, the Johnsons — and the London Symphony Orchestra? It’s a dream ticket, says Stephen Dalton

October 24, 2008


Onstage at Harlem’s fabled Apollo Theatre, Antony Hegarty cuts an imposing figure. Swept along by a 20-piece orchestra, New York City’s reigning demi-monde diva sobs epic tales of operatic sorrow and romantic rapture. Draped in a magnificent cream-coloured gown, the towering singer looks like an androgynous Statue of Liberty. Obscured by shadow for much of the performance, Hegarty sways as he sings, his tremulous voice channelling the spirit of Nina Simone. A ghostly angel of Harlem.

The excitable crowd at the reassuringly shabby, surprisingly compact Apollo runs the gamut of New York boho cool. Wonky-haired art students pretend not to notice the sleaze-rock legend Lou Reed, a longtime champion of Hegarty and his chamber-pop band, the Johnsons. Intersex couples and drag queens cheer every spine-tingling note from the world’s most fêted transgender pop idol. Old songs are transformed. New tunes sound rich and magical. A brassy cover of Beyoncé’s Crazy in Love is both bizarre and heartfelt.

The day after the Apollo show, Hegarty arrives in good spirits at a labyrinthine art-space-loft-thing high above downtown Manhattan. A soft-spoken gentle giant, the 37-year-old singer quakes with naughty-schoolboy mirth as he flees an aborted photo shoot on the roof terrace. The building is overlooked by the local headquarters of the FBI, so security rules are tightly enforced, especially with Barack Obama in town. . . .Read More

Baldwin praised by transsexual co-star

October 23, 2008

By Lara de Matos

His introduction to Celebville came courtesy of a Calvin Klein modelling contract in the '80s and he counts the likes of supermodel Cindy Crawford, as well as the über-sexy actress Sharon Stone, among his former co-stars.

But these days, William Baldwin's romantic inclinations lean towards the transgender sort - particularly those of the blonde, big-busted and deep-voiced variety. Well, on the small screen, anyway.

The man who once aspired to enter the legal profession has taken the TV world by storm in his latest role as the repressed poor little rich boy, Patrick Darling, in the current primetime sensation, Dirty Sexy Money.

And, as I discover upon meeting him at this year's Rome Fiction Festival, he is well aware of his star status. Apparently, modesty is a virtue lacking among the Baldwin brothers. Then again, perhaps it's simply a life lived under the constant glare of the spotlight that has led to Billy's blasé attitude towards the media, since his fellow cast members can't stop gushing about him, including his on-screen love interest, Candis "Carmelita" Cayne.

Given that William has generally come across as something of a man's man, it's surprising to learn that the Patrick-Carmelita love affair was one of his main motivations for agreeing to play the part. . . .Read More

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

phalloplasty-radial forearm flap

"my thoughts and why I am going for this surgery" eliaspj83

Thailand's lady-boys in a class of their own

22 October 2008

Belfast Telegraph

Lithe, peach-skinned and demure, Arttasit is the kind of woman who would turn heads on any college campus, except that he is not a woman; not yet.

The 21-year-old catering student attends class in Thailand's Suan Dusit University wearing makeup and a body-hugging female uniform. After four years of hormone treatment, he is preparing for a full sex change. "My goal in life is to become accepted as a woman," he explains.

There are about 100 transgender undergraduates at this college in central Bangkok, which offers the so-called "lady-boys" a unique educational refuge from homophobia and discrimination. Students are allowed to flaunt the campus dress code, which demands men wear trousers. Every year, dozens of the students enter a university beauty contest that has become famous for supplying entrants to Thailand's Miss Tiffany Universe, an annual pageant for transsexuals broadcast live across the country. Lady-boys work as teachers in some university departments and are even sent out on school recruitment drives. . . .Read More

Commentary: UCSF’s LGBT Center Turns 10

October 23, 2008

By Shane Snowdon

Did you know UCSF has a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) Center? Yes – and it’s the only one in a health-care setting anywhere in the world, although many undergrad campuses have an LGBT office. In fact, this fall is the tenth anniversary of UCSF’s LGBT Center, making it one of the oldest and most accomplished in the country.

What, you may ask, does an LGBT center do? More to the point, what has UCSF’s Center done in its ten years? And, if you’re not LGBT, what does the LGBT Center have to offer?
Whether you’re LGBT or not, we hope you’ll be proud to hear that UCSF’s Center has put our campus at the very forefront of the LGBT health movement, which aims to identify, reduce and eventually eliminate the particular health risks and disparities faced by LGBT people. And the UCSF LGBT Center has also helped make UC the nation’s leader in campus and workplace equality for LGBT people. . . 

. . .Transgender Concerns. UCSF is also a leader among U.S. campuses and employers in attending to transgender needs, but there is more to be done to ensure that transgender students, employees and patients are treated fairly and respectfully. As transgender people become ever more visible at UCSF and beyond, it’s important that classmates, co-workers and health-care professionals receive the information and training necessary to create a truly welcoming, equitable environment. . . .Read More

Becoming a woman also about economics

by Heather Draper

October 23, 2008

It's not news that women often make less money than men, even if they are working the same job.

But Alma L. López, the first Latina to be elected chief justice of an appellate court in the United States, this week brought up a notion I'd never heard before — that men who become women make less money than men. (Yes, you read that right.)

López, speaking at the San Antonio YWCA's Women of Influence awards luncheon Tuesday, cited several cases in which women were awarded millions of dollars when it was found they were discriminated against because of their gender.

She told some of her own horror stories from her early days as an attorney in Texas, including learning at her first job that she was being paid $400 a month for the same position in which a man was hired — after her — at a salary of more than $1,000 a month.

Then, in a twist, López mentioned a recent study that examined the salaries of transgender employees before and after their gender changes. . . .Read More

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Re: Some don't regret, others do

Teens in transition

As puberty hits, transgender youths are increasingly finding it the catalyst for coming out about their sexual identities.

"I'm the same person I was last year and the year before, but I am transgender and will now come to school as a boy," Tye told four assemblies at Cedarbrook Middle School in Cheltenham Township. "You may not agree, but I hope you will respect me and my right to get a good education."

Eyes misting with tears, Tye asked to be known as Ty. The transgender teen finished to rounds of applause.

Ty celebrated his 18th birthday yesterday. He was born female, but as far back as he can remember, he felt in his brain and his heart that he was a boy.

For years, his father, a family physician, and his mother, a life coach, resisted their child's yearning to switch genders, hoping Tye would grow out of it.

But the feelings intensified when she reached her teens. . . .Read More

Transgender journey

by Nhu Lich

22 October 2008

Vietnam’s most famous transsexual singer Cindy Thai Tai says she’s finally living the life she’s always dreamed of
After years of living in shame and torment, Cindy Thai Tai underwent sex reassignment surgery and says she’s never felt happier.

Cindy Thai Tai is ecstatic with her new life, she says. After undergoing gender reassignment surgery in 2005, Tai became one of just a few Vietnamese to speak publicly about her transsexuality.

“I make no secret about my gender transformation as I want people to accept me and others like me as we are,” says Tai. “There are those who are not brave enough to make their sexual orientation known in order not to be treated as social outcasts. I don’t want to be like them.” . . . Read More

Mike Penner returns to Los Angeles Times

Kevin Roderick

October 20, 2008

Eighteen month after writing a column about becoming Christine Daniels, veteran sportswriter Mike Penner has quietly returned to work at the Los Angeles Times, according to multiple sources close to the LAT's Sports staff. Penner's column in April 2007 about his sexual transformation became one of the most-viewed Times' stories of the year and was followed by a story in the LAT from media writer James Rainey and tons of other media attention. . . .Read More

Sunday, October 19, 2008

LGBT Alaskans on Sarah Palin

"Sarah Palin says she has gay friends but after dozens of conversations with LGBT Alaskans, it's clear they don't think she's a friend to the LGBT community. Get involved at"   hrcmedia

Tech lecture series helps shed light on transgender issues


October 18, 2008

Alone, the boy grabbed his mother's lipstick from the bathroom counter. Clutched in his hand, it felt like a prize, one he knew his schoolmates in this tiny town in the Texas Panhandle, and his parents, who did manual labor to support he and his sister, would reject him, possibly hate him, for wanting.

But they weren't here. His parents at work, the boy, about 11, pressed the tube to his lips.

Since Bobby was about 6, he'd been drawn to his sister's dolls and his mother's heels and dresses. When he was smaller, his mother would giggle when he strutted around the house in her clothes, but as he grew older he learned these things were not for him.

The boy's heart jumped as he heard his father's car rumble into the driveway. The mechanic, hands perpetually stained from tinkering with broken cars, had come home earlier than expected. Scared, Bobby tried to wipe away the lipstick, but the makeup, a stubborn shade of red, had stained his lips.

Father and son stood face to face.

Are you wearing lipstick? . . .Read More

Transcending the Issue of Sexuality

October 20, 2008

As students begin to settle in a routine at Columbia—finding their place in campus activities, learning the bureaucracy of the system, and slowly becoming caffeine addicts—a small group of students begins to question where it belongs.
Transgender people, those who choose to identify with the gender opposite to their sex, have a history of not fitting in. Defying their sex, transgender people break away from the gender and sexual binaries, so they fit in as neither women nor men, neither gay nor straight. Rather, they are a combination, a mix-and-match of characteristics that are difficult to define at first glance. For this reason, many find that students at Columbia, as well as the University’s general policies, do not know how to deal with transgender students. . . .Read More

POV: Transsexuality: Dating and Disclosure

October 20, 2008

Special to The Canadian

For some years I have grappled with disclosure issues in relation to friends, lovers and potential dates. I have wondered about both ethics of disclosure and the practical consequences. Like you, I doubt there's any clear-cut answer. Some days I feel so frustrated with the complexities that I feel like making an "I am a transsexual" t-shirt and wearing it everywhere to make life simpler.

The ethical questions are so complicated. On a basic level, of course it is the right thing to disclose. That way you live positively. There's nothing to hide. It's all out in the open.

There's a bravado attitude out there that says "if anyone doesn't accept it then they are not worth knowing" but it's easier said than done. It's all too glib for my liking. There are many, not terribly deep, interactions we have with people that help to make life enjoyable. So if it's not absolutely essential to a relationship then why spill the beans and have some of those easy relations transformed into weirdness and suspicion? That's the easy one. . . .Read More

POV: Transsexual Dating: Eligible Bachelorette

October 20, 2008

by Kennidi Monroe

Dating; Is It Easy For Anyone? I Used To Think That Dating Would Be Easier Being A Girl Versus Being A Boy. Wow, Was I Totally Wrong!

Many people say dating should come easy to me because I'm a beautiful girl. Guys should be swarming over me. Well the reality is that it's the total opposite. I may get a little bit of attention but I would never say men are dropping at my feet to be with me.

Here are some reasons why I think it’s hard for any transgendered person to date:

One: Most men interested in transgendered women have this fantasy about being with them. They feel that they can get their kicks off for being with "The Best Of Both Worlds" but reality sets in and they only want it as a fantasy. They can't deal with society accepting their fantasy. Men I think have a hard time accepting that they could actually want a relationship with a trans woman. Some guys would always wonder what would happen if their friends or family find out the woman they are with was once a man. See, it today’s society it’s still very taboo to be with a trans woman. Most people think that being trans is confusing, even people in the gay community. So they sell us short and use us for a fantasy but try to live that normal life. . . .Read More

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Hillary Clinton speaking at 2008 HRC National Dinner

"Sen. Hillary Clinton speaking at 2008 HRC National Dinner"   hrcmedia

Kids Pulled From Transgender Teacher's Class

Travis Unified School District Says It Must Respect Privacy

October 14, 2008
by KCRA 3

A teacher's gender reassignment surgery has caught the attention of some parents who want to know why the school district didn't notify them ahead of time about the change.

A music teacher at Foxboro Elementary School, who was formerly a woman, returned to school as a man at the beginning of the school year.

The teacher, who was not identified by KCRA 3, is now being addressed as "Mister."

Some parents told Travis Unified School District that they feel like their rights to know were violated. . . .Read More

City leaders to recommend approval of gay high school

Studies show increased dropout risk because of stigma, fear of violence
October 09, 2008
| Chicago Tribune reporter

Pointing to studies showing that gay high school students are at greater risk of dropping out because of stigma and fear of violence, Chicago Public Schools leaders said Wednesday that they will recommend opening a campus aimed at these students.

Final approval of the School for Social Justice Pride Campus, designed as the city's first school for gay, lesbian and transgender teenagers, along with 17 other schools, is expected to come Oct. 22 when the Board of Education votes.

Schools chief Arne Duncan said he will ask the board to approve the schools, which are expected to open in the fall of 2009 and 2010, to give greater choice to parents and students. "We want to create great new options for communities that have been traditionally underserved," he said. "If you look at national studies, you see gay and lesbian students with high dropout rates. . . . I think there is a niche there we need to fill." . . .Read More

Coming Out Gay Becoming Moot, Transgender Most Difficult

OCTOBER 15, 2008

Comedienne/chat-show host Ellen DeGeneres announced she was gay on the front cover of Time magazine in 1997 with the headline, “Yup, I'm Gay.” Many blamed the decision to come out for stalling her skyrocketing career. Singer Clay Aiken's recent admission of being gay on the cover of People magazine – “Yes, I'm Gay” – drew mainly hugs and a few shrugs.

Does Aiken's cakewalk coming out illustrate a new American irrelevance with being gay? According to a new Harris-Interactive survey, coming out gay is out.

In the national survey a majority (67%) of heterosexual adults agreed that they prefer honestly about sexual orientation over deceit and if someone they knew is gay or lesbian, they'd want to know. And a near universal majority (87%) of heterosexuals said that the coming out gay of an acquaintance would have a positive or no impact on how they view gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender people. . . .Read More

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

transgender rights in california schools

transgender law center:
phone#: (415) 865-0184

A Boy's Life

Since he could speak, Brandon, now 8, has insisted that he was meant to be a girl. This summer, his parents decided to let him grow up as one. His case, and a rising number of others like it, illuminates a heated scientific debate about the nature of gender—and raises troubling questions about whether the limits of child indulgence have stretched too far.

by Hanna Rosin

November 2008

transgender child
Brandon Simms at age 5 in a Disney princess costume
(Courtesy of the family)

THE LOCAL NEWSPAPERrecorded that Brandon Simms was the first millennium baby born in his tiny southern town, at 12:50 a.m. He weighed eight pounds, two ounces and, as his mother, Tina, later wrote to him in his baby book, “had a darlin’ little face that told me right away you were innocent.” Tina saved the white knit hat with the powder-blue ribbon that hospitals routinely give to new baby boys. But after that, the milestones took an unusual turn. As a toddler, Brandon would scour the house for something to drape over his head—a towel, a doily, a moons-and-stars bandanna he’d snatch from his mother’s drawer. “I figure he wanted something that felt like hair,” his mother later guessed. He spoke his first full sentence at a local Italian restaurant: “I like your high heels,” he told a woman in a fancy red dress. At home, he would rip off his clothes as soon as Tina put them on him, and instead try on something from her closet—a purple undershirt, lingerie, shoes. “He ruined all my heels in the sandbox,” she recalls. . . .Read More

Disparities surface among transgender workers

The Canadian Press

14 October 2008

GENDER INEQUALITY: A recent study has found a new way to examine pay disparities between men and women: Comparing the salaries of transgender employees before and after their gender changes.

The study in The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, an academic journal published by The Berkeley Electronic Press, found that while the average earnings for women who changed their gender slightly increased after the transition, it fell by nearly a third for workers who went from male to female.

The research was based on interviews with 64 individuals employed before and after a gender transition with hormone therapy or surgery.

"I think the gap that we've found has to do with ideas about gender and how masculinity is valued in the workplace," said Kristen Schilt, a sociology professor at University of Chicago who conducted the study with New York University professor Matthew Wiswall. . . .Read More

A phantom penis, and how to remove it

October 13, 2008
Michael Marshall
081013_phantom_penis.jpgThe Neurotopia blog draws our attention to an intriguing paper in Acta Medica Okayama. Titled  "Phantom erectile penis after sex reassignment surgery", it's a report by a group of surgeons atOkayama University in Japan.

They describe a twist on "phantom limb" syndrome, in which people who have lost a limb still experience sensation in it. Their patient experienced a phantom erect penis.

Phantom penises were first observed in 1951, and a 1999 review concluded that they were extremely rare. So what happened here?
Well, essentially this is a snapshot of how much sexual reassignment surgery has advanced in recent years. . . .Read More plus Comments

Phantom erectile penis after sex reassignment surgery.

Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine, Dentistry and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Okayama 700-8558, Japan.

Between January 2001 and December 2007, we performed vaginoplasty as sex reassignment surgery in a total of 14 male-to-female transsexual (MTFTS) patients [1]. Several complications occurred such as partial flap necrosis, rectovaginal fistula formation and hypersensitivity of the neoclitoris. Just after the operation, some patients feel that their penises still exist, but by several weeks postoperatively, this sensation has disappeared. Herein we report a case of MTFTS in whom the sensation of a phantom erectile penis persisted for much longer.

PMID: 18596839 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Monday, October 13, 2008

Translate - Film about New England's Transgendered Community

"Funded by Rhode Island PBS and Rhode Island Council for the Humanities, 'Translate' is a short documentary film about the struggles of the New England Transgendered community. Winner of the PBS / Independent Lens Film Festival."  videoandvision

Greenwich resident is Japan's first transsexual geisha

October 13, 2008

News Shopper Online

THE reaction Mary Murdoch gets from walking down her street is very different to how she was greeted in Japan.

Born Malcolm Murdoch, the 68-year-old says she recently became the first transsexual geisha on a visit to Kyoto.

Mary, of Brownspring Drive, New Eltham, explained: “My ambition was to dress up as a geisha and at first they were reluctant.

“But in the end I convinced them. I was the first person to actually do this. They were very welcoming and put aside the normal rules for foreign tourists.

“Since then the Japanese government has a policy which says if there’s a female name on the passport then you may dress up as a geisha.”

Mary started having therapy at the Charing Cross Hospital in London four years ago.

Under the hospital's rules, she had to change her name and swap trousers for skirts, to make sure she would be comfortable turning her life inside-out.

She said: “The situation in the 60s was dreadful - it was hardly understood. People used to be given electro-shock therapy. . . .Read More

All GLBT High School Not Favored by Students

by Cole Mathisen
KIMT News 3

Clear Lake, IA- Bullying is a growing problem in many school systems.  One major Midwest city is looking at a possible solution to bullying in its schools.  The idea is to help one of the most targeted groups of students.

Later this month the Chicago school board will consider an all gay, lesbian, bi, and transsexual school.  The idea is to create a safer place for the students.  More than half of all gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, and bi-sexual students admit to feeling unsafe at high school.

"I think a lot of the survey's that the youth of today complete in regards to this topic show that they can be very much at risk because of how they are treated,” said Kandice Bienfang-Lee who is a Social Worker for the Area Education Agency in Clear Lake, IA.

She says GLBT students come to her for a variety of reasons.

"Some are just wanting to be able to talk and explore that possibility others maybe have shared, and they are having some peers that are supporting them, and being an ally, and maybe others who aren't," she said.

It’s the students who are facing harassment that is prompting educators in Chicago to explore alternatives.  They say a proposed school would be open to all students but would cater to those with gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transsexual issues.  But some Chicago area students don't think it’s the answer. . . .Read More