Thursday, March 13, 2008
March 13, 2008
“How does a 14 year old shoot a 15 year old in the back of the head because he’s wearing high heels?” Trans activist Jenn Burleton muses about the recent murder of southern California teen. “More than any other source of childhood abuse, teasing, and bullying; femininity in male children kills.”
Dedicated to preventing another causalty, the founder and executive director of TransActive Education & Advocacy (transactiveonline.org), a Portland, Oregon based organization, works with parents and schools to support transgender and gender variant children.
“This work is not just for trans kids,” she insists. “Because all children are victims of gender expression oppression.”
A lesbian-identified trans woman, who recently celebrated her 25th anniversary with her partner, Burleton previously co-founded Trans Youth Family Allies (TYFA - formerly Trans Youth Family Advocates) a national organization providing support for trans kids and their families, where she served as the inaugural executive director and board president.
Once a trans teen herself, in the mid-1960’s, then 12-year-old Burleton became one of the first - albeit unsanctioned - trans youth to begin hormone treatments - after she discovered Dr. Harry Benjamin’s The Transsexual Phenomenon and began stealing her mother’s Premarin. “I had the benefit that my mom was an alcoholic,” she jokes. “She was out of it so much she couldn’t keep track of what was going on.” . . .Read More
by Katie Dettman3.13.2008
Tita Aida, who has hosted numerous charitable benefits over the years, has something new this month – "Catwalk '08," which is billed as an "elite modeling competition and beauty pageant for the transgender community."
The competition is expected to feature 16 transgender women, said Aida, who during her day job at the Asian and Pacific Islander Wellness Center is Nicky Calma, a transgender woman herself who was named to the San Francisco Commission on the Status of Women last month.
Aida, who is a health program supervisor at the API Wellness Center, said the agency will receive most of the proceeds from the March 22 Catwalk pageant, which she is producing along with Lee Evans. She explained that she used the word "elite" to describe the event because "we hope to bring it one step higher for the TG community. It is time for the TG community to get what they truly deserve, a well put-together event and competition." Aida hopes to hold the event annually. . . .Read More
In her own words, a transgender teen talks candidly about acceptance and tolerance.
We were shocked by the recent murder of 15-year-old Lawrence King--a young boy who was openly gay and reportedly wore mascara, lipstick and jewelry to school. Transgender teens have been in the spotlight lately and have left a lot of parents at a loss when it comes to talking to their own kids. Rika, pictured, a 17-year-old boy who came out as a girl during her freshman year (pictured), sheds a little light on the world of transgender teenagers.
Mom Logic: How did your parents react when you realized that you were really a girl?
Rika: I was in this depressive state. I didn't know if I was gay. I had good friends I was able to connect with, but I wasn't really sure of myself. At that point it was a taboo thing for me to wear female clothing. I was doing badly in school. And my parents asked me questions to know what was wrong and to help them help me. Finally I came out and told them, "Yes I am transgender." Then we went to Puerto Rico and I wore feminine clothing comfortably. That was my freshman year of high school. At that point, I went to a therapist and she said, "Well, she knows that she is a girl and it would be more polite to refer to her as 'her.'" . . .Read More