The Week In Trans 1/2/17

| Jan 2, 2017
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Happy New Year!

Jen Richards

The show Nashville was canceled by ABC but has been picked up by the CMT network and the new season starts this week. While one good reason to watch the show has always been its star Hayden Panettiere a good reason for the trans community to tune is the recurring role of a trans woman portrayed by trans actress/producer/writer Jen Richards. Learn more about her role in The Salt Lake Tribune.

In 2015 a trans woman in India made news by becoming the first trans woman to be appointed as a principal of a women’s college. Her name is Manabi Bandopadhyay and she is making news again by resigning from her position citing lack of support and prejudice from her staff. Get the full story on her resignation from Teen Vogue.

Joe Maldonado

8-year-old Joe Maldonado was kicked out of his Cub Scout pack because he was assigned female at birth. While the Cub Scouts, and the Boy Scouts, do not have a specific policy on accepting transgender children, the Northern New Jersey Council of Boy Scouts set a policy against transgender boys joining packs in their area. Since this story went public in the Northern New Jersey Record, some packs under the Northern New Jersey Council have made their displeasure known. The usual suspects are complaining that the Boy Scouts of America do not have a national policy preventing transgender children from joining. You can read the original story here and an update here.

On Christmas night, Ijan DeVonte Jarrett, a 44-year-old trans man, offered his seat on a New York subway to Stephanie Pazmino. When she got up to leave the train, she started punching and stabbing him. He was taken to Harlem Hospital. She has been charged with assault and with a hate crime. Her lawyer says that she was acting in self-defense. You can read the story in the New York Daily News. The update is here. In a further update, Stephanie Pazmino was released without bail, pending trial.

Sara Kelly Keenan

Sara Kelly Keenan received a new birth certificate. She was born intersex, and now, 55 years after her birth in New York City, her birth certificate indicates that she is intersex. The birth certificate is the culmination of years of effort, and it appears to be the first birth certificate issued within the United States to list the person as “intersex.” NBC News has this story.

North Carolina continues to be the subject of boycotts. The Business History Conference scheduled to meet in Charlotte in April 2018 has been moved to Baltimore. The 350 guests would spend $120,000 at the hotel. This story is on WTOP-TV.

15-year-old trans man Nate Hudson is back in the news. Previously, a judge ordered him to get a mental evaluation before granting his petition for a legal name change. A higher court then struck down the requirement for the mental evaluation, and sent the case back with instructions. Despite the ruling from a higher court, Judge J. Michael Wagner has not issued a ruling in the case. This week’s new development is that Nate’s attorney has requested a change of venue–a different judge. The Cass County Democrat Missourian has this story.

Dan Clay as Carrie.

A New York City man has adopted a new hobby after he went out for Halloween last year dressed as Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City. He had so much fun in her costume from one of the shows that he’s started putting together copies of what she wore in different scenes and goes out in to the city and recreates a frame from the show. His name is Dan Clay and you can see several of his scene recreations on the Stuff website.

In the Philippines there is a region known as the “egg basket of Luzon” and on the first day of the new year the men there dress up in their wive’s and mother’s clothes, makeup and jewelry. Then they parade through the town and do a dance. It sounds a lot like the Mummer’s Parade in Philadelphia but the tradition started in 1934 and the Mummers have been strutting since a lot earlier. The Philippines event is not meant to glorify drag but to make fun of the men who try, mostly unsuccessfully, to act like women for the day. It’s all good, clean fun, but what about the guys who really love to crossdress? They probably have to show less expertise than they’d like. Read about the tradition on the Inquirer website.

Victoria Anthony pageant contestant.

Not all of the people from the Philippines who wear women’s clothes are doing it to make fun of themselves like the men of Luzon. Five lovely Filipina trans ladies are competing in the Miss Transsexual Australia 2017 pageant and you can tell they take femininity and beauty seriously. The pageant takes place on January 28, 2017. You can meet the Filipina contestants on the GMA Online website.

Six months ago, administrators the Louisville Free Pubic Library told transgender employee Valerie Pfister that they could not wear a button proclaiming their preferred pronouns. (Yes, Valerie’s preferred pronouns are “they” and “them.”) After six months of back-and-forth with all staff receiving some training on transgender issues, a new policy has come forth: all staff now have the option to wear their preferred pronouns on their name badges. This story is in Inside Louisville.

Isabella Santiago

Fort Lauderdale, Florida, has come up with a new tourism campaign, and the new campaign features Isabella Santiago, a transgender model from Venezuela. While the copy does not identify Ms. Santiago as transgender, the ads will run in some LGBTQ print and digital media. The Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention Bureau has been advertising in LGBTQ media for over 20 years. This story is in AdWeek.

Mushtaq Aashi is a transgender woman in Pakistan. She grew up in a Christian family. Her family does not support her, so she went to live with hijras. However, the hijras are Hindus, and they didn’t take well to a Christian in their midst. So, she is an outcast among outcasts. The Express Tribune has her story.

Tales de Oliveira Faira just graduated from the Aeronautic Technology Institute of the Air Force of Brazil. The 24-year-old gay man was the victim of bullying while a student. He responded by wearing a minidress and very high heels to his graduation ceremony. The video shows him getting a round of applause as he walked to receive his diploma. Metro has this story.

In La Plata, Argentina, a hair salon has opened. All ten employees of this hair salon are in fact transgender women. Working at this salon has allowed all of them to leave sex work behind them. The Latin American Herald Tribune has this story.

While the Louisville Free Library felt that a button with an employee’s preferred pronouns was “too political,” buttons which say “My pronouns are. . .” have been introduced at the University of Kansas Library. One button features, “He/Him/His,” another features, “She/Her/Hers,” and a third has, “They/Them/Theirs.” All the buttons feature the phrase, “You belong here.” They are meant for students and other patrons of the library to wear, and staff are encouraged them as well, to set an example. The Associated Press story can be found here.

The Santa Barbara Transgender Advocacy Network has announce the impending opening of the Santa Barbara Transgender Community Center in February, and they are looking for a Volunteer Coordinator who would be responsible for staffing the Center with peer volunteers. The part-time position (10 hours per week) is paid. For more information email the S.B.T.A.N.

John Waters

With all the celebrities we lost in 2016 is a relief to learn that while John Waters, the transgressive filmmaker responsible for Pink Flamingos, Hairspray, and Cry Baby, while admitted to the hospital in late December was released and is doing fine after a bout with kidney stones. The poor man had to miss his own Christmas party. Ouch! You can read the good news in Metro UK.

For the last half-year, the province of Ontario has not required its health insurance cards to carry information about the gender of the insured. This became a problem when Tracy Ayre went to get a passport for her transgender son. There was no documentation to show that her son was a male. This story, originally from the Toronto Star, is in the Brampton Guardian.


World Net Daily has a reputation as a news source, and it’s not a good reputation. This week, they ran a piece about a new letter from the Colson Center, which warns of a “serious threat” to the “fundamental freedoms guaranteed to every person.” This “serious threat” is contained in laws which forbid discrimination against transgender people. The letter signed by “dozens of prominent Christian leaders,” begins, “We affirm that every individual is created in the image of God and as such should be treated with love, compassion, and respect.” That’s a fine start, but it goes off course in a hurry. The second sentence reads, “We also affirm that people are created male and female,” and then use that to denounce same-sex marriage as well as transgender people. They never mention intersex people. Intersex people do exist, and they do not fit neatly into that gender binary which this letter says that everyone fits into. For defending discrimination based on a not-quite-universal binary, WND gets a TWIT Award. The story is here.

A fifteen-year-old transgender male in Australia got permission from the Family Court to have a double mastectomy. The boy has been living as a male for three years, and he finds binders so constricting that he has trouble breathing when wearing a binder. The Daily Mail ran a story on this, but they misgendered the young man as a female. One quote said that he got permission “to have her breasts removed to ‘look and feel’ like a boy.” The Daily Mail updated their story the following day, removing the female pronouns as well as the most offensive quotes. Even so, for this bad editing, the Daily Mail gets a TWIT. Pink News has this story.

The National Catholic Register ran a guest editorial by Dustin Siggins, who claims that North Carolina’s HB2 “overturned a Charlotte measure which mandated that businesses must let men use women’s restrooms.” Of course, that was never a part of HB2. Mr. Siggins then goes on to insist that HB2 should not be repealed but instead “should be strengthened to protect the truth of biological sex and the safety of women and children.” Although these particular threats to the “safety of women and children” are never specified, it is presumed that this refers to the myth of a sexual predator pretending to be transgender in order to go into a women’s restroom. For insisting that we need a law to prevent a threat which does not happen, Dustin Siggins gets a TWIT Award. You can read his article on the National Catholic Register.

Christian conservatives in the U.S. believe that trying to protect the rights of LGBT people to be themselves and participate fully in our society means oppression for Christians. They claim that if a Christian baker is forced to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple the baker is being “forced” to promote homosexuality. They feel that letting trans women pee wherever they want to is forcing women to put up with “men” in the ladies’ room. They actually believe that they “face ruin” from the federal government’s attempts to assure LGBT people their full rights. The attitude they adopt is expressed in a TWIT Award winning article on World Net Daily.

This edition of TWIT was edited by Angela Gardner who also provided additional content.

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Category: Transgender Community News


About the Author ()

Every week Cecilia Barzyk diligently scans the internet to assemble as much trans-related information from the weekly news as possible.

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