The Week In Trans 5/3/21

| May 3, 2021
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In an address to a joint session of Congress, President Joe Biden said, “To all the transgender Americans watching at home–especially the young people who are so brave–I want you to know that your president has your back.” He then encouraged Congress to pass the Equality Act. Buzzfeed News has this story. Thanks to Alyssa Washington for a link to this and other stories.

Stella Keating

Stella Keating, the transgender 16-year-old who spoke to the Senate Judiciary Committee in support of the Equality Act, got to speak with First Lady Jill Biden. She was among the First Lady’s virtual guests of honor at the address, as KING-TV points out.

On the plus side, in North Carolina, the transgender sports bill has been set aside, not to be brought up again in this legislative session. The AP’s story can be found at WLOS-TV.

South Carolina seemed to reject the bill regarding transgender athletes, but it came back to the House Judiciary Committee again, which again failed to find the votes to send the legislation on to the floor of the House. Them has the story.

Governor Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania has promised that he will veto that state’s bill on transgender athletes, if it passes. When Republicans objected, he said that he would also extend Title IX protections to include protection against discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation. Thanks to Alyssa Washington for a link to this story.

A federal judge threw out the lawsuit which would have forced Connecticut to forbid transgender girls from participating on girls’ sports teams. Before you celebrate too much, there are two caveats. The plaintiffs, and their lawyers, are likely to file a motion with an appeals court, asking that the suit be reinstated. Also, while this ruling says that a state cannot be forced to forbid transgender females from participating in girls’ athletics, it does not say that a state cannot pass a law to forbid transgender females from girls athletics; it may be up to the states how to handle the issue. NBC News has the AP’s story.

In Runner’s World, Nikki Hiltz explained how running helped them to come out as transgender and non-binary.

In Louisiana, Governor John Bel Edwards told the legislature he would veto a bill restricting transgender health care to minors, if such a bill was passed. The sponsor of the bill still wants to go ahead with the bill, but has agreed to defer it. The Advocate of Baton Rouge has this story.

More news about anti-transgender legislation being proposed and enacted in state legislatures can be found here.

Two suicide prevention groups in the U.S. have come out with a statement pleading with lawmakers to stop trying to ban transgender health care for minors. The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention and The Trevor Project both said that such legislation would lead to an increase in suicide attempts among transgender youth. This story comes from PinkNews.

The American Medical Association sent a letter to governors, urging them to veto bans on transgender medicine for treatment of gender dysphoria in minors. The letter calls such bans a “dangerous governmental intrusion.” NBC News has this story, while the letter can be found at The AMA website.

In spite of this request from the AMA, a bill in Texas would define the medical treatment of gender dysphoria in minors as “child abuse.” The Texas Senate passed the bill, 18-12, on Tuesday, as The Texas Tribune reports.

The Austin American-Statesman reports on a rally outside the state capitol in Austin, which protested the bills targeting transgender people.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court voted against allowing Texas to file a complaint about the state of California banning state sponsored travel to Texas. While that ban was in response to a Texas law concerning adoption by LGBTQ people, a similar travel ban was proposed by New York legislators, in response to a ban on medical care for transgender minors. This story comes from LGBTQ Nation.

Jace King

Jace King is a transgender male who was profiled by KTRK-TV for being the first transgender Eagle Scout in his community. Thanks to Alyssa Washington for a link to this and other stories.

As Alabama continues to consider the possibility of forbidding doctors from medically treating gender dysphoria in minors, a billboard went up along Highway 208 in Birmingham, with the message, “Protect Alabama Trans Kids” imposed over the transgender pride flag. Them has this report.

As Alabama’s legislature continues to consider a transgender medical bill, the state has updated its sex education requirements. Teachers will no longer be forced to state that “homosexuality is not a lifestyle acceptable to the general public.” This comes as other states are allowing parents to opt out of allowing their children to attend sex education classes which “promote” the “LGBTQ+ lifestyle”. this story comes from them.

Dr. Robert N. Minor, a Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of Kansas, writes about why transgender people are suddenly the object of legislation in an essay for Whosoever.

In a virtual address to the National Press Club, Jaime Harrison, the chair of the Democratic National Committee, said that Republicans are obsessed with transgender people because they don’t have any substantive issues to discuss. The Advocate has this story.

The state of Ohio has finally put forth a plan to allow transgender people to update the sex listed on their birth certificates. Last December, a federal court ruled that the state should permit such changes, and this week, the state decided to put a policy in place by June 1, rather than appeal that decision. This story comes from NBC News.

Tiara Banks

Tiara Banks was found dead in her car in Chicago. She had been shot multiple times. She was 24, and is the third Black transgender woman killed in Chicago since last Christmas. Them has this story.

Natalia Lopez, also known as Natalia Smut, was a transgender woman and drag performer from Northern California. She was stabbed to death this week. Police have arrested a suspect in connection with her murder. This story comes from The Advocate.

Tiffany Thomas, who presented as female, was found shot to death in a Dallas car wash. Friends of the deceased say she identified as transgender, though family say she did not. Unfortunately, media such as CBS Dallas side with the family, while LGBTQ Nation list the victim as transgender.

In Reims, France, the body of Paula Migeon, a 50-year-old transgender woman, was found in the ashes of a fire. She had been stabbed, and her apartment torched. Details can be found in PinkNews.

Ashley Diamond

The U.S. Justice Department has come out in support of Ashley Diamond, a transgender woman who says she was raped while in a men’s prison in Georgia. In a Statement of Interest, the Department of Justice wrote that the official position of the U.S. is that housing transgender women in men’s prisons may be risky behavior and could, in some cases, violate the Eighth Amendment ban on cruel and unusual punishment. Buzzfeed News has this story.

A story from Stars And Stripes describes how transgender members of the U.S. military, including Major Alivia Stehlik, fared during the ban imposed by the Trump administration, and how they are doing under President Biden.

A military veteran in North Carolina says that she lost her job with UberEats because customers complained about having their food delivered by a transgender person. PinkNews has her story.

The Marsha P. Johnson Institute distributed $250,000 to Black transgender women who have been impacted by COVID-19. This story comes from them.

Elliot Page

Elliot Page sat down for an interview with Vanity Fair. He says that, since coming out, he has had a huge increase in creativity. He also says that the biggest difference is just being able to exist.

Elliot Page also sat for an interview with Oprah Winfrey. He said, “It’s an incredible sensation. . .I feel like I haven’t gotten to be myself since I was 10 years old.” The CBC has this story.

After the interview with Elliot Page, Oprah Winfrey said that she saw more clearly how badly transgender people are treated by Hollywood. This story comes from PinkNews.

A new study released this week shows again that socially-transitioned youth have rates of anxiety and depression that are nearly identical to those of cisgender people the same age. So, those high rates of depression and anxiety found in transgender youth must be in those who are not socially transitioned. Psychiatry Advisor has this story.

A survey by the American Psychological Association shows that an increasing percentage of teenagers are out to their parents about their gender identity or sexual orientation. Approximately 2/3 have told their mother or female guardian, while almost half have told their father or male guardian. The same survey found that bullying is still a problem, perhaps more-so than ever.

A new study shows that gender-affirming surgeries improve mental health outcomes among transgender people. JAMA Network has the study, while there is a story about it in them.

An article in Medical News today asks whether transgender females can get periods. The answer is that some transgender women have some symptoms which are also symptoms of PMS or premenstrual dysphoric disorder.

A new transgender studies center in Chicago wants to counter misinformation and the lack of research led by transgender people. This caught the attention of The Chicago Tribune.

Last week at the Oscars, Mia Neal took home the award for Best Actress for her performance in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. During her acceptance speech, she said, “I can picture Black trans women standing up here, and Asian sisters, and our Latina sisters, and Indigenous women. And I know that one day it won’t be unusual or groundbreaking, it will just be normal.” LGBTQ Nation has this shout-out.

Laverne Cox in her Oscars dress.

Laverne Cox was at the Oscars. She wore a dress made of over 1,000 yards of pink tulle. It was stunning, as PinkNews notes.

The final season of Pose premiered this past weekend. Producer Steven Canals said that the plan all along was to do three seasons. Out explains.

Janet Mock is speaking out about her problems with the production team of Pose. LGBTQ Nation has this story.

The movie Together Together has opened. Transgender actress Patti Harrison talked about the movie in an interview with Vogue.

Together Together did not set out to have a queer vibe, but it got one anyway. Writer-director Nicole Beckwith talked about that in an interview with them.

A new transgender romance movie called Port Authority has Martin Scorsese on the production team. Leyna Bloom plays the transgender woman. this story appears in The Advocate.

Beverly Glenn-Copeland is a trans male musician. Them has an in-depth look at his career and music.

An editorial in them calls on celebrities to take up the cause of transgender rights.

Four teenagers have written three new books, one about being transgender, one about being non-binary, and one about being inclusive. The New York Times has this story..


Symone talked about winning RuPaul’s Drag Race season 13 and more. This story appears in them.

Honey Mahogany, a Black transgender woman who competed on RuPaul’s Drag Race, is running to chair the San Francisco Democratic Party. The Advocate has this story.

London Trans Pride is planning its event for the weekend of June 26. This year, the theme will be Marching Against the Rising Tide of Hate in the U.K. The event was born three years ago, in response to an incident in which an anti-trans group was accidentally given permission to lead Pride in London. This story comes from them.

British intersex activist Roshaante Anderson tells UNILAD that he lives as a man because men get “so much more respect.” He reminds people that intersex individuals are part of the LGBTQ+ community, even if the I does not always get included in the acronym. PinkNews has this story.

Many stories in British media has been less sympathetic towards transgender people than they seem to be towards anti-transgender groups. The Good Law Project has been fighting against such forces as the LGB Alliance. PinkNews has this story.

The Halton Catholic School Board in Ontario told its schools that they could not fly the rainbow flag in support of LGBTQ+ students. All nine of the schools expressed their support for LGBTQ+ students on social media. This story comes from LGBTQ Nation.

Sapir Berman

A soccer referee from Israel, Sapir Berman, has come out as transgender. She has been a referee for a decade, and she says that many players treat her as a woman since she made her announcement. The AP’s story can be found at ESPN.

The Republic of North Macedonia has drafted a law which would make it easier for transgender people to receive legal recognition of their gender. PinkNews has this story.

Colombia is experiencing a national strike, and LGBTQ protestors are making themselves seen during the event. Colombia has been the scene of violence against transgender people, as LGBTQ Nation points out.

Honduras has had a nasty problem with LGBTQ rights, with several transgender women meeting violent deaths. The New York Times has a long piece about this.

In New South Wales, a bill regarding teaching students about LGBTQ people has attracted much attention. A Catholic bishop in the area announced this week that his diocese is opposed to the bill, as it marginalizes LGBTQ people. This story comes from Catholic Outlook.

In Britain, a ruling of the Equality Act is under appeal. Maya Forstater and her lawyer are asking for the right to call transgender women “men.” This is the subject of four different articles in PinkNews.

An editorial in The Advocate points out that several new state laws, and the writings of such people as Andrew Sullivan and Terry Schilling, seem to say that the problem is not so much transgender people but rather transitioning. (The new bathroom bill in Tennessee seems to be running contrary to this, but perhaps it is an old-fashioned outlier.)

Caitlyn Jenner

We reported last week on Caitlyn Jenner’s run for governor of California. This week, Vox reports that her campaign is finding little support among transgender people (as if we speak with a unified voice), while LGBTQ Nation reports that even Fox News is not onboard with her campaign.

Jamie Jara is the mother of a transgender daughter. She wonders how she should respond when her daughter asks why people hate transgender people so much. She writes in them that she is through debating her daughter’s right to exist.


Chris Attig is the father of a transgender child in Arkansas. He recently testified in front of the Arkansas state legislature about his experiences raising a transgender child. As he left the hearing, he was arrested. He was charged with exceeding his time limit by thirty seconds. Within the hearing, he was interrupted with the message that his time was up, and his microphone was cut off. So, lawmakers would have had trouble hearing what he was saying, but he was arrested for saying it, anyway. For not even making a pretense of listening, those who had Chris Attig arrested get a TWIT Award. This story comes from Law And Crime.

James Talarico, a former teacher, tried to explain to Texas lawmakers that their bills regarding transgender people assume a hard-and-fast binary of chromosomes–either XX or XY, and nothing else. He pointed out that modern science acknowledges chromosome arrangements–X, XX, XY, XXY, XYY, and XXXY. Beth Stelzer, president of Save Women’s Sports, replied, “They are dimorphic: XX, XY. The other ‘sexes’ mentioned are disorders of sexual development and are variants of XX or XY chromosomes. They are disorders of male or female.” For rejecting actual science in favor of her prejudice, and for referring to using the word “disorder” to describe something which is perfectly natural, Beth Stelzer gets a TWIT Award. PinkNews has this story.

Michael Smurro, a vice-principal in New Jersey, is being investigated after an incident in which his wife shouted at a woman whom she identified as transgender for using the restroom, and he threw a beer at the person involved. For verbal and physical abuse of someone due to their own prejudice, Michael and Lisa Smurro get a TWIT Award. This story can be found in NJ.Com.

Sam Johnson was the CEO of VisuWell, a telehealth company based in Tennessee. He was fired when a video of him harassing a gay male teen in a prom dress. Mr. Johnson called the teen “stupid” and said they “look like an idiot.” For harassment, Sam Johnson gets a TWIT Award. NBC News.

Medscape has an article with the title, “Transgender Teens: Is The Tide Turning?” The same article appears in Web MD with the title, “Transition Therapy for Transgender Teens Drives Divide.” The article starts out with a mention of the Keira Bell decision, with no mention of the fact that the decision is about to be reviewed on appeal by the High Court, nor that the court has already modified the restrictions that followed from that decision. They then talk to a Dr. Will Malone, who founded a group of doctors which calls itself “the Society for Evidence-Based Gender Medicine,” despite the fact that the group ignores evidence that goes against its predetermined stance regarding transgender teens. The article also mentions the side-effects of hormone blockers, while failing to mention the degree to which these may occur, and also omits the fact that hormone blockers were initially designed for cisgender children who were showing signs of puberty at an early age. Although the article eventually talks to Dr. Joshua Safer of Mount Sinai Hospital and the Endocrine Society, it has first presented the ideas of Late Onset Gender Dysphoria and Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria–neither of which is recognized by any medical society with even 1,000 members. The article comes in a week when the American Medical Association wrote to governors urging them to veto legislation that would punish doctors for medically treating gender dysphoria in minors. It also comes in the same week another study found that social transition is associated with better mental health outcomes, and another study associated gender confirmation surgeries with better mental health outcomes–both studies that add to the evidence-based support for medical treatment of gender dysphoria in minors. For fabricating a medical trend against what the AMA, the American Psychological Association, and the Endocrine Society consider best practices, the authors of this paper get a TWIT Award.

TWIT is assembled by Cecilia Barzyk with additional content and editing by Angela Gardner. Care to make a comment on this post? Login here and use the comment area below.

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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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