The Week In Trans 7/10/17

| Jul 10, 2017

Links in TWIT will open in this window. To return to this page use the Back button on your browser. If the link opens in a new tab, close the tab to return to this page.

Chloe Anderson

Five transgender athletes agreed to be interviewed for a new miniseries that will appear on the Olympic Channel. The athletes are volleyball player Chloe Anderson, swimmer Schuyler Bailar, hockey player Harrison Brown, boxer Pat Manuel, and triathlete Chris Mosier. Each will get a separate episode. Outsports has more on this story.

The special session of the Texas state legislature starts next week. Speaker of the House Joe Straus has reiterated his opposition to a “bathroom bill.” He says he wants to “protect our economy from billions of dollars in losses and more importantly to protect the safety of some very vulnerable young Texans.” Back in May, when Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick tried to reword the State Senate’s version of the bill, Mr. Straus refused to even look at the new language, saying, “tell the lieutenant governor I don’t want the suicide of a single Texan on my hands.” You can read the relevant comments in a story on NewNowNext, or you can read the much larger article the comments come from in The New Yorker.

The Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has announced that they will hear the case of Gavin Grimm v. Gloucester School Board of Education on September 12. There had been concern that the court might find the case was made moot by Mr. Grimm’s graduation, but the announcement of a date for arguments means that the case will indeed progress. Metro Weekly has this story.

Bob The Drag Queen

This week will be a big week for Bob the Drag Queen of RuPaul’s Drag Race fame. Today (July 10, 2017) she is featured in two films that premier at OutFest, the Los Angeles LGBT film festival. First she will appear in a feature film about a “drag bar where dreams go to die” titled Cherry Pop. Then her standup comedy film Suspiciously Large Woman: Bob the Drag Queen Comedy Special premiers. She was interviewed in LA Weekly last week.

The California Fair Employment and Housing Council put new regulations into law on July 1. These new regulations cover transgender and gender non-conforming people at work and in housing, and specify name and pronoun use and gendered dress codes for employees. You can read more about it from the Transgender Law Center.

Last week, a court in New Jersey granted a name change for a teen who only had consent from one parent. Trevor’s parents are divorced, and have joint custody, although he lives mostly with his mother. While his father consented to a hormone blocker and later to testosterone treatment, he opposed the name change. The judge granted the name change anyway, and wrote a fairly lengthy opinion on why she did so. She seems to think that this sort of thing may come up in the future. This week, Professor Art Leonard published commentary to his blog in support of the decision. You can find the commentary, along with a summary of the case, here.

Aleshia Brevard

Aleshia Brevard, one of the first people to get a sex-change operation in the United States (back in 1962), has passed away. She worked at Finocchio’s as a female impersonator, then moved to the Los Angeles area, where she occasionally appeared in films and on television. She wrote two autobiographies and a novel after coming out publicly about her gender change. An obituary can be found on TransGriot.

The Church of England held a vote on Sunday, and the results were a landslide. 30 of 32 bishops voted for a resolution accepting transgender people. Clergy followed suit at a 127-28 rate, and the lay people involved in the synod approved the motion by 127-48.  The resolution calls for transgender people to be “welcomed and affirmed in their parish church,” and for the House of Bishops to “consider providing some nationally commended liturgical material which may be used in parish churches and chaplaincies” to help make transgender people feel welcome and affirmed.  ITV News has more on this.

Phillipa York

In 1984, Scottish cyclist Robert Millar became the first Brit to win a jersey at the Tour de France, receiving the polka-dot jersey as “king of the mountains.” The one-time competitor returns to cover the race as a commentator for ITV 4, but she is now known as Philippa York. This turn as commentator is the first time that the former cyclist has gone public about her gender change. The Scottish Sun is the source for this story.

Minor-league hockey teams in Ontario are now putting new policies into place which will make the league more accepting of transgender athletes and other LGBT people. Each team has until October 1 to put the policies in place, but Windsor has made a video about their new practices. The CBC has this story.


Gavin Russom, who plays the synthesizer for LCD Soundsystem, has come out as trans and has a new look while on tour in the U.S. She tells Grindr, “I’m the happiest I’ve ever been.” You can find the story in Grindr.

Australian director Jonathan Messer has spent the last four years making a documentary about four trans men from Perth. The film is entitled It’s Not Just Me, and that’s something that each of these trans men learnt while telling his story for the film. The Australian Broadcasting Company has this story.

The activist group Just Want Privacy again tried to put a measure on the ballot in the state of Washington which would overrule the state’s regulation which permits transgender people to use the restroom or changing room belonging to their preferred gender. And, for the second year in a row, they came up short of the number of signatures needed to put the proposal on the ballot. The Seattle Times has this story.

The ice cream company called Magnum has opened a pop-up store in London, and they announced that they will donate their proceeds from Pride weekend to Mermaids, the charity for transgender children. This story is found in Pink News.

A police officer in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is being brought before a review board for misgendering a trans woman. Although Shelby Kendall has legally changed her name and gender, when she was pulled over for a traffic violation, the officer identified her as male. The officer’s defense seems to be that he thought that the gender identification on the license was a typographical error. The officer is quoted as telling Ms. Kendall, “Well, for the purposes of this citation, you’re a male.” That quote, if accurate, indicates some amount of discussion between the officer and Ms. Kendall at the time that the ticket was issued. The Sun-Sentinal has more on this story.


Can a good Muslim Arab boy become a fabulous drag queen in Britain today? If you ask Amrou Al-Kadhi he will surely say “yes.” Al-Kadhi performs as the principle queen of his musical comedy drag troupe called Denim and has time to make films, write television shows and knock out articles for many publications. Learn more about him on the Step Feed website.

A transgender teenager is suing Hereford Cathedral School in the U.K. on the claim that they did not appropriately handle his gender change. He claim that staff and faculty claimed that his gender identity was just “a phase,” and refused to allow him to wear a boy’s uniform. A spokesperson for the school says that the faculty and staff were not made aware of a medical diagnosis confirming gender dysphoria. This story can be found in the Mirror.

The future of hair transplants may be in the hands, uh, manipulators, of robots. The ARTAS machine is the only robotic system that takes hair from the parts of the scalp that has live follicles and plants it in the spots where the hair has fallen out. The ARTAS robot is only available in Britain and a trans woman from Birmingham, Nicola Trahearn, turned to it and surgeon Dr. Ali Soueid in hopes that she could stop wearing wigs and have a full head of shoulder length hair. See many photos and a video taken during the procedure on the Daily Mail website.

Five university students in Hua Hin, Thailand, were suspended for their part in the hazing of a transgender student. During the incident, the student at Rajamangal University of Technology was blindfolded and made to remove her shirt and bra. The University has made it known that they take a dim view of theis sort of thing. Khaosod English carried this story.

Joyita Mondal

In 2010 Joyita Mondal was forced to sleep on a bus bench when she became homeless and no hotel would rent her a room because of her trans gender status. She vowed then to stand up for other trans people and last week she was chosen to be a judge on the National Lok Adalat, which is one of the alternative dispute redressal mechanisms that is available in India. Mondal was chosen to be a judge on the Adalat panel since she is a social worker. Learn more about her in The Times of India.

Police in Istanbul arrested seven transgender rights activists for parading around Taksim Square with rainbow flags. The local government had made it clear that they would not permit a pride gathering. Nonetheless, some showed up for what was supposed to be the Eighth Trans Pride March. Hurriyet Daily News has more on this story.

On a much happier note, Madrid held its Pride Parade, and hundreds of people showed up. Politicians from all sides of the political scene participated. Several people from other countries participated. You can read about it in Edge Media.

You remember that bus with the anti-transgender messages on it, which was in Spain and then in the U.S. and then back in Spain. It is now in Mexico, where the National Front for the Family has nicknamed it the “freedom bus.” Counter-protesters wrapped the front of the bus in a rainbow flag, with transparent fabric carrying the rainbow to the sides. While they are careful not to let the banner touch the bus itself, it still brings the message of opposition. Gay Star News has this story.

Hina Wong-Kalu

While Polynesian culture had a place for those with different gender expression, when the missionaries arrived in Hawaii their teaching began to erode the native culture and replace it with western ideas concerning sexuality and gender. Hawaiians have a word for those who express both masculine and feminine traits. They are called mahu. One modern day mahu. Hina Wong-Kalu, appears in a documentary on Netflix titled A Place In The Middle, and she says that there were no moral judgements applied to mahu until the missionaries arrived and introduced shame. Learn more about Hina and the documentary on the Breaking News website.

In Britain, H.M. Prison Frankland houses some of the most notorious prisoners in the country. It also houses several transgender prisoners, and thanks to recent reforms, the transgender prisoners are allowed to wear wigs. It is just one of many reforms; for example, they have made changes to accommodate inmates who are less mobile. However, wigs for transgender inmates seems to be the most eye-catching thing in the story in Chronicle Live.

One of the confusing things about changing genders is which medical tests one should get done. We all have heard stories of insurance company computers that reject certain tests because of the listed sex of the insured, but that presumes that the doctor was right in ordering the test. Which tests should the doctor order? Pink News has a summary of which tests are appropriate.


A transgender woman was rejected from donating at a Seattle plasma center. She claims that they are discriminating against her. The FDA did update its rules about blood donations in 2015, allowing donation from “men who have sex with men” if they had been celebate for one year. When the person taking her medical history discovered that she was taking estrogen, the person said, “Oh, so you were born a boy.” The prospective donor tried to explain what it means to be transgender, but the person doing the medical history addressed her as “sir” and started to use male pronouns. When it came to the question about sex, the person taking the history rejected the prospective donor on the grounds of being a “man who has sex with men.” The rejected donor has filed suit. For not following the rules of the FDA, the person who took the medical history gets a TWIT Award. The Stranger has this story.

Doug Mainwaring writes in his blog on LifeSiteNews that the murders of transgender people are not hate crimes caused by transphobia but rather the result of a lovers’ quarrels. Does it strike anyone else as odd that someone on a site called “LifeSiteNews” is trying to downplay the importance of some murders? The fact that he uses scare quotes around the word “transgender” further weakens his case. For being so unaware of how he is hurting his own argument, Doug Mainwaring gets a TWITAward. His writing can be found at LifeSiteNews.

The Daily Signal fell for the writing of Dr. Michelle Cretella. They show a picture of a woman in a lab coat looking at a girl, and it seems to be a doctor treating a patient, but Dr. Cretella does not have any patients. She has an office in which to see patients but she is no longer a pediatrician; she is now the head of the deceptively-named American College of Pediatricians (a group with less than 1% the membership of the American Academy of Pediatricians), and she seems to make a good bit of her money writing. She especially writes against treating transgender children with medicine, because the drugs are very dangerous and besides we don’t know which children will grow out of their gender issues and which won’t, so we ought to treat them all as if they’ll grow out of the gender issues. First of all, she is wrong about which drugs are used when, and she overstates possible side-effects. Secondly, she is wrong about being unable to predict desistance, but even if some patients do desist, the hormone blockers are quite reversible. For spreading lies (starting with her own current occupation), Dr. Michelle Cretella gets a TWIT. Her article can be found here.

Stella Morabito has a history of crackpot ideas regarding LGBT people. She apparently got paid for another of her silly theories. She wrote a piece about how Fred Rogers, the now-deceased children’s television host, would have dealt with an eight-year-old drag queen. She presumes that Mr. Rogers would naturally be appauled by such a person, though she give no instance in which Mr. Rogers ever had such a reaction to anyone. She also conflates drag with being LGBT, while also conflating sexual orientation with gender identity. The real Fred Rogers would have known that drag is a type of performance, and that the performer can have any sexual orientation and any gender identity. For making so many errors in her writing, Stella Morabito gets a TWIT Award, and for running her piece, The Federalist gets a TWIT as well. You can find the piece in the Federalist.

The Daily Caller gets a TWIT Award for a story titled “Asking If A Transgender Person Had Surgery Or Just Enjoys Crossdressing Is A ‘Microaggression’ Now.” Of course it’s a microaggression. And the first line of the story which contains these words; “. . .genital mutilation surgery. . .” is also a microagression. It just highlights that The Daily Caller and other right wing “news” outlets continue to look at gender reassignment as “mutilation” rather than as a way for trans people to be comfortable living in their true gender. What they see is mentally unstable people hiring crazy surgeons to cut off their penises. The rest of the article actually presents real facts about how harmful microaggressions such as this can be with just a bit of the Caller’s snark thrown in. You can read the article here.

A TWIT Award goes to some of the citizens of Boston who recently were up in arms about a Drag Queen Story Time event at the Boston Public Library. It wasn’t just that the drag queens were there reading stories to kids as young as 5, but what really put people’s panties in a twist was that the queens were dressed as nuns. But not really regular nuns. They were from The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence (which the news story referred to as a “drag act.” So much for getting all the facts) and their habits are exaggerated examples of true nun’s habits. One of the queens in the photo that got people riled up is not even in a habit and the other queen could be a Spanish señorita. So all you Bostonians who were upset, enjoy your TWIT. You can read the story on the Heatstreet website.

TWIT is compiled by Cecilia Barzyk with additional material and editing by Angela Gardner. To comment on a story login here and use the comment area below.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Category: 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.

Comments (1)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. lesleyanne says:

    Speaking of puberty blockers, the new season of “I Am Jazz” finds Jazz Jennings facing one known consequence of being on blockers for several years.

    She’s told by two SRS surgeons that the lack of testosterone production has (naturally) kept her penis from growing (good!) but it also means there is very little penile/scrotal tissue available to create the neo-vagina (not good!).

    The irony of the Law Of Unintended Consequences for many young trans girls is the blockers may end up sabotaging the superior bottom surgery outcomes they so desire.

    I hope parents of trans kids are being told of this negative ‘side effect’ of blocker therapy.