Tuesday, April 22, 2014

News Bea*lletin

Yesterday, The Daily Northwestern's cover story was a piece called "Gender Open," detailing the current status of Northwestern University's provisions for their transgender students.  I was interviewed for the article.  I am happy to see cis- and transgender people alike recognizing the importance of these issues at a large institution like Northwestern.  If you don't have access to the physical newspaper (that has a pretty nifty photo of me in it), you can at least read the text itself here.

On a more global note, India has legally recognized a third gender option!  Yay progress!  Unfortunately, the article has some ignorant language issues—please only ever use transgender as an adjective and not as a noun; please never say transvestite again—but from some of my own research that I've done into India's hijra population, it is a comprehensive look at some of the key obstacles that transgender people face.  Unfortunately too, they are obstacles that parallel those of too many other countries, including our own.  You can check out that article here (shout out to my father for passing this along to me).

Also, in case you missed this one a couple months ago, Australia recently legalized a third gender option as well, following a lengthy court trial in which one Australian, Norrie, wanted to change their (always the safest pronoun to use when you aren't sure what they prefer) gender to "non-specific."  You can read more about that here.

It is important to keep in mind, of course, that although these laws are definitely cause for celebration, there are certainly many more than three gender options in life, and it would be nice to see some more governments reflect that in legislation.  Perhaps that even means getting rid of gender and sex bubbles altogether.

Nevertheless, this is an exciting time we live in.  Respect for transgender people grows by the day.  Our rights arrive slowly but they aren't stopping.

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