放浪息子 Hourou Musuko (often translated as Wandering Son) is one of the better depictions of transgender life in manga and anime (and maybe in any medium). It's a slice of life drama about two young people who are trans and starting middle school in Japan. The manga is being published in English by Fantagraphics, and the anime is officially licensed in English subs on Crunchyroll. [more inside]
Kristin Beck, a former Navy Seal who was once a member of Seal Team 6, has just published a memoir Warrior Princess in which she describes her journey to coming out as transgender. Reports on the book and Beck are at the Atlantic Wire and SOFREP. [more inside]
Since February of this year, Autostraddle ("News, Entertainment, Opinion and Girl-On-Girl Culture") has been running a very interesting series of articles about trans experience (primarily focused on trans women) called Trans*Scribe. [more inside]
Against Me! frontwoman Laura Jane Grace talks about her first year as a woman since publically coming out as transgender last year. She'll address it further on Against Me!'s upcoming album, Transgender Dysphoria Blues. Laura Jane has already played the title track live, along with other songs from it like Osama bin Laden as the Crucified Christ. The album may have been delayed by the departure of their fourth drummer, Jay 'son of Max' Weinberg. Punknews has officially endorsed Mikey Erg as a replacement.
37-year-old Transgender MMA fighter Fallon Fox recently came out as transgender during an interview with Sports Illustrated. She also doesn't believe she and other transgender MMA fighters should have to disclose their medical history to would-be opponents. Fox, 2-0 in MMA, was born a man but underwent gender reassignment surgery and began supplemental hormonal therapy in 2006. [more inside]
Today, November 20, is the Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day to remember all the people who've been killed in the past year out of transphobia. As before, the vast majority are poor trans women of color. Also as before, the true numbers are almost certainly far higher than the reported numbers. Ceremonies are being held around the world; see the website for details.
Miss Gender — A Video Podcast About my Transition From One Gender to Another [via mefi projects] [more inside]
Earlier this week, the Republicans in the Minnesota House of Representatives asked Bradlee Dean to give the morning prayer. [more inside]
Yesterday was the Transgender Day of Remembrance. In the past year, at least 29 people have been killed out of transphobia. The vast majority were poor trans women of color. One was a baby, killed because the father perceived the child to not be masculine enough. It's almost certain that the real numbers of dead are much, much higher.
None On Record - Stories of Queer Africa. After the brutal 2004 murder of FannyAnn Eddy, founder of the Sierra Leone Lesbian and Gay Association, native South African Selly Thiam decided to start recording the stories of African GLBTs both on the continent and in the diaspora. The result is a growing oral document of "the hopes, struggles, challenges and joy of being a QLGBT African - in their own voices". [more inside]
Yesterday, US President Obama signed a $680bn military policy bill, which cuts military spending, including $2bn in funding for new F-22 fighter jets. However, the bill also contained the first major piece of federal gay rights legislation, and fulfilled an Obama campaign promise: acts of violence against gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people have now been added to the list of federal hate crimes.
Mercedes Allen looks at who's in charge of deciding the fate of Gender Identity Disorder in the DSM-IV. The APA (American Psychological Association) has announced it's intention to revise the DSMV (Diagnosis and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). The expert they've named to chair revisions on sexuality and gender is Kenneth Zucker. Zucker is the major remaining proponent of Reparative Therapy for LGBT folks. [more inside]
In 1974 - or 1976, depending who you ask - Armistead Maupin began writing "an extended love letter to a magical San Francisco” in the form of a serialized, fictional drama published originally in the Pacific Sun, the San Francisco Chronicle and the San Francisco Examiner, originally called "The Serial" which then became collectively known as Tales of The City. It is a suprisingly beautiful, deep, emotional, cosmopolitan and lasting tale about life in San Francisco in the turbulent, heady days of the 1970s and 1980s. Widely credited with and cherished for helping spread a little of the openess, tolerance and acceptance that San Francisco is now famous for. It then became a series of books - Tales of the City, More Tales of the City, Further Tales of the City, Babycakes, Significant Others, Sure of You - and lastly, the spin-off tale of Michael Tolliver Lives. Almost exactly twenty years after first publishing, it then became an excellent miniseries from the United Kingdom's Channel 4, which aired in the United States on PBS, but not without protest or limitations. [more inside]
Up for consideration is the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which has been written to provide a comprehensive Federal prohibition of employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Last week, Barney Frank released a Statement saying that it is a mistake to continue seeking inclusion of "gender identity" as part of the Act. Or to put it in other words, there'd be protections for only the "GLB" part of the larger "GLBT community". [more inside]
Boys Don't Cry increased the visibility of female-to-male transsexuals with its shocking story of Brandon Teena. Previously a historical footnote, they've since used the Internet to come into their own, building communities (some geared towards TG youth and families of TGs | 2) and disseminating information, including practical resources such as how to pass as a man in public, standing to pee and shaving guides. Many have come out as transgender and lead successful lives as men. Personal stories include blogs and audio biographies. I can't fail to mention the first male porn star with a pussy, Buck Angel. (Wikipedia) Meanwhile, a debate rages in the lesbian community.
Official transgender blessings -- Kulanu -- the newly-revised manual for LGBT issues and ceremonies put out by the Union for Reform Judaism (1.5 million US Jews are Reform) now includes 2 blessings (written by a Rabbi now male) for those transitioning and who have completed the change, alongside the already existing same sex marriage liturgy and other documents and procedures. A first? (blessings text inside)
"Brandon Teena lived and loved as a man. For that, she paid with her life." Exactly ten years ago today , John Lotter and Tom Nissen hunted down Teena Brandon on a quiet farm near Humboldt, Nebraska (just west of Falls City) and brutally murdered her along with two of her friends (Lisa Lambert and Phillip DeVine), leaving only an eight-month old baby at the bloody crime scene. They had raped her that Christmas and when she reported it to Richardson County Sheriff, Charles Laux (currently working at the Tecumseh prison, where Lotter is ironically housed), she was subjected to a humiliating line of questioning that the Nebraska State Supreme Court would later call "beyond all possible bounds of decency". No action was taken to apprehend the cowardly pair until it was too late. [more inside]
First Gay/Lesbian/Bisexual/Transgender public high school to open in New York City. "I think everybody feels that it's a good idea because some of the kids who are gays and lesbians have been constantly harassed and beaten in other schools." says NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, but couldn't the same argument have been used against the racial integration of schools in the 1950s?
Remembering Our Dead: An online memorial to honor "those who were killed due to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice." The list includes Marsha Johnson - a key participant in the 1969 Stonewall Riots - as well as the recently murdered Gwen Araujo (whose funeral was thoughtfully blogged by Philo at East West). November 20th was the 4th Annual Transgender Day of Remembrance.
NYC Police Arrest Transgender Man for Using Men's Restroom The first link is just a post-arrest picture of riot cops and protestors. Read the story here.