Saturday, 15 July 2017

Between the (Gender) Lines: the Science of Transgender Identity - Science in the News

First, some (controversial) definitions. It would be remiss to claim to be able to define or categorize all variations in human sexuality and gender (hence the continually lengthening acronyms used, sometimes tongue in cheek, by the community); one of the larger acronyms, LGBTQQIAAP, still humbly accepts that it is not all-inclusive. These lists, while not exhaustive, are exhausting. The labels are useful in some respects, much like any other label denoting origin or role – they help us navigate social situations and can often be signs of respect. It is a natural human inclination to categorize, but broad assumptions can also lead to stereotyping. To limit the scope of this article, we will focus on transgender identity...

Read more: Between the (Gender) Lines: the Science of Transgender Identity - Science in the News

Meet The Doctor Social Conservatives Depend On To Justify Anti-Transgender Hate

Conservatives champion McHugh as an expert on transgender identities, but his antiquated rhetoric and biased rejection of what transgender people experience set him drastically apart from the consensus of psychiatrists and the standards of care that best support transgender people’s health...

Read more:
Meet The Doctor Social Conservatives Depend On To Justify Anti-Transgender Hate at ThinkProgress

Sex redefined : Nature News & Comment

As a clinical geneticist, Paul James is accustomed to discussing some of the most delicate issues with his patients. But in early 2010, he found himself having a particularly awkward conversation about sex.

A 46-year-old pregnant woman had visited his clinic at the Royal Melbourne Hospital in Australia to hear the results of an amniocentesis test to screen her baby's chromosomes for abnormalities. The baby was fine — but follow-up tests had revealed something astonishing about the mother...

Read the rest of this article: Sex redefined : Nature News & Comment (published in 2015)

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

French ethics panel backs lesbian procreation help | Reuters

French ethics panel backs lesbian procreation help | Reuters

Campaigners for lesbian motherhood got a significant boost in France on Tuesday when a panel of ethics specialists said that female couples and single women should be granted access to sperm-donor techniques of medically assisted reproduction.

The recommendation from the National Consultative Committee on Ethics (CCNE) comes two months after President Emmanuel Macron promised to legislate on access to medically assisted procreation for lesbians if elected.

The all-clear from CCNE, a panel which deliberates on sweeping societal changes made possible by the progress of science, brings France a step closer to the biggest gay rights reform since same-sex marriage was legalised in 2013.

A group1 that spearheaded months of protests before the legalisation of gay marriage denounced the view of the ethics committee. It urged Macron in a statement not to launch what it said would be a "futile" debate on the issue.

It cited a poll by Opinionay2 survey which found earlier this month that 77 percent of respondents answered "yes" when asked if they felt the state should guarantee the right of children born through medically assisted techniques to a mother and a father3.

Medically assisted procreation is widely available in places such as Britain, Belgium and Spain but it is reserved in France to heterosexual couples, with most or all of the bill paid for by public healthcare funds.

France was the 14th country in the world to legalise gay marriage.

The CCNE, which is made up of a rotating membership of 39 people representing the main religions as well as ethics experts and scientific researchers, was created by late President Francois Mitterrand in 1983.

Gay rights group SOS Homophibie welcomed its recommendation and called on Macron to legislate rapidly.

The CCNE said it opposed recourse to surrogate mothers, one of the only ways gay male couples could aspire to parenting, though they can adopt.

(Reporting by Sophie Louet, Brian Love and Cyril Camu, editing by Pritha Sarkar)

1. Manif Pour Tous, an exceptionally virulent and homo/transphobic manifestation of the religious far right. It became an official political party in 2015 but has yet to present any candidates for election as far as we know.
2. A typo for Opinionway
3. The question was "Do you believe the State should guarantee the right to have a father and a mother for children conceived via medically assisted procreation?"

Thursday, 25 May 2017

An Open Letter To Those Praising The New York Times ‘Tomboy’ Piece

Why do we need to have a conversation about the harms of gender norms that does so through the lens of affirming one’s not-trans-ness?
Well worth reading to the end: An Open Letter To Those Praising The New York Times ‘Tomboy’ Piece

Wendy Davis: Texas Lawmakers Are Bullying Transgender Youth

Just a couple of weeks ago, as the Texas legislature entered the final days of its legislative session, House lawmakers from both sides of the aisle came together, tearfully, to pledge their support for “David’s Law,” a bill that addresses cyberbullying. Named for a San Antonio teen who took his own life after being bullied, the law would require public schools to establish cyberbullying policies and systems for anonymous reports.

As Republican State Rep. Wayne Faircloth said, speaking in favor of the bill: “It is time to treat each other with respect, and that starts here in this House… We have to set the example here. It’s how we treat each other. It’s how we walk. It’s how we talk. It’s how we listen to seek to understand, to make a difference.”

Just 10 days later, some of those very same lawmakers became the bullies... Wendy Davis: Texas Lawmakers Are Bullying Transgender Youth at