Just thought this was worth posting.
Modern Science has investigated a phenomena that has existed since before Jesus was born, in which people would not identify with the gender and body with which they were born.
In some societies they were called two spirited, and were shamans and holy people, in others they were a recognised third gender and appeared in the original creation myth. In Rome there were the Cybelle where transgendered women would have primative surgery and serve as priestesses to their Goddess….
What modern science first learned was that people who suffered from Body/Brain gender disconnect, known as Gender Identity Disorder could be helped by hormones, and then by gender conforming surgery.
Then when we started examining the brains of deceased transgendered individuals we found brain structures identical to those found in their identified gender (i.e. female for mtf).
Finally when our brain imaging technology finally caught up, we were able to example the living brains of pre-hormonal therapy transgender people and find absolute and irrefutable proof that their brains are structured like the brains of their identified gender even with no hormone therapy.
That is what modern science has taught us.
I came across this video by sillyyetsuccinct about the policy of forcing that transgender swedes be forced to not only undergo sterilisation but also make sure that they have no chance to have genetic children if they want to get a female marker on their swedish governmental records.
We are always told about how progressive and liberal Sweden is on pretty much every issue, from gay rights to taxation. But this is an unduly cruel law, and its not an accidental one, given that it requires that any frozen eggs, sperm or embryos be destroyed as well.
I’m a transwoman, but I made the choice prior to taking hormones, to freeze some sperm, which aside from the fun of a woman having to jump through all the donation hoops, was something I felt was important to me. I know many transwomen who regretted not taking that step when they could.
At the time I felt like I should keep the options open, but now I’m very much of the mind that I want to have a family, and if they are my genetic children, all the better.
If someone had said to me, that in order to change my passport/drivers license/important documents, I would have had to destroy my genetic material, I would have had to make an impossible choice, either I could have an easier life where I didn’t need to wear a transgender badge on my sleeve OR I could have the possibility of having my own children.
Now I’m sure that out there, that there are people who would blurt out “well you want to be a freak, you shouldn’t breed” or “you shouldn’t be allowed to inflict your lifestyle on children”. but thankfully they aren’t the ones making the decisions, its supposedly liberal politicians and bureaucrats who have determined that quite literally a “sacrifice” is required to perform the voodoo of changing your gender marker.
I know I’m not swedish, and living in the UK I get a moducum of basic legal protections and rights, every single record reflects my correct gender, and I have jumped through the hoops to be able to potentially have my own genetic children.
However its (hopefully unintentional) eugenics targeted against trans-people and it should not be in any country, let alone a country that prides itself on its liberal progressive credentials.
Consider, for a moment, the following story:
“But how did you know?”: Oh that age old question asked just one more time, and never for the last.
They sighed. A sigh so softly expressed so many times. A sigh so soft and understated that only a person accustomed to such moments would understand it. Barely visible to the casual observer, those in the know would recognise their hearts sinking as they prepared to answer the inevitable and recurring question. At least they weren’t being asked about the configuration of their genitals or their sexual preferences though. They’d been spared that indignity on this occasion. It was at least a tolerable question, and once more they found their selves giving out the very personal details of their personal childhoods.
“I always got on better with boys,” he said, “and then when puberty hit it was a nightmare. I just knew I had to do something, but I didn’t know what”.
“Oh, it was a bit like that for me to,” she interjected, “except I got on better with the girls. I used to like playing with dolls but my parents would take them from me when they caught me. My mum caught me using her makeup once. I guess I was just born this way.”
Why? Why, oh why, oh why must we go through this standard narrative again, and again and again? Yes, I’m as guilty as anyone of this, but surely this is the sort of thing we should be telling our nearest and dearest -should there be a cause or desire for them to know- and not random strangers or acquaintances? If you actually like answering these questions and the ‘standard narrative’ applies to you, then sure, why not… but for the rest of us: Why?
Really speaking, this pretty much applies to LGB people as much as it does to trans people. We collectively feel the need to justify our existence by offering narratives, terminology and ideas that can be readily digested by the rest of society. We explain our histories and our existences according to the frameworks provided for us, which are inevitably designed to fit in with the pre-ordained rules of a hetero-normative society. We often seem to instinctively try to avoid standing out, and instead try to shape ourselves to fit the mold at the expense of our own unique individualities. Not even cissexual people their selves are immune to this effect, from the schoolyard bullies, to the neighborhood yobs and interest groups hitting out at and questioning anything that poses the smallest challenge to the normative status quo, marking it as somehow different and inferior by its mere existence. For LGBT people though, there’s a difference – we tend to accept it, consciously or not, as being part and parcel of being LGBT, and it runs right the way through society.
While anti-abortionists claim that a woman’s right to do as she likes with her body is superseded by the rights of the unborn child in a similarly vitriolic battle over what choice women should have over their bodies, the argument against LGBT people is predicated differently. It is based on the idea that we, in ourselves, are disgusting and morally wrong simply for our very existences… and I ask – why? Why must we be special cases having to explain our origins? Why should we be subject to attempts to cure us? Why should we be considered as worth anything less than anybody else because of who we are in spite of the fact that we do nothing wrong, and nothing to harm anybody else? Ironically, there is even a section of the feminist community that believes in a person’s choice over their own body, and yet would deny trans people that choice – one feminist famously wanted to “mandate trans people out of existence”. The anti-choice argument at least contains some kernel of reason (whether you agree with it or not), whereas the argument against LGBT equality does not. Such a lack of reason was seen recently in the UK, where a popular soap opera showed two men cuddling in bed and provoked outrage from some quarters, while hetero-centric casual sex, violence, threats and even rape have been deemed unworthy of complaint by the same people.
This argument that we are some kind of scourge on society, and that we’re somehow exotic or explicit material that should be kept out of the eyes of children spurs us on to justify ourselves with a whole host of purported medical, evolutionary, sociological, genetic, or psychological reasons. In doing so, we are the ones that create our own oppression. Instead of standing up to such questions, and instead of requesting the civil courtesy of the respect afforded to everyone else, we give in. In giving in and answering their questions with narratives that fit their views, we perpetuate a cycle where they feel they have the right to ask. They feel they have a right to know. A right to pry. A right that wouldn’t exist anywhere else, and thus lends itself to a sense of the normal vs the abnormal, which of course transforms itself into issues of right or wrong, above and below, inferiority and superiority. We hand them power. We give them privilege over us, and all by trying to fit into their world, rather than staking our place and our claim on our already being a part of their world,