Blog dedicated primarily to randomly selected news items; comments reflecting personal perceptions

Monday, June 01, 2015

Gender Neutrality

"Birth certificates (may) give false information about people and characterize them in a way that is actually wrong, that assumes to be right, and causes people ... actual harm."
"It's considered true and infallible when it isn't."
Morgane Oger, Vancouver transgendered woman
Morgane Oger, chair of the Trans Alliance Society: “Birth certificates (may) give false information about people and characterize them in a way that is actually wrong.”
Ben Nelms for National Post   Morgane Oger, chair of the Trans Alliance Society: “Birth certificates (may) give false information about people and characterize them in a way that is actually wrong.”
"That means that children are raised 'as' the birth-assigned gender, which is a crazy-making experience. Instead of living in a social reality that recognizes that gender develops, and does not exist at birth, those children have nothing to work with except that something feels profoundly wrong."
"Getting to the stage of being able to 'change' gender is an anguishing process, in which a child often experiences severe pushback from their own families."
barbara findlay, Vancouver human rights lawyer

"Harriette was mistakenly assigned the gender 'male' at birth. Having any gender marker on her birth certificate has contributed significantly to discrimination based on her gender, at school and in the world."
"Since it is impossible to tell an individual's gender at birth it is discriminatory to issue a birth certificate with that information on it."
Colin and Megan Cunningham, parents of Harriette
Sandy Aitken
Sandy Aitken   Harriette Cunningham had her gender re-designated on her birth certificate last year.

A year ago it was the introduction in some Vancouver schools of gender-neutral pronouns, changing vocabularies describing gender that appears so offensive to the LGBT community. Effectively turning social cultural norms upside down to satisfy the mewling demands of people challenged in their gender orientation by assuming a gender persona unreflective of their physical appearance at birth who appear to resent that their emotional trauma, real or induced, is of little interest to people who experience no such unsettling disequilibrium.
“Trans and gender non-conforming children have a legal right to be safe at schools,” said Morgane Oger, who is transgender and a parent of two school-aged children. Oger is one of the spokespeople for the BC Safer Schools Coalition (, which has formed to support the proposed changes to the School Board’s current LBGT policy.
The policy being considered was developed over three years by a subcommittee of the Vancouver School Board that had representatives from all education stakeholders including parents, students, teachers, unions, and administration.   It recommends, for example, that trans and gender non-conforming students be accommodated in their use of preferred pronouns, reducing sex-segregated activities, creating gender-neutral washrooms and change rooms wherever possible, and where there are gendered facilities, permitting students to use the facility which conforms most closely with their gender identity. Students are entitled to confidentiality with respect to their gender identity; and will not be referred for ‘reparative therapy’.
And that's another thing; transgendered, lesbian, queer, gay people whose affinities are inborn do not take kindly to any thought in the general public that their condition is other than representative of the 'norm'. The problem here is that these issues are private ones of an intensely intimate personal nature. Why, how and however people wish to express themselves should be kept private, for it is no one else's business. And in fact, other than the kind of social deviants who make life miserable for those with 'differences', the general public doesn't really care to know.

Perhaps it's an emotional, pathological backlash by people who have suffered harshly by the normal majority for whom homosexuality and all the other differences in gender assignment by inheritance or acceptance in the past when those not burdened by such differentiation gender realities maligned and often violently attacked those in the LGBT community that has the denizens of that community insisting that the general society change itself to align its values with that of the LGBTs. A bit of whimsical arrogance born of spite.

But it seems to work. It is the emotional blackmail of guilt, it is pay-back time. Where at one time society insisted that those in the LGBT community change themselves to reflect normalcy, now those in the LGBT community demand that those who are 'normal', alter their opinions, their behaviours, their priorities and their values to fall in line with those of the LGBT community, as a measure to give them the respect they have long been denied. That respect would be far better earned if they stopped behaving like tantrum-entitled juveniles.

But the community appears to be on a roll. It is as though they cannot get enough of the contrite society that once wronged them, grovelling enough for their satisfaction to kick in, and for mutual respect acknowledging that each side is entitled to their own social contracts and values reflective of who and what they are. The non-LGBT community doesn't have to alter itself through the contortions demanded of the LGBT community to have peace between the two former antagonists reign.

But here is the Trans Alliance Society and a number of transgender and intersex people arguing before the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal that doctors should no longer assign the sex of a baby based on its natural external trappings that nature has endowed each with. And that's the thing of it; it is nature, and it is a natural, normal inheritance that is responsible for 'assigning' a newborn with its gender; one that parents are happy to accept, valuing that child for what it represents; an addition to a family circle.

But, this is British Columbia after all, an often wacky province in Canada with its very own culture of uber-tolerance to all manner of complaints and lifestyle declarations. British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario and Nova Scotia make it easier for people to change their legal gender status on official documents. But this isn't enough for the Trans Alliance Society, which insists that all babies be considered gender-neutral, and that in schools gender-neutral language be used, the idea being that children will sort themselves out into what's natural for them individually.

What has been lost in the controversy over 'rights' and specifically the nonsense that Human Rights are integrally involved in such matters is that the LGBT community is a relatively small one. And it is that small community that is vociferously demanding of the larger majority that they accommodate themselves to the views and priorities of the tail wagging the dog.

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