A cisgender character named Temperance Brennan on the tv show Bones, when told she ought to use female pronouns for a deceased trans woman. (via southcarolinaboy)
I watch Bones regularly, but it’s getting a lot more difficult for me to enjoy the show. At its heart, it is deeply normative about sex and gender—puritanical about the former and essentialist about the latter. (I’m assuming this quote was pulled from last night’s episode, which I haven’t seen yet.)
In a landmark ruling which is being completely ignored by not only the mainstream media but also the gay-centric LGb(t) media, a federal court ruled yesterday that a trans person may not be treated differently than a cis person of the same legal gender for the purpose of marriage. It might seem downright frivolous, but local courts in New York, Kansas, Ohio, Texas, and Florida had all previously ruled that trans people still count as their birth-assigned gender for the purpose of marriage regardless of their legal gender.
In this case, a union health insurance fund sought to establish the same bigotry in Minnesota by cancelling a couple’s joint health insurance after discovering that the wife was a trans woman. The fund claimed that Minnesota’s anti-same-sex marriage law should be interpreted to also prohibit opposite-sex marriages in which one partner is trans. The court emphatically rejected this reasoning, declaring,
“The Fund’s interpretation of Minnesota law was unreasonable and wrong. Minnesota law recognizes the Radtkes’ marriage as a marriage between a man and a woman because Minnesota law recognizes Plaintiff’s sex as female… . It was not the Fund’s role to impose its own definitions of gender and marriage upon its participants. In this case, the Fund ignored all evidence of the State of Minnesota’s view of Plaintiff’s sex and marital status. The Fund’s decision was not only wrong, under a de novo review, it was a flagrant violation of its duty under any standard of review.”
What makes this ruling totally historic is that it is the first time a federal court has ever ruled in favor of trans marriage equality, and only the second time any court has ruled in favor of trans marriage equality. Furthermore, it is the first break in a decades-long streak of hostile court rulings, and the first ruling which broadly upholds legal gender rather than examining private parts; the previous favorable ruling was explicitly based on “sexual functionality” and therefore only applied to post-op trans people.
This is a huge step forward for LGBT rights, and the fact that it’s being widely ignored is a sobering reminder that the “gay rights first and only” agenda has complete control of the established LGb(t) political movement.
“The Plan was unambiguously written to allow all persons who are legal spouses under Minnesota law to be eligible family dependents. The Fund’s role was to ascertain Minnesota law. It was not the Fund’s role to impose its own definitions of gender and marriage upon its participants. In this case, the Fund ignored all evidence of the State of Minnesota’s view of Plaintiff’s sex and marital status. The Fund’s decision was not only wrong, under a de novo review, it was a flagrant violation of its duty under any standard of review. In sum, the Fund erred when it terminated Plaintiff’s participation as an eligible family dependent. The Fund’s termination of Ms. Radtke is reversed and she is reinstated as a participant as of April 19, 2010.”
Not to piss on a good parade (cuz hey, marriage equality for trans folks is great and all) but I’m not liking the whole “this is a huge step forward for LGBT rights” line in there considering all the poverty and homelessness faced by queer and trans* youth (especially women with disabilities of color in those two groups, most often in the trans zone) and the ridiculous levels of lethal violence faced by trans women of color specifically. A huge step would be combating that shit with the level of tenacity people throw at marriage equality.
Cuz yanno, people are starving, turning to crime, committing suicide, being assaulted and fucking dying and all. But marriage and pageants. Huge deal, right? “Huge steps”.
The more important thing that was buried in this decision that we didn’t get to right away is Judge Davis’ formally defining what should have been obvious all along (but wasn’t): That trans people’s changed legal sex is their sex, period, and previous statuses are irrelevant.
Ahhh, I see. That’s a lot bigger than marriage.
I’m not sure I would call him a feminist hero for not doing those things but it certainly makes him an alright human being. All of those things listed have been done, yes, but not doing them doesn’t make you a hero for refraining from being a douche.
Here’s my issue: You don’t have to touch someone for it to count as assault. Sending an unwanted photo of your genitalia to someone is sexual assault. It’s not equivalent to rape, but that doesn’t mean it’s “harmless,” or that the person who did it is an okay dude.
And certainly Clinton having an affair with Lewinsky was a HUGE power differential, and we’ll never really know what level of coercion was present there. But we know for sure that this photo was unwanted. So don’t ask me which is “worse,” because I really don’t know.
There’s also… Maybe it’s just me because I haven’t seen it raised anywhere else. But, really? “Have we really become so unsexy as a society”? Really? The sexy imperative has extended to our conceptualization of society as a whole - no wonder rape culture continues to thrive when everything, including whether or not a person committed assault, has to be framed in a way that is titillating to the viewer.
Are we really so fucking bored as a society that we can’t take in information that isn’t trying to seduce us into excusing bad behavior?
Soooooo this quote has been going around my dash a lot the last day or so and apparently no one else is going to say this, so, uhm: I find it deeply offensive to refer to a woman who has survived a devastating car accident as maimed. Deeply. Offensive. Like the first time I saw this I had to go take a time out so I didn’t just start SCREAMING. And I have been seething about this for the last day. ‘Maimed’ is not a word you use to refer to human beings unless you happen to know that they specifically identify that way. I have some other thoughts about the embedded attitudes in this quote currently going unchallenged, but I think I am just gonna leave this here for now.
…and here are a bunch of other things wrong with that quote.