Thursday, 18 December 2008

The Next Big Thing

My regular column, The Next Big Thing in TechLifePost this week deals with the consequences of microwave radars that can see through clothing - and in more detail than the manufacturers would like publicised.

I'll be blogging about this later, and in some more detail, with URLs to the various stories about how this technology is being introduced in Europe and elsewhere. It's a bit of a worry, frankly. Especially to the Intersexed.


Battybattybats said...

I can see how plenty of Transexuals would have major problems with this technology too.

Those who choose not to have genital surgeries (which is quite a lot of the FtM Blokes) or those for whom the procedure is unavailable whether from complicating health conditions or financial hardship etc or those going through transition who are yet to have that surgery done.

And Crossdressers, some of whom are full-time, some not. They also would have issues.

Genderqueer too.

It's another example of how many issues are shared by many. Anyone whose anatomy and expression don't match the expectations of whoever screens them has cause for concern.

I see more and more the value of an inclusive term like the one used by AHRC: S&GD (sex and gender diversity) because so many issues effect either all the S&GD people or a significant proportion of the different groups within it.

Chris said...

How long until the ubiquitous nudity turns all of us into nudists?

I suppose I'm just an optimist. Or maybe I just like naked people ;)

Battybattybats said...

I for one won't become a nudist.

I need to protect my pale skin from skin cancer for starters.

And being a Goth I express myself a lot through my appearance and so I'd keep clothing for it's decorative potentials too. That and extensive body paint while a fun option would be too much trouble for regular day to day appearance.

I don't mind if others become nudists, but I'll keep my long sleeved tops and swishy velvet skirts thanks :)

mythusmage said...

Then you have people you don't want to visualize naked.

I expect, to get serious here, that most people aren't going to be bothered by this. It'll just be another thing in life you get confronted with on an occasional basis. As long as everybody else sees you as dressed, who cares what some tech type sees on a screen. People will get used to it.

That's the thing about us, no matter how much we assert that something is intolerable, and how we'll never learn to tolerate it, sooner or later it's a normal part of life. So long as it does not threaten our health and well being, we adapt to it and sooner than we think.

Happy Monkey.

Battybattybats said...

Other than a violation of the basic Human Right to Privacy there is the issue of discrimination.

In that a screener seing an anatomical variation on the screen may then flag that person causing additional duress from excess process, unfair treatment or worse.

Whether thats an artificial leg or the presence of both a penis and breasts or sign of double mastectomy or body-art.

There needs to be strong processes of review and redress to ensure screeners personal biases are not allowed to influence the procedures or worse to ensure there are not discriminations in standard procedure.

I'm reminded of the case of the woman forced to remove her nipple piercings in an airport, painfully so as one was cross-threaded.

She suffered substantial embarassment, and physical and emotional suffering because of that.

I could certainly see lots of people suffer because of abuse of this technology IS, TS, TG, Goth etc etc.

Especially in countries where there are not strong or any protections for these groups!

Suddenly having F marked for sex on your passport may not be enough when your plane gets diverted to a changeover in a non-TG protecting country when you pass through the screen and see anatomy that doesn't fit their expectations.

Russia has been discriminating against Goths recently so ones body piercings etc could very much be an issue passing through such a screen.

Anonymous said...

I think I've solved the mystery of how transsexuals can be heterosexual in one sex, then still be heterosexual in the other sex. It has to do with confusion over attraction and identity. Basically, say a hetero MTF notices a cute girl and admires her and identifies with her, and the MTF is confused because the MTF has a male body and thinks, "It must be because I have a crush on her and want to date her, etc.," but in reality the MTF just identifies with the girl, leading to much confusion later in life.

The MTF starts to open up and to transition and then starts noticing a real attraction to, but not identification, with men.

(Basically, to fall in love with someone just because you identify with the person is narcissistic, because it is like falling in love with yourself. When it comes to finding a mate, you may see the mate as a peer, one of your kind, but you do not fall in love with the mate because you identify with that mate. This is the confusion over identity and attractiveness that TS's often have to deal with.)

Zoe Brain said...

S.A.D. - while I would have preferred you to comment on a thread remotely relevant....

Your thesis covers my own case all too accurately. I'm uncomfortable with that, I don't want it to be true. But I'm not so good at fooling myself that I can deny it.

Much as I don't want it to be, objectively it's the most likely explanation.

Battybattybats said...

Sure, thats one way to explain same-sex attraction. Only it's one of thousands upon thousands of different reasons why any one person may be attracted to any other one person.

For one person I know it's all in the sound of the voice, whether male or female. For another it's their smell but only the smell of the same sex has this result. For many their are combinations of appearance and behavioural factors many of them not conciously recognised.

As many people are bisexual in inate desire but only one or the other in practise because of social acceptability in their community whether a conscious or unconcious decision then with transition could easilly come a switch from seeking female partners to male for many bisexual MtFs and vice versa for FtMs. As being a man with a woman is more socially acceptable and then being a woman with a man is also so. This could easilly be an unconcious thing.

Then there is the posibility that hormone levels may change the function of the sexual parts of the brain resulting in the sexual desires of the person shifting in orientation.

Your hypothesis provides one possible solution, there are others and yours is far from certain. Yours may be too caught up in heteronormative assumption and fail to take into account the range of mildly to strongly bisexual people and the lack of self-acceptance and self-awareness of this.

Sure your explanation may cover some folk, but it certainly doesn't cover all.

In my experience (mainly through conversations often after coming out to people) very few people indeed are 100% straight or gay, the majority being to some extent bisexual even if they have only had one same-sex (or opposite-sex) experience or if they have never had one but still find said people attractive and are open to that possibility.

Most who are inactive in their bisexuality are so because of fear of social stigma especially loss of family relationships.

Therefore transition merely shifts which of these is acceptable in a heteronormative social and psychologicalframework.