Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Today's Battles

At Tampa Bay Online, more of the same in the "Bathroom Issue". It's incredible how much damage just one hysterical scare campaign will do.

And on Alchua Voter Guide.
1. Where do you stand on the Transgender bathroom ordinance?

Robert Krames: I oppose this ordinance for the obvious safety concerns raised by our citizens. The ordinance also adds additional burdens to our already struggling local businesses.

2. Do you think a compromise could have been reached? If so, what would you offer?

Robert Krames: Yes I do. The current City Commission constantly reminds us that this ordinance is meant to protect individuals from being discriminated against when attempting to buy a house or get a job. If that really was all this ordinance did, I would not be against it.

Followup:When I say compromise, I mean, do you have any suggestions about how to protect the rights of transgendered persons who have doctors orders to start living as their new sex as part of the process of undergoing sex change? This question was raised by the Mayor on the night the measure was approved.
No answer from Gainesville City Commission candidate Robert Krames on that one as yet. And "obvious safety concerns"? *SIGH* It's worth remembering that all the "Transgender Bathroom Ordinance" does is to add "Gender Identity" to the list of groups given some civil rights protection. A list that includes the usual race, creed, colour, national origin etc. That's it.

Then a sensible issue, a genuine question from a Sergeant in the US Army who wonders what the heck the implications of allowing Transgendered people to serve would be. I answered at length - the comment is awaiting moderation, but here's the gist. In reply to
Where do we draw the moral line in the sand when it comes to acceptable behavior? How, as a First Sergeant, do I deal with a male Soldier who dresses like a female? Which uniform do I issue him/her? Does a transgendered Soldier get graded on the male APFT standards or the female APFT standards?...
When I do an in-ranks inspection, how do I deal with a male Soldier showing up in a skirt and pumps? Which latrine does he/she use? Where do I put them in the barracks? Can a transgendered female who became a male go into the Infantry Branch? Armor? Other areas that deny women to serve?
I answered simply:
What do you do with a man who dresses as a woman? Refer him to a medic. He's nuts.

What do you do with a woman who looks like a man? Refer her to a medic. She's transsexual.

What do you do with a woman who *used* to look like a man? Treat her as you would any other female soldier. After 2 years of hormones and surgery, she won't be any different from other women in terms of physical capabilities.
I left aside some of the more fantastic flights of fancy, involving sheep etc. If it's not the bathrooms, it's the bestiality.

That was the Fantasy : here's the Reality. Another post from a support site I'm on.
At just barely 21, I was jumped by two or three guys in the evening as I walked away from a bus stop, where I had gotten off. I was about half a mile from my apartment that was over a family friends garage.

I don't remember much, excepted something hitting me from behind, and I hit the ground.
I remember going down and everything was fuzzy and muddled.

The end results were this:
A smashed in skull and face, with severe damage to my left eye socket and cheek bone. The left eye suffered optic nerve damage, that left me with a permanent blurred vision in it.
The right temple was shattered and the upper part of my skull was seriously cracked and was swelling.
My jaw was cracked in half at the chin, at I had a molar knocked out. All of my front teeth were push in. The left side of my jaw was broken at the rear.
I had multiple broken ribs,with a punctured lung,and a smashed dislocated left shoulder. Which has never healed correctly.
My pelvic bone was broken into pieces.
The right hip bone socket and leg bone had been damaged, leaving me with a slight limp today.
I was slashed multiple times across the back, sides, thighs.
I had been savagely gang raped, and my anus was torn and bleeding profusely. The colon was torn too.

I somehow had crawled out the drainage culvert, and up onto the sidewalk where I collapsed. How I managed it, I'll never know.
A passing motorist saw this heap in the grass between the street and the sidewalk, and stopped to investigate. What he found horrified him. He called 911. Others stopped to help I am told.
I was rushed to a hospital about 3 miles away. The EMS people, told the police I wouldn't make it. I was in a coma. I had stopped breathing twice on the way there, and had lost to much blood.
I was rushed into a emergency surgery room, and prepped for surgery to try and save me. When they took my ripped up dress off, then they saw it. I wasn't a female, and they immediately thought I was a cross dresser. The staff dilly dallied a while until the friends I was staying with came rushing in and raised Holy Toledo with them. Then they changed their tune, and began to work on me.
It is my understanding, that when the staff told the police about my gender, they had a good laugh about it. My parents had been notified and arrived the next day. Then the real Hells Fury started once my mother and sister were there.

I was in emergency surgery for over 3 hours just to stabilize me. I actually flat lined multiple times. It was touch and go for the next 48 hours.
I would face many more surgeries to actually replace and repair everything that had been damaged.

My mom, my sister, and my and their friends cried all night long.
No one thought I'd survive. I remained in the coma for three weeks.When I started to come out the initial coma, they induced a second one. They felt my mind wouldn't have been able to handle it then.
The police told my mother and sister, that I was raped and the guys who did it, tried to murder me. They used some kind of heavy blunt objects,plus they mercilessly stomped and kicked me, and they cut, stabbed and slashed me over and over.

My sister has told me that I looked a war casualty...and had more lines running in and out of me, than she thought would be feasible.

Technically I had been dead...and I had been brought back to life.

The police think that either the attackers knew me, and stalked me, or it was random, and they freaked when they didn't find a vagina. However my mouth and anus were violated, because tests indicated thus. The perpetrators were never found or arrested.

It took over 25 total surgeries; to reconstruct my face, putting in stainless steel plates/plastic and assorted parts, reset my front teeth, try to save my left eye vision that never did come back right,repair the cheek bone with a plastic one, replace my pelvic bone with Stainless and Nylon, steel pin my thigh socket, and reattaching the femur to the socket,repairing my left lung, and one plastic surgery after the other for over two years. I was in the hospital for almost three months, and then bed ridden at home for another two.
I have scar lines all over my back,sides, and legs where I had been sutured, and the faint scars from surgeries. Today, I won't wear a two piece bathing suit.
I have a slight speech lisp and cannot remember the attack at all. After I came out my my 2nd induced coma, I thought I had been hit by the bus somehow.

When my mom and sister held my hand crying, telling me what had happened, I was so shocked, that I passed out. All the mirrors in my hospital room had been removed for my own good. I didn't see myself for a long time. I could feel all the braces and heavy bandages on me, and I hurt something awful, unless the nurse came in, then she open the drip line and I'd drift off..finally I was released, and was taken home.

I didn't leave the house for months, and everyone constantly kept an eye on me.
I wouldn't and couldn't be alone for almost a year. I was scared to death of the dark. I never knew how many loving friends and family I had, until I came home to convalesce. The out pouring of love was incredible. It took more than 4 years to get everything repaired as best as it could be. I was off hormones for a year and half, in the beginning, then was allowed to go back on them. I had lost a lot of shape and weight.

{ the damaged/replaced pelvic stirrup, and the finely cracked hips bones around the repair, nearly held me back from SRS. There was great concern about whether or not I'd ever be able to have sex, and if I broke it again, I might lose my female genitalia from more surgeries. After many long physician conferences, they agreed to go ahead}

I wasn't as lucky as I thought I was...I have never taken it for granted since then. Today, I am almost never alone. Someone is always with me. The cost of this nearly life ending event, was over one hundred thousand dollars after all the bills were compiled. Insurances paid for about 80% of it, and my parents paid the rest.

It is a blessing now, to have a very protective husband, live in a private gated community, and have home security as well.

There really are very horrible people out there...I encountered them.
So pardon me if I don't take those hysterics screaming about perverts in the bathrooms (THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!!), or "drawing moral lines" terribly seriously. The matters here are for grown-ups.

I count my blessings, but I have to say that dealing with posts like that, day after day, week after week, month after month, year after year... sometimes I'm a bit short with people expressing their genuine but misguided concerns, and for that I apologise. I make no apology though to those who manufacture concerns to get the donations coming in. Or so they can occupy positions of power in a populist movement. They're a tiny minority, but the harm they do is out of all proportion to their numbers.

But that gives us hope: for if such a tiny group of people can make a real difference in service of Evil - not Sin, not Error, but the genuine article - then what can a few on the other side do? We can Educate, we can bring attention to the facts, and we can counter hysteria with logic and compassion. How can we not win, eventually? Because the bulk of people, even those who are against us, are fundamentally decent human beings.


Battybattybats said...

"What do you do with a man who dresses as a woman? Refer him to a medic. He's nuts."

Normally Zoe your pretty good on these things. But not only is that rather overly-binary but fairly offensive to all the non-binary folk out there.

Especially as depending on definitions it could refer to me. Because I'm certainly not the standard-definition transsexual!

Plenty of crossdressers of all ilks from binary folk to genderfree have served in the military too, serving as proudly and bravely as the closeted gays and the transsexuals!

Isn't the value of a uniform in identifying side first, rank second and individual third? In which case wouldn't letting them choose whichever uniform they feel like (on the day or perhaps making a long-term decision) so long as it's the right rank and side and insignia?

Zoe Brain said...

BBB - with the military culture, any CD who dresses in cross-gendered attire is Nuts.

There are some things that may be not only acceptable, but quite unobjectionable in civilian life that are cause for long terms of imprisonment in the military. Getting up late. Wearing hair longer than collar length.

Anybody who attempts to buck the system in an obvious way, no matter what that way is, is crazy.

Battybattybats said...

More than one marine has worn non-regulation underwear in battle. Ed Wood the director of enjoyably bad films was said to have done and I've met online a number of members of several branches of several countries armed forces who did so or who crossdressed whenever they had the chance to on leave.

There are quite a few vietnam vets and gulf war vets on crossdresser forums that I've met. A couple who worked on aircraft carriers and at least two who worked for NASA, one during the apollo missions.

Now you could just as easilly argue that being gay and in the military is nuts, but many have fought and died for their countries.

I don't think any did this to 'buck the system'. Nor take such chances for a hobby nor for 'sexual thrills' despite that being the way most like to characterise crossdressers of all varieties.

Some of those vets since transitioned and many have not, yet the experiences of each are eerily similar, seeming different only in severity of need.

Anonymous said...

Bats, when you refuse to be part of a binary system that 99.9% of the world understands and embraces, you pretty much give up the right to claim you are then part of either of those binaries as far as I'm concerned.

As for evil, I have seen and been the victim of real evil and it wasn't "cissexuals" but transgender evil.

I lost jobs because of it, was libeled and slandered because of it, turned into authorities as a terrorist because of it. Almost left homeless because of it when I was taking others in to keep them from that state. I was magazine bombed (subscribed to hundreds and hundreds of magazines in my name) because of it. Attempts were made to have me arrested filing false reports, interfer with my getting mail, attempts to take away all my internet access.......and plenty of completely credible death threats.

If you are not a classic transsexual, as far as I am concerned you are your birth sex (absent some other intersexed condition, a real one, not some imagined crossdresser fantasy) If you oppose the gender binary, you do not get to chose sides at will, you already chose to be outside of it totally. Deal with it.

Battybattybats said...

Hi Radicalbitch.

99.9%? Whats the source of that figure? Is it a personal estimate or does it have some objective validity? Whats the demographic breakdown of it too? As perhaps I live in an area where that is far less the case. Certainly its not amongst my subculture nor amongst the members of the younger generation I've met recently. And of course it seems to be a very culturally-specific notion too from an historical/anthropological perspective.

Non-bindary folk seem to be much more common than the 0.1% from your figure. Certainly amongst Goths and Emos its vastly higher than 0.1% of Goths are non-binary people and as for accepting of non-binary people my estimate would be it's more like 99.9% of Goths and Emos are non-binary accepting.

Just going by some estimates of the number of crossdressers in the general population (many I've heard put the figure from 1 in 50 people up!) and with the amount of non-binary people amongst them I would not be surprised if the number of non-binary people in the general population were larger than 0.1% and the number of non-binary accepting people much much higher. Though of course getting a representative sample and solid figures is far from simple.

But even if it is 99.9% Human Rights are not based on majorities. A minority of just one single individual remains valid from a Human Rights perspective. The rights of Intersex people and Transsexuals and any othe group do not depend on their proportions per capita or the degree of their popular acceptance, only the legal recognition of and protections of those rights depend to some extent upon the latter.

As for evil done to you by Transgender people, I don't doubt that just like all humans Transgender people are capable of evil too. I saw enough evil last night to be reminded of how evil humans can be, with nothing transgender related about the situation. But just because you suffered evil from Transgender people does not mean that evil is intrinsic in Transgender. Just alas in humans.

Now my not fitting your binary gender paradigm may not fit your cherished ontology nevertheless you canot define my subjective reality for me. Nor define objective reality by group consensus lest the world switched from flat to round only when enough people were convinced of the notion. You do not own the ideas involved. Gender is not under your copyright. It just aint your deme'sne.

So I'm afraid your going to have to deal with the fact that I dont aggree with your conclusions on the subject and hence will not behave according to your edict, your definitions nor your preferances.

Though I am always open to new evidence to reevaluate my opinions and conclusions.

But Radicalbitch, I belong to a community/culture which does accept my binary non-conformity. And without insisting as you do that I must then be outside it totally. That is true whether you can deal with it or not.