The Science of Being Transgender

Recently we’ve been hearing a lot about transgender identity. That made us wonder… what makes us the gender that we are? And what should you do if your kid doesn’t fit the mold? To find out, we talked with endocrinologist Dr. Joshua Safer, psychologist Dr. Laura Edwards-Leeper, and psychologist Dr. Colt Keo-Meier.

The Problem With the Wrong Kind of Trans Visibility

At some point between 2011, when I transitioned, and 2018, a curious thing happened in the relationship between trans people and popular culture. A certain subset of trans people — usually (though not always) palatable, sympathetic and conventionally attractive — became pervasive, appearing on magazine covers and in prestige dramas. Some even became full-fledged celebrities. And we took on — in some mainstream liberal circles, anyway — an often crude, if occasionally flattering, symbolism: Our presence in a project lent it an air of edginess, sometimes even glamour. Above all, as Mr. Shteyngart’s narrator alludes to, we were seen as authentic.

.. Trans and nonbinary people — by most estimates, not even 1 percent of the population — have come to hold an outsize role in our cultural imagination, especially in the minds of film directors, journalists and fashion and television executives (who are still, with some notable exceptions, almost never trans themselves). And yet, it’s not exactly clear what this role has done for us.

.. Trans people may be on more screens and magazine covers than ever before, but for the 84 percent of Americans who believe they’ve never met a trans person in real life, we still live in the realm of the imagination, theoretical at best.

Man for a day, woman for a day. | Diane Torr | TEDxStGeorg

What is to gain from living a day of another gender? Diane Torr shows a perspective inspired by experiences from both male and female behaviours.

Diane Torr is a performance artist, who since the 1980s has performed as a male. In her workshops “man for a day” / “woman for a day” Diane resolves gender prejudices and teaches both males and females to see the world as well as themselfes from the opposite genders perspective.

A Better Way to Ban Alex Jones

“Hate speech” is extraordinarily vague and subjective. Libel and slander are not.

.. Most appallingly, he has insisted that these grieving families were faking their pain: “I’ve looked at it and undoubtedly there’s a cover-up, there’s actors, they’re manipulating, they’ve been caught lying and they were preplanning before it and rolled out with it.”
.. Rather than applying objective standards that resonate with American law and American traditions of respect for free speech and the marketplace of ideas, the companies applied subjective standards that are subject to considerable abuse. Apple said it “does not tolerate hate speech.” Facebook accused Mr. Jones of violating policies against “glorifying violence” or using “dehumanizing language to describe people who are transgender, Muslims and immigrants.” YouTube accused Mr. Jones of violating policies against “hate speech and harassment.”
.. In the name of stopping hate speech, university mobs have turned their ire not just against alt-right figures like Milo Yiannopoulos and Richard Spencer, but also against the most mainstream of conservative voices, like Ben Shapiro and Heather Mac Donald.
Dissenting progressives aren’t spared, either. Just ask Evergreen State College’s Bret Weinstein, who was hounded out of a job after refusing to participate in a “day of absence” protest in which white students and faculty members were supposed to leave campus for the day to give students and faculty members of color exclusive access to the college.
.. The far better option would be to prohibit libel or slander on their platforms.

.. Unlike “hate speech,” libel and slander have legal meanings. There is a long history of using libel and slander laws to protect especially private figures from false claims. It’s properly more difficult to use those laws to punish allegations directed at public figures, but even then there are limits on intentionally false factual claims.