Utah's transgender community remembers those lost, looks ahead to better future

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  • joserodriguezrodriguez Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 23, 2013 2:30 a.m.


    You neglected to include Q.I.A. The questioning, intersex, and asexual communities must be recognized and have their voices heard! Wouldn't it be ironic if the L.G.B.T. community shunned these groups of people as "odd, and different"? I just love how in today's society, if you're a straight, white, male, you must be the aggressor, and in the wrong. Apparently there is good money to be made in being a sensitive minority.

  • Hemlock Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 22, 2013 12:20 p.m.

    Human rights are a given. The medical and psychiatric professions as well as social mores are less definite on the etiology and proper direction for many of those involved, i.e. restrooms, sports teams, etc. Keep an open mind and understand that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are granted to all, GLBT and straight.

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Nov. 22, 2013 9:25 a.m.

    Nobody should be killed because of this.

  • Contrariusier mid-state, TN
    Nov. 22, 2013 9:20 a.m.

    @Pagan --

    "Gwen Araujo. 10/03/02. "

    In Detroit, a transgendered woman's body was found in a trash can on November 8 of THIS year.

    In New York City, a transgendered woman was beaten to death on August 17 of THIS year, WHILE her attacker yelled homophobic insults at her. Her attacker had been flirting with her -- the attack began when he realized she was trans.

    In San Bernardino County, a transgendered woman who had been starring in a YouTube reality should was beaten to death on August 21 of THIS year, in her own apartment.

    In Jamaica, a transvestite/nongender-conforming 16-year-old youth was beaten, stabbed, shot, AND run over by a car at a party on July 21 of THIS year, after an acquaintance told other partygoers that he was trans.

    These attacks happen all the time, folks.

    Instead of making fun of transsexualism/GID and belittling trans people, we should be putting our energies towards understanding and equal protection.

  • Zoe Brain ,
    Nov. 21, 2013 11:12 p.m.

    Ken - "So "Creator" to me is simply Mother Nature. And to your point, I trust her judgment as to the gender of a person. She decides and her decision is final."

    Er.. no.

    Counterexample : Imperato-McGinley J, Guerrero L, Gautier T, Peterson RE. Steroid 5alpha-reductase deficiency in man: an inherited form of male pseudohermaphroditism. Science 1974 Dec 27; 186 (4170): 1213-5

    In an isolated village of the southwestern Dominican Republic, 2% of the live births were in the 1970's, guevedoces (actually male pseudohermaphrodites). These children appeared to be girls at birth, but at puberty these 'girls' sprout muscles, testes, and a penis. For the rest of their lives they are men in nearly all respects. Their underlying pathology was found to be a deficiency of the enzyme, 5-alpha Reductase.

    Those of us who "naturally change sex" are few in number - in Utah, and most other places. But more common than having red hair in others. It's a pity that biology isn't taught well in the USA, it would get rid of a lot of the misconceptions that are the basis of prejudice.

  • Zoe Brain ,
    Nov. 21, 2013 11:08 p.m.

    Christopher B - maybe this will aid understanding:

    Sexual Hormones and the Brain: An Essential Alliance for Sexual Identity and Sexual Orientation Garcia-Falgueras A, Swaab DF Endocr Dev. 2010;17:22-35

    The fetal brain develops during the intrauterine period in the male direction through a direct action of testosterone on the developing nerve cells, or in the female direction through the absence of this hormone surge. In this way, our gender identity (the conviction of belonging to the male or female gender) and sexual orientation are programmed or organized into our brain structures when we are still in the womb. However, since sexual differentiation of the genitals takes place in the first two months of pregnancy and sexual differentiation of the brain starts in the second half of pregnancy, these two processes can be influenced independently, which may result in extreme cases in trans-sexuality. This also means that in the event of ambiguous sex at birth, the degree of masculinization of the genitals may not reflect the degree of masculinization of the brain. There is no indication that social environment after birth has an effect on gender identity or sexual orientation.

  • Pagan Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 11:07 p.m.

    Gwen Araujo. 10/03/02.

    After discovering Gwen was a man, she was killed by four men, I believe with, a can of food.

    Initial case? Deadlock.

    SECOND case? Her attackers finally charged with Murder.

    People are factually dying ladies and gentlemen.

    We need to do more.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Nov. 21, 2013 10:39 a.m.

    I said:

    "6. Male-to-female transsexuals have been found to have a typically female stria terminalis "

    Woops, I cut off a line there. That should read: "...stria terminalis (part of the brain), while female-to-male transsexuals have a typically male stria terminalis. "

    @Chris -- you mention medical experts again.

    The Intersex Society of North America states: "...intersex anatomy doesn’t always show up at birth. Sometimes a person isn’t found to have intersex anatomy until she or he reaches the age of puberty, or finds himself an infertile adult, or dies of old age and is autopsied. Some people live and die with intersex anatomy without anyone (including themselves) ever knowing."

    There are many many causes of intersex conditions and GID/transsexualism. Some of those causes are externally visible, and others are not. And, yes, "competent medical professionals" and "medical experts" diagnose people with these conditions every day.

    These are medical realities, Chris -- not just flights of fancy.

  • Contrarius mid-state, TN
    Nov. 21, 2013 10:20 a.m.

    @Chris B --

    "competent medical professionals"

    Funny you should mention competent medical professionals, Chris.

    Competent medical professionals agree that:

    1. Gender Identity Disorder (GID) has been connected to multiple biological factors such as genetics, changes in brains structure, and prenatal exposure to hormones.

    2. GID may occur as frequently as 1 in 500 people.

    3. Most people diagnosed with GID identify experience gender dysphoria before puberty.

    4. Twin studies indicate that GID is 62% heritable, and therefore has a strong genetic influence.

    5. In male-to-female transsexuals, GID is often associated with genetically-induced androgen insensitivity.

    6. Male-to-female transsexuals have been found to have a typically female stria terminalis

    7. In addition, the hypothalamus in male-to-female transsexuals appears to function as a typical woman's does.

    As for chromosomes -- roughly 1 in 1700 babies is neither XX nor XY. About 1 in 1000 is XXY, and some are XO. And there are other chromosomal abnormalities as well.

    One recent well-known intersex example is Steve Crecelius. Steve is a former cop and father of five. He also has ovaries and a uterus.

    These are medical realities, Chris -- acknowledged by those "competent medical professionals" you mentioned.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 10:10 a.m.

    Corporal Klinger wore dresses to get a section eight. In actuality it was disparaging the LGBT community, ascribing his dressing, as an act of mental unbalance.

  • Ken Sandy, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 9:35 a.m.

    @LDS - I'll add that I'm not religious. So "Creator" to me is simply Mother Nature. And to your point, I trust her judgment as to the gender of a person. She decides and her decision is final. If someone doesn't like it, take it up with her. But it still doesnt' change her decision.

  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 9:30 a.m.

    If several doctors diagnose someone with the exact same condition, and that person disagrees, in likely reality the doctors are right. Now, that's not to say the person doesn't BELIEVE something different. They may even WISH Something different. But in all likelihood, the conclusion of numerous doctors(if they same conclusion) is correct.

    That is a proper comparison to people who wish or think they are a different gender.

    At birth, numerous doctors are often involved, and numerous doctors are involved in that baby's life, often every couple weeks. Typically, those doctors all come to the same conclusion of the gender of that person. And in nearly all cases, that conclusions is correct, EVEN if the person later disagrees or WISHES it weren't the case.

    But again, I'll trust the conclusion of multiple medical experts over the wishes/feelings of a certain individual, anyday

  • Open Minded Mormon Everett, 00
    Nov. 21, 2013 9:26 a.m.

    Why can't real life be more like on M*A*S*H.
    They didn't need to kill Corporal Klinger just because he a dress.

  • Christopher B Ogden, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 9:25 a.m.

    There are some things we can just pick for ourselves. I have always wanted to be able to fly like a bird, that does not mean I'm a bird. Even if I were to sew wings on my arms, that would not make me a bird. My desire to be a bird may consume my thoughts and feelings, and I may even feel like a bird, but it doesn't make me one.

    ABC News recently ran a story about a man who believes/wishes he were a dog. See reference below.

    "Pittsburgh Man Thinks He's a Dog, Goes By Name 'Boomer' ABC News - November 6 2013"

    Its not bigotry by not treating this man as a dog.

    Similarly, if competent medical professionals have determined the gender of a person(typically at birth) that is their gender. And its not bigotry to treat people the gender medical professionals say they are.

    Most young children know the definition of male/female with problem. They could teach many people a things or two about gender. As there are many who are confused.

  • Ken Sandy, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 9:19 a.m.

    @LDS - I agree there are certainly great variations in peoples feelings and desires. And I agree that kindness is paramount. But with that said, let's not pretend that kindness means "support anything." I cannot and will not do that. Only females should be allowed in female restrooms and dressing rooms. I have very good reasons for not wanting men in the locker rooms where my high school daughters change their clothes. I have very good reasons for not wanting men in the locker rooms at the community gym where my wife changes her clothes. And I don't mean just men who profess currently to be men. I mean men. In extrememly rare cases, people are born with unambiguous gender; and although as true as that may be, it is certainly not even close to the majority of "trangender" people. The great majority of "trangender" people are fully one gender or the other in physical reality, but their minds are confusing them. Or they just simply want to be the opposite gender of what they are. But wanting/wishing doesn't cut it. Only females deemed actual(not wishing) females by doctors should be in female locker rooms.

  • LDS Cedar City, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 9:07 a.m.

    There is a lot we don't know about same-sex attraction and associated conditions. It is becoming apparent we know very little about this topic. We base most of our conclusions on centuries-old thought. And morals and mores rooted in the distant past.

    What lies ahead is scientific determination of genetic influences in our gender characteristics. Let's be honest: we see a wide spectrum of sexual strengths and drive among humanity. We see no drive/no attraction to overwhelming thirst for sexual experiences to mild same-sex attraction to powerful same-sex attraction.

    None of us know why this spectrum is so diverse. None of us should judge another based on our narrow view of gender. Let our Creator be the judge of all.

  • Girlse State Midvale, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 8:43 a.m.

    Chris, I'll never agree with you on sports, but you're a breath of fresh air on everything else. Couldn't be more correct in your assessment!

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 8:25 a.m.

    I believe there are people out there who wish they were a different gender. There may also be people out there who feel a different gender. But when competent medical professionals have determined the gender of a person, that's the gender they are.

    A man in a dress is a man in a dress. A man who has asked a doctor to alter his anatomy is a man who has asked a doctor to alter his anatomy. Nothing more, nothing less.

  • RFLASH Salt Lake City, UT
    Nov. 21, 2013 6:11 a.m.

    I got to know a girl named Amber. I don't know how long it was, but weeks later is when I found out she was transgender. I would have never known and to this day I can not picture her as a male. She was so sure about who she was. I have met others and each one seemed to have that same confidence. I say this because it is about who they are and don't we all know ourselves pretty well. I have never felt an issue with it. Why should it be an issue? god gave us all something within that helps us know who we are. I think there is much more to life than we can ever know, but we can learn so much more. We don't listen to each other enough. We are too busy judging everyone. take some time to know them and listen
    to what they have to say. You will understand more and when you realize it is real to them, you will get that same feeling that I did. Once we stop judging so much, it is amazing how beautiful people are! You just have reach out