December 1st, 2012
Some years ago my friends John and Terry lived across the street from a frumpy older woman who was, according to them, pretty much indistinguishable from any other frumpy older woman. Her name was Christine Jorgensen.
But six decades ago Jorgensen was anything but frumpy or older. But she was a woman. Named George. And sixty years ago this weekend she set about the process of having her body match her gender. Hers was the first widely known successful transexual transition.
Much of the rest is known. She was a curiosity, a celebrity. And Christine did what she could to educate and inform an incredulous public. BBC has a nice write up of her life.
But for me, the point is that at the end, after the glamour was gone she was exactly what she was all the time: a woman.
We can sometimes forget this from the way that Hollywood or the media can at times report on the subject. A transgender woman or man is almost always just that: a “transgender woman” and “transgender man”, as though there must be an asterisk on their gender.
But while politics and prejudice can very often demand that trans folk place this aspect of their being first and fight for their rights, they are not the “colorful edge” of the LGBT community and the processes they may have chosen to align their body with their gender does not define their gender.
Transgender poeple are neither exotic flowers or freaks. They are not as a whole glamorous and exciting or “a man in a dress”. They’re just people. And, in my experience, the novelty soon wears off and then you see transgender people through their humanity – some good, some less so – all just living their lives with integrity, but no asterisk.
In this original BTB Investigation, we unveil the tragic story of Kirk Murphy, a four-year-old boy who was treated for “cross-gender disturbance” in 1970 by a young grad student by the name of George Rekers. This story is a stark reminder that there are severe and damaging consequences when therapists try to ensure that boys will be boys.
When we first reported on three American anti-gay activists traveling to Kampala for a three-day conference, we had no idea that it would be the first report of a long string of events leading to a proposal to institute the death penalty for LGBT people. But that is exactly what happened. In this report, we review our collection of more than 500 posts to tell the story of one nation’s embrace of hatred toward gay people. This report will be updated continuously as events continue to unfold. Check here for the latest updates.
In 2005, the Southern Poverty Law Center wrote that “[Paul] Cameron’s ‘science’ echoes Nazi Germany.” What the SPLC didn”t know was Cameron doesn’t just “echo” Nazi Germany. He quoted extensively from one of the Final Solution’s architects. This puts his fascination with quarantines, mandatory tattoos, and extermination being a “plausible idea” in a whole new and deeply disturbing light.
On February 10, I attended an all-day “Love Won Out” ex-gay conference in Phoenix, put on by Focus on the Family and Exodus International. In this series of reports, I talk about what I learned there: the people who go to these conferences, the things that they hear, and what this all means for them, their families and for the rest of us.
Prologue: Why I Went To “Love Won Out”
Part 1: What’s Love Got To Do With It?
Part 2: Parents Struggle With “No Exceptions”
Part 3: A Whole New Dialect
Part 4: It Depends On How The Meaning of the Word "Change" Changes
Part 5: A Candid Explanation For "Change"
Using the same research methods employed by most anti-gay political pressure groups, we examine the statistics and the case studies that dispel many of the myths about heterosexuality. Download your copy today!
And don‘t miss our companion report, How To Write An Anti-Gay Tract In Fifteen Easy Steps.
Anti-gay activists often charge that gay men and women pose a threat to children. In this report, we explore the supposed connection between homosexuality and child sexual abuse, the conclusions reached by the most knowledgeable professionals in the field, and how anti-gay activists continue to ignore their findings. This has tremendous consequences, not just for gay men and women, but more importantly for the safety of all our children.
Anti-gay activists often cite the “Dutch Study” to claim that gay unions last only about 1½ years and that the these men have an average of eight additional partners per year outside of their steady relationship. In this report, we will take you step by step into the study to see whether the claims are true.
Tony Perkins’ Family Research Council submitted an Amicus Brief to the Maryland Court of Appeals as that court prepared to consider the issue of gay marriage. We examine just one small section of that brief to reveal the junk science and fraudulent claims of the Family “Research” Council.
The FBI’s annual Hate Crime Statistics aren’t as complete as they ought to be, and their report for 2004 was no exception. In fact, their most recent report has quite a few glaring holes. Holes big enough for Daniel Fetty to fall through.