Published on December 13th, 2011 | by Wild Gender0
Here’s a bundle of mainstream media gender buzz from the last few days. What do you think about the coverage of gender variance in the media of late?
BOSTON GLOBE: trans twins
#1. The transgender half of an identical set of twins, Nicole, is profiled on the front page of the Boston Globe. Her case with the Orono Maine School Department was made famous within the state when Nicole and her family plead for the right use her bathroom of choice. She won. Nicole and her twin brother are 14-years-old. In general, Wild Gender was pleased to find that Globe author, Bella English expanded the focus from “Gender Dysphoria” and body discomfort to include Nicole’s joy at her gender identification. Still, there were the typical painful moments of a mainstream media article about trans folk, when English uses the wrong pronoun for Nicole during the beginning of the article.
TIME MAGAZINE: “next frontier in civil rights”
#2 Time Magazine published an article by writer Adam Cohen called: “Transgender People: the next frontier in civil rights.”Cohen cites the federal court decision that ruled in favor of a Georgia trans woman who was fired for being a Georgia transgender woman. The federal court system determined that her firing was a violation of the U.S. Constitution. In the article, Cohen also references the increase in U.S. companies that went public recently for including gender reassignment surgery in their insurance packages, nearly one third of companies now cover surgery, including businesses like: Apple, Google, American Airlines, and Chevron. Besides this, Cohen makes the point that: “If two of the nation’s most powerful institutions, federal courts and major corporations, are increasingly lining up behind transgender people, then change is undoubtedly on the way.” Wild Gender’s biggest gripe with this article is that it is included in the Time’s “New Ideas” section. We find the idea that human rights for gender variant folks is a “new idea” as laughable.
DAILY MAIL: teaching trans
#3 The internet exploded last week when the U.K. Department for Education announced a proposal to include transgender anti-discrimination lessons in the curriculum of Personal, Social and Health Education for students as young as elementary school. According to an article by U.K. site Daily Mail, education ministers want to “combat transphobic bullying,” which is defined as the taunting of children who express ‘gender variant behaviors.” To Wild Gender, the idea that a governmental body of K-12 educators is considering the health and well being of gender variant students, is staggering. To the Daily Mail, it’s an opportunity to include a quote Margaret Morrissey, founder of campaign group called “Parents Outloud” she told the Daily Mail, “We have given (students) sex education and teenage pregnancies have risen year on year. We have told children about drugs education and we have a serious problem with drugs. We have told them about drinking and cigarettes and we have more children with alcohol problems and smoking.” We’re not sure whether Morrissey is concerned that education about transgenderism in schools will increase bullying, or if she’s worried that it will actually increase the amount of gender variant students.