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AEGIS Internet News, February 1998

AEGIS Internet News, February 1998

In May, 1995  when I was Executive Director of the nonprofit American Educational Gender Information Service, I compiled and transmitted what I believe was the first transgender-specific online news feed. It was called AEGIS Online News. The News initially went out to several hundred AEGIS members and other subscribers as a plain text file over the fledgling internet.

In those days there wasn’t much news to repost. Consequently, the News was initially distributed every other month; it took that long to compile enough material to create a newsletter. Within two years, however, there was almost too much news to handle.

I posted material as I came across it, both from primary sources and from other newsfeeds. Rex Wocker’s LGBT newslist was a valuable resource. Soon, subscribers were sending me material.

In November I moved the News to a majordomo automated list which kept track of subscribers; before that I handled subscriptions, unsubscriptions, and address changes manually and sent out the news via blind carbon copy. The name was changed to AEGIS Internet News and the introductory material about AEGIS was removed because it was available to readers on demand from the server. The list, initially hosted by my ISP (Mindspring) was eventually moved to a server hosted by Kymberleigh Richards, the publisher of the magazine Cross-Talk. This enabled me to send e-mails to the server as I came across news items, yet distribute them as a digest once per day– sometimes twice or three times daily if there was a lot of news. This was easier on both me and the readers, who had been receiving up to eight e-mails a day.

I stopped publishing AEGIS Internet News in mid-1998.

On January 1, 2000 AEGIS was repurposed as Gender Education & Advocacy. Under the supervision of the late Penni Ashe Matz, news went out as Gender Advocacy Internet News.

Many posts have been lost, but we have preserved several hundred. Here are issues of AEGIS Internet News from February 1998:

1998, 2 February

<HTML><PRE>Subj: AEGIS Internet News Digest 2/2/98 Date: 98-02-02 14:34:36 EST From: (Dallas Denny) To:

AEGIS Internet News is a service of the American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc.

To subscribe or unsubscribe from AEGIS Internet News, send e-mail to Contents:

1. Ad Hoc Committee for Prison Health Care Reform 2. Kate Bornstein Book Tour Dates 3. FIRST MOTION IN THE SPANISH STATE ABOUT THE RIGHTS OF TRANSSEXUAL PEOPLE 4. Phyllis Frye Resigns as Executive Director of ICTLEP 5. Trans academics featured in Chronicle of Higher Education 6. Test-tube baby who is ‘nobody’s child’ Date: Mon, 26 Jan 1998 13:37:55 -0500 From: Song Weaver <julie@DRYCAS.CLUB.CC.CMU.EDU> Subject: (fwd) Transgender Prisoner Advocates Challenge Discrimination MIME-Version: 1.0 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=”us-ascii” Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7BIT

Please circulate this information widely and feel free to publish. Thank you.



Att: News Editor, Newsroom

For Immediate Release: January 21, 1998 For More Information Contact: Scott Cozza (707) 778-0564 Judy Greenspan (510) 834-5656,ext. 3150


January 21 — Supporters of the rights of transgender prisoners today sent a letter to Warden Ana Olivares of the California Medical Facility-Vacaville challenging the lack of care and treatment of the incarcerated transgender population at that institution. The letter was signed by over 25 organizations and individuals.

The newly formed Ad Hoc Committee for Prison Health Care Reform called for Warden Olivares to investigate the “poor and nonexistent” medical and mental health care for transgendered prisoners at CMF-Vacaville.

According to Scott Cozza, a community advocate and member of the ad hoc committee, CMF-Vacaville does not have a mental health program or a medical clinic that addresses the special needs of the transgendered prisoner.

Claiming that some corrections officers “demean, demoralize, humiliate and discriminate against transgendered prisoners,” the ad hoc committee also called for special training for correctional officers and staff on the psycho-social issues of the transgender community.

Judy Greenspan, Director of Catholic Charities’ HIV/AIDS in Prison Project, noted that most of the transgender population is automatically housed in the prison’s HIV Unit whether they are HIV+ or not. “Transgender prisoners are often the victims of rape and violence within society and within prisons. The fact that they are housed in the HIV Unit unnecessarily puts them at risk for HIV infection,” Greenspan stated.

The letter to Warden Olivares also criticized the Vacaville prison for not allowing most transgendered prisoners access to hormonal therapy. “We believe that transgendered prisoners should be allowed to live their lifestyle within the prison and that includes access to hormone treatments and psychosocial support groups,” said Karen Shain of the California Coalition for Women Prisoners.

“We have asked Warden Olivares to immediately investigate the health care concerns outlined in our letter and to schedule a meeting with concerned members of our ad hoc committee,” Cozza added.


[Text of letter appears below]


Ana Olivares, Warden California Medical Facility at Vacaville P.O. Box 2000 Vacaville, CA 95696

Dear Warden Olivares:

We are writing to you as representatives of the Ad Hoc Committee for Prison Health Care Reform. This group is made up of culturally diverse organizations and individuals who are dedicated to improving the medical and mental health care conditions for people who live behind bars. We are deeply concerned about the health care needs of the transgendered prisoner population housed at your facility.

It has been brought to our attention, that the medical as well as the mental health care remains poor and/or nonexistent at the California Medical Facility for the transgendered prisoner. The following is a list of quality care issues which we are concerned about:

1) Correctional Officers and other staff receive no training on the psychosocial-bio issues of the transgender (TG) community. Some corrections officers demean, demoralize, humiliate and discriminate against TGs.

2) The correctional facility does not have a mental health program which addresses the mental health needs of the TG prisoner. Correctional mental health service views TGs as deviant and pathological.

3) The correctional facility does not have a medical clinic addressing the unique medical needs of the TG prisoner.

4) The TG prisoner should be housed in a special unit within the correctional facility where they would be allowed to live their lifestyle within the limits and rules of the facility. Many are housed with other prisoners and are raped and emotionally abused.

5) Currently TGs at CMF are the only non-HIV+ incarcerated group housed in the HIV/AIDS program. This places them at risk for infection of HIV.

6) Incarcerated TGs are not even considered eligible for hormone therapy unless they received this therapy prior to incarceration. In reality, it is rare for those who received hormones prior to incarceration to be approved to receive hormones while incarcerated. And it can take months for hormones to be approved in the very rare cases when they are.

7) TGs living with HIV/AIDS are denied hormones. They were also denied being able to attend a TG sensitive support group. There was no support group offered in their area addressing their unique needs.

8) The California Department of Corrections needs to develop an official policy in the DOM Department Operations Manual which addresses the psychosocial-bio needs of the incarcerated TG community.

To date there is no such document.

9) TGs who are incarcerated should be provided HIV/STD peer education which is sensitive to the TG community. They receive no HIV or other health information.

10) The incarcerated TG should be protected from sexual assault, physical and verbal abuse and discrimination. The experience of the TG prisoner is feeling unprotected.

11) All transgender prisoners whether they are HIV positive or not are disciplined more harshly than the general population for the same offense.

12) TGs are not allowed to wear make-up or feminine clothing. Many who have developed breasts are not allowed to wear bras. They are strip-searched by male officers.

The Ad Hoc Committee for Prison Health Care Reform is requesting that the California Medical Facility investigate the health care concerns identified above. We are also requesting a formal meeting with you to discuss our concerns and develop solutions to this serious deficiency in health care delivery. Please contact either Scott Cozza at (707) 778-0564 or Judy Greenspan at (510) 834-5656, ext. 3150, to set-up this meeting. Thank you for your consideration.


Scott Cozza, Advocate Judy Greenspan, Director, HIV/AIDS in Prison Project Anne Donnelly, Policy Director, Project Inform Eileen Hansen, Policy Director, AIDS Legal Referral Panel (ALRP) Irwin Keller, Executive Director, ALRP Lisa Johnson and Rachel Bernstein, LYRIC Rob Guzman, SF Department of Health Barbara F. Anderson, Ph.D., Gender Identity Services, Center for Special Problems Willis Johnson, New Village, National Task Force on AIDS Prevention Nancy Nangeroni, International Foundation for Gender Education Lara Johnson, Organization for Sensible and Effective Prison Policy Karen Shain, California Coalition for Women Prisoners Dorsey Nunn, Legal Services for Prisoners with Children Cindy Chandler, Women’s Positive Legal Action Paul Lefrak, Free Mumia Coalition/Anti-Racist Action/Ann Arbor Jennifer Wood, Department of Communications University of Pittsburgh Barry Norris, Advocacy Director, Project AIDS- Louisville Bill Healy, Vice President and Treasurer, People AIDS Coalition – Hawaii Cynthia Anne Kruger Riki Anne Wilchins, Executive Director, Gender-PAC Joshua Goldberg Rosalyn Bloomenstein, Director, Gender Identity Project Leslie Brandon Betty Lou Arnold Jeremy Burke Barbara Gilette, Cambridge, England

cc: State Senator John Burton State Senator John Vasconcellos Assemblywoman Carole Migden Assemblywoman Sheila Kuehl Various Members of the Media


From: Date: Mon, 26 Jan 1998 16:21:30 -0500 (EST) Subject: “My Gender Workbook” – Tour Dates!

The following was provided by Kate Bornstein, on the release of her new book, “My Gender Workbook.” As many of you may recall, Kate did some of her research into this volume within the TCF and the Gazebo chat room, so I am pleased to hear of it’s release.

Cheers, . . /\\//\ Gwendolyn Ann Smith > () < Area Coordinator \/()\/ Transgender Community Forum


</P><P ALIGN=CENTER><B>TALK AND BOOKSIGNING SCHEDULE</B> Kate Bornstein for “My Gender Workbook”

</P><P ALIGN=LEFT>(NOTE: Times approximate. It’d be way good to double check these with the bookstore.)

Wednesday, Feb. 4: ATLANTA 7:30PM: Outwrite Bookstore 991 Piedmont Avenue (404) 607-0082

Thursday, Feb. 5, COLUMBUS 7:30 PM: An Open Book, 749 North High Street (614) 291-0080

Friday, Feb. 6: SEATTLE 7:30 PM: Red & Black Books, 432 15th Avenue East (206) 322-7323

Monday, Feb. 9: SEATTLE 7:30 PM Elliot Bay Books,101 South Main Street (206) 624-6640

Tuesday, Feb. 10: VANCOUVER, B.C. x 12:30 PM: SFU Bookstore, Birnabye, BC V5A 1S6 (604) 291-3887 x 7:00 PM Simon Fraser, Harbor Center Store, Vancouver, BC

Wednesday, Feb. 11: SAN FRANCISCO 7:30 PM: A Different Light, 489 Castro Street (415) 431-0891

Thursday, Feb. 12: BERKELEY 7:30 PM: Cody’s Bookstore, 2454 Telegraph Ave., Berkeley, CA (510) 845-0837

Tuesday, Feb. 18: WASHINGTON DC METRO AREA 7:00 PM: Borders Books, 1201 Hayes Street, Arlington, VA 22202 (703) 414-8919

Thursday, Feb. 19: PHILADELPHIA 7:30 PM: Giovanni’s Room, 345 South 12th Street (215) 923-2960

Tuesday, Feb. 24: BOSTON METRO AREA 6:00 PM: New Words Bookstore,186 Hampshire, Cambridge, MA 02139 (617) 876-5310

Wednesday, Feb. 25: NORTHAMPTON, MA 7:30 PM: Reader’s and Writers Live, Smith College, Nielson Browsing Room

Thursday, Feb. 26: AMHERST, MA 12:30 PM: Brown Bag Lunch Lecture Series, U Mass Campus Center, (413) 545-4824

Sunday, March 1: TORONTO, ON 1:00 PM: Lichtman’s Books, 2299 Yonge St., Toronto

Wednesday, March 18: CHICAGO 7:30 PM: UnAbridged Bookstore, 3251 North Broadway, Chicago IL (773) 883-9119


Return-Path: <> From: TheXGrrrl <> Date: Tue, 27 Jan 1998 10:16:12 EST To: Subject: ICTLEP Press Release – for AEGIS News Organization: AOL (

Subj: PRESS RELEASE: ICTLEP ELECTS NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Date: 98-01-26 17:47:16 EST From: PRFrye To: To Phyllis List:





send mail to: PO Drawer 1010 Cooperstown, New York 13326 U.S.A. phone: 607-547-4118 net: America On Line, Keyword “ICTLEP” web page:

Executive Director (outgoing), Phyllis Randolph Frye, Esq, Executive Director (elect), Sharon Stuart/Tom Heitz, Esq, Documentation Law Director, Melinda Whiteway, Esq, Health Law Director, Shannon Minter, Esq., Treasurer Director, Sandy Kasten, Esq, Development Director, Dana D. Turner, Esq, __________ @ _________ Development Moderator, Margo Dockendorf, Esq, Employment Law Moderator, Sarah Douglas, Esq., Employer Education Moderator, Diana Cicotello, Imprisonment Law Moderator, Raymond Hill, 107 S.Ct. 2502,

permanent address: PO Drawer 35477 5707 Firenza, Houston, TX 77235-5477

PRESS RELEASE contact person: Sharon Stuart, 607-547-4118,


The Transgender Law Conference (ICTLEP, see letterhead) announces that it has elected Sharon Stuart/Thomas Heitz as its new Executive Director. Stuart/Heitz, a bi-gendered activist of long standing, was an original Director of ICTLEP when it formed in 1991 and has her Juris Doctorate from the University of Kansas Law School. Her new position begins on 15 March 1998.

Stuart/Heitz sees her job as providing a year-long transition from a “founder-driven” organization (which began in 1991 when its founder was the only, totally out and totally active, TG lawyer in the United States) to one with more structure and a deeper organizational base. “Today, with so many TG lawyers and TG law students being out or coming out, there is a growing pool of folks who can take on the miriad of bar-association-styled committee work that needs to be done,” states Stuart/Heitz.

Out-going ED and founder, Phyllis Randolph Frye, told her Board three weeks ago that she had had enough. “Being an activist for over two decades is one thing, but being on the point for all of those two-plus decades is more than enough. And six years as Executive Director of this organization with six annual conferences and six annual, bound Proceedings was also enough.” Frye was asked by Stuart/Heitz to remain as a Director in order to provide historical perspective and continuity, and she agreed.

ICTLEP remains ready to serve the Transgender Community and to work in harmony with the inclusive LGBT Community. Stuart/Heitz asks, “If you are a legal professional, won’t you please contact me and see how you can help to take TG legal work from this plateau into the next? My Directors and Moderators need you!”

If you are a current financial contributor, please continue. If you are not yet, please consider helping out. Check out the ICTLEP web page at (and the AOL keyword ICTLEP). Also find ICTLEP information on


Transmaterial collector Bob Davis send us this message:

Believe it or not, and I’m not sure I do, there’s a web site for very gay female impersonator Rae Bourbon. The address I was given is <>. Among other things it’s supposed to include his monologue “The Wedding” from his first lp with UTC Records, that’s Under The Counter Records.

We checked out the site, which includes two long RealPlayer audio clips from Ray/Rae Bourbon’s albums.



From: “Kim” <> Subject: Transnews Eleven Date: Thu, 29 Jan 1998 17:42:38 +0100 X-MSMail-Priority: Normal

TRANSNEWS from Cibeles, web of Identidad de Genero Number Eleven


PALMA-DE-MAJORCA, JANUARY. A Committee of the Parlament of the Balearic Islands has studied, on last November, a motion from The Greens about the transsexual people’s rights to non-discrimination in labour (70% are unemployed), to an easy change of name, to the Social Security for surgery, to their situation when in prison and to political asylum when they are prosecuted in their origin countries by their transsexuality.

The motion has received the warm support of other parliamentary groups, such as United Left, the Nationalists and the Socialists, but has been defeated by the Popular Party (right-center wing), which has the majority. The voting in the Committee has obtained 8 yes, 9 no and no one abstention.

The motion has been proposed by the Gay and Lesbian Balearic Association Ben Amics.

The Association of Identidad de Genero express that this experience has demonstrated that there are big social and political forces with us, that this motion will be not the last and that the Association Ben Amics has proved its solidarity.


Date: Sun, 1 Feb 1998 15:40:59 -0500 Subject: article and discussion about transgendered academics From: To:

This week’s issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education features an article about transgendered academics, their scholarship, and their push for protection under universities’ anti-bias policies. The story is available on The Chronicle’s Web site, where The Chronicle is also sponsoring a discussion about the issues raised in the piece. The Chronicle would be interested in hearing from members of this list about their experiences in academe, and about the need for including transgendered status in anti-bias policies. You can find the story, and join in the discussion at:

Scott Jaschik Deputy Managing Editor The Chronicle of Higher Education


From: “Christine Burns” <> To: “Backup UKPFC News” <> Subject: And you think WE’VE got problems …. Date: Sun, 1 Feb 1998 10:47:52 -0000

If you ever thought that trans people were in some way specially singled out to have their lives screwed up by lawyers, then read on .. for yet another example of what happens when the law fails to keep pace with reality. >From Electronic Telegraph ( Sunday 1 February 1998 Issue 982 Copyright Telegraph Group Limited 1998.

Test-tube baby who is ‘nobody’s child’ By James Langton in New York

A BLUE-eyed infant known as “nobody’s child” has no parents because she was conceived in an infertility clinic and born to a surrogate mother, a Californian court has decided.

The case of two-year-old Jaycee Buzzanca has created a legal storm in America, where it has underlined the growing complexity of the rights of children born through infertility treatment.

A judge has declared her to be without a mother or father because doctors used both donor sperm and eggs, then transferred the embryo into the womb of a surrogate mother recruited by a San Francisco couple, John and Luanne Buzzanca, who paid her a fee of almost $10,000 (6,250).

But while the pregnancy thrived, the Buzzancas’ marriage did not. By the time Jacyee was born in April 1995, Mr Buzzanca had filed for divorce. After his wife sought child-maintenance payments, he successfully argued that the baby could not be his in any legal sense.

An appeal judge later backed Mr Buzzanca but, to the astonishment of legal experts, also ruled that Mrs Buzzanca “was not entitled to be called the legal mother of Jaycee at this time”.

Robert Monarch, the Orange County Superior Court judge, said the child had no biological tie to the couple or the surrogate, Pamela Snell, defined under Californian law as her “gestational” mother. Furthermore, in American law, donors cannot be regarded as natural parents.

Lawyers for the child began giving evidence last week to seek a fresh appeal which might allow her to remain with Mrs Buzzanca, who has temporary custody and is seeking to establish that Jaycee is her daughter. One of the judges hearing the appeal said: “This is the most extraordinary surrogate case to date.”

The child has the backing of the American Civil Liberties Union and family law experts. Taylor Flynn, an ACLU lawyer, said Mr Buzzanca was being “vicious” for refusing to accept responsibility for Jaycee. “It is appalling that he would bring this child into being and then have the court declare that he is not the father and she is not the mother.”

A growing number of experts have said that the case shows that medical technology is outstripping legal and ethical questions. Arthur Caplan, a medical ethicist at the University of Pennsylvania, calls it “a very bad situation where you have children being made without rules, via a technique that never existed before”. The Association of Certified Family Law Specialists, which is giving evidence at the appeal, says the original ruling “used the technological novelty of Jaycee’s conception and gestation to create a new type of illegitimacy. It found that she is nobody’s child”.

The case is further complicated because Mrs Snell and her husband, Randy, at one point applied for parental rights and custody after learning that the Buzzancas’ marriage had failed. Last year the court considered six possible parents, including the anonymous sperm and egg donors, and rejected them all.

Mrs Buzzanca, 42, had unsuccessfully tried in-vitro fertilisation four times, spending more than $40,000 (25,000) from a $200,000 (125,000) inheritance. Doctors then suggested that they try surrogacy and introduced them to Mrs Snell, who had recently given birth to her third surrogate baby. The couple decided to use donors for fertilisation because of an earlier court case in New Jersey, where a surrogate mother refused to hand over the baby, saying that she was its biological mother. Mrs Snell, who was then planning to retire from surrogacy, says she decided to help the couple after Mrs Buzzanca “begged and begged. I felt so sorry for them”. An embryo was created and implanted in August 1994. At the same time, both the Snells and the Buzzancas signed a contract.

Within two weeks Mr Buzzanca had left his wife. He refuses to comment on the break-up, although his lawyer says he never wished to have a child. He added that: “Moral issues are not always the same as legal issues.”

Mrs Buzzanca took legal action to enforce child support of $386 (240) a week, on the basis of the surrogacy contract. Her lawyers said that in signing the agreement he effectively caused Jaycee’s conception.

Mr Buzzanca’s defence is based on Californian law, which declares that to be responsible for her, he must either be Jaycee’s genetic or adoptive father or have supported the child after her birth. His former wife could resolve the legal tangle by adopting Jaycee, but refuses to do so because she wants the surrogacy contract enforced and her ex-husband to pay child support.

If Jaycee’s appeal fails, her future is uncertain. Mrs Buzzanca refuses to adopt a child she regards as her own. The financial well-being for the little girl will rest largely on state welfare handouts. -30- <FONT COLOR=”#0f0f0f” BACK=”#fffffe” SIZE=3>

———————– Headers ——————————– Return-Path: <> Received: from ( []) by (v38.1) with SMTP; Mon, 02 Feb 1998 14:34:36 -0500 Received: from ( []) by (8.8.5/8.8.5/AOL-4.0.0) with ESMTP id OAA21161; Mon, 2 Feb 1998 14:34:21 -0500 (EST) Received: from MS. ( []) by (8.8.5/8.8.5) with SMTP id OAA03802; Mon, 2 Feb 1998 14:11:10 -0500 (EST) Message-Id: <> X-Sender: X-Mailer: Windows Eudora Light Version 1.5.2 Mime-Version: 1.0 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=”us-ascii” Date: Mon, 02 Feb 1998 14:12:02 -0500 To: From: Dallas Denny <> Subject: AEGIS Internet News Digest 2/2/98


1998, 4 February

Return-Path: <> X-Sender: Date: Wed, 04 Feb 1998 09:34:10 -0500 To: From: Dallas Denny <> Subject: AEGIS Internet News Digest 2/4/98

AEGIS Internet News Digest 2/4/98

AEGIS Internet News is a service of the American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc.

To subscribe or unsubscribe from AEGIS Internet News, send e-mail to Contents:

1. City Says Rescue Worker had “right” to Taunt Victim 2. Chronicle of Higher Education Article 3. Review of “Mema’s House, Mexico City” —————–

>From The Washington Blade 1/31/98

City says rescue worker had `right’ to taunt victim

by Lou Chibbaro Jr.

Following expressions of outrage by Gay activists, the D.C. Corporation Counsel this week agreed to withdraw language from a legal brief asserting that the city’s Fire Department is exempt from the D.C. Human Rights Act, which bans discrimination based on sexual orientation, personal appearance, and other classifications. But D.C. Corporation Counsel John Ferren declined to drop language from the brief that contends that a city emergency medical technician had a “First Amendment right” to shout derogatory names at the victim of a 1995 car crash in Northeast D.C. after he discovered the victim was a man dressed in women’s clothes.

Ferren’s office filed the legal brief last December as part of the city’s response to a $10 million wrongful death lawsuit brought by the mother of Tyrone “Tyra” Hunter, a 26-year-old District man who was killed in the car crash.

Hunter’s mother, Margie Hunter, charges in her suit that her son suffered damages in two separate incidents related to the car crash _ discriminatory treatment by the emergency medical technician at the scene of the accident and faulty medical treatment at D.C. General Hospital. Margie Hunter’s suit asserts that it was the faulty and negligent treatment at the hospital that actually led to her son’s death.

The Aug. 7, 1995, car crash triggered a heated confrontation between the Gay community and the Fire Department. It also became a rallying point for local transgender activists, who said the incident was an example of how transgendered people are mistreated in society.

At a press conference Wednesday, Jan. 28, representatives of local Gay and transgender groups said they are concerned that the city has decided to allocate funds to contest the Hunter lawsuit rather than agree to an out-of-court settlement.

Rick Rosendall, president of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance, said Ferren called him just prior to the press conference to disclose that he would drop language in the city’s brief that asserted the Fire Department was exempt from the city’s Human Rights Act. That language, if upheld by the courts, could have given the Fire Department authority to discriminate against Gays, transgendered people, and other minorities, said Gay activists.

“It’s just unbelievable that the city would take this position in the first place,” said Sharen Shaw Johnson, executive director of the D.C. Group Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence.

Darren Buckner, president of the D.C. Coalition of Black Lesbians, Gay Men, and Bisexuals, said the language in the court brief came at a time when the Fire Department has yet to fulfill a longstanding promise to provide Gay and transgender sensitivity training for all firefighters and emergency medical technicians. Buckner noted that activists believe the emergency medical technicians mistreated Gays in at least one other case involving a Dupont Circle assault against a Gay man.



February 6, 1998 Issue


Transgendered Scholars Defy Convention, Seeking to Be Heard and Seen in Academe

A growing movement demands protection in anti-bias policies and attention for their ideas


Before he delivers a lecture on gender identity to his philosophy class this semester, Michael A. Gilbert must decide what to wear. Most likely, he will put on a knee-length skirt, a long-sleeved blouse, and low pumps. Standing before a mirror at home, he’ll fix his wig and apply some makeup before heading out the door.

Professor Gilbert is a cross-dresser who teaches philosophy at York University, in Ontario. When he appears in drag this semester, it will be the second time that he has introduced students in his “Gender and Sexuality” course to a side of himself that he had kept hidden for nearly 50 years. “Having tenure is a two-edged sword,” he says. “It means I can’t be fired. But when it’s appropriate, it’s also incumbent upon me to take a risk and stick my neck out. My main goal is to provide an openness for transgendered people.”

Dr. Gilbert is among a growing cadre of “trans” people on campuses who are going public. Organizations for gay, lesbian, and bisexual students have already begun tacking a “T” on the end of their names to embrace “transgendered” or “transsexual” students. In the past year, students and professors have also pushed universities to extend protection to transgendered people under policies that prevent discrimination against minorities. What’s more, work by transgendered scholars is making transgender studies a hot new topic. One of the most important contributions to the field, a transgender issue of GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies, edited by Susan Stryker, is due out next month from Duke University Press. A flurry of other publications on the topic is expected this spring and summer, and transsexual academics have started an electronic mailing list on the subject. (Those interested in joining the list, called “transacademic,” can send an e-mail message to

“We are pioneering a new field of scholarship,” says Dr. Stryker, an independent scholar, who changed from male to female in 1991, a year before earning her Ph.D. in history from the University of California at Berkeley. “This whole area is going to become an increasingly big social concern over the next decade.”

Despite its growing visibility, most people still need help in navigating the world of transgenderism. The label “transsexual” typically is reserved for people who have had at least some sex-change surgery and who take hormones to further the change. “Transgendered” is a catchall term that is used to refer to people who live as the opposite sex, whether or not they have had sex-change surgery. The description encompasses cross-dressers, also known as transvestites, and is used by some lesbians and gay men to describe themselves.

Transgendered people are gaining attention, but their numbers are still small. Only about .025 per cent of Americans identify themselves as transsexual, and about 2 per cent of Americans consider themselves transgendered, says a non-profit group, the International Foundation for Gender Education, in Waltham, Mass.

Having a sex change is a deeply personal matter, but several transsexual academics spoke freely about the experience for this article. Most of them told of being well received on their campuses after they changed gender.

C. Jacob Hale chose to become a man and sought tenure on California State University’s Northridge campus in the same year. The timing was risky. But Dr. Hale, a professor of philosophy, didn’t want to wait.

“I could not imagine going through my tenure review and then telling my colleagues, ‘Guess what? There’s something I forgot to tell you,'” says Dr. Hale, who made the decision to change sex in 1995. But the professor did feel vulnerable. “I was very afraid of losing my academic career,” he says. “What else do philosophers do?”

The first thing Dr. Hale did after announcing that she would become a man was to buzz-cut her bleached-blond hair. Dr. Hale also began taking male hormones and had her breasts removed, but has stopped short of genital surgery.

Dr. Hale’s sexual transition has caused a transformation in his scholarly interests. The professor began at Northridge studying the philosophy of science and mathematics. Now he works at the intersection of feminist theory, queer theory, and transgender theory. Near the top of a list of publications on his curriculum vitae is a paper called “Leatherdyke Boys and Their Daddies: How to Have Sex Without Women or Men.”

Much of the research in the emerging field of transgender studies is the work of scholars, like Dr. Hale, who consider themselves transgendered. Although male-to-female transitions are the more common, a lot of recent scholarly work explores the opposite change.

Holly Devor, a professor of sociology at the University of Victoria, in British Columbia, and a lesbian who considers herself transgendered, has just published a 700-page book called FTM: Female-to-Male Transsexuals in Society (Indiana University Press), which tells the personal stories of 45 transsexuals, with excerpts from their own accounts. Second Skin: Body Narratives of Transsexuals, by Jay Prosser, a transsexual professor at the University of Leicester, in England, will be published by Columbia University Press in June; it features photographs of transsexuals’ physiques. Henry S. Rubin, a transsexual lecturer in social studies at Harvard University, is expecting to finish a book this summer tentatively called The Subject Matters: FTM Subjectivity and Embodiment, to be published by the University of Chicago Press.

It comes as no surprise that some people have problems with such lines of research. Bradford Wilson, executive director of the traditionalist National Association of Scholars, says he objects to any group of people’s studying themselves and calling it scholarship. “When one chooses one’s research subjects as a means of affirming one’s difference, I think that one runs the risk of distorting the scholarly enterprise,” he says. “This is not necessarily scholarly. It’s political.”

But Dr. Rubin says it is not unusual for scholars in any field to write about their own experiences. “To claim that we’re skewing our scholarship because we’re writing from a position fails to recognize that everybody is similarly situated,” says Dr. Rubin, who landed a coveted lecturer’s job at Harvard in 1991 while he was still a woman, completing a Ph.D at Brandeis University. Dr. Rubin made his sexual transition, without any problems, four years after he arrived at Harvard, he says.

Deirdre N. McCloskey is one faculty member who hasn’t made her transsexualism the subject of her study — at least not yet. She continues to work on the same questions about the economy that interested her when she was Donald McCloskey. But her writing is now self-consciously female. Donald had been well known for his pointed challenges to the basic assumptions that economists make. Dr. McCloskey, who began making the change to Deirdre two years ago, still poses such challenges. But now she frequently refers to herself as “Aunt Deirdre” in tweaking the predominantly male profession.

In her first book as a female author, Deirdre McCloskey takes her colleagues to task for what she sees as their overreliance on theory and statistics to explain human behavior. Donald did that, too. But unlike Donald’s work, Deirdre’s book, published last year by Amsterdam University Press, is full of references to gender. “There’s a woman’s point here,” she writes in one chapter of The Vices of Economists: The Virtues of the Bourgeoisie.

She acknowledges that not everyone approves of her interpretation of what it means to be a woman. “Red flags go up when you speak of thinking like a woman, but that’s what I do,” she says. “The crucial point is that it’s not because I’ve consulted page 35 of the manual on how to be a girl. It seems to come from inside.”

Like Dr. McCloskey, Michelle Stanton also talks about noticing “a softening in body and perceptions” since she changed from male to female in 1992. As a man, Dr. Stanton was drawn to the technological side of television and film production. He wrote several articles for the journal of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers. But after becoming a woman, says Dr. Stanton, “I never wrote for them again.” She explains: “In the production side, you’re involved in physical activity, moving sets, pushing cameras. I didn’t want to do that anymore.” Now her research and teaching concern the marketing and advertising aspects of the entertainment industry, fields she calls “more people-oriented.”

Most of the transgendered professors interviewed for this article describe their transitions on campus as uneventful. Dr. Stanton even calls hers “tranquil.” Universities, particularly large research institutions, are known for being tolerant places and may therefore be among the most comfortable venues for someone undergoing a sex change.

Even Valerie J. Harvey, a professor of computer and information systems at Robert Morris College, a small liberal-arts institution in Pennsylvania, underwent a change from male to female in 1996 without a hitch. Jo Ann M. Sipple, vice-president for academic and student affairs at the college, acknowledges that some of Dr. Harvey’s colleagues found the experience “unnerving.” But officials were more concerned about how students would react. “We have a fairly conservative student population, and I thought maybe some of them would object on moral or religious grounds,” recalls Ms. Sipple. The college had counselors on hand to help students cope when Dr. Harvey announced the change. “But,” the administrator recalls, “there were no complaints.”

For Wynd D. Harris, a professor of marketing and international business at Quinnipiac College, the transition has not been that easy. The professor changed names from William to Wynd last May, and in August asked to be recognized as female.

But the college balked. Dr. Harris had been taking hormones but had not yet had genital surgery when he requested the change. The university asked for proof that the professor was a woman. “They told me I had to have a physical exam,” recalls Dr. Harris. The professor refused. In October, the college suspended Dr. Harris and started termination proceedings against her.

Pat Smith, a spokesman for Quinnipiac, says Dr. Harris made a series of requests that have troubled the college. First, he says, the professor asked to be recognized as Jewish (he had been a Protestant), then he wanted to be considered American Indian, and then he wanted to be called a woman.

Nonetheless, a committee of faculty members voted nine to one last month, with one abstention, to retain Professor Harris. Now the provost must decide what to do. In the meantime, Dr. Harris has had sex-change surgery and is legally female.

To head off situations like the one facing Dr. Harris, some transsexuals are pushing for administrative protection from discrimination. The effort isn’t widespread, but it is happening at some prominent institutions.

The University of Iowa has already adopted a policy that protects people from discrimination based on their “gender identity.” Ben Singer, a graduate student in English who had sex-change surgery in academic 1995-96, has pushed for a similar policy at Rutgers University. He says his adviser became angry when he told her he was having a sex change. “As a feminist, her perception was that I was giving up my womanhood,” recalls Mr. Singer. He decided to lobby the university to make things easier for people like him.

Last month, the executive vice-president at Rutgers directed administrators to provide protection for “people who have changed sex or who are in the process of changing their sex.” But Mr. Singer says he objects to the plan because it ignores transgendered people who may have no intention of having sex-change surgery.

The Transgender Task Force, a small group of students at Harvard University, has persuaded the student Undergraduate Council there to add “gender identity or expression” to the list of protected categories in the council’s policy against discrimination. The task force is now going on to ask that the entire university change its non-discrimination policy, but administrators are trying to put the brakes on the effort.

“I advised the students that this was a matter about which there was not a great deal of information or understanding,” says Harry R. Lewis, dean of Harvard College. “I thought their job was initially to educate the community.”

Harvard may already be doing a good job of educating people about the issue, whether it realizes it or not. Last year, it began allowing Alex S. Myers, a transgendered student who dresses like a man but is biologically a woman, to live on an all-male floor of a campus dormitory. Mr. Myers, who is part of the Transgender Task Force, is among a group of transgendered people who don’t take hormones or undergo genital surgery, and don’t plan to.

“There is a contingent of younger people who see that you can live as transgendered without having surgery,” says Mr. Myers, who wears his hair slicked back and speaks in a tenor voice. “The reason I pass as a man has nothing to do with my genetics and everything to do with society. Gender is completely different now than it was 20 years ago.”


La Mala Vida

MEMA’S HOUSE, MEXICO CITY: On Transvestites, Queens and Machos. By Annick Prieur . University of Chicago: 294 pp., $16.95 paper

By SCOTT SHERMAN Ten years ago, the young Scandinavian sociologist Annick Prieur attended an AIDS conference in Mexico, where she had the good fortune to encounter Gerardo “Mema” Ortega, a charismatic ex-prostitute-turned-AIDS educator. Mema invited her to his home on the outskirts of Mexico City, which turned out to be a haven for a diverse group of teenage transvestites and gays. For a fledgling scholar interested in gender and sexual deviance, it was an ideal setting for field work. So Prieur took up residence in the modest chalk-white dwelling and for six months immersed herself in its daily bustle and routine. Located in Ciudad Nezahualcoyotl, an immense lower-class district built on a dry lake bed, Mema’s house, like most in “Neza,” is tiny and cramped, with three small rooms and a plumbing system best described as primitive. But for the young boys (and a few girls), most of whom have strained relationships with their families, it is a place to sniff glue, exchange ribald gossip, listen to loud music and engage in erotic activities with a steady stream of guests and visitors. “Selling sex is totally accepted,” affirms Prieur, “and an active sexual life is seen as desirable.” In spite of the chaotic environment–a dozen or more people drop by each day–the house is structured by rules and hierarchies: Those who choose to live there (most do not) are obliged to tidy up and run errands in exchange for meals, and certain privileges (like who gets to sit next to Mema at the dinner table) are based on an individual’s place in the pecking order. Sex, to a certain extent, is also regulated. Condoms are mandatory, and voyeurs may be asked to leave, as their presence might inhibit the other guests. At the heart of the book are portraits of the transvestites (Prieur refers to them as jotas, a term derived from Mexican slang). All of them lead precarious lives. Some are hairdressers and thieves, while many are prostitutes. Imperiled by street gangs, sadistic policemen and belligerent customers, the sex workers rely on Mema’s house as a sanctuary from violence and humiliation. In one of the many details that give the book its realistic texture, we learn that transvestite prostitutes in Mexico City are habitually released from police custody with their purses empty and their heads shaved. Some of the most harrowing scenes take place in jails and prisons. In spite of their promiscuous lifestyles, the jotas seek domesticity; most dream about a husband, especially one who is ultra-masculine. To attract such men, they subject themselves to a harsh regimen of breast implants, hormone treatments and oil injections which, especially the latter, tend to result in severe medical complications. Moreover, certain jotas employ ingenious methods to disguise their genitals in an attempt to fool customers into thinking that they are real women. When they are caught, violence is the predictable result. As a social scientist, Prieur wants to grasp how the jotas fit into a society that is both censorious and discreetly tolerant of male homosexuality. In Mexico, it is a subject fraught with ambiguity, denial and complexity. When she and Mema repair to a local disco, the latter seduces a young man named Daniel. The next morning, Prieur inquires if Daniel is homosexual. “It is not that simple,” Mema replies. Presumably, Daniel was a mayate–a man who has sex with other men but otherwise adheres to a heterosexual identity. In “The Labyrinth of Solitude,” his definitive chronicle of the Mexican psyche, Octavio Paz noted the double standard, embedded in the culture, through which the mayate avoids stigmatization: “Masculine homosexuality is regarded with a certain indulgence insofar as the active agent is concerned,” Paz wrote. “The passive agent is an abject, degraded being.” By and large, Prieur’s findings confirm this: The jotas are scorned, but their bisexual mayate lovers remain free of the social consequences of their conduct and go about their lives with typical machismo. (A Kinsey-style survey of sexual behavior has never been conducted in Mexico, but this book suggests that homosexual activity is rife; the neighborhood plumber and electrician are among those who partake of the licentious pleasures of the house.) “Mema’s House, Mexico City” is both a revealing inquiry into a little- known urban subculture and an analysis of how machismo and homosexuality coexist in the Mexican working class. But the book’s value is diminished by its disjointed structure and its relentlessly academic focus; in too many places it reads like an application for tenure. Prieur’s sprightly anecdotes and sketches are constantly punctuated by theoretical digressions and scholarly ruminations. Had she relegated the latter to a single chapter at the end, the result might have been a more coherent and accessible book. But her preoccupation with academic concerns blinds her to the rich possibilities of the material. We never, for instance, get a concrete sense of the sagacious Mema, who is the central > figure in the study and also one of Mexico’s leading gay rights activists. (For those seeking a cohesive narrative, Joseph Carrier’s 1995 book, “De Los Otros: Intimacy and Homosexuality Among Mexican Men,” covers much of the same ground.) Nevertheless, Prieur has done justice to her teenage informants by faithfully conveying their experiences and testimony, much of which lingers in the mind. This is a somber book, a compendium of human waste, broken lives and unfulfilled yearnings. Take the experience of Dani, a 25-year-old jota who wishes to extricate himself once and for all from la mala vida. Inspired by a chance encounter with an elderly homosexual who leads a miserable life peddling chewing gum, Dani pledges to return to school and to marry a woman from his hometown. For a while he succeeds. “Dani left Neza, and for a long time nobody knew what had become of him,” Prieur writes. “But he came back, and took up his old life, not talking about marriage anymore.” It’s a characteristic denouement, for Ciudad Nezahualcoyotl is a place where redemption is elusive, dreams are deferred and the dusty streets themselves give off the aroma of temptation.

Scott Sherman has written on Mexico for the Nation, the Dallas Morning News and Newsday



1998, 5 February

Return-Path: <> X-Sender: Date: Thu, 05 Feb 1998 11:40:05 -0500 To: From: Dallas Denny <> Subject: AEGIS Internet News 2/5/98

AEGIS Internet News Digest 2/5/98

AEGIS Internet News is a service of the American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc.

To subscribe or unsubscribe from AEGIS Internet News, send e-mail to Contents:

1. Open letter from Dr. Holly Devor. 2. Lucent Technologies Offers Protection to Trans Employees 3. Hormone Heidi and the Nation of Gold


From: Dr. Holly Devor <> Date: 3 February, 1998

An open letter to my friends and colleagues. (If you wish to circulate this letter, please do so in its entirety.)

In the February 6th 1998 edition of The Chronicle of Higher Education, an article appeared entitled, “Transgendered Scholars Defy Convention, Seeking to Be Heard and Seen in Academe.” In that article, I was identified as “Holly Devor, a professor of sociology at the University of Victoria, in British Columbia, and a lesbian who considers herself transgendered.” Reading this statement came as something of a shock to me. As many of you know, I am indeed a lesbian and quite a masculine one at that. Many of you have probably wondered if I am transgendered or if I am transsexual because of my appearance and because of the research that I do. I have certainly been on occasion introduced to audiences as a male-to-female transsexual, as a female-to-male transsexual, or as a male-to-female or female-to-male crossdresser. I have always corrected such statements when they have been made simply because they are inaccurate. I feel compelled to write to you now for similar reasons.

I do not, at this time, consider myself to be transgendered. I say “at this time” because both the word transgendered is evolving and I am evolving. The word transgendered is currently used in a variety of ways. Some people use it to include feminine gays and masculine lesbians like myself. Some people use it to include transsexual people. Other people limit their usage to exclude transsexual people and to include only people who wish to live partially or fully as another gender, principally crossdressers and transgenderists. In my published work I have suggested that the term transgendered might include those people who may only think of themselves as other than the typical genders but not wish to express that in out-of-the-ordinary ways. I think that, for now, for most people, the term means crossdressers and transsexuals; certainly, that was the way that it was used in The Chronicle article. It is in this context that I say that I do not consider myself to be transgendered. At another time, if the meaning of the term were to become more firmly established to include masculine lesbians, I might claim it as my own. At another time, I might come to think of myself as other than a masculine lesbian. For now, that is where I am.

Please know that I consider myself to be an ally of transgendered people, and often to be an advocate on the behalf of transgendered people. Perhaps I am a not-so-distant cousin. Perhaps I am a neighbour. For now, I do not consider myself to be transgendered. Please also know that I value my privacy tremendously and that it has been hard for me to write such a personal letter in such a public way. Please note my comments, copy them to others as you see fit, and then let the matter lie. Holly Devor, Ph.D. Phone: 250-721-7577 Professor, Sociology Department FAX: 250-721-6217 University of Victoria EMAIL: Box 3050, Victoria, BC URL: Canada V8W 3P5



It’s Time, Ohio! is pleased to announce that Lucent Technologies, the leading producer of telecommunications products, has adopted an Equal Employment Opportunity policy statement that includes protection for transgendered and intersex employees.

In the EEO policy statement, Rich McGinn, president and CEO of Lucent Technologies, said “Demonstrated commitment to equal opportunity is an investment in our people and our future growth. Consequently, a company that attracts, selects,develops and retains the best will remain the industry leader. Lucent’songoing efforts in this direction will provide us with a critical, competitive advantage in the marketplace.”

Lucent is leading the way in the creation of an open workplace. Lucent’s new EEO policy contains specific language to prohibit discrimination based on gender identity, characteristics, or expression. Lucent’s wording creates a separate, but equal, status for transgendered employees, next to the protection for sexual orientation. To our knowledge, Lucent Technologies is the first large company to provide specific language in its EEO policy to protect transgendered employees.

Lucent’s wording protects transsexuals (“gender identity”), intersex (“gender characteristics”) and crossdressers (“gender expression”.) The wording goes beyond these three narrow categories, protecting people whose gender presentation is nontraditional, including masculine women and feminine men.

Lucent’s wording goes beyond a promise not to hire, fire, or promote based on gender issues or sexual orientation. Lucent also prohibits any discrimination or harassment of our employees. Lucent’s policy is to: … prohibit unlawful discrimination or harassment because of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, citizenship, sex, marital status, age, physical or mental disability, one’s status as a special disabled veteran or veteran of the Vietnam era, or because of a person’s sexual orientation, gender identity characteristics or expression, in any employment decision or in the administration of any personnel policy;

It’s Time, Ohio! would like to encourage other organizations and companies to follow Lucent’s example, and add specific transgender language to their policy statements. To that end, we are making available the text of the Lucent Technologies EEO policy and the text of the glossary, specifying the meaning of these terms.

EQUAL! at Lucent Technologies is the Employee Business Partner diversity group for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered employees of Lucent Technologies. Its web site is It’s Time, Ohio! is the Ohio chapter of It’s Time, America!, a transgender lobbying organization. Its web site is The web site of It’s Time, America! is


>From: “Christine Burns” <> To: (Press for Change News list) Subject: NATION OF CHEATS: Hormone Heidi and the real price of gold Date: Sun, 25 Jan 1998 00:28:19 -0000 FOCUS NATION OF CHEATS: Hormone Heidi and the real price of gold ( The Sunday Telegraph 4th Jan 1998)

…One of the most dramatic and shocking cases came to light last week. It involves Heidi Krieger, the former European women’s shotput champion who claims that the pills she was fed by her trainer and doctor effectively turned her into a man.>>

THE TRAINERS, officials and medics behind the sporting prowess of now- defunct communist East Germany were checking their mail for more than the usual Christmas cards over the holiday season.

Hundreds of them are under investigation for their role in one of the largest pharmaceutical experiments in history – the systematic state-sponsored doping of thousands of athletes, some as young as 10 and 11, over a 20-year period.

Armed with a dramatic cache of Stasi secret police files recently unearthed in Leipzig, a 60-strong team of Berlin detectives has been closing in on the guilty men. And to meet a legal end-of-year deadline, they issued many in the Christmas post with warnings that they faced possible prosecution.

The new documents – stored with typical totalitarian fastidiousness by a Stasi officer – show that orders for the hormone-doping policy came from the very top. The country’s leaders were obsessed with proving the supremacy of their Workers’ Paradise over the capitalist “class enemy” in all walks of life, including on the winners’ podium.

And it is now clear that few of the medals or records claimed by the East German sporting machine during the Seventies or Eighties are free from suspicion.

Many of the East’s stars paid a heavy price for the clandestine doping programme, their lives wrecked at the altar of sporting excellence by a regime happy to win at any cost.

The athletes, often unsuspecting teenagers, were told the little blue pills they took each day were vitamins. They were, in fact, potent cocktails of anabolic steroids that could play havoc with their bodies. Men developed breasts and lost their libidos. Women grew facial hair, acquired deep voices and suffered gynaecological complaints and infertility.

One of the most dramatic and shocking cases came to light last week. It involves Heidi Krieger, the former European women’s shotput champion who claims that the pills she was fed by her trainer and doctor effectively turned her into a man.

The strapping broad-shouldered young woman who set sporting records in the mid-Eighties is now delighted when he turns female heads in bars. A transsexual who has legally changed his name to Andreas, he has had his breasts surgically removed. But he is still agonising about whether to undergo the harrowing process of four operations to acquire male genitalia.

Krieger was a product of Dynamo Berlin, the Stasi-run sports club situated near the Wall. She was first given the anabolic steroid Oral Turinabol in 1982, according to the files for Sportswoman 54 (her codename). A year later, aged 17, she took the European junior title in Vienna after receiving 1,820mg of the drug.

The East’s obsession with sporting success reached fever pitch in 1986, when the European Athletic Championships were held in West Germany. Even the East’s own medical experts had warned Krieger’s trainers that her annual intake should never exceed 1,000mg. But in the run- up to the Stuttgart meeting, they upped the dose for their unwitting protege to 25mg a day, a rate which took her past the recommended annual maximum in just six weeks.

Krieger – whose butch appearance earned her the soubriquet of “Hormone Heidi” from her rivals in the West – took the gold. But her career soon fell apart because of injury. And she says at the same time she was growing to hate her female body and realised she longed to be a man. She was racked by doubt, fear and depression and contemplated suicide.

While her career disintegrated and her life sank into turmoil, her trainer Lutz Kuhl and doctor Joachim Wendler prospered with good jobs in the new united German sporting world. Kuhl coaches the national javelin squad. Now the new-look Krieger has given statements to the Berlin investigators and both men have been warned they could face prosecution.

They are among 189 from the world of athletics alone who have been notified that they are suspects in the criminal inquiries. In swimming, four coaches and two doctors have already been charged with causing bodily harm by doping minors – offences carrying maximum three-year prison terms – and are expected to go on trial before the summer. The Berlin detectives are only now working on other hormone-heavy sports such as weightlifting and boxing. To the embarrassment of the sporting authorities in unified Germany, many of the coaches and medics who administered the drugs still have important jobs in athletics and swimming.

“The primary motivation for the policy was apparently the state’s international prestige and the demonstration of the superiority of socialism during the Cold War,” says Prof Werner Franke, a Heidelberg micro-biologist who first uncovered the scope of the scandal. “The new files recovered from Leipzig are an incredible find. They show the policy went right up to the Central Committee. And they mean it will be possible to prosecute the big fish, not just the club trainers.”

As well as causing bodily harm, the current inquiries cover possible cases of life-endangering liver complaints, cancer, infertility and even death: a teenage swimmer from Magdeburg was found dead at the bottom of a pool in mysterious circumstances in 1973.

But the investigators also intend to target the functionaries, politicians and professors who oversaw the policy. “Doping in East Germany was different from other places in the world in that it was directed by the state,” says Michael Havemann, one of the Berlin squad.

The clandestine programme – known as State Plan 14.25 – was straight from the pages of a Cold War thriller. At the 1976 Games in Montreal, Stasi agents even set up a secret medical centre outside the Olympic Village and then dumped 10 suitcases packed with drugs, needles and tubes in the St Lawrence River after the Games.

The scale is unprecedented. By 1975, more than 2,000 sportsmen and women were being given drugs. The programme continued on a similar scale until the mid-Eighties, when improved testing at international championships boosted the risk of detection. Even in 1989, a few months before the fall of the Wall, 900 athletes were still taking performance- enhancing pills.

The experiments quickly paid off in the pool and on the track – by the Seventies, the country of just 17 million people had joined the American and Soviet sporting giants in the big time. The Politburo was delighted as hormone-fired medal machines brought glory to the East.

The broad shoulders, deep voices and facial hair of the East’s battery of top sportswomen were already raising suspicions 20 years ago. But in those days, drug-testing was much less rigorous and the country’s medical gurus knew when to take an athlete off them to avoid detection. The side-effects read like a horror list of ailments and illnesses. The swimmer Roland Schmidt is one of at least 12 male athletes to have had breasts surgically removed. Liver, kidney and lung defects and cancers are also common complaints.

Many of the East’s former sporting heroes have remained silent, fearing the scandal will damage their reputations and could even lead to them losing their medals. But others have started to come forward.

“They were presented to us as vitamin pills and I believed it because it sounded so normal,” says Karen Koenig, who set a world swimming record with the 4x100m freestyle relay team in 1984 when she was 15. “It was a ritual activity, like brushing your teeth. Every day I took pills.”

Like Koenig, most East German sporting stars claim not to have known they were taking banned substances. In the case of child proteges, that may have been true, although experts believe many older athletes turned a blind eye in pursuit of records.

Schmidt – first given his ration of special “vitamin pills” when he was 17 – made headlines in Germany as the weightlifter who grew breasts. In a sickening twist to his case, he contracted breast cancer before they were removed.

Catherine Menschner won her first swimming competition when she was six. Quickly identified as a star in the making, she was sent to a sporting academy where her mentors would hand her boxes of “sweets” filled with brightly coloured pills.

“Every athlete had their box with their name on it. A small handful of tablets were inside,” she recalls. “They had to be taken under the eyes of the coach. They told our parents they were vitamins, which seemed strange because we weren’t even allowed to take them into the locker room.”

By 11, she could complete 100 push-ups and weightlift 65lb after “earning” a place in a guinea-pig group in which the effects of early doping and weight-training were monitored. Two decades later, the “candy vitamins” have reaped a debilitating toll on her health. Her career was ended by spinal injury when she was 14 and now she suffers from back pain, breathlessness and infections of her over- sized lungs. Despite the strapping shoulders, her doctors have told her she cannot lift anything heavier than 250 grams – “That’s a block of butter,” she says with despair. She also blames the drugs for at least one miscarriage.

“Like me, most of the people who were victims of this doping programme never stood on the winners’ platform,” says Menschner. “An incredible number of children were sacrificed so that at some point one of them could rise to the top.”

1998 c Telegraph Group Limited FOCUS NATION OF CHEATS: Hormone Heidi and the real price of gold



1998, 10 February A

AEGIS Internet News is a service of American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc. To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to


1. FOX TV News Covers Intersex Controversy 2. MME Examines Intersex Controversy 3. Drag Ball 4. Pasco Male Impersonator put in Women’s Prison 5. Review of Kate Bornstein’s My Gender Workbook 6. Same Circumstances, Different Result (PFC)


I apologize to list members for not getting this out in time for you to view the program.

— Dallas



A news feature by FOX TV News Chicago covers the ongoing controversy over medical management of intersexuality.

WHO: Interviewed in the segment are ANGELA MORENO, who rebuts the argument that “modern” clitoral surgery is less damaging than older surgeries openly labeled clitorectomy; MS. MORENO’S PARENTS, who support her activism; ROBERT HATCH MD, a surgeon who continues to advocate emergency interventions in keeping with the traditional model; JUSTINE SCHOBER MD, a urologist who advocates against early genital surgery; ALICE DREGER PHD, a historian and narrative ethicist who argues that the secrecy, misrepresentation, and experimental early genital surgery advocated in the traditional medical model are unethical; and CHERYL CHASE, founder of the Intersex Society of North America. WHEN: Most likely to air during 9 PM news Feb 9 1998 in Chicago. Fox affiliates in other cities may also broadcast that day or later in the week; call your Fox affiliate and ask about the intersex feature from Fox Chicago.



Intersex activist Angela Moreno talks about how she was subjected to mutilating genital surgery and years of lies. Physicians who claim that intersex activists criticisms apply only to older surgeries take note: Angela’s surgery was performed in 1985, by experienced specialists. The “clitoral reduction” destroyed her clitoral sensation, not to mention her mental health.

Angela is now comfortable with her intersex status, describing herself as “a different kind of woman, born uniquely hermaphroditic” and who wishes from the bottom of her heart that she had been allowed to stay that way.

Today, Angela is a proud and bold intersex activist, working to prevent other intersex kids from being made to suffer as she was. Not only that — Angela’s parents are also beginning to speak out about how harmful the traditional medical paradigm is.

A sidebar acknowledges that the 40 year old insistence on early genital surgery is becoming controversial, and cites clinical psychologist Dr. Howard Devore calling for doctors to “respond to the infant’s concerns, rather than the panicked parents,” and let any surgery wait until the patient can choose for him or herself. Along with ISNA, Dr. Devore believes that children should be labeled male or female, but that surgery not be imposed.

Moreno, Angela, and Jan Goodwin. 1998. Am I a woman or a man? Mademoiselle (March):178-181+208, ill.


From: Date: Sun, 8 Feb 1998 15:37:45 EST

Subject: Vermont’s Drag Ball takes off



Northern New Englandís Largest Drag Event Enters its third year.

The Winter Is A Drag Ball, which last year drew 500 people to Memorial Auditorium in Burlington, Vermont is gearing up to be another stellar event. Featuring the dance music of Yolanda and The Plastic Family, as well as Endora, Cherrie Tartt, Catherine Quinn, Andrew Smith (of Chin Ho!) and Steph Pappas. The event will be hosted by performance artist Sue Ball. There are only two rules for the acts, performers must be in drag, and they cannot lipsinc.

I am thrilled to be the featured band, this is my favorite event of the year. Being HIV+, I appreciate the work of Vermont CARES and I am especially proud to be able to give something back to the agency.î said Yolanda. Yolanda will be premiering new numbers, new drag, and new hair. Yolanda was recently called ìan Endearing and quirky ladî by Billboard Magazine, and appeared with Martha Wash at the Dance Music Summit in Chicago in July.

This year[s theme is ìFreedom to Maryî and will include wedding drag, a wedding cake by The Artful Baker and decorations by Will Geisler. Both Endora and Yolanda will be available to perform marriages, and are licensed to do so.

The Artwork for the poster was done by Alison Bechdel, cartoonist of the internationally syndicated ìDykes To Watch Out For.î

The Event starts at 9 PM, and doors open at 8. Tickets are $ 12.00 in advance and $ 15.00 at the door. Tickets are available at the Vermont CARES office, The Peace and Justice Store, or by phone by calling 86-FLYNN.

The event will feature DJís Rob Douglas and Alan Perry spinning dance music before and after the show, and after the competition.

At midnight Constance Craving will host the competition, this yearís contestants will vie for over $ 1000 in prizes. Celebrity judges will pick a number of finalists and then pick runners up, and then crown the Drag King And Queen of Vermont. Prizes have been donated from a number of local businesses, including: Out In The Mountains, Jeffís Maine Seafood, Phoenix Rising, Chassmen and Bem, Old Gold, Greenhope Farm, OutrightVt, Maggie Maeís, Waterfront Video, The Garment Gallery, Muddy Waters, Metronome, New Victoria, Club Toast, Purple Shutter, Peace and Justice Store, United Airlines, Statements Hair Design, Lane Series and many others.

To interview Yolanda, call 865 0385. or email For other information call Christopher Moes at 865 9294 or email For Ticket information call 86-Flynn or VT CARES at 863 2437.


Tri City Herald, February 6

Pasco male impersonator put in women’s prison

By STEFANO ESPOSITO Herald staff writer

Chris Wheatley says she’s a man imprisoned in a woman’s body.

That may be so, but while the convicted Pasco sex offender’s body is locked up in a Washington prison, state Department of Corrections officials are treating her like a woman.

“We go by the anatomy – if they have the anatomy of a male, they are housed in a male institution and vice versa,” Gary Clarke, the department’s acting chief of classification and treatment, said Thursday from his Olympia office.

Since early December, Wheatley has been at the Washington Corrections Center for Women at Purdy. Judge Carolyn Brown in Benton County had asked state officials to consider an all-male facility, saying Wheatley’s gender is “debatable.”

Prison officials don’t agree. Wheatley will remain housed with women offenders as she makes her way through the system, Clarke said.

In November, Brown sentenced Wheatley to 22 months in prison for third-degree child molestation. Prosecutors said Wheatley, who has grown a goatee and takes male hormones, dated and fondled a 14-year-old Richland girl who was unaware of Wheatley’s true gender.

In a Franklin County case earlier in 1997, Wheatley pleaded guilty to third-degree rape of child. Prosecutors said Wheatley used a strap-on penis to trick a 15-year-old girl into having sex with her several times.

Wheatley’s attorney, Bob Thompson, said Thursday that keeping his client in an all-woman facility seems to defy common sense.

“The allegations against Chris is that he was doing improper sexual (behavior) against females,” Thompson said. “It just seems odd to me that if this is the sort of behavior you are trying to prevent, … it seems odd that you would put someone like that in an all-female facility.”

Although Wheatley mixes freely with other women prisoners, she hasn’t caused any serious problems, said Patricia Wachtel, a spokeswoman for the Purdy prison.

“She is not segregated in any way,” Wachtel said. “She seems not to have any infraction issues. She seems to be a good inmate.”

But Thompson has other concerns about Wheatley while she’s in prison.

The Pasco attorney said Wheatley was taking male hormones while in jail, but he isn’t certain if his client is allowed to do so in the women’s facility.

Prison officials, citing doctor-patient confidentiality rules, wouldn’t discuss Wheatley’s medications.

Thompson said it’s Wheatley’s ultimate goal to have a sex change and the hormones are part of “embarking on that journey.” But it seems Wheatley likely won’t reach her destination until after her release, set for December, Clarke said.


Review of :

Bornstein, K. (1998). My gender workbook. New York: Routledge.

By Debbie Fraker.

Reprinted with permission from Southern Voice, 29 January, 1998

Fraker, D. (1998, 29 January). Genderama; Boy, girl, man, woman? Fairy, dyke, drag queen or king? Once you stop thinking in terms of either/or, author Kate Bornstein explains how a whole world of options can open up your life. Southern Voice, 31. 46-47. A note about pronouns: In My Gender Workbook, Bornstein uses the non-gendered pronouns ze (for he or she) and hir (for his or her) in most cases, but she also uses traditional gendered pronouns when she knows the person identifies as a particular gender. This article will use traditional pronouns, but with this reminder to interpret them loosely.

In her first book, Gender Outlaw, Kate Bornstein talked about her experiences in transition, physically and emotionally, from male to female. Her life has led her to question gender itself as a binary construct. In the end, she began to say that she was neither a woman nor a man.

In My Gender Workbook, Bornstein addresses in depth the concept of living without gender, guiding the reader gently through the process. The book will be valuable to anyone questioning the rules of gender that attempt to keep us all wrapped in neat little boxes, defining everything from the clothes we are supposed to wear to the people we are supposed to have sex with.

“I don’t like scaring people,” says Bornstein. “That’s not a fun position for me to be in. This is one of the reasons she chose to present her ideas in a workbook format. The workbook asks more questions than it answers, allowing readers to provide their own answers. She also has a fabulous sense of humor about the whole thing, so she is unlikely to frighten anybody.

“The purpose of the workbook is to empower the reader to go against the cultural definition of identity and form their own identity so they don”t have to look at their bodies through the cultural lens that says they”re ugly,” she says. Toward that end, the book is peppered with multiple choice quizzes and other exercises designed to hep readers explore questions of gender on their own. The questions help put gender in proportion to one’s life rather than allowing it be an unspoken, unexamined influence. “The real way to find out [how much gender influences your life] is to ask yourself,” she says.

Bornstein posits a gender pyramid (based on he USFDA’s Basic Food Group Pyramid) as a model for understanding power levels associated with gender. At the very top is a “Perfect Gender,” a white, middle-aged, middle-class, heterosexual male WASP (among other things) who happens to also be the most powerful gender type in our society.

So how does this apply to gay men and lesbians? “What it means to be gay or lesbian is freeing up our desire, not bottling ourselves in,” she explains. “The gay and lesbian movement achieved a lot more than it has acknowledged itself for.” She refers to the fact that there are both lesbians and gay men on television and in other mainstream media. “What we don’t have is the real dangerous mix of ‘who cares [what the gender is], if it turns me on I’m playing with it,'” she adds.

Bornstein celebrates the fact that the rising generation is less concerned about gender and is breaking the bounds of heterosexual versus homosexual. “There is an extremely high incidence within the gay and lesbian community of lesbians attracted to drag queens and boys in drag and of gay man attracted to way cool butch dykes. What”s that about?” she asks with a grin. “The 18 to 25 year-olds are fabulous. I can’t wait to see the world they build,” she adds.

Oppression of any kind, Bornstein believes, will never be successfully overcome until we are willing to base our struggles on values rather than identities. “Separatist movements die,” she asserts. “Can you have a movement that”s going to be in any way restrictive or exclusive? No!” On her speaking tours of college campuses, she sees the younger generation of queers moving more in the direction ward politics of values and away from creating categories of identities. “These gay and lesbian students are much more coalition based,” she says.

Gender is only one aspect of our identities by which we are pigeonholed, but it is a very powerful one. Breaking free of it may be frightening, but it creates all new possibilities. “I’m not genderless in my presentation to the world, Bornstein insists. “The very fact of having no gender frees me to have any gender I want.”

When she comes to Atlanta February 4 to speak at OutWrite Bookstore, she will be presenting a challenge to the audience. She asks that people come prepared to giver her any gender identity, and she will take it on. “Also, try and come up with an insult, she adds. In the past, she has felt insulted by being mistaken for a drag queen. Now she simply sees “drag queen” as another gender presentation to have fun with. “Are you attracted to drag queens? I can be a drag queen,” she purrs.

Your Gender Aptitude: Love and Sex

>From My Gender Workbook by Kate Bornstein (1998, Routledge Books, $17.95, 292 pages).

1. Do you have a “type” of person you regularly fall for?

A. Definitely yes. B. I try to keep my mind open about this sort of things, but I usually fall for one type. C. I seem to fall for lots of “types” of people, but usually they”re all the same gender. D. What? You want to know if I fall for types? What a silly question. I fall for people I can connect with and who connect with me.

2. If you fell in love with a heterosexual woman, you would be:

A. Pleased as punch. B. Really confused. C. Nervous as hell. D. Curious, curious, curious.

3. If you fell in love with a heterosexual man, you would be:

A. Reassuring yourself that the old Greeks had friendships like that. B. Pleased as punch. C. Nervous as hell. D. Curious, curious, curious

4. If you fell in love with a lesbian woman, you would be:

A. Apprehensive, but tittilated. B. Nervous as hell. C. Pleased as punch. D. Curious, curious, curious.

5. If you fell in love with a gay man, you would be:

A. Reassuring yourself that the old Greeks had friendships like that. B. Resigned to your fate. C. Pleased as punch. D. Curious, curious, curious.

6. If you fell in love with a woman who used to be a man, you would be:

A. Concerned how well she would pass I n public. B. Wondering why you couldn’t have met her before her change. C. Nervous as hell. D. Curious, curious, curious.

7. If you fell in love with a man who used to be a woman, you would be:

A. Convinced that he’s really a woman and you’re not really a faggot. B. Really confused. C. Nervous as hell. D. Curious, curious, curious.

8. Who’s ultimately responsible for birth control?

A. She is. B. He is. C. I am. D. Honey, I haven’t had to worry about that one for years! 9. I like it…

A. On the bottom. B. On the top. C. In the middle. D. Yes I do!

Give yourself 5 points for each answer, 3 points for every B, 1 point for a C, and no points for any D. answers.

Here, you have a range of possible scores from 0 to 50, and if you haven’t guessed it by now, when it comes to your Gender Aptitude, smaller is better. But don’t fret, please. It’s just an aptitude, and like any part of human potential, with a little or a lot of work you can always improve.

0 – 10. Gender Freak– Whoa! This stuff must seem like kid”s play for you. Call me and let me know if I got this stuff right, will you?

11 – 20. Gender Outlaw– You’ve been working not only on your own gender, but the subject of gender itself for quite some time, huh?

21 – 30. Gender Novice. Gee, it’s like you have one hand in respectability and the other hand someplace where both of you like it.

31 – 40. Well Gendered– Hiya, Mister Man! Hello, Ms. Lady! I’m guessing you’re not reading this book to learn anything about yourself, am I right?

41 – 50. Capt. James T. Kirk– Omigod, I’ve always wanted to meet you! SoVo Editor’s note: The scoring system has been abbreviated from the book, in which additional aptitude tests allow for a score between 0 and 255 and aptitude categories are more elaborately defined. ——————

>From: “Christine Burns” <> >To: (Press for Change News list) >Subject: Same circumstances, different result >Date: Sun, 25 Jan 1998 11:00:35 -0000 >X-Priority: 3 >X-MSMail-Priority: Normal >X-MimeOLE: Produced By Microsoft MimeOLE V4.71.1712.3 >Reply-To: (Reply to the PFC Forum. Members only) >X-To-Unsubscribe: (message body: leave UKPFC-News) > >Sunday January 25th, 1998 > >SAME CIRCUMSTANCES, DIFFERENT RESULT > >A comparison of legal outcomes on both sides >of the Atlantic, twelve months apart > >>From Christine Burns >Press for Change > >———————————- > >Introduction > >A good test of whether a judicial system is functioning in a just and >rational manner is to examine whether, when the circumstances are similar, >any two cases will produce the same outcome. > >If they cannot do that, then something is wrong. Instead of a reliable, >authoritative and fair system which all parties can trust and respect, the >law becomes, instead, a lottery. An expensive lottery at that. > >The two examples which I’ve picked to illustrate that idea for this week’s >feature have many differences, to be fair. They were judged by different law >systems, with different approaches to evidence and admissibility, in two >different cultures, on opposite sides of the Atlantic, almost twelve months >apart. Yet they are both cases in which a wife has claimed previous >ignorance of her hsuband’s trans past, and then sought to use that past as a >way to deprive him of his rights in the marriage they both contracted to. > >We may speak the same language, but you may be forgiven for sometimes >wondering if that’s where the cultural similarities end. One culture has a >200 year history founded on the rights of individuals, which are delegated >to the state only so far as is necessary to organise a society. The other >culture has a thousand year history, based on the belief that the state >controls everything and devolves limited powers to the individual to manage >parts of it. > >As I illustrated last week, of course, this fundamental difference in >outlook goes a long way to explain why our own British government guards >that “fourth column” of the birth certificate rather more jealously than the >fifty distributed governments of the United States. > >So it’s hardly surprising, therefore, that when a US court convenes to >examine the status and rights of a trans plaintiff, the results come out >different .. because the presumptions are not the same. > >Neither of the two stories which follow are hot news, therefore. One is from >the UK in July/November 1996 and the other from the US in November 1997. The >fact remains, however, that in 1998 two men with similar backgrounds live >very different judicial outcomes because two countries, which sometimes seem >so alike, have a different view of who defines their status as people. > >Christine Burns > >—————————————————————————- >—- >Transsexual in Custody Suit Is Ruled a Male >Courts: Judge rejects woman’s claim that marriage was not valid >because her ex-husband was born female. >By GREG HERNANDEZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER >Los Angeles Times Wednesday November 26, 1997 >Orange County Edition >—————————————————————————- >—- > >ORANGE–A judge ruled Tuesday that a transsexual embroiled in a child >custody battle must be legally recognized as a male, a decision that >paves the way for the bizarre case to proceed to trial sometime next >year. > >”We couldn’t be happier,” said Taylor Flynn, an American Civil >Liberties Union staff attorney representing Joshua Vecchione in a battle >to seek joint custody. “This ruling means that Joshua has rights equal to >those of any parent. The court’s opinion recognizes that blood doesn’t >make a family; love does.” > >Vecchione, 40, of San Clemente, was born a female and called Janine >until undergoing sexual reassignment surgery 20 years ago. He and Kristie >Vecchione, 27, of Rancho Santa Margarita were married in 1990 and >divorced five years later. During their marriage, Kristie Vecchione gave >birth to a daughter, now 3, who was conceived through artificial >insemination using sperm from Joshua Vecchione’s brother. > >Kristie Vecchione and her attorney, Larry Ross, could not be reached >for comment Tuesday. > >They had argued in court that the marriage was invalid, maintaining >that despite the operation, Joshua Vecchione is still a female and >California doesn’t recognize same-sex marriages. > >Kristie Vecchione also maintains that she did not know that her former >husband was born a woman but instead thought he had been born with the >genitalia of both sexes. She has said it was not her choice to marry a >transsexual. > >Her former husband insists that his ex-wife knew all along about his >history and is only now using the information as a “weapon” to try to >deny him joint custody of their daughter. > >In a written opinion, Orange County Superior Court Judge Gary Ryan >wrote that California recognizes the post-operative gender of all >transsexual persons. > >”The post-operative anatomy of Mr. Vecchione is male except that he is >sterile and unable to conceive children,” Ryan’s opinion read in part. > >The judge’s ruling means that the case will proceed just as any other >custody case with the gender dispute no longer at issue, Flynn said. > >Joshua Vecchione was not speaking about the ruling Tuesday but >released a statement through the ACLU saying he was “thrilled” by the >decision but saddened by his former wife’s attempts to deny him joint >custody of their daughter. > >”I feel like a person now,” he said in the statement. > >No trial date has been set for the custody case. > >Also contributing to this report was the Associated Press. > >Copyright, The Times Mirror Company; Los Angeles Times, 1997. >GREG HERNANDEZ, Transsexual in Custody Suit Is Ruled a Male; Courts: Judge >rejects woman’s claim that marriage was not valid because her ex-husband was >born female.; Orange County Edition., Los Angeles Times, 11-26-1997, pp B-1. > > > > >———————————- >Transsexual loses claim to wife’s fortune >———————————- > >The Guardian, 22 November 1996 > >Self-made man loses claim to fortune >Woman deceived for 17 years by transsexual husband >By Clare Dyer > >A man born a woman whose wealthy former wife insists she was unaware of his >true sex during their 17-year marriage lost his claim to a share of her >substantial wealth yesterday. > >The 39-year-old wife, heiress to a share of a family fortune, had the >marriage to her transsexual husband declared null and void in 1994 after >discovering his birth certificate. She insists she believed that her >husband, who wore a false penis made of plaster of Paris, was male but had a >very small or deformed penis. > >Yesterday three Court of Appeal judges ruled that his ‘gross deception’ in >marrying her without disclosing the truth debarred him from a share in the >£400,000 family home or any other claim on her wealth, which he estimates at >£300,000 a year from family trusts. > >The pair cannot be identified to protect their children, a boy of nine and a >girl of four, born after artificial insemination by a sperm donor. The man, >referred to as M, is also fighting for contact with the children. The >50-year-old transsexual, who lives in a two-room flat in the south of >England, said: ‘I’m disappointed that she’s been able to take away something >that she knows doesn’t belong to her. All I can do now is pursue my >application for contact with my children and pursue my case to the European >Court of Human Rights.’ > >M, born into a working-class family in the north of England, became >convinced when a teenager that he was a man trapped inside a woman’s body. >He later underwent a double mastectomy and had hormone injections to deepen >his voice and grow a beard, but never underwent the difficult operation to >construct a penis from body tissue. > >In 1977, he met his future wife, then a 19-year-old university student, at >the pub where both were working. > >He later claimed they had a normal sex life using at first a penis he made >from plaster of Paris. Then they both went to a Soho sex shop to choose a >penis extension. > >Lords Justices Ward, Potter and Neill refused leave to appeal to the House >of Lords. M’s solicitor, Madeleine Rees, said she would seek leave from the >law lords and, if they refused, take the case to the Human Rights court in >Strasbourg. She added: “The civil rights of transsexuals have still to be >recognised in law.” > >But Lord Justice Ward held out hope that British transsexuals who undergo >”full reconstructive surgery” may, in future, be able to contract valid >marriages in their new sex, as they can in New Zealand, Australia, Sweden, >Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, and some US states. He cited a New Zealand >court ruling that a male to female transsexual could validly marry as a >woman, and suggested that the ban on such marriages might be reconsidered. >Lord Justice Ward said he had great sympathy for both parties. It was >’essentially a sad story’ and the couple had both suffered greatly. They had >persuaded a fertility clinic to provide artificial insemination, claiming >that M had had a vasectomy. Lord Justice Ward commented: “The apparent ease >with which they were able to obtain this treatment without the truth being >disclosed or discovered is one of the puzzling… features of this case.” > >The relationship broke down and the wife petitioned for divorce in 1994. >After a serious argument, when she cast doubt on his manhood, she said M >showed her his artificial penis, asking whether that was not good enough. >The judge said she retorted: “It’s not real.” > >She confided her suspicions to an old school friend who was a private >investigator, who found M’s original birth certificate. When this was >produced in court, M “more or less collapsed”. His wife “20 months later was >still receiving counselling for the shock it gave her”. > >Lord Justice Ward added: “Many – and I am one of them – will find it quite >astonishing that there was no single occasion in 17 years of life together >when her eyes did not see, or her hands or her body feel, or her senses tell >her that she was living with a man who had the genital formation of a woman, >a man who did not simply have a small or deformed penis, but had no penis at >all.” > >Lord Justice Ward said he understood the argument that a transsexual who >enters into marriage honestly believing there is no impediment should not be >debarred from a share of the marriage wealth. > >”But that is not the case. He knew the plaintiff would not marry him in the >unhappily ambiguous condition to which he is condemned. The fundamental >essence of matrimony must be… buttressed by refusing to permit the >defendant taking any advantage from the decree of nullity which has annulled >this travesty of marriage.” > >Lord Justice Potter said M had deceived the woman into a marriage and >”thereby artificially enjoyed a standard of living throughout the marriage >far higher by reason of the plaintiff’s means than would otherwise have been >the case, for reasons which reflect no credit upon him”. Lord Justice Neill >agreed. > American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc. P.O. Box 33724 Decatur, GA 30033-0724 770-939-2128 -30-

1998, 10 February B

Return-Path: <> X-Sender: Date: Tue, 10 Feb 1998 11:57:45 -0500 To: From: Dallas Denny <> Subject: AEGIS Internet News 2/10/98– Special Edition

AEGIS Inernet News is a service of the American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc. To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to AEGIS Internet News Special Edition 10 February, 1998 Winslow Street Whistle Blower Dismissed “For Cause”

Kerri Reeder, the trustee of the IFGE-administered Winslow Street Fund who alerted the transgender community that the International Foundation for Gender Education had used Winslow Street monies for its internal operations, has said that she received a letter from Winslow Street fund trustee and IFGE Board member Abby Zapin, informing her that she has been dismissed for cause as a WSF trustee.

In an open letter sent to the transgender community on 5 February, Reeder wrote, “After waiting for more than nine days after the IFGE Board Meeting, I received a letter from Abby Zapin explaining that I was dismissed, For Cause, as a WSF Trustee. The Cause was that I did not contact the Trustees or IFGE Board with my dispute but took it public.”

Reeder disputes this: “Yes, I did take it public after I received no response from the Chairs of Winslow Street and IFGE…. For the public record, I contacted both Abby [Zapin] and Linda Buten via E-mail and the receipt on my message was confirmed by AOL. I sent by US Mail the text of those notes to all IFGE Board Members. With no response, I turned to an open forum because the Chairs of IFGE and WSF and the Board of Directors would not respond. It was my duty as a Trustee to see that any action done by the Trustees lived up to the trust contributors had when they made donations.”

The Winslow Street Fund, named for a street in Provincetown, Massachusetts, was set up for the transgender community, and is administered by IFGE. For years, IFGE’s solicitations for donations to the Winslow Street Fund promised that WSF monies would never be used for IFGE’s internal operations– yet last October, IFGE borrowed $10,000 from the fund. Reeder and others, who were aware of IFGE’s plans to borrow the money, approached IFGE staff and board members and WSF trustees beforehand during Fantasia Fair to voice their concern.

On 13 November, Reeder widely distributed by e-mail a letter voicing her concerns about the WSF Loan to IFGE. In it, she detailed her attempts to communicate with both IFGE and her fellow WSF trustees: “On November 13, hearing nothing, I decided to go to the Community and forwarded my letter…”

In her 13 November communique, Reeder stated that her primary concerns were that there was no loan document, and that proper WSF procedures had not been followed.

Reeder claims her action was to “preserve propriety, honesty, and ethics which continue to plague IFGE and its activities. It is to preserve the Winslow Street Fund.” Reeder has called for the replacement of WSF trustees, herself included, by new trustees with a well-developed sense of ethics. As for the loan, Reeder has consistently asked that the community be provided with evidence that a promissory note was signed.

Nancy Nangeroni, Executive Director of IFGE, confirmed that Reeder’s dismissal had been discussed and decided upon at a meeting of the IFGE board, with a decision being made to dismiss Reeder for violating WSF rules, including confidentiality.

Nangeroni said that a promissory note exists and was signed by herself and other parties in December. She said she does not feel comfortable providing Reeder with a copy of the note, but that Reeder is welcome to come by the IFGE offices in Boston to view it. Reeder lives in Rhode Island.

Nangeroni emphasized that the IFGE board and the WSF trustees and she herself all feel that the loan was not improper, but was in the best interest of the community. She said, “I want to be clear that– I would like to give people confidence that IFGE is being run responsibly.”

A number of transgender activists have been critical of the loan. The most vocal has been Judy Osborne. Her November column in the Transgender Community Forum referred to the loan as “Rape on Winslow Street.” JoAnn Roberts also criticized the loan in her column in Renaissance News and Views.

Despite having been warned beforehand by Reeder and others that the loan would be controversial, neither IFGE nor WSF informed the community about the loan until after Reeder’s November letter was mailed.

Responding to Reeder’s criticism, Nangeroni wrote last fall in an e-mail message that Reeder could no longer be a WSF trustee after going public with the news of the loan.



IFGE Consistently Disappoints

The International Foundation for Gender Education seems unable to differentiate between its own welfare and that of the transgender community. In authorizing a loan from a fund it promised never to touch and then congratulating itself that it was a proper thing to do because it was “for the good of the community,” the IFGE board is engaging in circular logic. In failing to inform the community of the loan, IFGE has been irresponsible. And in continuing to force out those who, like Kerri Reeder, attempt to keep it on an ethical course, IFGE is sowing the seeds of its eventual demise.

Considering that a number of community activists warned IFGE beforehand that a loan from the Winslow Street Fund would be controversial, it’s mystifying that IFGE did not tell the community what it had done until it was caught with its hand in the proverbial cookie jar. It seems rather maladaptive, like a burglar who decides to ransack the house even though there is a police car parked outside– or perhaps it is merely arrogance, a serene assumption by its board that IFGE is not accountable for its actions, whatever they may be. However, I suspect the real answer is simple inefficiency.

For an organization that considers itself the future of the transgender community, and evidently the transgender community, IFGE consistently disappoints. Considering its large budget, it is decidedly underproductive. Its publications are uninspired and often amateurish. Its database of support groups is famous for not being updated. The statistics it gives reporters often seem to be made up on the spot. It uncritically distributes information, sending flyers about questionable procedures like needleless hair removal schemes and herbal hormones our alongside flyers for more legitimate products and services.

In a word, IFGE does not seem to be the polished, professional, and efficient organization the transgender community needs, but rather like an overgrown support group with a $300,000 budget.

IFGE is in perpetual financial crisis, bailing itself out once or twice a year by sending out panicky fundraising letters– which causes one to wonder why it imagines it will be able to pay the WSF loan back, rather than sliding more deeply into debt. It is in perpetual identity crisis, having walked away from the one thing it was truly good at– being an umbrella organization– in favor of doing gender education it is intellectually unprepared to do. And it is in perpetual moral crisis. The present instance– IFGE’s failure to disclose the loan from WSF until forced to do so– is but one of many ways IFGE continues to disappoint.


1998, 11 February

AEGIS Internet News

Wednesday, 11 February, 1998 To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to


1. News 2. Correction 3. Intersex in the News Again 4. Review of Transgender Care 5. In Your Face 1 6 In Your Face 2 News

From several sources we have learned that a raging fire in Provincetown, Massachusetts has claimed the large wooden building that housed the Crown and Anchor and Whaler’s Wharf. Two other buildings also burned to the ground.

For many years, the C&A played a key role in Fantasia Fair; it is also one of the leading landmarks in Provincetown. It will be sorely missed. Jean Marie Stine, the editor of Transgender Tapestry and an IFGE employee, has resigned. We have no details, but the resignation was confirmed by an IFGE board member.

Pete Smith, the former


We would like to correct an error in our editorial yesterday. Judy Osborne’s article was posted in the Transgender Forum, and not the Transgender Community Forum (TCF) which is a part of AOL.


Return-Path: <> X-Sender: (Unverified) Date: Tue, 10 Feb 1998 18:24:32 -0800 To: “ISNA News” <> From: Cheryl Chase <> Subject: Intersex in Society for Christian Ethics Annual

WHAT: Difference or defect? Intersexuality and the politics of difference

Karen Lebacqz Ph.D. Robert Gordon Sproul Professor of Theological Ethics Pacific School of Religion ABSTRACT

Under current medical practice, when a child is born intersex, sex is assigned and medical/ surgical intervention is undertaken. This practice is criticized by the Intersex Society of North America and by feminist scholars. Together they are creating a “politics of difference” approach in which differences are not seen as “defects” to be corrected. This paper analyzes the reasons offered in support of current medical practice and of the politics of difference, and argues for a move toward the latter. Crucial to the determination that this move is warranted are justice concerns and the emergence of support groups and technologies that allow geographically separated individuals to form a relevant “group.” Request offprints from Audrey Englert <>

Lebacqz, Karen. 1997. Difference or defect? Intersexuality and the politics of difference. The Annual of The Society of Christian Ethics:213-229.


Book Review Transgender Care:

Recommended Guidelines, Practical Information, and Personal Accounts written and essays compiled by Gianna Israel and Donald Tarver II, MD Temple University Press, 1997; 282 + xviii pages; ISBN 1-56639-571-2

By Steve Harris

Transgender Care is a rather different kind of book–not just among books by, for, or about the transgendered, but among nonfiction books generally. It is both a personal statement and a collection of diverse viewpoints; it is both an advocate for a new policy of healthcare and a polemic against that same policy (as being insufficiently revolutionary); it is both a dry, almost academic, detailed description of that policy, directed largely at healthcare providers, and a collection of impassioned voices, both raw and educated, strident and well-modulated, speaking out of the depths of that healthcare clientele.

This book is an important new resource for the transgender community; it may form the basis for an expansion of humane care of all segments of this diverse population.

Gianna Israel is a well-known gender therapist, working with Dr. Donald Tarver (public sector and private practise psychiatrist) in San Francisco. Ms Israel (herself a transgender woman) describes herself as both principal author and “project administrator” of Transgender Care. For this book is partly the work of Ms Israel and Dr. Donald Tarver as authors–Part I, “Recommended Guidelines”–and partly their work as editors in compiling Part II, “Essays”. In addition, most of the essay writers, with a few other people, served as a sort of review board for Part I, making the entire book a complicated process of give-and-take. There is a loss of a single point of view in such an undertaking; but that multiple-voicedness is one of this book’s special strengths.

The intended audience of this book is as complex as the book’s structure: It is largely intended for care providers in the field of transgender health, mental and physical, as suggested by both the content–suggested directives on the care of the transgendered–and the sparse, sometimes unforgivingly technical prose in which Part I is often voiced. But it is also of substantial interest to the transgendered, who should not only be aware of these recommendations for their care, but may take great interest in the essays on facial and genital surgery, insurance matters, intricacies of the client-therapist relation, personal stories of the transgendered, and even the philosophy of what it means to be transgendered.

What does “transgender” mean for this book? It is another of the book’s particular strengths that it is quite inclusive–crossdressers, transsexuals, transgenderists, drag queens and kings, MtF and FtM and androgynes and all. Although the bulk of the book is devoted to guidelines and essays concerning transsexual men and women, at every stage of the Guidelines, care is taken to address the needs of every stripe of transgender person.

Part I consists largely of an extended gloss on the Recommended Guidelines for transgender care. In brief, these Guidelines are the authors’ answer to the Harry Benjamin International Gender Dysphoria Association (HBIGDA) Standards of Care, but they are far more extensive than those SOC: They start with Guidelines for the placement and care of transgender people in residential environments, whether in social service, mental health, or correctional facilities. Next are Guidelines for hormone administration; then for aesthetic surgery (meaning anything non-genital–including, for instance, breast augmentation or mastectomy); and then for genital surgery. There follow Guidelines for the treatment of transgender people who are HIV-positive, Guidelines for treating those of different cultural background from the care-provider, and Guidelines for treating transgender youths.

The philosophy behind the Guidelines developed here can be gleaned from a few quotes–basically, a very positive outlook on what it means to be transgendered, as opposed to the overly pathologizing language characterizing much of the SOC:

“Irresponsible usage of labels [such as “transsexual” or “transvestite”, etc.] may result in … Care providers who stop listening once they decide an individual falls within a subpopulation. Encouragement of an individual to conform to models that are inconsistent with that individual’s needs or self-identity. … Transgenderists or transsexual individuals who feel pressured to conform to stereotypes…” (p. 14)

“Many transgender persons do not evidence gender-associated confusion or emotional distress.” (p. 24)

“There is no reason why psychiatrists and other mental health professionals cannot be charged with the responsibility of recognizing gender-identity issues without the necessity of labeling them as disorders.” (p. 25)

“Care providers and surgeons are … advised that in some circumstances a real-life test may be physically impossible prior to surgical intervention.” (p. 79)

The actual Guidelines are recognizably derived from the Benjamin SOC, but with a human face–the very name, “Recommended Guidelines”, instead of “Standards of Care”, bespeaks the principal difference: For instance, there is the familiar requirement for a three-month relationship with a Gender Specialist before hormones are to be prescribed (Guideline 1, p. 71), but then there is Guideline 1b: “Exceptions to the three-month assessment period may be considered by the evaluating Gender Specialist or the prescribing physician if a well-established transgender identity exists and other aspects of the Recommended Guidelines for Hormone Administration are observed.” Other Guidelines are similarly hedged about with warnings to be flexible and take individual differences into account. In short, the Guidelines are not legalistic Rules of Conduct, but considered suggestions addressed to care-providers who are expected to exercise careful judgement.

Note, also, that the prescribing physician is a formally addressed subject of the hormone administration Guidelines; thus do these Guidelines address the reality of the context in which they will be followed–or ignored, if they did not address that reality.

The Guidelines for genital reassignment surgery are not very different from those of the HBIGDA SOC; the two letters and one year’s Real Life Experience are still there, though there is more flexibility in the nature of the required relationship between client and counsellor.

But besides the raw Guidelines, there is much discussion of the issues involved:

a discussion on when and how to make disclosures of transgender issues to one’s family, children, or colleagues (with considerations for those contemplating or not contemplating hormones, transition, or surgery);

an introduction to the usage of hormone therapy, both MtF and FtM, including typical blood-levels;

an extensive section on Consumer Preparedness for those looking for genital surgery;

a basic discussion of how hormones and surgery are and are not complicated by HIV;

a nuanced discussion of the special problems of transgender youth, including some special solutions: “…allowing the child to dress androgynously for school and peer activities … encouraged to adopt an androgynous name until they are old enough to be certain they want to change their name permanently” (p. 138);

an entire chapter on Support Tools, including a suggested Gender Identity Profile form;

a series of Support Scenarios, illustrating the various modalities that may be useful for different types of clients in different contexts.

There are some issues missing from the discussion of Part I that it would have been well to have included. For instance, there is virtually no mention of the psychoactive effect of hormones, which a great many transsexual men and women have remarked upon. It may be idiosyncratic, perhaps placebo in nature, but it is so commonly reported that it deserves more than passing mention. Then there are the Guidelines for aesthetic surgery, with a recommendation for a six-month period of consistent desire for such surgery before a referral letter to a surgeon is issued; it would be nice to see a discussion of the reasoning behind this, but very little is given. And why not a discussion of the reasons for a full year’s Real Life Experience and two reference letters for genital surgery? There is some tension in the authors’ description of an individual’s having a self-defined transgender identity–defined to mean, among other things, “the ability to stay consistently within one’s chosen presentation” (p. 8); does this mean that if one is unable to “pass” then one does not have a transgender identity? This cannot be what the authors mean, but it’s unclear what they do mean; closer discussion is called for.

The thirteen essays of Part II include some notable names: Dr. Eugene Schrang, eminent sex-reassignment surgeon, speaking of his surgical techniques; Dr. Douglas Ousterhout, famed plastic surgeon, discussing techniques for gender-reassignment facial surgeries; Dr. Anne Vitale, well- known transsexual psychotherapist, discussing the complex nature of the client-therapist relationship; Rachel Pollack, transsexual activist, issuing a strong critique of the Recommended Guidelines from Part I. These and other essayists are part of the Review Committee for Part I. Other essays also criticize the Guidelines for maintaining something of a gatekeeper role for the therapist; another discusses the possibilities of legal challenges to insurance companies’ practices of excluding coverage for transsexual care.

One of the most hopeful-sounding passages in this book is that the authors intend future editions of the book, to include updated and additional information. I look forward to seeing this text evolve into an even more helpful and thought-provoking aid to the entire transgender community.


Date: Tue, 10 Feb 1998 21:09:19 +0000 From: Clare Howell <>


Riki Anne Wilchins, (212) 645-1753


Contact: Susan Wright, (718) 383-3318


[New York, NY: 28 Jan 98] CHANCELLOR JOHN Ryan stated at yesterday’s SUNY Board of Trustees meeting that the recent conference at New Paultz (Revolting Behavior: The Challenges of Women’s Sexual Freedom) included components that were “needlessly offensive to many people, including people of faith.” He accused SUNY-New Paultz President Bowen of “errors of judgement” which “cause harm and embarrassment to the State University.”

He added, “While the complexities of sexuality from many perspectives are clearly appropriate matters for academic study and discourse, the New Paultz conference promulgated a ‘how to do it’ manual of lesbianism and sadomasochism–not at all appropriate for a university.”

“Staff members… have been afraid of the reprecussions that might result if they included supposedly controversial topics like how to have safe sex,” said Emily Haight of the Student Assoc. in Albany. “We’re worried that issues important to students’ lives and health are being suppressed by Chancellor Ryan.”

Said Rev. Meg Riley, Dir. of the Unitarian Universalist Assoc., “It is always disturbing when the phrase ‘people of faith’ is used to mean people who are homophobic and anti-sex. For many people, it is our faith that demands that we fight bigotry and oppression.” SUNY Board Ignores Report Exonerating Bowan

[30 Jan 98] Led by Chancellor Ryan, the Board of Trustees voted to ignore the Review Committee’s report that absolves President Bowen of wrongdoing in regard to the women’s sexuality conference.

The committee, appointed by the Chancellor, said in its 40-page report that the trustees should provide “staunch support” on issues of academic freedom “especially during times of controversy,” and that “taxpayer support is provided as a matter of public policy and cannot depend on the wishes of individual taxpayers or the disagreement of specific taxpayers with particular activities.”

President Bowen responded, “I am shocked and dismayed that the Chancellor has chosen to ignore the findings and conclusions of his own Review Committee which found that ‘the President’s decision to allow the conference to proceed was based on the time -honored tradition of free expression of controversial subjects within higher education.'” Contact: Susan Wright (718) 383-3318

NOW-NY SUPPORTS SUNY PRESIDENT BOWEN ====================================

[New York, NY: 2 Feb 98] THE NEW YORK STATE Chapter of NOW passed a resolution at its convention on 9 Nov that addresses the condemnation of SUNY New Paultz’s recent Women Studies conference on sexuality that included topics of sadomasochism (S/M) and sex toys.

The resolution states, “[NOW] hereby resolves to commend President Bowen for this stand on the right of free speech under the First Amendment and condemns Governor Pataki’s participation in this orchestrated campaign.”

An educational discussion on S/M was held at the 20 Nov NOW-NY general meeting at which members who support the S/M Policy Reform Project spoke about the need to destigmatize sexual self-expression and S/M practice. The text version of the presentations are available on the S/M PRP webpage: <A HREF=”http://”>


Contact: Scott Cozza (707) 778-0564 and Judy Greenspan (510) 834-5656, ext 3150


[New York, NY: 21 Jan 98] SUPPORTERS OF THE rights of transgender prisoners today sent a letter to Warden Ana Olivares of the California Medical Facility-Vacaville challenging the lack of care and treatment of the incarcerated transgender prisoners there.

The newly formed Ad Hoc Committee for Prison Health Care Reform called for Warden Olivares to investigate the “poor and nonexistant” medical and mental health care of TG prisoners. Claiming that some corrections officers “demean, demoralize, humiliate and discriminate against transgender prisoners,” the committee called for special training for correctional officers and staff on the psych- social issues of the TG community.

Judy Greenspan, Dir. of Catholic Charities’ HIV/AIDS in Prisons Project, noted that most of the TG population is automatically housed in the prison’s HIV Unit whether or not they are HIV+. “Transgender prisoners are often the victims of rape and violence within society and within prisons. The fact that they are housed in the HIV Unit unnecessarily puts them at risk for HIV infection.”

The committee, made up of more than 25 groups and individuals, is seeking a meeting with Warden Olivares to discuss these issues and others regarding prisoners’ access to hormone therapy and peer support groups.


Date: Wed, 11 Feb 1998 08:36:09 +0000 From: Clare Howell <>


Editor: Clare Howell (718) 638-7062



[Corvallis, OR: 10 Feb 98] TRANS-ACTIVIST ASHLEY Sinclaire has filed a compliant with the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI), charging that the Corvallis Mail Center violated her civil rights and Corvallis’ anti-discrimination law.

She alleges that an employee of the Center, a private company that provides mail boxes and postal services, wrote a hate letter about her which led her to suspect that the employee had opened mail she had posted there.

Local police say there is no evidence of a crime and have declined to pursue the matter. However, if the allegation is true, the Mail Center employee has not only violated Corvallis’ anti-discrimination law but committed a federal crime.

Ms. Sinclaire changed her name in the Spring of 1997 and completed her transition. Several months later she received a letter from a man, Donald Snook, who is imprisoned in Washington state and with whom she is involved in a romantic relationship. She and Snook corresponded frequently using the Mail Center. Snook supports Ms. Sinclaire’s transition and forwarded her the letter:

“Don–Ashley let me read your letter. I hope you know she is a he. His reall [sic] name is [Ashley’s former name]. He is a fag. You are getting letters from a man who wants to be a woman. Think about it. He wants to move to San Francisco. This place is known as gay bay… HA, HA, HA, HA. You stupid ass. You want pussy so bad you will let a fag turn you on.”

Neither Sinclaire nor Snook knew the employee who wrote the letter. When confronted by police, the employee, the daughter of the Mail Center owner, admitted she had written the letter, but denied opening Sinclaire’s mail.

The employee said she figured out that Sinclaire was “pretending” to be a woman and that she wanted to warn Snook. The BOLI is currently investigating the matter because Corvallis’ anti-discrimination law that prohibits discrimination in public accomodations based on sexual orientation. DC SAYS RESCUE WORKER HAD ‘RIGHT’ TO TAUNT DYING VICTIM ==========================================

[Washington, DC: 10 Feb 98] WASHINGTON DC Counsel John Ferren contends that an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) had a ‘First Amendment right’ to shout derogatory names at transexual woman Tyra Hunter, who lay dying in the street.

The Washington Blade reports that the Counsel’s statement was part of the city’s response to a $10 million wrongful-death suit brought by Hunter’s mother. The city did withdraw language from its brief asserting that the city’s Fire Department is exempt from DC’s Human Rights Act which bans discrimination based on sexual orientation and personal appearance.

The unnamed EMT was applying first aid to Ms. Hunter after a 1995 car crash when he discovered that Hunter had a penis, whereupon he ceased giving aid and began making derogatory remarks that were witnessed by horrified bystanders. PBS HIGHLIGHTS USE OF GID AGAINST QUEER KIDS ============================================

[New York, NY: 9 Feb 98] REFLECTING THE escalating debate over Gender Identity Disorder (GID), a segment of PBS’s respected gay newsmagazine, ‘In The Life,’ last night joined the chorus of voices questioning whether GID is not another covert means of controlling difference.

The segment, produced by host Katherine Linton, featured an interview with GID proponent Kenneth Zucker, a well-known doctor whose primary practice is “curing” children of GID so they don’t grow up gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgendered.

Zucker identified GID as a symptom that could lead to homosexuality in later life. In a surreal moment, as he sat across from the openly gay, short-haired, slacks-clad Linton, he explained that masculine dress and behavior in girls can be diagnosed and treated with therapy and behavioral conditioning so they don’t become lesbians.

The segment also featured responses from the National Center for Lesbian Rights’ staff attorney, Shannon Minter, an out male transexual, and GenderPAC’s Riki Wilchins. Both noted that, since homosexuality was removed as a psychiatric disorder, GID has become the new way to pathologize queerness.

Noted Wilchins, “GID is a solution in search of a problem… Gender variance is good.”

GID was first created as an illness in the early 1960s. Although ‘In The Life’ dealt only with children, GID is also used to pathologize gender- variant adults, particularly those requesting hormones or sex-reassignment surgery. TRANSEXUAL WITNESS TO CHURCH BOMBING DIES =========================================

[Birmingham, AL: 10 Feb 98] PETE SMITH, WHOSE testimony against his Klu Klux Klansman uncle, Robert Chambliss, led to the only conviction in the 1963 bombing that killed 4 black girls, died of lung cancer at 57.

The AP reports that, at the 1977 trial, Smith was a woman, Elizabeth Cobbs, and a Methodist minister. She testified that she was with Chambliss as he watched TV reports that Sunday morning of the bombing and heard him say, “It wasn’t supposed to hurt anybody. It didn’t go off when it was supposed to.” Chambliss, found guilty of murder in the bombing, died in prison in 1985.

Smith underwent sexual reassignment surgery in 1981. He published an autobiography in 1994 naming dozens of people he suggested might have been involved in the bombing. Federal investigators have long believed that at least 4 men were involved. They reopened the case last summer. U.S. Attorney Doug Jones said that Smith’s death will not affect the investigation.


1998, 24 February

<HTML><PRE>Subj: AEGIS Internet News 2/24/98 Date: 98-02-24 14:26:46 EST From: (Dallas Denny) To:

AEGIS Internet News Tuesday, 24 February, 1998 AEGIS Internet News is a service of American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc. To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to


1. Youth Group Forms in Atlanta 2. ITA Launches Online News Service 3. Transvestite Thai Kickboxer Debuts 4. Houston Anti-Discrimination Order is Transinclusive 5. ITA Press Release– Opposition to Maryland Bill 6. Jessica Xavier Column


Brown, L. (1997, 19 February). Youth offered gender support. Southern Voice, 5.

Reprinted with permission. Youth Offered Gender Support

by Laura Brown

Young people with questions about their gender can now get support from a new group sponsored by Youth Pride. The weekly “gender support group” for ages 18-24 began meeting January 20, and will meet every Tuesday from 7-8:30 pm at the Atlanta Dream Hostel in Decatur.

“Whether you are seeking self-acceptance as a crossdresser, trying to find the correct spot on the transgender spectrum in which to live, working toward a complete transition from one gender to another, or if you have already made such a transition at some point in the past, this may be the group for you,” reads a flyer announcing the group. YouthPride Executive Director said the flyer will be sent to professional counselors “who may work with folks with gender issues.”

“Youthpride’s interest [in starting the gender support group] was that it was coming out of our own groups,” Ellis said. “We have kids who are in our gay/lesbian/bisexual support groups, but that’s not really their issue. Their issue is related more towards gender identity and so they were attending our group because they didn’t have really anything else to do.”

The gender support group is led by Y. Alex Morgan, a fourth-year graduate student and “psychologist in training” at Emory University, and Janice Heckler, a therapist who works primarily with children and adolescents and holds an MA in psychology. Heckler has completed coursework for a psychology doctorate and has worked with a local adult “gender exploration support group” for four years.”

Although YouthPride has separate sexual orientation support groups for young people ages 13-18 and 18-24, the gender support group will initially be open only to those 18-24, though facilitators said they hope to have a younger group in place within a year.

What: YouthPride Gender Support Group When: Every Tuesday, 7-8:30 pm

Where: Atlanta Dream Hostel, 115 Church St., Decatur

Cost: Free

Contact: 404-815-9965


From: Date: Mon, 16 Feb 1998 20:18:29 -0500 Subject: Press Release – IT’S TIME, AMERICA! LAUNCHES ONLINE NEWS SERVICE

It’s Time, America! Press Release– Please Distribute Widely

Contact: Penni Ashe, Acting Media Director It’s Time, America! Phone: (508) 626-8522


It’s Time, America! (ITA) announced today its launching of the It’s Time! News Service (ITNS). The purpose of the It’s Time! News Service will be to disseminate media advisories and other announcements to various news media and other interested parties, as well as to remail news items and action alerts to interested parties.

While the It’s Time chapters in various states have realized several significant gains in recent years, the work of the chapters has kept a low profile, allowing some people to believe that ITA’s accomplishments are few. The objective of the It’s Time! News Service is to rectify that situation, and to build momentum for public advocacy on behalf of transgender and other gender-variant individuals.

The It’s Time! News Service will carry news items of interest to the transgender and gender-variant communities. This will, by necessity, occasionally include news items of primary interest to other racial, ethnic, religious and sexual minorities. The determining factor will be whether or not the story has relevance for people who express their gender differently. “It is our hope that through this news service we can promote improved communication, understanding and cooperation among all minority groups,” said Penni Ashe, ITA’s Acting Media Director.

Historically, the focus of transgender education efforts has been national in scope, through the work of national organizations. Unfortunately, while these organizations have been effective in changing policy with national and international organizations, the evidence is clear that such efforts have not won over the hearts and minds of Americans. Said ITA National Director Jessica Xavier, “It’s time to shift to a new model. We have demonstrated that the grassroots model to public advocacy is effective. Now we need to publicize our efforts in order to capitalize on our successes.”

It’s Time, America! has advocated on behalf of transgendered and other gender-variant persons through state-level chapters since 1994. When reposting, please credit the It’s Time! News Service (ITNS). To subscribe to ITNS, send email to When doing so, please indicate whether or not you wish to receive remailed news.


From: Subject: Transvestite Thai Kickboxer Debuts Date: Tue, 24 Feb 1998 03:48:28 EST

Transvestite Thai Kickboxer Debuts

.c The Associated Press


BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) – Some fighters are known for their right cross, but kickboxer Pirinya Kaibusaba is known for cross-dressing.

A sellout crowd of 10,000 spectators was expected tonight to witness Pirinya’s debut at Bangkok’s Lumpini Stadium, the nation’s mecca of Muay Thai, or Thai kickboxing.

The draw? The 15-year-old native of Lamphun, 350 north of Bangkok, is the first known transvestite to try his hand – and legs – at the martial sport.

And though he powders his nose during training, the 140-pound Pirinya is no powder-puff in the ring. The young welterweight with red-tinted brown hair has already compiled a professional record of 20 wins, 2 losses and 17 knockouts in a sport where brutal kicks and elbows to the head are common.

Yet the prospect of a broken nose, cut eye or cauliflower ear doesn’t faze Pirinya.

“If I was afraid about my face, I wouldn’t fight,” said Pirinya, who wore makeup and pink nail polish at today’s weigh-in.

It was the weigh-in that presented Pirinya with his toughest test so far as a fighter. Boxing officials at Lumpini insist combatants be completely nude when they step onto the scale.

When ordered to strip in front of a phalanx of reporters and cameramen, Pirinya broke down in tears. Lumpini officials, who are all members of the Thai military, eventually allowed him to keep on his black jockey shorts.

Although Thai boxers are generally tattooed tough guys from poor farming areas or Bangkok slums, many readily accept Pirinya.

“I thought it was strange when I heard there was a transvestite boxer, but I like to see people who like boxing – I don’t care who they are,” said Pong Sudsaeng, another fighter.

Most Thais, in fact, accept transvestites. Locally they are called “katoeys” and are regarded as a third sex.

Pirinya is only 15, but that’s not unusual for a Thai boxer. Many start when they are 10 or 12, and some headliners at Lumpini are only 16. Most fight until their late-20s.

Advocates for children’s rights decry the violence of kickboxing, but Thai officials already have their hands full fighting rampant child labor and trying to free the 300,000 children the United Nations estimates are prisoners in Thai brothels.

Pirinya says he isn’t dreaming of championships or fame – he just likes the feeling of being in the ring.

“I don’t think I’m fighting to be famous. I’d rather have a quiet life,” he said. “I’ll fight until I get bored with it.”

AP-NY-02-24-98 0344EST Copyright 1997 The Associated Press


From: “Christine Burns” <> To: “Backup UKPFC News” <> Subject: City of Houston: Executive Order Protects TG Employees Date: Mon, 23 Feb 1998 22:01:05 -0000

>From the news list distributed by Phyllis Frye (19th Feb 98) …

==================== City of Houston: Executive Order Protects TG Employees ====================

On Monday, February 16th, 1998, Lee P Brown, the Mayor of Houston signed an Executive Order to prhibit discrimination based on sexual orientation. The magic is in the definition of sexual orientation which reads “the actual or perceived status of a person with respect to his or her sexuality.” The term sexuality can be defined in many ways, and the real or perceived status of a person’s “sexuality” definitely covers the transgender experience. Hats off to the Mayor and his legal staff.

Hats off to Annise Parker, Houston’s first openly-queer elected member of Houston City Council. She has been saying transgender inclusion from the beginning.

Hats off to Houston TG leaders, including but not limited to, Vanessa Edwards, Marie Gallagher, Michelle Myers, Sarah DePalma and MANY, MANY others who were out and visible and worked on Annise’s campaign and followed this executive order through to the signing. Good work.

For those of you who live in Houston, I suggest that you write a letter similar to the following. The addresses and phone numbers are in the Blue Pages of your phone book.


From: X-Sender: Date: Mon, 23 Feb 1998 20:46:24 -0500

IT’S TIME, MARYLAND! PRESS RELEASE For Immediate Release Restrict distribution to the glbt community and SOFFAs.

Date: February 23, 1998 Contact: Jessica Xavier, 301-949-3822, Voice MailBox #8

TRANSGENDERED POLITICAL GROUP ANNOUNCES ITS OPPOSITION TO GAY-SPONSORED CIVIL RIGHTS BILL IN MARYLAND Silver Spring, Maryland – It’s Time, Maryland! a state chapter of It’s Time, America! has announced it will officially oppose Maryland House Bill 68 – The Anti-Discrimination Act of 1998 – now before the House Judiciary Committee. The lead group behind HB 68 is the Free State Justice Campaign of Maryland, the state’s gay and lesbian lobby group. It’s Time, Maryland! (ITMD) takes this action with the consensus of its membership, which includes transgendered people, their signifcant others, family members, friends and allies living in the state of Maryland.

The reason for It’s Time, Maryland!’s action was not political but technical. According to ITMD Spokesperson Jessica Xavier, HB 68 will not provide adequate protection from discrimination to many if not all sexual minorities living in Maryland – including gay and lesbian people. “The key language of HB 68 – its definition of sexual orientation – is simply not sufficient to protect gender variant gay men, lesbians and bisexuals, as well as transgendered people.” Xavier explained that all these individuals have gender expressions or behaviors that are either too effeminate or too masculine, and thus they incur much more homophobic discrimination. “An as illustrated by the recent Supreme Court decision in Robin Shahar’s case, sexual orientation-only laws based solely on identity that do not cover conduct and behavior may not protect even straight-appearing lesbians and gay men.”

“What’s the point of supporting a bill that simply won’t be effective?” stated Gary Bowen, Coordinator-in-Chief of the American Boyz, the largest organization for FTM transgendered persons in the United States and another leader of It’s Time, Maryland!

Although many of the members of ITMD are very angry about the repeated exclusion of trans people in FSJC’s anti-discrimination bill (the third time in four years), ITMD’s leadership stresses that this opposition to HB 68 is for technical, not political reasons. “Our issue is with the Free State Justice Campaign, not with the gay and lesbian community of Maryland”, said mary Konchar, chair of ITMD’s Baltimore chapter. “We hope this action will help FSJC realize they must follow through with their promises and pay whatever political price is required to provide protection for gender variant people.” Added Xavier, “Action on changing the language in the anti-discrimination bill must be taken now, not in the long-term, because to wait any longer only postpones the day when all sexual minorities in Maryland will receive equal protection under the law.”


The following is reposted from It’s Time! News Service

From: Date: Mon, 23 Feb 1998 19:43:47 -0500

[Editor’s note: The attached piece appeared in Jessic Xavier’s “Trans Am Column” in the Baltimore Gay Paper recently. The paper’s readership is predominantly gay men and lesbians, so it’s really written for them – not for trans people. The opening paragraph is a stream of consciousness written from a butch lesbian’s point of view. I’m remailing it with the kind permission of the author.]

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ The Best Reason for Transgender Inclusion In ENDA by Jessica Xavier

He’s reading me. I can tell by the look in his eyes, as he shifts uncomfortably in his chair. Sigh. It’s hard enough for me to find my way in his world, let alone pay the rent. Yet here I am, interviewing for this job that I desperately need. I’m struggling to maintain eye contact, trying to show him I’m competent, stable, professional, straight…. although of course, in my heart of heart’s, I know the last is impossible. I’m hopelessly queer… oh excuse me, in the Ellen age, I’m a “gay woman”… no wait, that’s not right, either. I’m a lesbian, but there’s no need for the L word here, ’cause it’s obvious… Daphne Skolpinski was right – the last time I wore a dress was… But I sleep with women, so I’m still protected, right? Just because I look and act like a boy doesn’t mean that I won’t be covered under ENDA, like those fucked-up transgender guys-who-think- they-are-girls, right…? I’m right, right? Right…?

One of the painful ironies of queer existence is that the divisiveness created by our own cultural and ideological differences has caused almost as much harm to us as a community as have our heterosexist oppressors. The traditional divisions with which we are most familiar (race, class, age, and sex) and their accompanying privileges have been the topics of many different writers for the past twenty years, but very little has been written about some of the more subtle forms of privilege, like passing and birth privilege. To address these issues seriously would require a paradigm shift about the ways we think about homosexuality, which would threaten both the queer intellectual status quo and the conventional wisdom that affords gay and lesbian people the various ideological niches where they stake their identities and live their lives.

One of the characteristics of possessing privilege is that it’s possessor takes it for granted, and thus most privileged people are usually ignorant of it. It is that ignorance, and the failure to address the underlying social constructs that produce privilege in the first place, that gives us the classist, racist, and heterosexist society we live in. In the queer world, those of us who possess passing privilege – passing as straight men and women – enjoy a choice about who knows and who doesn’t. It’s probably safe to surmise that most of us who are closeted have passing privilege, and thus our homosexuality, bisexuality or transgendered status would probably come as a surprise to our family and friends. However, I’ll bet that many if not most of us who are out do not have passing privilege, since that choice was taken from us by mother nature. We just look and act too queer.

These more visible queers are *gender variant*. When someone refuses to follow this heterosexist society’s rigid code of gender role behaviors, they are gender non-conforming, or gender variant. The most common form of gender variance is, of course, same gender sexual relations. But what you do in your bedroom is your private business and usually not public knowledge, *if* you’re fortunate to have the aforementioned passing privilege. Yet there are probably just as many queer people who just aren’t straight-acting or straight-appearing, since their gender variance goes much further than just taking a same gender partner. How?

Perhaps the most obvious form of gender variance is physical appearance, as governed by clothing and personal grooming. But it goes much farther than short hair and men’s clothing for butch lesbians and bisexual women. There is even more gender variance in individual behavior, in one’s manner, in personal style and even in occupations, when women take straight-based stereotypical men’s jobs and vice versa. There are so many individualistic variations in gender behavior and roles that they are impossible to catalog here. But they can get you into big trouble real fast.

Which brings me to ENDA, the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and the controversy over it’s exclusion of transgendered people. ENDA will only protect people based on sexual orientation, not gender variance. As such, it is driven by identity, not behavior. But it was behavior, not identity, that cost lesbian attorney Robin Shahar her promotion and job in the office of Georgia Attorney General Bowers, who was the same cretin behind the Hardwicke case that confirmed sodomy as a crime in that state. If ENDA was law, her identity would be protected, but not her behavior, and thus she still would have lost. After a few more losses in cases similar to hers, the right will have all the behavioral legal arguments in place to defeat any discrimination case brought forward by a gay man, lesbian or bisexual under ordinary sexual orientation-only laws.

Yet the Human Rights Campaign, the flagship of gay assimulationists, continues to promote an ENDA designed to protect only those gay men and lesbians with passing privilege. In refusing to deal with the reality and extent of gender variance in the gay and lesbian community, HRC instead pushes a lowest common-denominator legislative strategy that, in effect, panders to the gender-based homophobia of straight congressmen. Their lobbyists go to the Hill, hat in hand, to plead for half a loaf, ready to sacrifice many of their own kind to guarantee the rights of the already privileged. Their so-called “improved climate” argument is full of holes, since it is based on the notion that actual protection based on sexual orientation will result in the wake of ENDA’s passage. As the Shahar case proves, it simply won’t.

As HRC skillfully defuses the arguments of the transgendered activists and plays divide and conquer within the transpolitical movement, it’s ship sails on, in willful ignorance of the iceberg looming dead ahead. When it is passed, ENDA will prove to be a legal Maginot line, benefiting the politicians who sponsored it more than the constituency it was designed to protect. Thus ENDA and any other plain-vanilla sexual orientation laws that lack language covering gender variant people will prove as useful as a defective condom in providing protection to gays, lesbians, bisexuals, the transgendered and any other gender variant people who dare to color outside the het world’s gender lines.

The best reason for transgender inclusion in ENDA? Gender variance, which covers *all* of us. Write HRC and tell them. Don’t do it for me – do it for your gender variant partner. Or better still – do it for yourself.

@ 1998, Jessica M. Xavier, The Baltimore Gay Paper, 2/6/98 -30

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1998, 25 February

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AEGIS Internet News Tuesday, 25 February, 1998 AEGIS Internet News is a service of American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc. To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to


1. Wall Street Journal Response to Chronicle of Higher Education Article, Letters to the Editor 2. Karen Dior


The Wall Street Journal, February 5, 1998, Page 22, “Asides”

Transgendered Theorists

Short of the Beltway, there’s probably no other place in the U.S. in which human nature reveals itself in the most nightmarish permutations than the college campus. And the perfect guide into the ever more surreally distorted landscape of learning is the amazingly straight-faced (can we still use that adjective or is it genderist or lookist?) weekly publication, the Chronicle of Higher Education. The latest issue addressed the often stressful but of course rich and rewarding lives of “transgendered scholars” on campus as they demand anti-bias protection and attention for their ideas. Not always easy, as the writer makes clear: “Before he delivers a lecture on gender identity to his philosophy class this semester, Michael A. Gilmore must decide what to wear. Most likely he will put on a knee-length skirt, a long-sleeved blouse, and low pumps.”

The Wall Street Journal, February 23, 1998.

Letter to the Editor: Unkind Description of Gender Disorder

In your Feb. 5 editorial-page aside “Transgendered Theorists” you label the transgendered a “nightmarish permutation” of humanity. You’re entitled to your opinion on anti-bias protection, but I take strong exception to your narrow view of what constitutes an acceptable range of humanity. To label the transgendered a “nightmarish permutation” not only serves to establish your negative imagery upon others, but also documents your ignorance on the subject.

Gender identity disorder, gender dysphoria and transsexualism are medical terms and diagnoses that serve to describe and treat naturally occurring phenomena found world-wide in roughly equal proportions in all countries, societies, cultures, religions and population groups. The terms describe incongruity between one’s perceived sex, as based on what is found between your legs, and one’s gender, which is found between your ears. These topics are well described in the medical literature, and it is a fact that historically and culturally many cultures accept and revere the transgendered.

Richard L. Manley Yucaipa, Calif. The Wall Street Journal, February 23, 1998.

Letter to the editor.

Dear Mr. Bartley,

I note your editorialist in today’s Journal has taken to task a very difficult matter addressed by the Chronicle of Higher Education. Certainly, many of the cultural subjects often addressed by academics these days seem a bit less than serious, but may I suggest that the topic of this article was not. As a transsexual woman in the business world, a part time academic and friend of others, might I suggest that the humor and disgust exhibited by your writer may be misdirected. Being transgendered is not a question of lifestyle choice nor avocation but of having been born with the self identity of one from the opposite sex as recorded at birth. Some research shows a possible physical cause of this condition being related to brain structures in one so afflicted which may have been brought about in-utero.

The article in question was written following an incident involving Wynd D. Harris, a professor of marketing and international business at Quinnipiac College, was threatened with termination of her job when, prior to her having had genital reassignment surgery, she attempted to work in her correct gender presentation. Others, particularly those without tenure, have seen their positions terminated, their careers in ruin and have been unable to find other work in any capacity. Not all have had the privilege of university tenure. The matter is not one to be simply dismissed out of hand. Important and valued human resources are wasted. Perhaps you would be interested in investigating this matter further. I note that the Journal has done an exemplary job of exposing the ignorance of false accusation by prosecutors in child abuse. Perhaps you would provide the same courtesy to those who are or can be contributors to society rather than belittling a belated recognition of some of those who have, with great difficulty overcome a very serious handicap.


The following originally appeared in Etcetera, 20 February, 1998. Reprinted with permission.

Former Porn Actor Turned Drag Queen Guests on “Veronica’s Closet”

by David A. Moore

He’s a former porn star, the son of conservative Republican and former Montana state Rep. Donald Gann, a drag queen and he’s living successfully with AIDS.

Even though some might view the background of Geoffrey Karen Dior (a.k.a. Karen Dior and Geoff Gann) as a bit controversial, it apparently hasn’t had any negative effects on the performer’s career. “There hasn’t been an problem with [my background] at all,” says Dior. “It’s not something I try to hide, so there’s no way for anybody to use the information against me.”

In the past it’s been practically impossible for actors to make the switch from porn films to mainstream projects. Dior, however, has broken that barrier on several occasions. Last year he appeared in drag in commercials for Braun Razors, Bud Light, and the Fox Sports Network. In film he’s had minor roles in movies such as “A River Made to Drown In,” and “Just Add Love,” while on television he’s captured spots on the shows “Head Over Heels,” “Xena: Warrior Princess,” and “The Commish.” Now he’s guest starring on NBC’s Kirsty Alley sitcom “Veronica’s Closet.”

In the episode titles “Veronica’s a Drag,” Dior plays a New York cable television performer whose impersonation of Veronica leads to much confusion, trouble, and hilarity. Also appearing on the episode along with series regulars Alley and Kathy Nijimy is supermodel Yasmin Bleeth and Eleanor Mondale, daughter of former Vice-President Walter Mondale. Not surprisingly, the role has generated controversy.

“Everybody was having a great time backstage in between takes, talking and posing for photos,” explained Dior’s public relations manager Allan Gassman. “They all seemed to be perfectly happy to pose with Geoff, including Kirsty. But now I can’t get them to release the pictures for print.”

According to Gassman, Alley’s manager, Nancy Kane, indicated that Alley had no intention of ever releasing the photos for print. “She told me that Kirsty didn’t want to appear in any of THOSE magazines,” Gassman stated matter-of-factly.

Gossip around Tinseltown has it that Alley may bear some ill will toward the gay community for rumors about her failed marriage to Parker Stevenson (tabloids reported that both were queer and that it was a marriage of convenience) or her religious convictions (she’s a Scientologist).

Despite the brouhaha, Dior is no doubt enjoying the controversy, something that has followed him throughout much of his adult life (Eddie Murphy recently dropped a suit against Dior for telling a tabloid that the two had sex). “I don’t lie,” Dior told Etcetera. “What I said happened, happened.”

Apparently it’s all in a day’s work for the young actor. “I enjoy my life. Despite the odds, I’m going to have a good time.”



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1998, 27 February A

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1. Transsexual NZ Mayor Praises PM’s Hero Parade Speech 2. Rutgers Amends NonDiscrimination Policy 3. Millenium 2000 March 4. NGLTF Comment on Millenium Activities 5. In Your Face! 6. Michigan Journal of Gender and Law


Radio New Zealand News News Wire 2-22-98 Transexual Mayor Praises PM’s Hero Parade Speech

Carterton’s transsexual mayor Georgina Beyer has praised the Prime Minister’s appearance at the gay and lesbian HERO parade in Auckland.

Up to one hundred thousand people braved steady showers to watch the annual parade along Ponsonby Road – just outside the area plagued by power cuts.

The Prime Minister Jenny Shipley spoke briefly at the opening, saying the parade celebrates diversity, and that she hoped the country would continue down the road of being a tolerant society.

Georgina Beyer who was also at the parade says support from both the Prime Minister and from the leader of the Labour Party Helen Clark was important.





Contact: Ben Singer,

[East Brunswick, NJ February 26, 1998.] After almost 2 years of difficult struggle over transgender and gender-variant inclusion in the Non-Discrimination Policy at Rutgers University, Executive Vice President Joe Seneca released a memo which expanded discrimination protections at Rutgers University to include “people who have changed or are in the process of changing their sex.” The change effectively expands the policy to cover transsexuality.

The change marks the end of a long and difficult struggle, lead by Rutgers Graduate student Ben Singer, to advocate on behalf of all transsexual and gender-variant persons at Rutgers. A primary difficulty in the negotiations was the apparent confusion on the part of the Rutgers attorneys regarding the meaning of “transgender,” which was resolved by re-interpreting the category of Sex, already covered by the University’s policy, as “people who have changed or are in the process of changing their sex.” While the final phrase ostensibly limits protections to those persons who are transitioning from one sex to another, it is believed that the phrase may be useful in protecting many gender-variant non-transsexuals. Said Singer, “The difficulties presented to us over the meaning of ‘transgender’ represent an apparent attempt on the part of the conservative, and sometimes even reactionary, administration to maintain the sex/gender status quo. The need to frame the protections in a framework of a medicalization of transsexuality is evidence of the conservative nature of the administration’s stance.”

The questions asked by the university administrators indicate that the chief objections were fixated upon “men in dresses” showing up in classrooms. This perspective resulted in resolving the negotiations by taking a minimalist approach: that of allowing people to change from one sex to the other. “A more progressive solution would have been to recognize the inherent fluidity of gender,” said Singer. “So, while the policy may cover those people who choose not to use medical technologies to change their bodies, it clearly does not cover the ‘horrific’ specter of ‘men in dresses.’ Also likely not to be covered are men who simply look feminine, or women who look masculine.” In addition, he noted, the policy change includes a necessity of intentionality — and specifically the intent to change sex — which means that people who are being discriminated against for violating the gender stereotypes have no recourse without self-identifying as transsexual. “The implication is that one must have access to self-definitional language before they can be protected, a luxury many gender-variant people don’t have,” he said.

It is believed that this is the first anti-discrimination change resulting in transgender protections in the academic community which resulted from a long and difficult series of negotiations.

Ben Singer is a co-founder of the Transgender Health Action Coalition (THAC), an It’s Time, America! (ITA) affiliate based in Philadelphia, PA. In addition, he is a transman and activist in the gender community.


From: BabsC <> Date: Thu, 26 Feb 1998 22:41:37 EST

Subject: Milleneum March

The Millenneum March on Washington

I want to share the exciting news that we are going back to Washington!

The name of the march is “The Millenneum March on Washington for Equal Rights” and it is set for the Spring of the year 2000.

Of course, the question will be – equal rights for whom?

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered People.

That is correct, and Transgendered!

HRC and MCC are the lead sponsors and they agreed that the march needs to include the full LGBT community. (It took three previous Marches on Washington — 79, 86, 94 and I made them all — and 31 years, but the transgenders finally got allowed back into what they started with the Stonewall Riots in 1969.)

The March has also been endorsed by the National Black Lesbian and Gay Leadership Forum, NGLTF (the Task Force), the National Latino/a Lesbian and Gay Organization, the National Youth Advocacy Co-alition, PFLAG, NGLTF, GLAD, ICTLEP (the Transgender Law Conference) and so forth. Other organizations are signing on this week. A Committe of National and Local LGBT organizations is also forming.

Robin Tyler (a very long time friend of mine and one of the founders of the first March on Washington for Gay Rights in 1979) is the Executive Producer of the 2000 March and would love to include your organization in future press as endorsors.

If you want to be added to the list, just E-mail <A HREF=””></A> (or 818-893-4075) with the following:

_______________(name of organization) endorses the “Milleneum March on Washington for Equal Rights.” to be held in the Spring of the year 2000.


Date: Thu, 26 Feb 98 16:18:31 -0400 From: ngltf <> Subject: OP-ED: Landscape Changed; State Focus Must Follow ************************************************************** NATIONAL GAY AND LESBIAN TASK FORCE OPINION-EDITORIAL

Contact: Tracey Conaty, Field Organizer 202-332-6483 x3303 voice 1-800-757-6476 pager

2320 17th Street NW, Washington, DC 20009


WASHINGTON, DC—March 1, 1998—-Eye on Equality is a monthly column that discusses or gives commentary on national and state-level political events or provides a behind-the-scenes look a social movements and trends. The column is written by Kerry Lobel, Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. Landscape Changed; State Focus Must Follow

There has been much debate in the past few weeks about the possibility of a Millennium March on Washington for Equal Rights in the year 2000. I would like to share my thoughts with you on an exciting proposal which will more directly effect the lives of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered people at the state and local level.

Our marches in 1979, 1987 and 1993, focused our country¹s attention, for good reason, on building visibility and power in Washington. But the political landscape has changed dramatically, and with that, our focus must also change.

Over the past several years we have seen the center of gravity shift from action at the federal level to movement at the local and state level. Let¹s use the dawn of a new millennium as the time to make our activism count at the local and state level.

We find ourselves at a time where our communities have made enormous cultural gains. Despite these gains, most gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered Americans live in states that allow discrimination based on sexual orientation, that ban same-gender consensual sex, and that do not consider violence directed at the GLBT community as a hate crime. Many states ban same-gender marriage, even though it is not legal in any state. More and more queer youth find their school groups and clubs the target of right-wing legislators that understand the power that a growing number of gay-straight alliances holds to change communities.

Last year, a record number of bills affecting the GLBT community were introduced in state legislatures. Many bad bills were defeated and a record number of good bills were passed. Two states moved bills forward that banned discrimination based on sexual orientation. Last month, voters in one of those states, Maine, voted to repeal their civil rights bill.

In state after state, NGLTF worked with local and state activists to move their agendas forward on issues ranging from hate crimes to sodomy to family issues to civil rights issues. In 1996, we helped launch the Federation of Statewide Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Political Organizations. Today its executive committee works to ensure that no state has to fight any battle alone.

Our movement is growing stronger and more people are involved in their communities than ever before. With this growth, has come many challenges. Today we find ourselves at the brink of making important decisions that will forever affect our futures. At NGLTF, we believe that our communities must be visible in every state capital in America.

NGLTF¹s proposal for 50-state marches and actions to be held in 1999 has been widely distributed. It was first discussed at a gathering of the Federation of Statewide Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Political Organizations attended by representatives of 32 states. The proposal was then distributed in September at a roundtable meeting attended by over 30 executive directors of national GLBT political organizations and associations. It was also discussed at numerous workshops, gatherings and meetings at NGLTF’s annual Creating Change conference held in November in San Diego. It will be discussed again by national and state leaders in March, 1998 at our National Policy Roundtable.

The process of discussing the 50 state actions/marches has been lengthy and not always perfect. But it has reflected the belief that no one organization can control an entire movement¹s agenda. The road to our freedom is a long one and the process is as important as the result. A national movement is fueled by the collective energy and spirit found in towns and cities across America. It is there that our futures lie.

I’m interested in your views and I hope you¹ll drop me a note at NGLTF or email me at


Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 08:27:13 +0000 From: Clare Howell <>


Editor: Clare Howell (718) 638-7062


TRANSGENDERED SEX WORKER MURDERED =================================

[Tampa, FL: 18 Feb 98] RONALD ‘TASHA’ DUNN, a 42 year-old prostitute, was found bludgeoned to death early Saturday morning in a Tampa parking lot. Dunn was found wearing pants, a jacket, and a bra.

Police have no leads in the case. As to a motive, Tampa Homicide Detective Jerry Clark stated, “I don’t even want to speculate. The truth is, we don’t know. We are hoping someone will come forward.”

Transactivists expressed little confidence that police will aggressively pursue the killer(s). Said Tonye Barreto-Neto, of Transgender Officers Protect and Serve (TOPS), “Violence against the transgendered is horrific, yet it continues to be ignored or underplayed by the police, news reporting agencies, and the public.”


Contacts: Vanessa Foster, Phyllis Frye,

HOUSTON PROTECTS TRANSGENDER EMPLOYEES ======================================

[Houston, TX: 19 Feb 98] NEWLY ELECTED HOUSTON Mayor Lee Brown today signed an Executive Order to prohibit discrimination in the hiring of city employees based on sexual orientation. The order defines sexual orientation as “The actual or perceived status of a person with respect to his or her sexuality.”

The wording of the order is based on a similar statue in Minnesota. It is the result of efforts by Houston’s first openly-queer City Council member, Annise Parker, and members of Houston’s transgender community.

Said Phyllis Frye, Executive Director of the International Conference on Transgender Law and Employment Policies (ICTLEP), “The term sexuality can be defined in many ways, and the real or perceived status of a person’s sexuality definitely covers the transgender experience.”


Contact: Cheryl Chase,

MADEMOISELLE EXAMINES INTERSEX CONTROVERSY ==========================================

[Chicago, IL: 25 Feb 98] TITLED ‘AM I A WOMAN Or a Man?’, an article in the March issue of Mademoiselle magazine features intersex woman Angela Moreno and highlights the trauma she suffered at the hands of medical specialists intent on making her ‘normal’.

Born with a vagina, XY chromosomes, internal testes, but without ovaries or a uterus, Ms. Moreno was raised as a girl. In 1985, when she was 12, her parents consulted doctors about her enlarged clitoris. The doctors recommended surgery to remove the testes and the 1 3/4″ clitoris, saying this was necessary for Angela’s mental health. Angela was told she had ovarian cancer and the operation was a hysterectomy.

The years of sexual awakening after the operation caused Ms. Moreno much trauma and frustration as a result of her amputated clitoris. Now, at age 25, she still has no clitoral sensation. She discovered the true nature of her operation in 1995 when she demanded her medical records.

She now identifies as an intersex woman and is an outspoken critic of medical intervention. “I want to make sure that other intersex kids don’t suffer like I did,” she said. “I don’t believe I was treated for a medical emergency; what the doctors treated was their discomfort with indeterminate gender. Cutting infants’ genitals to fit cultural norms isn’t medicine– it’s mutilation.”

There is a growing movement among health care providers that reflects this view. Clinical Psychologist Howard Devore, in a sidebar to the article, maintained that surgery should wait until the child is old enough to decide whether to identify as a boy or girl. He said, “Doctors need to respond to the infants’ needs, rather than the panicked parents’.”


D.C. DROPS FIRST AMENDMENT CLAIM IN TRANSEXUAL WRONGFUL DEATH SUIT ==============================================

[Washington, D.C.: 13 Feb 98] WASHINGTON D.C. Counsel John Ferren has withdrawn a statement from a legal brief contending that an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) had a First Amendment right to ridicule dying transexual woman Tyra Hunter. The EMT ceased giving first aid to the critically injured Hunter and began making derogatory comments to her when he discovered that she had a penis.

In the city’s initial response to a wrongful death suit brought against the city by Hunter’s mother, Counsel Ferren had contended that the EMT had a right to shout derogatory comments at Hunter because the comments, although offensive and crudely stated, were protected under the First Amendment because they did not include false representations of Hunter.

The Washington Blade reports that Ferren withdrew that contention from the city’s legal brief after a storm of complaints by Gay, Lesbian, and Transgender activists.


PRE-OPERATIVE TRANSEXUAL WINS LEGAL NAME CHANGE ===============================================

[Pittsburgh, PA: 14 Feb 98] IN A PRECEDENT setting case, transexual woman Lisa Harris has won a court-ordered name change, from Brian to Lisa, after living for 22 years as a woman. She has undergone hormone therapy and had facial surgery to feminize herself, but has not had Sexual Reassignment Surgery (SRS).

Many jurisdictions throughout the country have denied name changes for transgendered people until presented with evidence that SRS has been completed. Although no state law prohibits transgendered people from changing their names, many judges have cited attempted fraud as the reason for denying transexuals’ name change petitions.

Reflecting this reasoning, dissenting Judge Saylor wrote, “To judicially sanction a pre-operative transsexual’s adoption of an obviously female name would grant recognition to a physiological fiction.”

However, concluding for the majority, Judge Olszewski stated, “We believe that the better reasoned approach is to require such a petitioner to demonstrate that he or she is permanently committed to living as a member of the opposite sex.”


Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 12:41:18 +0100 From: “Stephen Whittle” <> To: X-List: The Michigan Journal of Gender & Law seeks submissions for our Fall 1998 and Spring 1999 issues. We welcome the contributions of the thinkers and writers in your organization. We also invite you to subscribe to our journal.


The Michigan Journal of Gender & Law seeks to create a forum beyond the confines of traditional legal discourse where activists, practitioners and scholars can engage in interdiscipliary dialogue on issues of gender, sexuality, race and class. By giving voice to concerned thinkers and writers from many fields, the Journal will foster not only the exchange of ideas, but the development of a community.

The Michigan Journal of Gender & Law was founded in 1991 by a small group of feminist students at The University of Michigan Law School. We have grown to publish two issues a year which can be found in law libraries and private collections around the world, and in legal online services.


The central mission of the Michigan Journal of Gender & Law is to create a feminist legal publication that will help expand and develop legal discourse beyond traditional boundaries. The Journal is dedicated to providing a forum for exploring how gender issues, as well as related issues of race, class, sexual orientation, sexual identity and culture impact the lives of women and men. The Journal seeks to juxtapose and interweave theoretical and practical perspectives on gender issues in order to provide a bridge between the two. To achieve these purposes, the Journal will publish the views of legal scholars, activists, social scientists, practitioners, students, and others. PUBLICATION POLICY

The Michigan Journal of Gender & Law accepts a variety of written works. We are interested in both traditional and non-traditional pieces that explore gender issues that are found in the law. Written pieces may include, but are not limited to, traditional law journal articles, essays, book reviews, briefs or other legal documents, speeches, critiques, fiction pieces and poetry.

The Journal wishes to promote equal recognition of diverse voices and encourage the publication of pieces based on diverse experiences and viewpoints. In this manner, published pieces are not distinguished on the basis of the author’s educational and/or occupational background.


We require one (1) double-spaced “hard copy” manuscript only. We suggest but do not require an additional electronic version on 3.5″ disk, in Word 7.0. (If Word 7.0 is unavailable to you, you may submit in WordPerfect or an older Word format) We are unable to accept email submissions.

While all published pieces must conform to The BlueBook, 16th Ed. and The Chicago Manual of Style, we welcome submissions in other citation and style formats. Please use footnotes.

We select articles on a rolling basis for our semi-annual publication dates. We only have a few spots left for the Fall 1998 issue, which we expect to fill by about the end of February or so. We hope to fill the Spring 1999 issue by the beginning of October. We will consider a piece for the earliest issue open at the time the piece arrives.

Additional Hints for Authors: Please do not forget to consider your audience. This journal writes for an

audience of lawyers, law professors and law students. If your piece intersects other fields it should be understandable by those that are not familiar with it. Likewise, if your piece analyzes law, it must be written towards an audience of lawyers. If you have not been to an american law school you may wish to

consult a law graduate on the method and style of legal analysis if your piece analyzes law.

We are often asked about length requirements for submissions. We have no length requirements, because different types of writing would require varying amounts of analysis. We look for pieces that develop original thoughts fully. Those that are research oriented pieces should show fruits of having researched the entire subject completely. The average length for accepted articles is 50-80 manuscript pages.

Please send all submissions to the following address:

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law Attention: Selection Coordinator University of Michigan Law School Hutchins Hall Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1215

If you have further questions please contact: (email) or (734) 763-7378 (phone)


We welcome new subscribers to our journal. Please contact our Business Manager, Maureen Bishop for more information about subscriptions. Please write the above postal address, email, or phone (734) 763-6100. We appreciate the support of our subscribers. Thank you very much for your interest in Michigan Journal of Gender & Law. – 30 –

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1998, 27 February B

<HTML><PRE>Subj: AEGIS Internet News 3/3/98 Date: 98-03-03 10:48:06 EST From: (Dallas Denny) To:

AEGIS Internet News Friday, 27 February, 1998 AEGIS Internet News is a service of American Educational Gender Information Service, Inc. To subscribe or unsubscribe, send e-mail to Contents:

1. Trans Kickboxer Kicks Butt 2. World’s Scariest Police Chase Down Transpeople 3. MSNBC’s Good Bi Sex on the Weekend 4. Hayley’s Revelation


Date: Sat, 28 Feb 1998 06:57:03 -0500 From: “PlanetOut NewsPlanet” Subject: [GLB-NEWS] [GLBT-NEWS:PNO] Kickboxer Wins Bangkok Debut

NEWS SOURCE: PlanetOut NewsPlanet – BACKGROUND OF NEWS SOURCE: PlanetOut is a web site with oodles of news, information, and just plain Web-fun for the gay community. Visit their site and support their news staff that bring you these articles. This particular article may have even more links–click below for the Web version of this article:

Kickboxer Wins Bangkok Debut NewsPlanet Staff Wednesday, February 25, 1998 / 03:05 PM SUMMARY: Muay Thai makes way for a 16-year-old transgendered rising star whose kick is as effective as his kiss.

Parinya Kiatbusaba celebrated his first victory in the Bangkok big-time of Thai kickboxing (Muay Thai) on February 24 by giving his battered opponent Pongsak “Oven” Sor Bunma a kiss on the cheek. Parinya entered the ring for one of the world’s roughest sports wearing full makeup, including red lipstick and pink nail polish, his medium-length hair dyed red and tied back with a hairband. The 140-pound 16-year-old is a “katoey,” a cross-dresser regarded in Thailand as a third sex, who plans to spend some of his 40,000 baht ($900 U.S.) prize money on cosmetic surgery. “I had a big fight today and proved that I can do it like a man, even though my feelings deep inside are very feminine,” he told Thailand’s “Nation” newspaper.

Parinya, described by at least one reporter as “beautiful” helped draw a crowd of 10,000 to Bangkok’s Lumpini Stadium, the Madison Square Garden of Muay Thai. He took a cut over one eye in the course of the bout, but said, “If I was afraid about my face I wouldn’t fight.” However, he admitted in a post-fight interview that, “I don’t want to fight with a handsome man because I won’t want to hurt him.” He also told reporters, “I don’t think I’m fighting to be famous. I’d rather have a quiet life. I’ll fight until I get bored with it.”

Parinya has also been described as “prim to a fault,” and he demonstrated that trait at the pre-fight weigh-in. By tradition and regulations, kickboxers are weighed in completely naked in front of officials, reporters, and anyone else who cares to watch, a prospect which sent Parinya into tears. “The rule is unacceptable, how can I strip in public,” he said. Officials relented to the point of allowing him to retain his black briefs.

But Parinya recovered quickly for some pre-fight banter. “I would like to warn my opponent not to get distracted by my eyes or my smile because this smile has knocked 18 boxers out in 22 fights over the last two years,” he said. His professional record in the provinces was 20 wins and 2 losses, officially including only 17 knockouts. Bunma, a veteran of 28 fights, responded that, “I will not be shaken by his smile tonight. I will give him a big lesson so that he will learn that Thai Boxing is the game of a real man” — words he’d have to eat after five rounds in the ring with Parinya. Bunma also gave Parinya a mocking little hug before the bout began.

Katoeys had already made their mark in volleyball in Thailand, where an all-katoey team has been the national champion. In 1996, the Thai national volleyball team’s two best players were katoeys, but the volleyball association removed them out of concern for reactions in international competitions.


Date: Tue, 3 Mar 1998 00:08:24 -0500 From: Automatic digest processor <LISTSERV@LISTSERV.AOL.COM> Subject: GLB-PRESS Digest – 27 Feb 1998 to 2 Mar 1998 (#1998-3)

[ submitted by GLAAD ]

World’s Scariest Police Chase Down Transpeople

On February 17, FOX targeted transpeople in World’s Scariest Police Chases, another “reality-based” police program. “They could be high, they could be insane, they could be both,” the voice-over says. “These suspects are so dangerous, so reckless, and so weird that they make these chases unforgettable.” During the “so weird” section, the program shows police forcing at gunpoint a transgendered person from a truck. Then two separate clips are shown where either cross-dressing men, drag queens or transgender women (the show does not make this distinction) are engaged in high-speed chases. In the first, the voice-over identifies the suspect as a “local football coach, well-known and well-liked.” When the person is caught, the voice-over asks, “But why did he run, and why didn’t the officer recognize him?” He snidely states that, “He was wearing a wig and women’s clothing.” Between segments, a police officer explains that safety is the number-one concern, and that they want people to be stopped, not humiliated. But the next arrestee tells a different story. While being chased, the driver calls 911 and explains, “Brand-new dress on, that’s what I got. Now they’ll see me all dressed up, and want to parade me around in front of everybody in jail….” The arrestee says he will stop when “I get my make-up off,” adding, “I hope this won’t make the news.” When the driver is arrested, the camera fixes on his legs in hose, noting that “an officer can’t help but smile.”

By prefacing the segment by calling the transpeople “weird,” and lumping that in with being “high,” “crazy” or both, FOX sets viewers up to consider transpeople “freakish.” The voice-over confirms this bias against transgendered people in its attitude toward the wig and dress of the first driver. The second driver has a valid concern of humiliation after arrest by police officers, who unfortunately have a long history of insensitivity and even outright violence towards lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people. But this is dismissed by the officer stating that police do not want to “humiliate” suspects. Instead of giving any context to the driver’s fear, the structure of the show makes the person appear irrational and “weird.”

Let FOX know that this kind of side-show treatment of transgender people is unacceptable.

Contact: Peter Roth, President of Fox Entertainment Group, Fox Television Network, 10201 West Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90064-2606, fax: 310.369.7363, or call the viewer hotline at: 310.369.3066


MSNBC’s Good Bi Sex on the Weekend On the front page of MSNBC’s Sex on the Weekend page (, devoted to sassy Q & A on sex and relationship matters, is an excellent response to a question about a bisexual best friend. The letter writer, “So What If I’m Not?,” explains that his best friend, J., who just came out as bisexual, relentlessly insists that “I am either hiding my bisexuality or a total bigot who hates bisexuals. I’ve [even] tried flippantly answering that I am a trisexual transsexual. How do I handle this? How does one prove one’s sexual orientation? Why [does] it matter to my friend that I be bisexual?” Columnist Jennifer Kornreich responds: “For him to harass you is as inconsiderate as all those ignorant hets who pester non-heterosexuals about the validity of their own sexual preference. I know of no way to ‘prove’ one’s orientation. Sexual partners don’t necessarily determine anything; certainly marriage [doesn’t]. I’d hate to play into the highly erroneous myth that gay and bisexual people hit on straight friends, but perhaps it is bugging him that you’re not hitting on him. J. may also feel defensive about his newfound sexuality and mistakenly believes that the best defense is a pre-emptive offense [but] you are only fueling J.’s arguments with your increasingly shrill insistence that you are straight. If J. is indeed a worthy best friend, he’ll knock [it] off and relate to you like a normal human being (which is not dependent on orientation).” She adds, “P.S. The ‘trisexual transsexual’ thing isn’t funny. Leave the jokes to me, straight boy.”

Please thank Jennifer Kornreich for her sensitive and right-on advice. Contact: Jennifer Kornreich c/o Arlene Kim, Sex on the Weekend, MSNBC, One Microsoft Way, Building 25, Redmond, WA 98052-8300, e-mail:


From: Press For Change News List Subject: Hayley’s Revelation Our thanks to Brenda Smith for this cutting … Margaret Forwood’s WORLD OF SOAP… [The Express Magazine Sat Feb 28/98]

Altered States…

You’d imagine that shocking old Brookside would have thought of it first. But unless David Crosby’s new squeeze Molly turns out to be not quite the merry widow she seems, then Coronation Street has won the race: the first British soap to feature a transsexual.

Last night, Hayley Patterson, wonderfully played by Julie Hesmondhaigh revealed her secret: “I am not a female by birth, Roy, but by choice.”

The build-up was splendid, comic and touching by turns. Duffle-coated Hayley was late for a date because her bus had broken down. Which she didn’t normally expect because “they usethose Czech engines with the modified cam that the Russian army developed in Afghanistan”. Roy’s eyes shone with the joy of finding someone with whom he could have an intelligent conversation. “There’s something about you . . .” he mused.

Gail urged him to move things on, to invite Hayley up to the flat, to introduce passion into the equation. Roy quoted a Shakespeare sonnet about love not being love “which alters when it alteration finds”, little knowing just what alteration there’d been. Of the surgical kind.

He lit candles. Hayley turned up in blue satin and the ubiquitous polo-neck. Had too much to drink, started to confide “her most intimate secrets”. Said she’d understand if he never wanted to see her again. “Nothing would make me not want to see you again, Hayley,” said Roy, and then came the bombshell. Roy remains speechless until Sunday.

And that is what I suspect this plot is all about. It’s Roy’s story: how he’ll react to discovering the first person he could really relate to was not what he’d they were at all, whether he’ll ever trust his own feelings again.

No doubt it will all be beautifully done, but ultimately, it’s a quesion of whether it should have been done at all. A show as beloved as Coronation Street surely doesn’t need such shock tactics Ena Sharples will be spinning in her grave.

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