What do you do when the contents of your heart conflict with the image of your physical being? How do you find a way to just live a normal, safe life? My answer was hair! That's where Franklin Beauty School came into the picture.
The opposition is very confused about the differences between sex and gender, gender identity and sexual orientation. But the problem is more fundamental: Most Americans do not have a basic understanding of human biology and reflexively equate "biology" and "sex" with genitals.
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I did this for the first time last year. The 20-odd transgender deaths that passed my desk during 2012 were compiled into a post presenting the victims' names and how they died in order to convey the importance of observing the Transgender Day of Remembrance. I'm doing it again for 2013.
The rise in violent crimes against same-sex-oriented souls or those perceived to be same-sex-oriented, like Ryan Langenegger, a straight Nebraska man ...
Go ahead, interview a trans person or two before you publish that story telling us how awful we are. I'm available. I'm happy to have a discussion, make a statement, clear the air.
All Saints' Day also marks the first day of Transgender Awareness Month, with its own equivalent annual vigil, the International Transgender Day of Remembrance to commemorate those slain in anti-transgender hate crimes.
This weekend I did the Google auto-complete experiment using the words "transgender" and "transsexual," and the results were awful, depressing, and horrifying. Afterwards I teamed up with a trans male friend (who does a lot of artwork I admire) to put these results to pictures.
What is needed are interventions that understand the problem of LGBTQ bullying as rooted in cultural values, not in individual "bad" children, and that see schools as sites where traditional genders and heterosexuality are valued, rewarded, and given positions of power and prestige.
When I speak on coming out and bring in my own experiences, I often leaven the stories with references to Jewish law and tradition. In some respects, not only am I repeatedly coming out to these audiences as trans and gay, but I'm also coming out as Jewish.
The following blog post is adapted from my memoir, Words Never Spoken.
Playing the role of Felixia is a real-life transgender Navajo woman, Carmen Moore, who says that just about everything that Felixia experiences in the film is something that she's gone through in her life. There is no glamorization in Drunktown's Finest, and the emotion is raw.
In Kumu Hina's school, a young student who decides to wear both male and female leis at a school performance is not sent to the principal or the guidance counselor, nor are the other students derisive or hostile, much less violent.
"Left to rely on what I heard, I expected to feel something akin to a sonic boom followed by that sparkly thing twilight "vampires" do."
For the transgender individual whose misrepresentative outer appearance is at the root of their personal conflict, it may be clear how the skin is a critical component of establishing self-harmony. However, the role of the dermatologist in their care is yet to be determined.