"Cis" and "cisgender" certainly have a proper place in academia and are likely to be used there for a long time, given how their use has steadily increased. They are also increasingly used in non-LGBT progressive circles as part of policy and sociology discussions. Outside these contexts, however, neither word does us much good.
A 16-year-old transgender girl spent 77 days alone in a Connecticut prison without ever being convicted of, or even charged with, a crime. Known publicly as "Jane Doe" because she is a minor, she sat alone in the York Correctional Institution, a high-security prison in Niantic, Connecticut, for two and a half months.
I would like to propose that when we see each other, when we greet each other, when we congratulate or debate each other, we do it all with great kindness; that no matter what we believe to be true or not true about words and the meanings behind them, we refuse to use any form of language that might be even remotely jarring to someone's spirit.
In February 2014 Queerty, the online magazine and newspaper focusing on gay topics, ran a piece titled "Seriously Sexy Trans Men Make Us Say 'Mmmm!'" What's interesting and horrid about the article? The comment section, which displayed the pervasive lack of understanding of transgender identities within the gay community.
Recently, a video about a transgender child in California went viral. Sadly, like every other conversation about transgender children, the comments section was often unkind. Scanning the comments, I saw the same poorly thought-out ideas keep popping up. I think it's time to put these misconceptions to bed.
I have to disagree with Mitch Kellaway's decision to stop blogging on Gay Voices. I'm sure he feels that it's the right decision for him personally, and I respect his choice and his reasoning. But rather than remove myself from the conversation by withdrawing as a blogger, I believe the opposite is called for.