YouGov has published a new survey about the conditions in which transgender people live.
Twenty-four percent of American adults think being transgender is a mental disease. Fort-seven percent think being transgender is a choice.
A psychological state is considered a mental disorder only if it causes significant distress or disability. Many transgender people do not experience their gender as distressing or disabling, which implies that identifying as transgender does not constitute a mental disorder.
--American Psychological Association
Although 40% of adults say that they personally know someone who is transgender, 27% of adults say they would never be friends with someone who is transgender.
Forty one percent said they would be “very open” to having a transgender man for a friend and 52 percent said they would “strongly support” a best friend who came out as transgender, while 19% sad they would be somewhat supportive..
Significantly fewer people would consider dating, either casually or seriously, a trans man, woman or non-binary individual – 17%, 16% and 18% respectively. Respondents were even less likely to be open to the idea of engaging in a sexual act of any kind with a trans man or non-binary person (15%), and even fewer would consider intimacy with a transgender woman (13%). In the past twelve months, only 4% of Americans have been on a date with a transgender person.
A quarter of respondents said they would not tell anyone if they had sex with a transgender person (38% of respondents who identify as "completely male" and 21% of respondents who identify as "completely female.").
This pervasive ideology says that trans women are shameful, that trans women are not worthy of being seen and that trans women must remain a secret— invisible and disposable. If a man dares to be seen with a trans woman, he will likely lose social capital so he must adamantly deny, vehemently demean, trash and/or exterminate the woman in question.
Oddly, respondents were slightly more likely on each measure to say that they’d be open to dating transgender people, suggesting a disconnect between their romantic interest in transgender people and their sexual interest.
Some of this may change sometime after I have passed on (I'm 69). Fourteen percent of millennials have felt their gender identity differs from what is typical of people assigned their sex. Only seven percent of those 35-54 feel similarly.
It seems inevitable that large percentages of Americans will continue to say that they wouldn’t even be friends with a transgender person long after the day non-discrimination protections finally get passed. Cultural acceptance is not a precondition for equal protection under the law. But it sure would be nice.
--Samantha Allen, The Daily Beast
On the whole, most Americans are fairly accepting of transgender people. Asked whether it is morally acceptable or morally wrong to identify with a different gender from your gender at birth, 53% of Americans either say that it is morally acceptable (14%) or is just not a moral issue (39%). Americans under the age of 30 (18%) are the least likely to believe it is immoral to be transgender, while people aged 45 to 64 (38%) are the most likely.
When it comes to religious groups, Protestants are far more likely than any other religious group, however, to say that it is morally wrong to be transgender. While 47% of American Protestants think that it is morally wrong, only 23% of American Catholics agree. Most American Catholics either think that it is not a moral issue (47%) or is morally acceptable (12%).
Bad news for trans kids:
Forty-one percent would be at 'upset' or 'very upset' if their child said they were transgender while 39% say that they would not be very upset or not upset at all.
In other news, Montreal transgender cartoonist Sophie Labelle had her facebook page hit with an orchestrated attack of hate and death threats, was doxed and forced to cancel the Halifax launch of her new comic (Assigned Male) and move to a different location.
Finally, Chelsea Manning released the following statement:
I appreciate the wonderful support that I have received from so many people across the world over these past years. As I rebuild my life, I remind myself not to relive the past. The past will always affect me and I will keep that in mind while remembering that how it played out is only my starting point, not my final destination.
She posted this pic to Twitter and Instagram: