Transgender athletes

Even people who otherwise support transgender equality often draw the line at transgender women competing against cisgender women. We have a couple of new opinions expressed lately. What makes these more unusual than most is that they are grounded in science.

Steven Petrow investigates at Washington Post.

This charged debate is timely because of a landmark rule change instituted by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) this year. In Rio, transgender men (female-to-male athletes) will be allowed to compete without any restrictions (based on the sexist assumption, I suppose, that trans men could never dominate their sports). Trans women, meanwhile, are no longer required to undergo gender-reassignment surgery to compete in female divisions, and the previously mandated two-year wait after transitioning has been jettisoned.

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Sunday Train: Adventures on the Beijing Subway

I have ridden the Beijing Subway and lived to tell the tale!

Of course, the youtube clips you might be able to find about incredible overcrowding on the Beijing subway is just part of the story. Indeed, when riding on my "home" subway line, I often not only find plenty of standing room on the train ... I often get a seat.

So follow me as I wander through the Beijing Subway System, below the fold.

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The Breakfast Club (Festa na Roça)

Welcome to The Breakfast Club! We’re a disorganized group of rebel lefties who hang out and chat if and when we’re not too hungover we’ve been bailed out we’re not too exhausted from last night’s (CENSORED) the caffeine kicks in. Join us every weekday morning at 9am (ET) and weekend morning at 10:30am (ET) to talk about current news and our boring lives and to make fun of LaEscapee! If we are ever running late, it’s PhilJD’s fault.

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Gender at the Olympics

Opening Ceremonies at the 2016 Olympics in Rio are this evening at Maracana Stadium...even though we are already through two days of Soccer competition.

The show was produced by film director Fernando Meirelles (City of God).

I hope that the Opening Ceremony will be a drug for depression in Brazil.

--Meirelles

Rumors are flying. Some of them are true.

Lots of samba and bossa nova. Lots of dancers. Mrs. Tom Brady, Brazilian super model Giselle Bundchen as the Girl from Ipanema.

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Interesting(?) Factoid

Yesterday a commenter tried to lay the creation of transgender identity at the feet of "a loving mommy" who encourages a little boy to play with make-up, nail polish, and cross-dressing while "disparaging male boding activities with a daddy she resents."

This ticked me way the Hell off. Not only does it completely ignore the existence of trans males, it has absolutely no scientific foundation.

Doctors at Boston Children's Hospital combed through their patient records and discovered that 8.2% of the young people treated at the clinic between 2007 and 2015 were being raised by adoptive families. This compares to a rate for the general public of 2.3%.

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Donald Trump and the Law of Unintended Consequences

It is going to be tempting to many on the left side of politics in the United States to see the Clinton / Trump contest as a put-up, a conspiracy to get a weak candidate of the Corporate Party elected based on how incredibly ... yes, seemingly implausibly bad ... the other candidate from the other Corporate Party seems to be.

But I don't see it that way. To me, this is the Law of Unintended Consequences of craven political games hitting us big time.

What I mean by that, under the fold.

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Pope: Acceptance of transgender people is "terrible"

Words from a pope mean something to some people. Personally, I was raised Lutheran, so I grew up already excommunicated by the Vatican...as Lutherans had been for centuries.

But I have to admit I had expected better from Francis.

And people have been trying to interpret his words actions to me as more pro-trans than I've ever interpreted them. Now the cat is out of that bag.

Remarks from behind closed doors have surfaced.

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Can we stop counting?

 photo Skye_zpsm8nykex6.jpgAround 8am last Saturday morning the owner of Ecclesiastic Granite Fab discovered the body of Skye Mockabee in his parking lot in Cleveland's Puritas-Longmead neighborhood.

The 26-year-old Mockabee was declared dead at 8:30 after EMS, firefighters and police arrived at the scene. The police report said the body was lying face-down next to a tow truck with blood coming out of her mouth. The police report also described the victim as a man. On Monday the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner's Office deadnamed Mockabee.

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Judge chooses not to act...yet

US District Judge Thomas Schroeder heard arguments today on whether he should block enforcement of HB2.

Opponents of HB2 argued that it deprives transgender people of "respect, dignity and equal access to public facilities."

Judge Schroeder was asked to put the law on hold until after the trial on its constitutionality is held in late October/early November.

Challengers to the law include the US Justice Department and the ACLU.

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