New England's professional sports teams back transgender equality

The New England Patriots, Boston Bruins, Boston Celtics, and New England Revolution have all announced their support of legislation that would guarantee protections for transgender people in public accommodations in Massachusetts.

The Boston Red Sox announced their support in November.

I think that having not only New England’s most prominent cultural institutions, but also frankly the most iconic public accommodations that come with that — Fenway Park, TD Garden — really sends the message.

This issue has become mainstream and widely accepted.

--Kasey Suffredini, Freedom Massachusetts

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Senior Anglican clerics call for church apology to LGBT people

The letter, signed by over 100 senior church officials, was sent to the Archbishops of Canterbury and York.

The archbishops are meeting attending a meeting of 39 primates from the global Anglican Communion this week,

The letter calls for the church to acknowledge that LGBT members around the world have been treated as "second-class citizens."

[F]or too long the church has treated gay, lesbian and transgender people as a 'problem to be solved'.

-The Very Reverend Mark Boyling, Dean of Carlisle Cathedral

The meeting is being held in an effort to prevent a schism between liberals and conservatives.

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The Breakfast Club (Beatles Classic)

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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India's first transgender band drops Pharrell Williams cover

6-Pack Band comprises six transgenders singing original songs, including a cover version of Grammy-winner Pharrell Williams' hit "Happy". They have been joined by Bollywood star Sonu Nigam for their debut collection.

We are taking one step at a time. There are total six songs. I felt very happy singing with them. They were singing my songs all the time, they have a very good vibe. I really enjoyed their innocence and child-like energy.

--Sonu

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Health Disparities in transgender veterans

Dr. George R. Brown and Dr. Kenneth T. Jones have recently had published a new study concerning the mental and medical health of transgender veterans: Mental Health and Medical Health Disparities in 5135 Transgender Veterans Receiving Healthcare in the Veterans Health Administration: A Case–Control Study.

There are no large controlled studies of health disparities in transgender (TG) or gender dysphoric patients. The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is the largest healthcare system in the United States and was an early adopter of electronic health records. We sought to determine whether medical and/or mental health disparities exist in VHA for clinically diagnosed TG veterans compared to matched veterans without a clinical diagnosis consistent with TG status.

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Cruz: Transgender students an "infliction"

Ted Cruz put in his claim for the transphobic vote yesterday.

Not that he hasn't had some sterling competition from Mike Huckabee, Ben Carson and Marco Rubio.

Rubio seems to imply that employing LGBT people and serving LGBT customers were themselves sinful actions.

it is “most baffling” that anyone could thoughtfully defend the notion that it is normal — that it is perfectly legitimate — for a person just to declare oneself to be a different gender. It borders on laughable, and I know to say it’s laughable would bring great contempt because people would say you’re being insensitive. I’m not being insensitive. I’m exercising just a little bit of common sense.

--Huckabee

Carson opposes allowing transgender people to serve in the military, "worrying that the military is being used as “a laboratory for social experimentation.”

“Deal with the transgender thing somewhere else.”

Last month, Carson similarly said that trans people don’t deserve “extra rights,” like equal access to safely use the bathroom.

Focusing on Cruz:

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Washington Human Rights Commission adopts new transgender policies

The Human Rights Commission of the state of Washington announced on December 26 a new set of rules governing use of sex-specific facilities.

In essence the state is officially recognizing transgender women to be women and transgender men to be men.

Of course, there are some folks who can't wrap their heads around that.

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Defining by example: Political Powerlessness

Researchers at the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law published a new study in the December issue of the SAGE Journal Research and Politics. The study, Transgender inclusion in state non-discrimination policies: The democratic deficit and political powerlessness, was written by Andrew R. Flores, Jody Herman, and Christy Mallory.

Transgender people—people whose gender identity or expression is different from their assigned sex at birth—and their allies advocate for the inclusion of gender identity or transgender in state non-discrimination policies. These policies generally proscribe discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations. Courts and administrative agencies have determined discrimination against transgender people is a violation of existing statutes, but there remain efforts by advocates to seek policies that explicitly prohibit discrimination on the basis of transgender status, which are often the result of legislation going through the political process. A pluralist understanding of the political process theorizes that a majority coalition of minorities can offer social groups policies they support. This rests on the presumption that a majority coalition of minorities should rule. Any indication to the contrary may suggest a democratic deficit, whereby more than a majority is necessary for policy introduction. We find that there is a substantial democratic deficit regarding the inclusion of gender identity or transgender in employment non-discrimination policies. On average, state support for the policy must be 81% in order for the state to have a policy reflecting such sentiment. This leaves substantial implications for the political powerlessness of transgender people in the political process.

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