Human Rights

Transgender New Yorkers protected, for now

This past Wednesday New York's state Division of Human Rights adopted regulations proposed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo in October that add transgender status to the list of factors protected by the state Human Rights Law, which was first adopted in 1945.

The Human Rights Law prohibits employers, businesses or housing providers from discriminating against someone based on a wide variety of factors, including age, race, creed and color.

Today we are sending the message loud and clear that New York will not stand for discrimination against transgender people. It is intolerable to allow harassment or discrimination against anyone, and the transgender community has been subjected to a second-class status for far too long.

The regulations make clear that the word “sex” refers not only to gender, but also “gender identity and the status of being transgender. Since the Human Rights Law prohibits discrimination based on sex or disability, the regulations make clear those protections apply to transgender individuals and those with gender dysphoria, too.

--Gov. Cuomo

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Leaving the US in the dust

Lest you be an ardent believer in American Exceptionalism one should take note that some countries are leaving the US in the dust when it comes to human rights advances.

Bolivian Justice Minister Virginia Velasco Condori on Wednesday announced new policy which will allow transgender people to register legal documents using their new identities.

The policy is not perfect.

People who want to alter their name and sex on official identity documents must apply to the Ministry of Justice where a "psychological examination will be held to approve the process.

--Velasquez Condori

But it is light years ahead of the US, which has no federal policy on transgender people whatsoever.

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One thing I know...

...from nearly 23 years of writing about transgender issues on the Internet...

...is that cisgender people who deign to write about trans issues (overall, a rarity) are likely to have their voices heard by a much larger audience than transgender people. It is just so easy to write off anything that arises from our mouths or pens or keyboards as self-serving claptrap...because, you know...

...we're trans.

We're the voices that don't actually exist in the minds of too many religious fundamentalists and their ilk. A recent study of Fox News by Media Matters showed a concerted effort to villainize our community. People don't listen to the words of villains.

So it is with heart felt gratitude that I welcomed Wednesday's ope-ed in the Detroit Free Press by Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Campaign and Judy Shepard, cofounder of the Mathew Shepard Foundation, End epidemic of violence against transgender women.

I'm supposing they published this in Detroit because that has been one of this year's hotbeds of anti-trans violence. Other hotbeds...over the past few years...have been Washington, DC, Baltimore, New York, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and Houston.

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A Diatribe

Often I see it mentioned by folks that the country is going to hell in a handbasket and bemoaning the state of our society. This is often accompanied by myriad reasons, some of which seem to have more merit than others in my opinion.
 
While I tend to agree with the statement in general, and several of the reasons in particular, I have come upon what I consider a defining moment among the reasons, and that is defending the torture that our gov’t and its operatives did in our name.
 

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VotSquare paper.li for Saturday, 30 August 2014

A Lead Arts & Entertainment Story: Top Ten Labor Day Songs, By Peter Rothberg at The Nation.

Or click on the headline to go to the embedded paper here at the Voices on the Square site. Note that the embed is not compatible with all devices.

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Gender Prison: The Cult of Transgender

No, Federalists. We transpeople are not being totalitarian.

What is it that fear of transgender people is called? Oh, yeah. That would be transphobia. But you know what? Calling writer Stella Morabito at The Federalist transphobic for the article she produced...from whatever orifice it may have emerged...would not make me totalitarian. The designation neither robs her purse nor breaks her leg...and has no legal consequences.

Morabito is worried...about a lot. She's worried that transpeople can have children and thus redefine what it means to be a father or mother. She cites Thomas Beatty giving birth to 3 children during his transition from female to male. She worries that somehow how Thomas, and the rest of us transpeople identify somehow affects how other people are identified.

It’s not an overstatement to say that ENDA is a huge step, mostly under the radar, to codify a new definition of humanity.

--Morabito

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Hellraisers Journal: General Bell Blames Socialist and W. F. of M. for All Troubles in Colorado

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.
-Mother Jones

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Monday June 13, 1904
From The Indianapolis News: More Union Miners Deported from Cripple Creek District

Cripple Creek Deportations June 1914

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Hellraisers Journal: Deported Union Miners Dumped at Bleak Alkali Sand Dunes Without Food or Water

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.
-Mother Jones

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Sunday June 12, 1904
Cripple Creek District, Colorado - Deported Miners Dumped Near Kansas Border

Cripple Creek Deportations June 1914

The miners who were herded down the street on Friday by militiamen and Citizens' Alliance "deputies" and then loaded into railroad cars and deported from the Cripple Creek strike zone, were found near the Kansas border yesterday. The following report comes to us from today's San Francisco Call:

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Hellraisers Journal: Gen. Bell Promises "One Deportation After Another" from Cripple Creek District

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.
-Mother Jones

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Saturday June 11, 1904
From The Topeka Daily Capital: Mother Jones Continues Heading East

"MOTHER" JONES WAS HERE
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Is One of the Staff of President John Mitchel
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"Mother" Jones, who has been prominently identified with the Colorado miners' strike and is on the immediate staff of John Mitchell of the United Mine workers, was in Topeka for a short time yesterday afternoon. She called upon the local machinists and made a short talk at their meting. She left for the East last night.

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Cripple Creek Deportations June 1914

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Hellraisers Journal: Trial of Joe Hill, IWW Singer & Songwriter, to Begin Today in Salt Lake City

You ought to be out raising hell. This is the fighting age. Put on your fighting clothes.
-Mother Jones

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Friday June 10, 1904
From the Kansas City Star: Mother Jones Heads East to Speak in Kansas City on Sunday

Mother Jones, Not Smiling

"Mother" Jones to Speak at a Picnic

Mary G. [sic] Jones, known as "Mother" Jones, will speak at Budd park Sunday afternoon at 4 o'clock. "Mother" Jones once lived in Kansas City and had a dressmaking shop, but in recent years has devoted her attention to Socialism and has been active in big strikes as a crusader. She will talk on the miners' strike in the Cripple Creek district. There will be a picnic in connection with the meeting Sunday afternoon.

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