Recently someone in my inner circle began a relationship with a transgender woman. I learned to love someone new and accept her into my circle. Issues affecting transgender people have become my issues. I have read articles about people wanting to make policy about which bathroom is used by a transgender person. Then I realized, this isn't just a problem "they" face, it's a problem she faces.
Writer Elinor Burkett, in this past weekend's New York Times, takes it upon herself to define womanhood, which she feels is under attack from trans women. Instead, Burkett only succeeds in viciously grinding an anti-feminist axe with the intent of severing trans women from our rightful womanhood. Transmisogyny is where transphobia and misogyny meet, each intensifying the other. It is a form of gendered oppression experienced by trans women, central to which is the vicious lie that we are, or ever have been, men. This is violence, a violence which all too frequently ends in a trans woman's death.
Fixating on Russia is not going to solve the various human rights crises facing the West. Russia does have several of its own human rights abuses, several of its own problems that harm the society there. But let's not pretend for a second like the West is somehow incredibly different. By doing so, we forego the responsibility to address the problems that we have right here at home, and prove to the world that we are still holding onto simplistic "scary Russia" sentiments that were just as misguided and ignorant during the Cold War as they are now.
When newly-sentenced Wikileaks source Pvt. Bradley Manning revealed he would be pursuing gender reassignment while in prison, the announcement was met with a raft of reaction, some of it supportive, much of it venomous. Some 1,700 km northeast of the cell where Manning will serve 35 years for leaking U.S. military secrets, Canadian legislators have been at work since June 2011 to expand the Canadian Criminal Code to include gender identity and gender expression on the list of characteristics protected by hate crime law