Letter for May 26, 2016

• Please try to understand transgender people

Please try to understand transgender people

This letter is in response to Bea Bock’s attack (TGI, May 25) on the Obama administration’s attempt to eliminate discrimination based on gender or sexual identity.

Bock’s letter is based on the false premise that we know biologically there are only two genders. This is not true and has been widely understood in the scientific community in the United States since the 1950s (Udry, J. Richard (November 1994). “The Nature of Gender,” Demography).

Many other cultures — both modern and ancient — such as Australia, Germany, India, New Zealand, Mesopotamia, historical Mediterranean cultures, and many Native American cultures recognize that many factors contribute to gender. Some of those factors include chromosomes, gonads, hormones, primary sexual characteristics (genitals), secondary sexual characteristics (such as body development due to hormones), and the gender identity and role which are usually set by the time a child is three years old (Boles, Jacqueline, and Tatro, Charlotte, Androgyny (subsection Gender-identity formation), in Men in Transition: Theory and Therapy, 2013, edited by Kenneth Solomon).

In response to the claim that other mammal species only have two genders, hundreds of species including red deer as well as a number of bird and reptile species have multiple distinct recognized genders (Roughgarden, Joan (2004). Evolution’s Rainbow: Diversity, Gender, and Sexuality in Nature and People. University of California Press).

The idea that somebody would change their gender based on a whim just to be able to peep into a restroom or locker room is a complete fabrication intended to suppress the rights of transgender people who are not the perpetrators behind most sexual assaults. All that the Obama administration is trying to do is to allow transgender individuals to continue to use the restroom that aligns with their gender identity like they have been for years with zero reported cases of them attacking or sexually assaulting anybody.

So, let’s not stick with what we “know” if it’s wrong. Educate yourself. Have compassion for people going through struggles that you don’t understand. At the end of the day we’re all just humans trying to get through life as best we can and having the support of our peers and community instead of uninformed attacks makes the world better for all of us.

Marc Sicignano, Kalaheo


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