poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Revisions Likely in Birth Certificate Policy

Spurred by a 2002 city law forbidding discrimination based on gender identity and expression and reform sought by gender rights advocates, the city's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is considering an amendment to the policy governing changes to a birth certificate, making it possible for transgendered people born in New York to alter the gender designated on the form.

However, in testimony before the Board of Health on Monday, advocates agreed in recommending a number of significant changes to the amendment currently under discussion, and some maintained that the overall approach contemplated is inappropriately based on what they termed a "medical model" inconsistent with an emerging ethos of gender self-identification.

Everyone who testified at the Monday hearing, however, agreed that revision in the current city policy is long overdue and congratulated the health department on its work in moving toward reform.


Intersex Produced by: Dheera Sujan

A group of women talk of their experiences with a rare condition - intersexuality. They are women who have the male XY chromosome. One was forcibly raised as a boy. One only found out about her condition accidentally when she was a teenager. And one was kept in the dark about it deliberately by doctors. About one baby in 20,000 infants is born intersex. Often these infants can be clearly seen to belong to one sex, but a small percentage of them are born with ambiguous genitalia and in the past, doctors made a unilateral decision about which sex they thought the child belonged to. Sometimes they even performed surgery without properly consulting or informing the parents. That practice has been banned in the Netherlands but although medical personnel and lay people are more open to variations in sexuality these days, people with an intersex condition still find the subject very difficult to bring up. This program was produced by Dheera Sujan of Radio Netherlands and airs as part of our international documentary exchange series, Crossing Boundaries.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Transsexual prepares lawsuit against Thai army

Bangkok- A Thai transsexual man is preparing to file a lawsuit against the army for rejecting him for conscription on the grounds of his "mental disorder," news reports said Thursday. Samart Meehcharoen, 22, said that the army's rejection statement, issued two years ago, had deprived him of career opportunities, as a private firm had recently turned down his job application citing his "mental disorder," the Bangkok Post reported. 

"I cannot accept it, because I don't have a mental problem. I'm a normal guy who feels like a woman," said Samart, who wears his hair long and has undergone breast-enhancement surgery, though he has stopped short of a sex change. 

If the Administrative Court accepts Samart's case, it will set a legal precedent in Thailand, which still practices conscription to fill its armed forces.


Four convicted in St. Maarten attack on gays

Four French nationals were convicted Thursday of beating two gay American tourists in this Dutch Caribbean island and given prison sentences of six months to six years.

The tire iron attack seriously damaged the brain of one of the victims, an employee of the CBS News show "48 Hours."
Three citizens of the island's French half -- Glen Cockly, Micheline Delaney and Allan Daniel -- and a man from the nearby French Caribbean island of Guadeloupe, Michel Javois, were found guilty of public violence and grievous bodily harm by Judge Jan Bosch.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Sex Change Doctor Dead At 82

(AP) Dr. Stanley Biber, a small-town physician who said he performed more than 4,500 sex change operations in his career, has died, a friend and funeral home owner said. He was 82.

Biber died in Pueblo, where he had been hospitalized for complications from pneumonia. The cause of death was not announced Tuesday.

"We've lost a tremendous friend in our community," said Mary Winter, owner of the Cormi Funeral Home in Trinidad, a town of 9,300 near the Colorado-New Mexico border.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

NYPD may have violated transgender woman's rights

Amnesty International is urging the New York City Police Department to investigate allegations that its officers violated the human rights of Christina Sforza, a transgender woman involved in a July 10 altercation at a McDonalds restaurant in Manhattan, according to an October 27 press release sent by the human rights watchdog group. 

Sforza claims she was viciously beaten with a lead pipe by the McDonalds manager on the night of July 10 and repeatedly called a “fag” and a “faggot” by store employees and customers.