It's a given that the Middle East has a long way to go as far as LGBT acceptance is concerned. Remember that sound byte of Ahmadinejad claiming that Iran doesn't have any homosexuals? Turkey is supposed to be the most secular and liberal Muslim country in the Middle East, yet its religious, right wing government still considers homosexuality to be a disease.
I'll be the first to admit that Saturday Night Live is a totally hit or miss show these days. There are definitely some skits that cause me to cramp up from laughing so hard, while others leave me bored. I get it - it takes a lot to put on a live, hour-and-a-half variety show every week, and not every joke will be a zinger. And while I don't expect every second to make me laugh, I also don't expect there to be parts of the show that will make me cringe and rage.
This past Saturday night started off promising. Then it turned transphobic.
Xavin explaining not fitting in to male-female gender roles in Runaways. via
Both print comics and webcomics seem to be paying more attention to being inclusive these days, especially when it comes to LGBT characters. I've long treasured the diversity that's out there in webcomics if you dig a little bit, but even the comics you don't have to dig for are starting to include characters of color and queer characters. Jeph Jacques, for example, upped the inclusion ante at Questionable Content last year when two women of color and a white transwoman appeared in a one-panel diversitysplosion. Other comics seem to be moving in the same direction. Maybe next Randall Munroe will strike a blow to androcentrism and retcon the xkcd stick figures into being female-to-intersex pansexuals of color.
To celebrate inclusion in comics and encourage more, I'd like to put forward my top five list of the best genderqueer characters in comics.
I'm skeptical of any awards given out so closely to the release of an honoree's film. It's an extra press release, another sound bite, and a little something for the likes of Entertainment Tonight, Extra!, and TMZ to shill. Yawn.
That said, it was worth following The Hollywood Reporter's extensive coverage of the Human Rights Campaign's Visibility Award, presented to Cloud Atlas codirector Lana Wachowski.
When the Washington Post featured a story about a transgender five-year-old last week, online commenters accused the parents of overreacting to harmless "tomboyishness." But parents who listen to their kids, allow their kids to live as their preferred gender, and guide them through consensual medical decisions are choosing life for their children when the alternative could be far more serious than a temper tantrum.
Trans icon Kate Bornstein's memoir, A Queer and Pleasant Danger: The true story of a nice Jewish boy who joins the Church of Scientology and leaves twelve years later to become the lovely lady she is today, shines a bright, unflinching light on self-image, gender, and life on the far edge of the fringe.
Last week, Argentina gave citizens the freedom to change their legal and physical gender without having to undergo medical, psychiatric, or judicial procedures. Along with eliminating patronizing barriers to swapping an "M" for an "F" on a driver's license, the law gives Argentinians a freedom you won't find anywhere else: gender self-determination.
The lead singer of Against Me! came out as transgender in the latest issue of Rolling Stone, which hits newsstands on Friday. While some of the comments on Rolling Stone's online article are predictably disgusting, commentators on the official Against Me! message board have been overwhelmingly supportive.
After all, any diehard fan knows it's the music that matters. And if transfolks are the ones making it, well, that should come as no surprise.