Monday, September 30, 2013

What We Already Know…

For most trans-people this is not new, we live it every time we go to the doctors.
Transgender Healthcare Still Lags
Medpage Today
Published: Sep 29, 2013
By David Pittman

SAN DIEGO -- Despite advances in civil rights in the gay and lesbian community, transgender patients still face discrimination and disparities in the health system, an expert on gay healthcare said here.

Transgender people routinely avoid using healthcare resources because of the way physicians may have treated them in the past, or because of fear of being treated differently, said Joe Freund, MD, a family physician in Des Moines, Iowa, who cares for a large base of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) patients.

"I've got trans[gender] patients who refuse to go to the emergency room unless they're basically unconscious because of doctors screaming out of the room when they discovered something they didn't think they were going to find," Freund said at the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) scientific assembly. "People are poorly treated at times."
OK, raise your hand if you postponed getting medical care because you are trans.

My hand is raised. Before I transitioned I avoided going to my doctors because I worried what he would say something about shaving my body hair off. I had a fever over 100 but I toughed it out, for all I know it could have been pneumonia.
Medicare is currently examining whether or not it should cover sex-change surgery, and Freund called the pending decision "vital."
There is a very good chance that Medicare will cover Gender Confirming Surgery shortly and I will be starting Medicare tomorrow Congress willing.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Good News!

If you are on cross gender hormones like me there is some good news for us.
Article Review: Breast Cancer Development in Transsexual Subjects Receiving Cross-Sex Hormone Treatment
Open Minded Health

There’s a new study out from the Netherlands examining the prevalence of breast cancer in transgender people. Gooren et al found that trans women and trans men who have had hormone therapy may be at the same level of risk for breast cancer as cis men.
For trans women, the development of breasts and increase in breast tissue might increase their risk for breast cancer. Trans women also receive estrogen and/or progesterone, which may affect an estrogen or progesterone sensitive cancer. This study’s authors found 8 cases of breast cancer in trans women in the medical literature, ranging from 1968 to 2013. Three of those cases appeared not to be related to hormones. The other five occurred within 5-10 years of starting hormone therapy. These cases also follow the (cis women) pattern of ductal carcinomas being the most common cancer.

For trans men, the presence of breast tissue is a risk, even after top surgery. Remember that top surgery does not remove all breast tissue! And estrogen levels continue to be at a “female” level, especially with testosterone’s ability to aromatize to estrogen. Or at least, estrogen levels continue to be at that level until an oophorectomy. Additionally, trans men may be reluctant to be screened for breast cancer because it’s deemed a “female” process and may aggravate dysphoria. 4 cases of breast cancer among trans men were found in the literature, from 2003 to 2012. The cancers were detected within 2-10 years of starting hormone therapy, and three of the four were ductal carcinomas.
The study had 2,307 male-to-female (MtF) and 795 female-to-male, the subjects ranged from 18 to 80 and they were on cross-sex hormones from between 5 to over 30 years. The Abstract conclusion is,
The number of people studied and duration of hormone exposure are limited but it would appear that cross-sex hormone administration does not increase the risk of breast cancer development, in either MtF or FtM transsexual individuals. Breast carcinoma incidences in both groups are comparable to male breast cancers. Cross-sex hormone treatment of transsexual subjects does not seem to be associated with an increased risk of malignant breast development.
One thing to remember is that it is believed that your chances of breast cancer increases with family history, dosage, and length of treatment. Also there are other diseases from our birth parts such as prostatic cancer and for our trans-brothers ovarian cancer that we should be tested. We should always let our medical providers know our history.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Saturday Six #494

Patrick’s Place Saturday Six #494

1. Which brand of cell phone do you use?
It is a LG

2. Which brand of phone did you use for your very first mobile phone?
I have no idea, which ever brand they gave me.

3. What year did you first own a cell or mobile phone?
2000, they is a long story behind it.

4. What year did you buy your first smartphone?
I don’t own one.

5. How many apps do you have installed on your phone at the moment?
See above.

6. On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you with your cellular provider?
-10, I have Verizon and my old phone broke and I signed a contract to get the new phone for free and then a few days afterward they asked if I was still employed with my former employer and I said I’m retired from them and sent them my direct deposit statement. They sorry their agreement with my former employer only covers current employees. I never knew that and I have retired since 2007 and they never asked that question before; I felt it was highly unethical for them to ask that after I signed the contact. It was kind of “gotcha” moment and as a result my payments went up 20%. I probably still would have signed the contact because it is still a good price but they should have told me up front and now they lost a 14 year customer, I will never go back to them.

Shine On

Kwizgiver at “What if this is as good as it gets”, has awarded me the Shine On award.

Here are the rules of the award:
1. Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you.
2. Acknowledge that blogger on your blog, and link back.
3. Share seven random, interesting things about yourself.
4. Nominate up to 15 bloggers for the Shine On Award, provide a link to their blogs in your post, and notify them on their blogs.

Now for the seven random facts about me:

1.    I loved watching the America’s Cup race that is taking place in San Francisco. The Team USA came from behind (8-1) to win the last eight races (9-8) it was one of the biggest comebacks in sports history. It’s probably the only sports that I like.
2.    I love giving workshops and one day I would love to teach a class.
3.    This is my first cold in more years than I can remember.
4.    As an adult I never went to a museum until I was 59.
5.    Along the same lines, except for work I never went out to eat by myself until I was 59.
6.    I think I am a good amateur photographer.
7.    I’m dyslexic

My nominees...
Harriet and Friends
Bank Chick Scratching

Saturday 9: Ain't That a Kick in the Head?

Crazy Sam’s Saturday 9: Ain't That a Kick in the Head?

Unfamiliar with this week's featured song? Hear it here.

1) In the song, Dean sings, "Ain't That a Kick in the Head?" to express how delighted he is to discover the girl loves him. When was the last time you were pleasantly surprised?
A year ago August; hopefully, lightning will strike again.

2) Martin was born Dino Paul Crochetti, and his family only spoke Italian at home. Do you speak any language other than English?
I only know “mangia” and a few other choice words that I can’t repeat here.

3) Before he became an entertainer, Martin fought under the name "Kid Crochett." Do you watch boxing? What about wrestling?
Nope and nope. The only sports that I watched lately was…

Americas Cup 34th Launch trailer from Johan Rimér on Vimeo.

4) This song appeared in the original Ocean's 11 (1960). That film was remade in 2001, with basically the same plot -- a group of suave criminals knock over the casinos on the Vegas Strip. Why do you think so many movies feature crooks and con men as heroes?
Because many people think of the casinos as the crooks and there is also the Robin Hood effect.

5) Crazy Sam's college sweetheart took over his family's wholesale liquor business, married a woman named Helene and has two sons. How does she know this? She checked his Facebook page on the sly. Have you ever used the internet to look up an ex?
No, but I was friends on Facebook with an ex.

6) As she writes this week's meme, Sam is sipping from a Big Bang Theory cup that features  Sheldon's face and the word, "Bazinga!" Tell us about your favorite mug or water bottle.
It is a mug from my former employer, when they shut down the factory I grabbed a handful of cups.

7) Are you a good judge of character?
Nope, not that good a judge, I tend to believe what I am told.

8) Do you know how to turn a somersault?
No, I like to keep my head attached to my neck.

9) Which one do you use -- roll-on, stick or spray deodorant?
OK, let’s hear the gasps… I don’t use a deodorant. I don’t perspire and also wear clean clothes and take a shower daily and you won’t need any.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Coming Out Never Ends

I just had a call from the town police department about my emergency contact information for seniors (I registered since I'm retired and live alone)
Her: Is this Mr. _______?
Me: This is Ms. ________.
Her: Does (my old name) still live there?
Me: Um... kind of. I transition.
Her (not missing a beat): Congratulation.
She then reviewed my contact in formation.

Catch 22

Awhile back I wrote about a trans-woman living in a homeless shelter in Maine, there were complaints about her making the other clients uncomfortable. They said,
But the women who complained said they believe that in at least one case, it was a ruse. They believe one of the people in question is a man who occasionally dresses as a woman to get into the shelter, perhaps for voyeuristic reasons. That person did not have any feminine mannerisms and often dresses in a T-shirt and jeans, sporting a 5 o'clock shadow of male facial hair, they said.
So this leads me to the “Catch 22” people want trans-women to have electrolysis and to be on hormones but for someone living in a homeless shelter that is beyond their financial means and insurance or state assistance does not cover hormones, surgery, or electrolysis. Many people think that insurance shouldn’t cover our medical expenses but at the same time they expect us to integrate in to society.

So that leads me to where I am today, at a meeting on aging. I have been invited to a meeting on developing a policy for trans-seniors and one of my concerns is that they expect us to have hormones, surgery and electrolysis; but that not what they are going to get! I want them to understand that nowhere in the non-discrimination law does it say that you have to have any of those, all it says is “gender identity” not how well you can integrate into society.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Gender-Neutral Washroom

Up in Canada the Memorial University of Newfoundland now has gender-neutral bathrooms,
First gender-neutral washroom established at Grenfell Campus
The Muse
By Robert Leamon
September 25th, 2013

As part of Corner Brook’s Pride Week celebrations, Grenfell campus’s first gender-neutral washroom was unveiled this week. The single-stall washroom was previously designated as being for males or females, but that label has since been replaced by the text “Gender-Neutral Washroom.”
Advocates for gender-neutral washrooms say that by establishing these spaces, people who do not conform to the gender binary of men or women, as well as transgender people, will feel more welcomed within the community. Gender-neutral washrooms also have been proven to reduce instances of harassment toward transgender people who would otherwise be forced to choose between male or female washrooms.
When I was a guest lecturer at my Alma-mater last week after my presentation I was asked by the MSW Program Director what I thought about gender-neutral bathroom for the new campus in Hartford. I told her that single stall “family bathrooms” could serve as a gender-neutral bathroom so a trans-person could use it if they didn’t feel comfortable using the regular bathroom and that a person who doesn’t want to share a bathroom with a trans-person can also use it. I do not believe that we should be forced to use gender neutral bathrooms and under Connecticut state law we can use the bathroom of our gender identity (That is the common interpretation of the law, however, it has never been heard in court).

Right now I am on a LGBT panel at the School of Medicine at UConn for second med students. The last of three outreaches this week.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Second Of Three…

I’m on the second outreach of a triple play this week. Yesterday and tomorrow was for second year med students and today is for psych students. Today’s outreach is with the Stonewall Speakers bureau, we go out and speak to schools and colleges in Connecticut.

After the speaking engagement I’m going out to lunch with a friend

Update 3:40PM
Thank you for your email. ---------- and Diana came to my class this morning and gave amazing personal accounts of their experiences. It was one of the best panels I have ever had in my class.
The students were extremely engaged and the comments I heard from students at the end of class were very positive. I would like to thank both Diana and ------- for their time and contribution this morning but also to your organization for providing this wonderful opportunity for educating people on such important issues.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Have You Been Here?

Caught between male and female?

Suppose you are a post op trans-woman and you are rushed to the emergency room with pains in your abdomen what would you tell the doctor?

Would you tell them that you are a trans-woman?  It could cost you your life if you don’t*.
Parts Unknown
Huffington Post
By Leslie Lagerstrom
Posted: 09/20/2013

Severe pain in my 17-year-old son's abdomen took us to the ER last week. It's one of those situations that everyone dreads, but if you're transgender, there can be an added level of anxiety when the medical professionals you are dealing with aren't current on trans health care. Such was the case for us, beginning at the reception desk.
Yeah, I dreaded going to the emergency room. Heck I even dreaded going to my primary care physician, when I had a fever over 100 I toughed it out because back then I didn’t want to have to explain it to him why I shaved my legs, chest and arms.
I hold my breath as flashbacks of other occurrences of this very scenario begin playing in my head. It's happened at the orthodontist's office, at school, at the bank, at the library, at the community center -- basically at any institution, organization or business that has Sam's birth name, Samantha, in the computer system from the years before it was legally changed to Samuel.
Been there, done that. Talk about having to out yourself, there is nothing like arguing that you don’t want to change my last name, only my first name and being told they can’t do that because their computer isn’t set up for that.
Next up is the triage nurse. A woman wearing white orthopedic shoes, which seems premature given her young age, ushers us into a small, sterile room to take Sam's vitals and discuss his symptoms. Protocol dictates that she also determine what current medications he is on, if any, which we openly share.

"Testosterone?" she repeats in the form of a question. "Why are you taking that?"
For me it was when I got to my estrogen that she asked me the question. before I transitioned but when I was taking hormones I had to go to the ER; I could see her type in on the computer as I was telling her my meds… heart medication, cholesterol medication, Finasteride… prostrate, Spironolactone… high blood pressure and then I got to Estradiol. And that puzzled look came on her face when she asked "Why are you taking that?" I then could see her go back and fill in the blanks after my meds with “transsexual.”
We entered parts unknown that night, and to our surprise, some of Sam's medical staff were along for the ride. While Sam had someone who could advocate for him and speak on his behalf, many transgender people do not, which makes them even more vulnerable when seeking medical attention. We share this experience not to shame but to shed light on the fact that education and training are still greatly needed to ensure that trans patients receive the same respect and level of care as everyone else.
And that is what I’m doing right now, I’m at a medical school and I’m on a panel  doing a “Trans 101” (Actually, it is "LGBT 101" we are on a panel with gays and lesbians) for second year med students today and Thursday.

*Acute bacterial prostatitis can be the result of bacteria, a virus, or a sexually transmitted disease. Symptoms may include fever and chills, low back pain, frequent and painful urination, weak stream when urinating, and infrequent urination.

And don’t think that after you had your surgery that you are safe from Prostatitis because you are not! Your Prostate isn’t removed and it still can get infected.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Does Our Language Keep Us Down?

There is a discussion on WPATH Facebook page about the use of words that we use to describe blending in to society…

Jenn _______

Starting a grassroots movement to replace the terms "passing", "passable" and "stealth" with "integrate".

It's LONG PAST time trans people and those around them stopped using words that imply that one is "fooling people" or "successfully imitating" their true gender.

Self-integration (the desire to integrate) into one's culture is both a matter of quality of life and, for many trans people, life or death, however we don't need to use words (Passing) appropriated from the post-Reconstruction era to describe African-Americans who were light skinned enough to "pass for white" in order to obtain better living conditions or employment.

And we MOST CERTAINLY don't need to use words that specifically mean "to sneak around, undetected" (Stealth) to describe our desired ability to simply live our lives as human beings rather than as "a transgender.”

Let's all try to stop using words to describe our lived experience that only serve to confirm what some people think - that we are 'pretending' to be who we are.

It is something that I never thought about, but what she said is true; our words define us. When we use language that has a negative connotation we are implying that we are doing something sneaky or sinister.

I thought about using “assimilate” instead of "integrate" but then I thought that many of us do not wanted to be assimilated we want to live our own life not someone else’s vision of life. We do not want to be the Borg, we want to be ourselves and live our own lives.

I feel that this is important not so much for us within the trans-community but more because of the way we are perceived by others. The language that we use has a profound impact on the way others look at us. Study after study has shown that language not only affects us but also how we are seen as a community. It is not just "Politically Correct" but it could be a matter of life or death. The trans-community has one of the highest suicide rates and thoughts of suicide than other marginalized communities. The use of language has a lot to do with our self-esteem, sometimes we use language without thinking. 

What do you think?

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Do We Have An Agenda?

I guess we do, to be treated equally and to be recognized as the gender that we identify. Well the is an article in Inside Higher ED about out “agenda,”
Broadening the Transgender Agenda
September 18, 2013
Allie Grasgreen

Last week, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill students marched the mile from campus to the Board of Governors meeting site to protest the UNC System’s blanket ban, imposed by the board, on gender-neutral housing. The new policy -- which overturned the Chapel Hill Board of Trustees’ endorsement of the housing option --  was approved while students were away for the summer under the reasoning that “there are more practical ways” to make students “safe, comfortable and included,” the board chairman said.

But it sparked outrage among advocates and campus officials concerned for the well-being of transgender students and others who would prefer to live outside traditionally designated pairs for college roommates.

Among elite institutions, UNC’s move was unusual – many institutions are in fact moving in the opposite direction. There are now about 150 colleges that offer gender-neutral housing, according to a running count by Campus Pride. Granted, that’s out of more than 4,000 institutions – and it’s taken more than 20 years to get to this point.
The conservatives are outraged over gender-neutral housing but the students have no problem with being able to choose a transgender roommate. Notice when they voted to overturn the Board of Trustees, they voted on it when no one was around during the August break. According to the student newspaper, The Daily Tar Heel, a number of student organizations including the UNC Student Power, Sexuality and Gender Alliance and Students Working for Adequation of Genders along with the speaker pro tempore of UNC Student Congress want the gender-neutral housing.

No one is forcing them to live in gender-neutral housings, they choose to live there, but that doesn’t matter because this is about transgender people and anything about us they are against. Hell, back when I went to college in the early 1970s we had co-ed housing and on weekend in our dorm there were more women our bathroom than men and no-one minded we just did our business and left. The showers were all individual stalls with a little seat in the front to change and the shower in the back of the stall.
Besides housing there is the covering the cost of heathcare…
Several colleges have added transgender surgeries and hormone therapies to their student insurance policies over the last couple of years, with at least 70 in all covering one or both of the expenses. (The additional services add virtually nothing to the cost of premiums.)
Okay, you got that? “…additional services add virtually nothing to the cost of premiums” The conservatives are going ape over having to pay for our surgery even through it cost them around a quarter a month in premiums. The article goes on to say,
Another practice gaining traction -- one from which non-trans students will benefit just as much -- is a preferred name policy. The new one at the University of Wisconsin at Madison allows students to note their preferred name through their online learning platform, which is then transmitted to class rosters and the online student directory. While plenty of students of all gender identities may prefer a nickname to a given name, the issue is important for many transgender students for whom the name with which they were born represents a gender with which they don't identify.
My nephew goes by his middle name, I know a number of people who go by the their initials or by JR. But heaven helps us if we let the student use the nickname in class especially if it has anything to do with trans-people.

Did You Feel The World Coming To A Screeching Stop On Friday?

Neither did I. There were no earthquakes, meteors or any other calamity when Cassidy Lynn Campbell was elected Homecoming Queen at Marina High School in Huntington Beach.
Transgender Student In Huntington Beach Named Homecoming Queen
September 20, 2013 8:00 PM

HUNTINGTON BEACH ( — A transgender student at Marina High School in Huntington Beach made history Friday evening by becoming the school’s Homecoming Queen.

Cassidy Lynn Campbell, who was among five finalists, was selected for the coveted title. The announcement was made during halftime of Friday night’s game.

Earlier in the day, students reportedly erupted in cheers when it was announced that Campbell was among the finalists.
It was the student body that voted her Homecoming Queen, it was the students who rose up above fray over her being trans and elected her. It is the adults who have problems with trans-woman as a Homecoming Queen, the students see the person, it is the adults who cannot see past the bigotry. It is the adults who are writing that is bring her down on what should be her greatest day in her life.

I wrote this Saturday morning to be posted this morning, but since then there has been news articles about the hateful comments...
Transgender Teen Crowned Homecoming Queen Confesses It's Not What She Hoped For: 'I'm So Sad, I'm So Distraught'
By Emma G. Gallegos
Sep 21, 2013

Last night transgender teen Cassidy Lynn Campbell won her bid to become homecoming queen at Marina High School in Huntington Beach. It should have been a happy ending to her campaign for the crown that attracted nationwide attention.
But the afterglow of her win didn't last long. Today Campbell posted a video of herself on her YouTube channel that she mostly uses to document her transition. Dressed in her homecoming queen crown and sash, she confessed that she wasn't feeling happy about her win. The negative comments that she had received from strangers had gotten her down: "Why is it that I fucking won homecoming queen but I'm not happy? I'm so sad, I'm so distraught and so broken down and so upset and so deteriorated and so tired of the world. I'm tired of the lies."

Campbell said that she's been deluged with "negative," "judgmental," "mean," "hateful" and "ignorant" comments, including some claiming that she is pretending to be a female. She reiterated what she's said before in media interviews: that she's felt like a girl since she can remember and it's dressing like a boy that feels like a fraud to her. She says, "It still does hurt my feelings because I'm a human being just like any girl out there. Take 'girl' out of it. I'm a human being."


Why do they hate like that? Why waste your life hating? What do you get out of life in bring down someone else? Why do you want to drive someone to suicide?

I don’t understand, you only have one life and why waste it hating? Why do you call yourself a “Christian” when Jesus taught love?

She is not hurting you, you don’t even know her. Does she threaten you so much that you want to attack her?

I feel so sad for you, what a sad life you must lead.

I deleted the video because it was autostart and I hate when I don't have a choice to watch a video.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Saturday Six #493

Patrick’s Place Saturday Six #493

1. What percentage of the total number of towels, washcloths and linens that you own are actually clean, folded and on the shelves of your linen closet?
I have no idea, probably I have six or seven sets and when I take the last one from the shelf I do the wash.

2. How many washcloths do you have in there right now?
See the above answer.

3. How many different color washcloths do you have?
Every set is a different color, easier to keep track of them.

4. Which have a greater variety of color: your towels or your washcloths?
I buy sets, two bath towels, two hand towels, and two washcloths.

5. Which single color is most of what’s in your linen closet?
I don’t have more than one in each set, see the above answer.

6. Is this a color that most closely matches your bathroom or bedroom, or is it a more neutral color in your home?
Nope, I don’t really care about color coordinating my linens.

Saturday 9: Seattle

Crazy Sam’s Saturday 9: Seattle

Unfamiliar with this week's song? Hear it here.

1) Let's get the obvious out of the way: Have you ever been to Seattle?
Yes, at 3 AM… well not really it was only midnight but my body was still on Eastern time. Our plane arrived and we drove through Seattle on our way to Everett.

2) Businessweek named Seattle one of the best places to live, citing its clean air, low crime and high employment. What makes your current hometown a great place to live?
It is where I grew up and it is in midway between Boston and New York and it is only an hour drive to the ocean and is only a couple of hours drive to the mountains of Vermont or New Hampshire. We also have great museums and places like Sturbridge Village and Mystic Seaport.

3) In this song, Bobby brags about how green Seattle is. Is it still green where you are? Or are the trees beginning to show their fall colors?
Yes, we still have a couple of weeks before the leaves turn here.

4) This song was the theme of a 1968-1970 show called Here Come the Brides. Do you know the words to any other TV theme?
Nope, seems like a waste of time.

5) Bobby Sherman was once America's #1 teen idol, selling millions of records and earning 5 Gold Albums. Girls who wrote to his fan club received a postcard back signed, "Peace, Love & Bobby Sherman." Have you ever belonged to a fan club?
Nope, another waste of time.

6) Alas, the career of a teen idol can be short, and by fall 1970, Bobby was replaced on magazine covers by David Cassidy. Sherman went on to a second career with the LAPD, instructing officers in CPR and first aid. Do you know how to perform CPR? The Heimlich Maneuver?
Yes and yes and I also know how to use an AED.

7) The "disc" you see shown is actually made of cardboard and was printed on the back of a Post Alpha-Bits cereal box. It was one of four that Post printed on different cereals back in 1970 so that Bobby-loving little girls would have to go through lots of different cereals to collect the whole set. What's your favorite breakfast cereal?
Generic granola, I usually buy the cereal with the lowest carbs.

8) Crazy Sam can't decide if she wants berries or banana slices with her cereal. Which would be your choice?
Since I just bought strawberries today and bananas are too high in potassium, I’ll stick with the berries.

9) Do you ever eat cereal straight out of the box? Drink milk directly from the carton?
Probably when I was a teenager.

Friday, September 20, 2013

I'm At Class Right Now

I'm teaching a class to social work students right now at my alum-mater; every time I go back there now it seems strange to be walking the halls. Today I am a guest lecturer for the class on LGBT Experience and I'll be giving a one and a half hour presentation.

Here is a picture of me from last night at Real Art Ways that Stana took.

When “Gays” are “LGBT”

When it comes to gay rights and equality, we are experiencing a sea change in public opinion unlike any we have ever seen. In the past two decades alone, cultural attitudes surrounding LGBT issues have dramatically shifted from a place of bias, stigma, and prejudice to one of acceptance and equality. Well, for about 50% of Americans, that is.
That is the write up for one of the Connecticut Forum panel discussion this year "Being Gay". Did you get the part that says “cultural attitudes surrounding LGBT issues”?

The panel is made up of… Martina Navratilova, Dan Savage and Bishop Gene Robinson and is narrated by Jonathan Capehart from the Washington Post. So you notice something about the panel beside they are all white upper class talking about being marginalized.

They are all gays and lesbians.

Where are the Bs and the Ts?

Once again “Gay Inc” is speaking for us. We are patted on our backs and being told “don’t worry, we’ll take care of you.”

Thursday, September 19, 2013

I Wish I Made This List… But One Of Our Tribe Did

I wish that I was on this list of the top 400 richest American’s but there was one trans-person who did make the list.
Jennifer Pritzker Becomes First Transgender Billionaire
By Brian Solomon
Sept. 16, 2013

There are 48 women on this year’s FORBES 400 list of richest Americans, but one stands out from the rest. With her listing newly switched to female, Jennifer Pritzker becomes the world’s first transgender billionaire.

Jennifer Natalya Pritzker, formally known as James, is one of 11 billionaire members of the extended Pritzker family on the FORBES list. They sold a majority stake in industrial conglomerate Marmon Holdings to Warren Buffett‘s Berkshire Hathaway for $4.5 billion in 2007 and continue to control publicly-listed Hyatt Hotels. The heiress has an estimated net worth of $1.7 billion.
According to Forbes
Col. Jennifer Pritzker announced in August that she would now live her life as a woman, becoming the first transgender billionaire and first Forbes 400 member to switch gender. Formerly known as James, the retired Army lieutenant colonel founded the Pritzker Military Library in Chicago in 2003, and through her Tawani Foundation works to preserve American military history. She is CEO of private wealth management firm Tawani Enterprises in Chicago.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

We Are Winning?

Even though the Employment Non-Discrimination Act cannot gain traction in Congress we are making headway through the courts and agencies rulings. In Connecticut long before the gender inclusive anti-discrimination law was passed we had an administrated ruling from the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (CHRO) that protected us from discrimination. Now on the federal level we are see that again in the recent U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Education agreement with the California's Arcadia School District based on Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and Title IV of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. And with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) ruling on April 20, 2012, that an employer who discriminates against an employee or applicant on the basis of the person’s gender identity is violating the prohibition on sex discrimination contained in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Now we are seeing the results of the EEOC ruling,
Transgender Community Steps Closer to Employment Equality

A South Dakota woman’s settlement is the latest in a string of cases that say transgender discrimination is applicable under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act
By Maya Rhodan
Sept. 16, 2013

A transgender woman has reached a $50,000 settlement with her former employer in a discrimination case in South Dakota, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced Monday,  accelerating a trend toward equal opportunity for transgender workers.

Cori McCreery, 29, was fired in 2010 after telling her employer at Don’s Valley Market in Rapid City, S.D. that she would be transitioning on the job. Lambda Legal, a legal organization for lesbian, gay, and transgender people as well as those living with HIV, filed a complaint on McCreery’s behalf in 2012 in partnership with the EEOC, saying her employer violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
“This comprehensive settlement makes a strong statement about the EEOC’s commitment that discrimination against transgender workers will not be tolerated,” said Dru Levasseur, Transgender Rights Project Director for Lambda Legal said in a statement. “The days of firing people on the basis of their gender identity or gender expression have passed. “
Now we need to make sure that we are covered by employer’s insurance coverage we should be covered for all medically necessary expenses, including Gender Confirming Surgery.

A Good Discussion...

This is an excellent discussion on what it means to be dating a trans-woman and what it means in general to be trans.
Transgender activists Laverne Cox and Janet Mock joined scholar Mark Anthony Neal and The Nation’s Mychal Denzel Smith for a discussion on HuffPost Live about DJ Mister Cee’s latest scandal. The famous New York City DJ resigned from his post as host of Hot 97 after a blogger posted a video of an encounter he alleges to have had with Mister Cee in which the longtime radio personality solicited sex for money.

Something To Think About

Have you seen that video that has gone viral of the woman at the bus stop dancing?

How many of us have had our pictures taken without our consent by laughing teenagers? As a trans-person I have seen many people snapping pictures of my friends and myself when we are out in public.

The next time that you post a picture or a video of someone who was caught doing something in public think about this; would you want it to be a picture of you doing something stupid? I confess that in the past that I have posted pictures like that but then I thought would I want my picture to be posted on Facebook and I have stopped posting them.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013


You hear people say we don’t need anti-discrimination laws that we as a society have gotten beyond discrimination and bigotry now. You hear people say that we don’t need affirmative act laws because we have equal access to colleges now. You hear people say that we don’t need voter rights acts anymore that it is from a different era.

I saw a video of a young boy sing the National Anthem at the NBA finals and I think he has a nice voice, I then read some of the comments and they are unbelievable racist and hateful.

Then I hear about how a woman who was born and raised in Syracuse NY of Indian ancestry has won the Miss America Pageant and then I read the comments and they are filled with bigotry, racism and ignorance it is disgusting.

Racism and bigotry is still alive in here in America, you find it in the Anonymous comments that have embolden the dregs who hide in the shadows.

I see an education system that is setup to discriminate. They call it school choice or school vouchers but in reality to is just another method of segregation but this time instead of racial discrimination we are discrimination based on achievement. As one study found “However, we find evidence that the voucher program led to increased sorting, as the best public school students left for the private sector.” [1] Those student who do not make the grade or cannot afford the tuition are relegated to the underfunded public schools. In addition, vouchers do not end segregation and another study found that,
In the end, my findings provide no empirical support for arguments that unfettered school choice policies will reduce segregation by race and class; in fact, they substantiate claims that unrestricted school choice increases segregation of both types. [2]
The voter ID laws are designed to disenfranchise marginalized communities. By requiring voter to prove their identities with birth certificates places an undue burden on the poor and the elderly. For middle income voters it is no big deal to take a day off from work to go and get a copy of your birth certificate in another city. But for a person who is working to jobs 60 hours a week with no vacation time or a car it is a hardships. It means not getting paid and going by public transportation to another city and then having to pay for a copy of their birth certificate. In a study they found that,
Our results clearly suggest that voting laws which require specific or multiple forms of identification will isproportionately impact racial and ethnic minorities, immigrant populations, and those with lower incomes. [3]
Segregation, racism, bigotry, and discrimination are alive and growing here in America; it has just gone from overt to covert. If you don’t believe me just read the comments on the news stories about Sebastien de la Cruz and Nina Davuluri and then tell me there is no more racism and bigotry here in the United States.

[1] The effects of generalized school choice on achievement and stratification: Evidence from Chile’s voucher program

[2] Private Choices, Public Consequences: Magnet School Choice and Segregation by Race and Poverty

[3] Voter ID Requairements and the Disenfranchisements of Latino, Black and Asian Voters

Monday, September 16, 2013

A Tale Of Two Cities

One place is open and accepting and the other place is bigoted and rejecting.
Oconomowoc School District adopts 'gender-neutral' restroom policy
Wisconsin Gazette
Written by Louis Weisberg, Staff writer
Sep 13, 2013
Oconomowoc School District Superintendent Rodger Rindo announced last week that unisex bathrooms would be installed at every school in the district.

The new policy was adopted in response to an incident involving a transgender elementary school student. Parents complained after the student used a girl’s restroom at Summit Elementary School on Sept. 6. Apparently, they believed she should have used the boy’s room.

In a press release, Rindo said converting one restroom at each school into a “gender-neutral” bathroom “will provide a facility which is safe and accessible to all students, not only to transgender students.”

“What’s really important is that we’re not singling anyone out – that anybody can use that bathroom,” Rindo told FOX6 Milwaukee.
Meanwhile south of the Mason-Dixon Line…
Transgender student denied access to bathroom, told to use storage closet
12:05 AM, Aug 27, 2013

CLEARWATER, Florida - A Safety Harbor transgender nursing student says her Pinellas vocational school isn't allowing her to use the women's restroom.
Wilson, who's transgender, was born a boy but since she was 12 she said she's identified with being female. She's currently undergoing gender transition right now. She mentioned that to some of her fellow classmates recently, and a month later she said she was called into the office.

"Basically told that I can't use the women's restroom and I can't use the men's restroom- and the only restroom I was given access to at that time was a storage room that did not lock from the inside," Wilson explained.
In an article in RH Reality Check they reported,
The current educational rights landscape for transgender and gender non-conforming students is uneven. While victories are coming out of California and Colorado, where transgender 6-year-old Coy Mathis won the right to use the girls’ bathroom, other states are working to dismantle or at the very least curb lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights. From Tennessee’s botched “Don’t Say Gay” bill, which would’ve banned primary and secondary school faculty from discussing sexual orientation and gender identity/expression to the choice by Pennsylvania’s Red Lion Area School District not to read transgender student Issak Wolfe’s assumed name at graduation (not to mention listing him as a prom queen, instead of a king, candidate), transgender students are facing more roadblocks in guaranteeing equal representation and protection.
Even in Connecticut where we have a gender inclusive non-discrimination law and the Commission of Human Rights and Opportunities said in their Guidelines for Schools on Gender Identity and Expression that, 
Students should have access to the restroom that corresponds to their gender identity asserted at school. Schools may maintain separate restroom facilities for male and female students provided that they allow students to access them based on their gender identity and not exclusively based on student’s assigned birth sex.
Never the less, school systems in the state still refuse to allow trans-student to use the bathroom of their gender identity. They claim that the law does not specifically say that they have to allow trans-students to use the bathroom of their gender identity. Which is true, however, there were numerous amendments to the proposed bill to limit bathroom use to a person’s birth gender. The amendments were proposed in committee, in the House and in the Senate and they were all defeated.

Why does it take legal action to make them do the right thing?

Sunday, September 15, 2013

It Doesn’t Make Sense

Texas does not want marriage equality and they went to the extreme of passing a constitution amendment that defines gender based on you birth certificate and you cannot change your birth certificate in Texas. But at the same time they have a law that listed as an acceptable form of identification a driver’s license or a passport.
Transgender widow denied Harris County marriage license
by Kevin Reece
KHOU 11 News
Posted on September 14, 2013

HOUSTON -- The transgender widow of a Wharton County firefighter, whom a judge ruled was not entitled to her late husband’s death benefits because she was born a man, is challenging Texas law once more by attempting to get married again.
Nikki Araguz, 38, was the transgender wife of Wharton firefighter Thomas Araguz. He died fighting a blaze at a Wharton County farm in 2010. His family, when they found out Nikki Araguz was born a male named Justin Purdue, challenged her rights to the benefits. They argued that the marriage should be declared null and void because the Texas Constitution effectively bans same sex marriages. A judge agreed that although Araguz had her original California birth certificate amended to show that she is now female, that Texas law goes by the original birth certificate that shows Araguz/Purdue was born male.
Araguz’ reference to the family code that allows sex change documents as proof of identification for a marriage license was an invalid argument according to Treece. The only way it could be successfully used as a form of identification for the marriage license, under current Texas law, is if Araguz were marrying a woman.
So the idiotology of Texas laws strikes again. They have two contradicting laws; they want to ban same-sex marriage and heaven help us if some trans-person marries a person of their birth gender but at the same time they say you can use a driver license or passport for identification. In other words they are saying if you can pass as a man or woman (wink, wink) you can marry, but if you look like a “tranny” we want to see your original birth certificate. That raises some questions by asking some people for their birth certificate and not other people seem to me to violate Fourteenth Amendment where individuals in similar situations be treated equally by the law.

Take a look at Ms. Araguz in the video can you imagine if she married a woman, they would be a lesbian couple or if a trans-man married a man they would be a gay couple just what the Texas Constitution is trying to ban. What I would like to see is a trans-man and a man apply for a marriage license from the same clerk and see what happens.


Saturday, September 14, 2013

Saturday Six #492

Patrick’s Place Saturday Six #492

1. What did you enjoy most about kindergarten?
I don’t know what I enjoyed about it, it was more like hating it school.

2. What did you enjoy most about elementary school?
You know what you are asking was over fifty years ago, I don’t remember that much from that era.

3. What did you enjoy most about junior high/middle school?
Again what I mostly remember from junior high school was the nuns rapping my knuckle with a ruler for smudging the ink on the paper because I’m left handed.

4. What did you enjoy most about high school?
Science club and building a giant 6 foot Tesla Coil.

5. Which grade or year of school was your least favorite and why?
It is a toss-up between grades 1 through 12. If you hadn’t figured it out yet, I hated school. I was called  “four eyes” and all the other names in the book.

6. What percentage of your classmates do you still have some real interaction with at least once per year?
One, he runs a farm-stand and I stop by and talk to him once or twice a year. But here is a long story…

Earlier this year the town was trying to covert an old golf course where I walk into soccer fields. Those of us who were trying to stop them were looking for ways to block the development and I remember a Facebook friend mentioning that she was a member of town historical society and I contacted her. She told me that it was a historical site, the first gun factory in the country. So I meet her and her mother as we walked the site and as we talked it turned out that her mother and I went to school together (You can read the whole story here).

Saturday 9: Dominos

Crazy Sam’s  Saturday 9: Dominos

1) Have you ever carefully set up dominos and then watched them fall? Or built a house out of playing cards?
Yes to the dominos, but I never had much luck with a house of cards.

2) In this week's song, Big Pink lead vocalist Robbie Furze sings, "The hottest love has the coldest end." Have you ever had a relationship that started out so promisingly and passionately but then quickly flamed out?

Yes, last summer.

3) This is from Big Pink's CD, A Brief History of Love. What about your personal history of love? How many times would say you have truly been in love?
Far too few and too far in between.

4) Nicki Minaj sampled this song for her own, "Girls Fall Like Dominos." Nicki won't be back on American Idol this season. Is your reaction a) delight or b) sadness or c) a yawn.
C) Yawn. I never even heard of them… they are a different generation.

5) While nationally the news centers on foreign policy and the economy, Sam's hometown is abuzz over the new Asian-fusion restaurant on Main Street and whether it can get a liquor license. What's the big local story where you are?
Who's buying the local goat farmer land is the big buzz in town.

6) Mary Jane Kelley is believed to be the fifth and final victim of Jack the Ripper. OK, now it's your turn. Share a random fact that's rattling around in your brain.
Right now I’m brain dead, I’m only on my first cup of coffee and I woke up only a half hour ago.

7) Crazy Sam cursed last night when she dropped a can of tomato paste on her foot. (Hey! It really hurt!) When was the last time you swore?
When I was trying to cut a rope of the raft and the knife slipped and I broke the blade.

8) Sam has a grocery bag filled with hoodies and t-shirts she no longer wants and plans to take them to The Salvation Army store. What do you do with your gently used clothes? Toss them or donate them or hand them down to a friend or relative?
I take them to Goodwill, any place than the Salvation Army. They discriminate against LGBT people.

9) Do you blush easily?
Not easily but I do blush.

Friday, September 13, 2013


Researching a presentation that I’m giving at UConn School of Social Work I came across the speech that Lana Wachowski delivered to the Human Rights Campaign's annual gala dinner in San Francisco in October 2012 on her acceptance of their Visibility Award and many parts of her speech resonated with me. One of the parts that I related to was went she went out to dinner with her mother for the first time…
We went to dinner. I dressed as feminine as I could, wanting to be seen by strangers as Lana. Hoping that waiters would not call me "sir" or "he," as if these people suddenly had the power to confirm or deny my existence.
Especially the part “as if these people suddenly had the power to confirm or deny my existence.” So many time people have that power over us to put us down by using the wrong pronoun or calling up by our old name or by using derogatory comments or by laughing. Whether it is by ignorance or bigotry the effects are the same, depression and suicide.

Visual non-conformity is a risk factor in causing anti-transgender violence, how well one passes is directly proportional to the amounts of bigotry faces every day. In the email that I received are my presentation last week the woman wrote “…I told them I had just heard from one of the bravest people I’d ever met.” No I’m not brave, the ones who are brave are the trans-people who do not pass and go out every day, and they are the ones who are facing the violence and discrimination. The brave ones are the ones who because they have nothing go out and work the streets.

The bigotry also come from within our community by those who want to pass judgment on those they feel do not meet their standards. Those within our community who want to confirm or deny our right to be ourselves.

The brave ones are those who stand up against any who try to confirm or deny our existence.

Victory! One Small Step.

In New York City a trans-woman won the right for her case of discrimination against a Catholic school to be heard, but it is generating cries of religious freedom.
Marla Krolikowskii, Transgender Catholic School Teacher, Receives Legal Victory (VIDEO)
The Huffington Post
By James Nichols
Posted: 09/11/2013

Marla Krolikowskii, a transgender Catholic high school teacher whose 32-year employment was allegedly terminated after being called "worse than gay" by a school administrator, received a major victory in court this week.

Krolikowskii reportedly filed suit against St. Francis Preparatory School in Queens, N.Y after school officials allegedly fired the teacher following her coming out. According to the above video, school officials claimed that she was fired for insubordination, despite the fact that her termination strongly paralleled her coming out as transgender.
In New York City they have an ordinance prohibiting discrimination because of gender identity or expression but I don’t know anything about the law she is suing the school only that the case is being heard in Queens County Supreme Court.

She taught at the school for 32 years and through all those years she had a feminine appearance, long hair, long finger nails and earrings and the students never minded. It was a parent who complained to the school officials about her appearance.

There are those who are arguing that the school is a Catholic school and is exempt from the discrimination laws. They cite the First Amendment that states "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." However, there have been many court cases where they have found that religious schools or colleges are not exempt under the law if they receive public funding or if they accept all students no matter their religion. An example is the case of the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association denying a lesbian couple the use of their pavilion to be married in. Because they regularly offered the pavilion to the broader public they have to obey the anti-discrimination law (The organizations has since banned all weddings there and it does not violate the law because it treats everyone equally).

The courts have ruled that as long as a law is not aimed at any particular religion belief it does not violate the First Amendment. An example is the U.S. Supreme Court case in 1982 which said that Amish employers are not exempt from paying in to Social Security for their employees and are only exempt when an Amish individuals is self-employed.

Just think what would happen if church owned hospitals were allowed to discriminate bases of their religious beliefs; you are in an automobile accident and you are rushed to the nearest hospital and as you are wheeled in to surgery that ask for your religion. Then they deny you surgery and send you away because you are the wrong faith or the wrong race or any other thing that is against their religious beliefs. There would be such a public outcry over it but somehow it is okay to discriminate against LGBT people. They have to treat everyone equally and that includes everyone they hire.

If a hospital or school is paid entirely by private funds, is run by and for people of their faith they can do anything that they want. However, once they accept any public funding or open their doors to the public they have to obey all the laws.

Thursday, September 12, 2013


I was driving home from the cottage yesterday listening to the radio when the played “Honey” by Bobby Goldsboro and as it was playing tears came to my eyes. I have his album with this song and “Little Green Apples” and no matter how many time I listen to that record I never cried.

So now I’m wondering why did it bring me to tears, was it because my parents dying? Was it because I have more life experiences to relate to? Or was it because of hormones?

I probably watched “Love Story” two or three times and I never cried until I started take hormones. "Fifty First Dates" is another movie that makes me cry.

I joke that since I started taking hormones I learned what is meant by a “good cry” it seems to have some therapeutic value, I don’t know but I seem to feel better after I cry during a movie or a sad song. I’m still trying to figure it all out. It feels good to get your emotions out and not keep them bottled up inside of you.

Here is a video of him singing “Honey”

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A Strong Ally

When we were working to pass the anti-discrimination law here in Connecticut we had a strong coalition of many organizations and some of the strongest allies were the Connecticut AFL-CIO and other labor organizations they supply lobbyists and guidance.
AFL-CIO adds protections for transgender workers to its constitution
LGBTQ Nation
Staff Reports
Tuesday, September 10, 2013

LOS ANGELES — The AFL-CIO, the largest federation of unions in the United States, amended its constitution Monday to ban discrimination on the basis of gender identity or gender expression.

The American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations, comprised of more than 50 national and international unions representing more than 12 million workers, voted in favor of the provision during its 2013 convention being held this week in Los Angeles.
The updated amendment reads: “To encourage all workers without regard to race, creed, color, sex, national origin, religion, disability, [or] sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression to share equally in the full benefits of union organization.”

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

World Suicide Prevention Day

For me suicide has struck close to home. Before I transitioned I never knew anyone who had committed or tried to commit suicide. Now I know of three people who have and I lost count of those who have tried.

A recent national survey of trans-people found that 41% of trans-people have tried to commit suicide.

WebMD list these warning signs…
Warning signs that someone may be thinking about or planning to commit suicide include:
  •     Always talking or thinking about death
  •     Clinical depression -- deep sadness, loss of interest, trouble sleeping and eating -- that gets worse
  •     Having a "death wish," tempting fate by taking risks that could lead to death, such as driving fast or running red lights
  •     Losing interest in things one used to care about
  •     Making comments about being hopeless, helpless, or worthless
  •     Putting affairs in order, tying up loose ends, changing a will
  •     Saying things like "it would be better if I wasn't here" or "I want out"
  •     Sudden, unexpected switch from being very sad to being very calm or appearing to be happy
  •     Talking about suicide or killing one's self
  •     Visiting or calling people to say goodbye
If you have suicidal thoughts please seek help.

I Want To Share An Email...

I want to share in part an email that I received from a medical doctor from the Student Health Services who attended the seminar that I gave at UConn last week...
I wanted to write and thank you so much for your presentation at CMHS at UCONN last Thursday.  When I picked up my daughters (ages 12 and 13) after school that I day I told them I had just heard from one of the bravest people I’d ever met.  We then had a very long conversation about what it means to not identify with your birth gender and the challenges and discrimination faced by the Trans-Gender community.   I’m sure that you don’t remember me but actually rode up in the elevator together.  You were facing the elevator key pad (coping mechanism?) and I was too preoccupied to say “Hello,” for which truly regret the missed opportunity of meeting you.
I firmly believe that we bring about change through education, by getting out there and to begin a discussion with each other is the only way that we can make the world a better place for all of us.

Monday, September 09, 2013

The Big Lie…

You know what they say if you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it people will believe; well that is what the Republicans are doing about “voter fraud.” If you listen to the Republicans you would think that voter fraud is massive but it is the exact opposite.

Down in Florida the Department of Law Enforcement conducted an investigation to arrest all those people who were voting fraudulently, do you know how many they found in the 2012 presidential election? Two. That’s right only two cases.
Two voter fraud cases close with meager findings
Times Bay Times
By Michael Van Sickler
September 4, 2013

The potential for fraud in the 2012 presidential election was how Florida Republicans justified measures that made it tougher to register voters.

So nine months after ballots were counted, where exactly are the culprits of voter registration fraud?

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement hasn't found them.

The agency released the results of two more cases involving allegations of voter registration fraud.

In an inquiry into the Florida New Majority Education Fund, which aims to increase voter registration among underrepresented groups, the FDLE concluded it could make no arrests.

In another inquiry, involving Strategic Allied Consulting, a vendor for the Republican Party of Florida, an arrest was made of a man who stole the identity of a former girlfriend's ex-husband. He admitted to fraudulently filling out two voter registration forms.

And that was it.

No investigations this year have found fraud on a significant scale.

Two other cases involving Strategic Allied Consulting remain open, but even Gov. Rick Scott, who loudly sounded the alarm of fraud, appears to have moved on.
This isn’t the only time that investigations in to voter fraud has turned up zilch.

In an article in Salon, by Andrew Burmon who wrote about Texas voter fraud, he wrote…
The statistics bear me out. From 2002 to 2005 only one person was found guilty of registration fraud. Twenty people were found guilty of voting while ineligible and five people were found guilty of voting more than once. That’s 26 criminal voters -- voters who vote twice, impersonate other people, vote without being a resident -- the voters that Republicans warn about. Meanwhile thousands of people are getting turned away at the polls.
In an opinion piece in Politico writing by Tova Andrea Wang who wrote…
Yet law enforcement statistics, reports from elections officials and widespread research have proved that voter fraud at the polling place is virtually non-existent. The motivation for ginning up this bogeyman is often to intimidate certain groups of voters and, ultimately, make it harder for minority or disadvantaged groups to exercise their right to vote. It is no accident that these operations have repeatedly focused on minority communities.
A CBS affiliate wrote this about voter fraud in North Carolina…
Elections officials in North Carolina said most of the voting fraud allegations they investigate turn out to be unfounded. Over the past five years, the state has referred about 350 cases to district attorneys for investigation, mostly in cases of felons who cast a ballot without first getting their voting rights restored. There are more than six million registered voters in the state. States already have ways to check the identity of voters when they register and when they go to cast a ballot. North Carolina’s current law requires residents to provide documents proving their name and address in order to register to vote. Those who register improperly can be charged with a felony.
Meanwhile in Pennsylvania the Republicans actually boasted about how the voter ID laws will give the elections to the Republicans…
House Majority Leader Mike Turzai was caught on tape this summer boasting about his colleagues' success: "... First pro-life legislation -- abortion facility regulations -- in 22 years, done. Voter ID, which is gonna allow Governor Romney to win the state of Pennsylvania, done."
Law officials said in court case against the law in Pennsylvania,
…in a stipulation agreement signed earlier this month, state officials conceded that they had no evidence of prior in-person voter fraud, or even any reason to believe that such crimes would occur with more frequency if a voter ID law wasn't in effect.
    "There have been no investigations or prosecutions of in-person voter fraud in Pennsylvania; and the parties do not have direct personal knowledge of any such investigations or prosecutions in other states,” the statement reads.
Here in Connecticut the only thing that you need for identification is an electric bill with your name and address on it. After every election the Secretary of State’s office audits the elections, for the 2012 elections they reported "empirical evidence shows that fraud by people voting in person is extremely rare."

So the next time you hear someone who want “voter ID laws” to stop “voter fraud” ask them where is their proof? Demand facts. Don’t buy into the Republican’s BIG LIE.