Sunday, June 30, 2019

Today’s The Big Day!

Today is the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising and it is going to be streamed live!

You can watch the New York City parade live from 1 to 3 EDT here.

You can watch the Chicago parade live from 1 to 3 CDT here.

You can watch the San Francisco parade live from 10:30 PDT here.

There is a big debate on whether or not to allow LGBTQ+ police officers to march in uniform. Where do I stand on it?

At the Middletown Pride last weekend had heavy police coverage including a MRAP, some said that they didn’t like all the police presence.

I see headlines lie these and like the police presence at Pride.
White Nationalist Threats Against Transgender People Are Escalating
By Cassie Miller
June 26, 2019

Transphobic rhetoric, some of it violent, appears to be increasing among white nationalists and neo-Nazis as the fight for transgender rights gains visibility and public support.
A Hatewatch review of internet chatter, social media posts and recent news events shows hate groups ramping up their efforts to demonize the transgender community, going as far as calling for the deaths of trans people.
The harassment of transgender people and their allies has been especially pronounced during Pride month, celebrated in June. For example, at Detroit’s Motor City Pride event June 8, about a dozen members of the National Socialist Movement raised a swastika flag, tore apart a rainbow flag and yelled, “fuck you faggots” and “Jews will not replace us.” And in Orlando, the New Independent Fundamental Baptist Movement held a “Make America Straight Again” conference with some speakers calling for the government to kill members of the LGBTQ community, which includes transgender people.

White nationalist group interrupts Detroit pride event, members appear to urinate on Israeli flag
Fox News
By Anna Hopkins
June 9, 2019

A group of white nationalists marched on an LGBTQ event in Detroit on Saturday, demonstrating Nazi salutes and carrying weapons.

Members of the National Socialist Movement (NSM) caused outrage at the event meant to celebrate gay pride, and one member was photographed appearing to urinate on an Israeli flag.

The Motor City Pride is described on its Facebook event page as the largest pride month event in Michigan, with 40,000 people marked as attending. On Saturday, some individuals tried unsuccessfully to stop the NSM group from entering the streets, which were blocked off by police and lined with rainbow flags.

DC Pride parade ends in chaos after false report of gunshots, causes 'widespread fear'
ABC News
By Amamda Maile
June 9, 2019

A brief commotion broke out during Washington, D.C.'s "Capital Pride" parade after revelers heard what they took to be gunshots, but city officials said it was a false alarm.

There were minor injuries "due to reports of a shooting," Mayor Muriel Bowser said in a post on Twitter. "There were no shots fired, and there is no active threat."

Kevin Donahue, the deputy mayor for public safety, tweeted: "There are injuries from people running from what they thought were gunshots. But there is NO ACTIVE SHOOTER at Dupont Circle."

Seven people were transported to area hospitals with non-life threatening injuries sustained while running from the scene, authorities said. Others were treated on scene for minor injuries.
There is evil out there.

And that evil has us in their sights and I for one liked the police presence at the Middletown Pride, I think the MRAP was overboard, but looking at one of the moderate “right” emails about the Pride said “Main Street in Middletown earlier this month looked like an occupied country, all those giant rainbow flags on the buildings, like a message from a conquering army.” Even though they didn’t say violent nor do I think that organization would condone any violence it shows that not everyone is a fan of Pride.

As for police marching in Pride, they are LGBTQ+ and I am not in favor of censorship. Those opposed to their march can protest and let their feelings known. I feel if we want their protection we need to let them march.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Saturday 9: Ooh La La

Sam's Saturday 9: Ooh La La (2013)

On Saturdays I take a break from the heavy stuff and have some fun…

Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.*

1) "Ooh la la" is defined as an interjection said when you think someone or something is "surprising, unusual or attractive." Looking back over this week, did you come across anything that deserves an "ooh la la?"
The lobster roll I had last night for dinner

2) In this song, Britney Spears sings that she's eager to accompany you, even if you're not a millionaire. But let's say you suddenly become really rich. What's the first leisure trip you would take with your new funds? Who would you bring along?
A RV trip out west to the national parks… who wants to come with me?

3) Britney is eager to dance with you, even if you don't wear designer clothes. Let's say you need to add a blouse (or shirt) to your wardrobe. Where's your go-to for clothes shopping?
Dress Barn (Now Roz and Ali but they are closing so I have to find a new place to shop) for professional clothes Kohl’s and Target for causal clothes.

4) The video begins with Britney at the movies with her two young sons. Will you be seeing any family members this weekend?

5) This is a theme from the movie Smurfs 2. A Smurf is a little blue creature who lives in a mushroom-shaped house in the forest. Assuming that your home is not shaped like a mushroom and isn't in the forest, how would you describe your abode? (Mansion, ranch house, farm house, high-rise, igloo ...)
A modified Cape.

From 4 or 5 winters ago

6) Britney admits to smoking and biting her nails. What bad habit do you wish you could break?
Eating midnight snacks

7) In 2013, when this song was popular, Pope Benedict resigned. Thinking over your working life, have you been more nervous on your first day of a job, or the last one?
The last day I couldn’t wait to get out the door.

8) Also in 2013, golfer Phil Mickelson won the British Open. When did you most recently golf?
The last time I golfed was miniature golf two years ago.

9) Random question -- On what part of your body was the last itch you scratched?
All over… I sat out on the deck last night and the “No-See-Ums” and I got like bites all over but mainly on my ankles.

Thanks so much for joining us again at Saturday: 9. As always, feel free to come back, see who has participated and comment on their posts. In fact sometimes, if you want to read & comment on everyone's responses, you might want to check back again tomorrow. But it is not a rule. We haven’t any rules here. Join us on next Saturday for another version of Saturday: 9, "Just A Silly Meme on a Saturday!" Enjoy your weekend!

*My generation when we hear "Ooh La La" many of us think of the Faces version.

Friday, June 28, 2019

Some Thoughts On Life

Today is the anniversary of my transition in 2007 and after all these years there is one thing that stand out… you are you.

I would have to say that I am still the same person in a different wrapper, the imagine of “self” is still the same.

History Is Written By The Victors...

...Or by those who have the PR firm.

And Stonewall is the same way, minorities, lesbian, and trans started the revolution but now you will think it was all be white gay men. (I use rebellion or uprising instead of riot, for me the word riot denotes criminal activity while rebellion or uprising denotes throwing off the yoke of oppression.)
Miss Major On Rioting At Stonewall: ‘That Was 3 Nights Of Absolute Terror’
“If Stonewall would have made a difference, things would be better today,” the transgender activist said.
Huffington Post Queer Voices
By James Michael Nichols
June 4, 2018

“I’m not really anything special,” Miss Major Griffin-Gracy says with a slight chuckle. “I’m just one of the girls.”

But despite her modesty, Griffin-Gracy is anything but ordinary. An older trans person and a mother figure to countless LGBTQ young people, Griffin-Gracy is an elder of the queer rights movement ― and someone whose legacy almost demands your respect.

Present the night of the 1969 Stonewall riots, an event heralded as the beginning of the mainstream LGBTQ rights movement, Griffin-Gracy in many ways is an embodiment of LGBTQ history. In the decades since Stonewall, she has worn the hats of organizer, activist, prison abolitionist, sex worker and transgender elder, providing a crucial voice for those members of the LGBTQ community most disproportionately affected by violence and systems of power and oppression.
When you watch television shows about Stonewall all most only have interview with white gay men, oh they might have one or two black or trans people they interview but the vast majority of them are white. An example is the PBS American Experience show “Stonewall”

The Daily Beast had a series on Stonewall at 50.
Stonewall 50: Don’t Forget the Black & Brown LGBTQ Struggle
Black queer and transgender people have always had to remind the rest of the community of our prominence—despite the fact that the movement was co-led by us since the beginning.
By Ernest Owens
June 6, 2019

On June 28th, 1969, the Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village became a major catalyst in the movement for LGBTQ rights. Transgender activists Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera were among the boldest and most outspoken leaders who stood up against the ongoing police brutality and harassment that plagued the now landmark gay bar for months.

The actions that occurred that night at Stonewall weren’t a protest, but a riot—violent, disruptive, and purposely resistant. The LGBTQ community had enough of the state-sanctioned discrimination and abuse. Blood was shed, fighting ensued, arrests were made—the police were not there to protect and serve, but to persecute and torture.
In another article…
Wilson Cruz on Stonewall 50: ‘I Am Inspired by All the LGBTQ People of Color Who Ignited the Revolution’
‘Star Trek: Discovery’ star Wilson Cruz is motivated ‘to continue the fight’ of Sylvia Rivera, Marsha P. Johnson, and others. ‘We are everywhere, and we will not be ignored.’
By Tim Teeman
June 7, 2019

I learned of the Stonewall Riots in high school. As tough as high school was for me in the late ’80s and early ’90s, the one saving grace, I should say, the four saving graces for me, were the four brilliant and politically aware gay boys of color I called friends.

It was a politically charged time for the LGBTQ movement, at the height of AIDS crisis, and we were becoming aware of our own place and responsibility in this new era because of organizations like ACT UP and GLAAD.
We saw ourselves in them and felt, and still feel, a great responsibility to their legacy. We came to understand that we, now, had been passed a baton and that we needed to take on the struggle of our time and continue their fight and we did, and still do. The revolution continues.
Making Stonewall white what does it do to all the black and brown LGBTQ+ youth, it strips them of their heritage and role models.

Trans people and lesbians are also minimized in the history of Stonewall.
Stonewall 50: How the Long Lesbian Fight for Space and Identity Took an Anti-Transgender Turn
Queers are still battling with state-sponsored homophobia, but in the lesbian community we are also battling with ourselves and each other over the boundaries of gender identity.
By Mary Emily O’Hara
June 17, 2019

So the story or popular mythology goes, a butch lesbian may have thrown the first brick at Stonewall by urging patrons to resist arrest. But lesbians weren’t just present that famous night—they were absolutely instrumental in the 50-year period of LGBTQ activism that followed.

Joan Nestle, the 79-year-old co-founder of the Lesbian Herstory Archives, remembers standing outside the Stonewall Inn the night after the raid, struck by the grittiness of the West Village crowd in contrast to the more buttoned-up, polite “homophile” pickets that had been taking place throughout the 1960s.

“[Stonewall] was a sexualized site. It was in the streets that we acted out our erotic lives,” said Nestle. “Queer sex is a political motivator, and it was clearly evident in the streets of the Village that night.”
When asked if Stormé was transgender, as some now believe, Nestle said it wasn’t so simple as that. “The word we used at that time was ‘passing woman.’ She passed as a man,” said Nestle. “Stormé was biracial and always fought against being put into boxes. Race and gender were fluid things for her; she didn’t want to commit to either.”
You know it doesn’t really matter who threw the first brick, or bottle, or pennies, what matters is that they did it and that we include all those that were there that night fifty years ago today.

We can let anyone one or any group to be excluded.

They say history is written by the victor but we cannot forget all the victors.

Gay Liberation Front and Gay Activist Alliance had a policy of excluding members who could not assimilate into the white general population. If you look at the protest in front of Independence Hall in Philadelphia what you see is a white middle class lesbians and gays, what you don’t see any black, brown, butch lesbians, or any trans people. They were told that they were not welcome in the revolution.
AP Photo/John F. Urwiller
Stonewall was not the first uprising some of the earlier know rebellions were…
  • Cooper’s Do-Nuts, Los Angeles, 1959
  • Dewey's Restaurant Sit-in, Philadelphia, 1965
  • Compton's Cafeteria Riot, San Francisco, 1966
  • Black Cat Tavern, Los Angeles, 1967
In many, if not all of them, the police were checking the “drag queens” for three items of male clothing and they were after hour’s hangout for those who had to make their living off of the streets.

Do you have any material from trans conferences, rallies, marches, TDORs?
I urge you to donate them to libraries that have LGBTQ+ collections or to Sexual Minorities Archives.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Looking Through My Lens

Some people say that what I write is just as bad as the opposition’s rhetoric but I say you have to look though my lens. For most of my life I was a white liberal male but when I transition all that changed and not just in the obvious way.

When I first came out it was at a support group meeting which its members were mostly white middle income trans women. But then I went to the Transgender Day of Remembrance and I heard the names…

And when I read the name that I was handed I cried, and cried and could hardly read the name though my tears.

I started to ask “How can I help?”

Then in another support group a trans women came to the meeting all black and blue. She worked in construction and she was cornered by two who beat her. She ended up getting arrested for disturbing the peace when the officers wouldn’t arrest them she raised her voice.

Then there were the cutters, I never knew a cutter before but I have lost count of the number of trans people. Then there are those who succumbed to the hate against them.

Reading the news with all the state and national laws that were passed against us… The laws that want to make us criminals for just existing… The hate directed against us by those who want to force us out of existence.

Then there is the hate now coming out of Washington DC… Did you know that they actually banned flying the Rainbow flag at the Rainbow Inn for the fiftieth anniversary?

That is the lens that I look through, that is what shapes me.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

A Part Of A Wall Came Down

The Republicans have been known to oppose us at every turn but surprisingly Kansas blinked.
Kansas to allow transgender people to change their gender on birth certificates
The Wichita Eagle
By Dion Lefler and Jonathan Shorman
June 24, 2019

Kansas has become the 48th state in America to allow transgender people to change the sex designations on their birth certificates.

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has entered a consent judgment in a federal lawsuit to allow people to legally change the gender in their birth records by submitting a personal sworn statement of gender identity.

In addition, they would have to provide a drivers license or passport with their new identity, or an affidavit from a physician or mental health professional attesting to the person’s gender identity.

The doctor would have to certify that “based on his or her professional opinion the true gender identity of the applicant and that it is expected that this will continue to be the gender with which the applicant will identify in the future,” the consent judgment said.
“It was time for Kansas to move past its outdated and discriminatory anti-transgender policy,” Gov. Laura Kelly said in a statement Monday. “This decision acknowledges that transgender people have the same rights as anyone else, including the right to easily obtain a birth certificate that reflects who they are.”
The two states that do not allow trans people to change their birth certificates are Ohio and Tennessee.

Even though the article says that 48 state allow the birth certificate to be changed only about 24 states do not require surgery.

Many time we heard that birth certificate is a “historical document” I say Bull Sh*t! All a birth certificate does is to prove that you’re a natural born U.S. citizen and you need it for a passport, driver license, and employment. The birth certificate should reflect you true identity.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

We Have Always Been Here And We Will Not Go Away

This photo, taken on the Minnesota frontier, depicts
Regina Sorenson and three others “dressed in men’s suits.”
Wherever you look in history there are trans people and unlike lesbians and gays we are very “out.”
The Forgotten Trans History of the Wild West
It was a frontier in more ways than one.
Atlas Obscura
By Sabrina Imbler
June 21, 2019

FROM 1900 TO 1922, HARRY Allen was one of the most notorious men in the Pacific Northwest. The West was still wide and wild then, a place where people went to find their fortunes, escape the law, or start a new life. Allen did all three. Starting in the 1890s, he became known as a rabble-rouser, in and out of jail for theft, vagrancy, bootlegging, or worse. Whatever the crime, Allen always seemed to be a suspect because he refused to wear women’s clothes, and instead dressed as a cowboy, kept his hair trim, and spoke in a baritone. Allen, who was assigned female at birth, was actually far from the only trans* man who took refuge on the frontier.

Despite a seeming absence from the historical record, people who did not conform to traditional gender norms were a part of daily life in the Old West, according to Peter Boag, a historian at Washington State University and the author of Re-Dressing America’s Frontier Past. While researching a book about the gay history of Portland, Boag stumbled upon hundreds and hundreds of stories concerning people who dressed against their assigned gender, he says. He was shocked at the size of this population, which he’d never before encountered in his time as a queer historian of the American West. Trans people have always existed all over the world. So how had they escaped notice in the annals of the Old West?
Then around that time over in England there were Mollies and Tommies.
In the paper “Bitches, Mollies, and Tommies: Bryon, Masculinity and the History of Sexualities” in the Journal of the History of Sexuality, D. S. Neff writes,
As the eighteenth century progressed, men who were formally known as "sodomites" became categorized as effeminate "Mollie," a term that had first been applied to female prostitutes. Edward Ward, writing in 1709 about "The Mollies Club" in London, observes that "there is a curious band of fellows in the town who call themselves "Mollies" (effeminates, weaklings), who are so totally destitute of all masculine attributes that they prefer to behave as women. They adopt all the small vanities natural to the feminine sex to such an extent that they try to speak, walk, chatter, shriek and scold as women do, aping them as well in other respects.
Then moving farther back in time…
(Note: Some of these article are old and from European sources and use words that are our of style now here in the U.S,)
The 18th Century’s Transvestite Spy Rediscovered
By Marion Maneker
April 16, 2012

The earliest surviving formal portrait of a male transvestite has been discovered by Philip Mould in a New York saleroom.  On first glance the historic portrait featuring a rather masculine looking woman piqued the renowned art sleuth’s interest.   A gentle clean and further painstaking research uncovered a rich and colourful history.

“The 18th century portrait appeared to be of a somewhat manly middle-aged lady. Research before the sale suggested otherwise, and upon cleaning, the face revealed a distinctive 5 0’clock shadow. This fuelled further investigation that resulted in the astonishing discovery that the portrait is of the legendary spy, diplomat and transvestite, Chevalier D’Eon that has been lost since 1926.  The painting is now “under serious consideration” by the National Portrait Gallery, London.  Should it be purchased will represent the gallery’s first oil painting of a cross-dresser in guise.

“The story of D’Éon is one of the more remarkable biographies of the 18th century. The recent rediscovery of this lost and only oil portrait should dramatically reawaken his  historical significance,” adds Philip Mould.
Then let’s not forget our sixth president of the United States, John Quincy Adams and his connection with us.

It seems like Mr. Gray fancied himself in a dress and Mr. Pitts was smitten by her and when Mr. Pitts found out she was trans he rapped Mr. Gray on the head with a cane.
Mr. Molineux. I saw him dressed in Womens Cloaths. He had the outward Appearance of a Woman, a Gown and Womens Cloaths. I saw a Couple of young Gentlemen gallanting him. Pitts was one. I was very sensible they were taken in. Plaisted was the other. They appeared to be very loving—she rather Coy. I called out to Pitts at New Boston. He turnd a deaf Ear. He came back and said he had a very clever Girl, and went to her again.
It is a little hard to follow but witnesses testified that,
J. Whitworth. Pitt said in the forenoon, that Gray had used him very ill, and he would beat him whenever he met him. About 1 1/2 Hour before, he did [ . . . ] Very ill in Speaking Reports of him.
Mr. Hutchinson. Pitts told me he had sent a Lad to the Custom house to call Gray out to demand Satisfaction of him. And I saw em at it, and the Blood dropping from G's Head. Stick knotty, 1/2 Inch Diameter.
Tim. Odin. Pitts went into the Barbers shop, and asked Gray if he would ask his Pardon. No, you wooly headed Rascall, I wont. D—n you you shall, running his Fist up says Pitts. I could not hear the rest of the Conversation till Pitts struck him. The stick did not seem to be struck hard. But Gray said, Ile set this down to your everlasting Account.
Melvill. Gray had no stick nor Hatt. Gray and Pitts were coming from Dehones shop, to Carpenters. Pitts in a Passion. Pitts shoved him off first with his Hand, and then a stroke with a stick. Saw the Blood.
Isaac Pierce. Heard a Blow at the Town House steps. About 3. Rods.
Dr. Roberts. Wounds, one about 3/4 of an Inch, the other between 1/3 and 1/2 on the scalp, Top of the Head. Both done at one blow. About 12 or 14 days. Every other day. Bill a Guinea. No more than a flesh Wound.
J. Quincy. If he had a Mind to discover his Manhood as much as he had at other Times he would have taken another Weapon.
Knows Gentlemen who have a Talent of diminishing or exagerating just as they please.
Pain, of Body, Expences, Ignominy.
Of great Importance that Juries should be uniform and steady in their Decisions, and that Capriciousness and Humour should not prevail.
Atrocious, inhuman, Injury &c.
Mr. Molineux. I saw him dressed in Womens Cloaths. He had the outward Appearance of a Woman, a Gown and Womens Cloaths. I saw a Couple of young Gentlemen gallanting him. Pitts was one. I was very sensible they were taken in. Plaisted was the other. They appeared to be very loving—she rather Coy. I called out to Pitts at New Boston. He turnd a deaf Ear. He came back and said he had a very clever Girl, and went to her again.

And then there was WWII...

Besides Christine Jorgensen there was,

We are here… We are trans… We will not go away!

Monday, June 24, 2019

On The Road Again

This morning I’m driving back home from the Cape, I’ve been up hear since Friday and it was a wet drive up, Saturday we nice during the day but there were thunderstorms that went just west of over the bay and we just got light rain. In between showers I went out for supper at Mac’s on the Pier for fried clams

All I did all day we some work around the cottage, on Sunday I worked in the morning and some friends came over in the afternoon, headed out to P’town where we walked around for a bit. We ended up sitting on the deck at the Aqua Bar.

I left the cottage early because I have a TV interview in the afternoon.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

We All Are Getting Older

Those of the Stonewall generation are getting to their sunsets.
Will LGBT Retirees End Up Back In The Closet?
By David Rae
June 5, 2019

What does your dream retirement look like? Your life experience living as part of the LGBTQ+ community will likely play a role in where you retire, how much money you have to spend in retirement, and even your healthcare needs as you age.  Sadly, homophobia may put a damper on part of your gay retirement plan.  It might even drive some part of the community back into the closet as we get older.
Since then, I’ve met people who’ve gone back into the closet after entering retirement communities.  Others living in fear of what will happen to them once their “family” is no longer able to keep an eye on them. Many may wonder if they will be able to afford Long Term Care, and if they will ever actually need it. All of this on top of the fear of ‘getting old’ which many of us are working hard to ensure this process happens as slows as possible. I’ve heard many gay men joke  that they are suffering from Peter Pan syndrome (I don’t wanna grow up….).
Older LGBT baby boomers are leading the way into retirement.  There is still a gargantuan need for more LGBT Senior Services. Not to mention more LGBT friendly housing options.  How to do we make sure no one is forced back into the closet in retirement?
Suppose you crossdress and you have to go into a Long Term Care [LTC] facility will you be able to do that?
Suppose you need a wig would you be able to get them in a LTC facility?
Today, there are an estimated 3 million LGBT people in the US over the age of 65, according to a 2014 Washington Post article.  The number of gay retirees is expected to more than double by the year 2030.  Keep in mind, these are only estimates, and the LGBT+ community is likely to be underestimated in many population counts.
Many of them will be trans and it is entirely different from being trans… when you are trans there is no hiding.

What the article does not cover (besides us) is home care.

What happens if you need a 24 hr. live-in healthcare provider?

Or just someone to take you shopping or to doctor’s appointments?

How will you be treated?

To answer some of these questions there well be a senior center discussion for LGBTQ+ seniors.
Laws, Legislation and Lunch!
LGBT Adults and Allies of the LGBT Community are invited to join the LGBT Moveable Senior Center—a partnership among Senior Centers in the Greater Hartford area to connect the LGBT community to mind-body-spirit, to each other and to services and supports for healthy aging!
Join us for an expert led discussion about current laws, legal issues and legislation that impact you.  Invited guests include:
Chris Erchull, GLAD Staff Attorney
Steven Hernandez, ED of CT Commission on Women, Children, Seniors, Equity and Opportunity
State Representatives

Update... I just found this in today's Hartford Courant
A concern for LGBT boomers
Elder care options limited for many
By JoNel Aleccia and Melissa Bailey Kaiser Health

Two years ago, nursing professor Kim Acquaviva asked a group of home-care nurses whether they thought she was going to hell for being a lesbian. It’s OK if you do, Acquaviva said, but is the afterlife within your scope of practice?

After Acquaviva’s talk, an older nurse announced she would change how she treats LGBT people under her care.

“I still think you’re going to hell, but I’m going to stop telling patients that,” the nurse told Acquaviva.

Acquaviva, a professor at George Washington University School of Nursing in Washington, D.C., raised the example at a panel hosted by Kaiser Health News on inclusive care for LGBT seniors. It was one of many examples of discrimination that these older adults may face as they seek medical care.

LGBT baby boomers, dubbed “the Stonewall Generation,” came of age just as the 1969 New York uprising galvanized a push for gay rights. After living through an era of unprecedented social change, they’re facing new challenges as they grow old.

“Fifty years after Stonewall, there’s a new generation of LGBT elders who never thought they’d get an AARP card,” said Nii-Quartelai-Quartey, AARP’s senior adviser and national liaison on the issue who also participated in the panel.
“The fear of living in a situation where they can’t advocate for their own care and safety is terrifying,” said Hilary Meyer, chief enterprise and innovation officer for SAGE.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Saturday 9: Venus in Blue Jeans

Sam’s Saturday 9: Venus in Blue Jeans (1962)

On Saturdays I take a break from the heavy stuff and have some fun…
Last Saturday I went the Middletown Pride and the next day a friend stopped by and her pick-up broke down in my driveway and we spent the day trying to get it started, then trying to get a tow.

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

1) Like the dream girl described in this song, Sam is wearing jeans as she composes this Saturday 9. Is there a lot of denim in your wardrobe?
Oh yes… denim skirts, jackets, jeans, shorts, etc.

2) Jimmy Clanton likens this girl to the Venus de Milo, the ancient Greek sculpture made of marble and now on display at the Louvre. Is there any marble in your home?

3) He refers to his girl as "Mona Lisa with a pony tail." The Mona Lisa is also at the Louvre. What's the last museum you visited?
I visit a lot of museums and the last one was the New Britain Museum of American Art, a few miles from my house. I also visit the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art in Hartford which is one oldest museums in the nation.
Back in college in the early seventies I took an art history class and the class mentioned the mural by Thomas Hart Benton that is at the NBMAA and it only took 30 years for me to get around to see it. Benton collection was a depression era WPA artist.
I get free passes from my local library.

4) This girl is so awesome, she's the 8th Wonder of the World! Without looking it up, could you name the other 7?

5) Jimmy Clanton spent his entire professional life behind a microphone. After he quit selling records, he began spinning them as a DJ. Do you consider the sound of your voice one of your better qualities?
Nope… it is a monotone.

6) At age 80, Mr. Clanton still performs. He averaged an appearance/month in 2018. Some of his fans were surprised that he has let his pompadour go completely white. Do you color your hair?
No… I just wear a wig.

7) In 1962, when this song was popular, Americans were reading about 5-year-old First Daughter, Caroline Kennedy, and her pony, Macaroni. Tell us about a pet you had when you were very young.
It was a parakeet that we had and it flew around the house when I was five or six, and I killed it! I closed the hallway door and didn’t know it was flying behind me. I heard a thud when I closed the door and there was the parakeet dead on the floor… I cried and cried and still remember that day.

8) Decades later, Caroline Kennedy was the first woman to serve as US Ambassador to Japan. Have you ever been to Asia?
Nope only other country that I visited was Canada

9) Random question: When talking among themselves, who do you think is more open and honest about sex -- men or women?
I have a very unique perspective having seen both sides now and the women are more open and honest hands down. Men are rude and crude.

Thanks so much for joining us again at Saturday: 9. As always, feel free to come back, see who has participated and comment on their posts. In fact sometimes, if you want to read & comment on everyone's responses, you might want to check back again tomorrow. But it is not a rule. We haven’t any rules here. Join us on next Saturday for another version of Saturday: 9, "Just A Silly Meme on a Saturday!" Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, June 21, 2019

It Is Not Being Trans That’s The Problem…

It is the bigots that are the problem.
Gender transition positively affects well-being of transgender adultsHealio
By Nathaniel Frank
April 15, 2018

Transgender adults who receive medical treatments for gender transition experience improved quality of life, self-esteem, confidence and relationship satisfaction and decreased anxiety, depression, suicidality and substance use, according to a literature review from the What We Know Project, an initiative of the Center for the Study of Inequality at Cornell University.

“This research review demonstrates a strong scholarly consensus that, with proper diagnosis and adequate support, individuals with gender dysphoria can be effectively treated and function normally,” Nathaniel Frank, PhD, the project director, told Endocrine Today.
In 93% of the studies, the research indicated high overall well-being and mental health status among participants who transitioned, with 0.3% to 3.8% of participants indicating regret. “Regrets following gender transition are extremely rare and have become even rarer as both surgical techniques and social support have improved,” the researchers wrote in the study summary online.
Meanwhile down in D.C.
Trump administration announces rollback of health care regulations protecting LGBTQ people
CBS News
By Emily Tillett
May 24, 2019

The Health and Human Services Department (HHS) announced Friday that it is proposing a rule that would change a regulation under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) that expanded anti-discrimination protections to transgender individuals.

The new regulation would change the 2016 rule that banned discrimination -- on the basis of sex and against trangender people -- by health care providers that receive federal funding.

In a release announcing the proposed change, HHS pointed to a Texas judge's December 2016 injunction that kept the Obama-era rule from being implemented. U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor sided with the state of Texas and other plaintiffs who argued that the Obama rule would force health care providers and insurers to enable transgender people to be treated and get coverage for gender transitions and abortions, despite their religious beliefs or against their medical judgment.
And I just read that Trump has appointed 20 percent of the federal judges with more on the way, the latest…
Trump pick slammed as 'anti-LGBTQ activist' gets lifetime judicial appointment
Matthew Kacsmaryk is the latest in a series of judicial nominations to elicit alarm from LGBTQ and civil rights advocates.
NBC News
By Julie Moreau
June 19, 2019

The Senate voted Wednesday to confirm Matthew Kacsmaryk to the position of U.S. district judge for the Northern District of Texas, a lifetime appointment. His appointment riled Democrats and LGBTQ advocates who have opposed his nomination for almost two years.

Kacsmaryk is the latest in a series of judicial nominations to elicit alarm from LGBTQ and civil rights advocates over what they consider anti-LGBTQ track records. A 2017 report from Lambda Legal found that, of President Donald Trump’s nominees, “nearly one-in-three have records that demonstrate hostility towards the rights of LGBT people.”

Among advocates, concerns about Kacsmaryk are his opposition to LGBTQ anti-discrimination protections and same-sex marriage, along with his remarks concerning transgender children and adults.
Be scared, be very scared.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Trans Athletes... Unfair Advantage?

Trans people are back in the news again, unfortunately in a bad way… the gender inclusive non-discrimination law is being challenged.
Connecticut high school athletes file complaint over transgender policy
The Hartford Courant
By Alex Putterman  and LoriI Riley
June 18, 2019

Three Connecticut high school track and field athletes have filed a federal discrimination complaint against a statewide policy on transgender athletes, saying it has cost them top finishes in competitions and possibly college scholarships.

The conservative Christian law firm Alliance Defending Freedom filed the complaint on behalf of the girls Monday with the U.S. Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights. It seeks to reverse a Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference rule allowing athletes to compete in sports corresponding with their gender identify.

The CIAC says its policy follows a state anti-discrimination law requiring students to be treated in school according to the gender with which they identify.
This goes back to last year when two trans athletes won the Track & Field competition (I wrote about it here and here).

The trans athletes speak out in another Hartford Courant article,
Connecticut high school transgender athletes ‘no longer want to remain silent’ following Title IX complaint
By Dan Brechlin
June 20, 2019

Two transgender high school track and field athletes responded Wednesday to a Title IX complaint alleging that the runners prevented other female runners from top finishes and potentially from college scholarships.
“I have faced discrimination in every aspect of my life and I no longer want to remain silent,” said Bloomfield High track and field standout Terry Miller, one of the two transgender athletes cited in the complaint. “I am a girl and I am a runner. I participate in athletics just like my peers to excel, find community and meaning in my life. It is both unfair and painful that my victories have to be attacked and my hard work ignored.”

Miller, along with Andraya Yearwood, who attends Cromwell High, have been working with the American Civil Liberties Union as the complaint begins to unfold. Miller won the State Open 200-meter title for the second straight year in 2019 and won the Class S titles in the 100 and 200, as well as the New England 200-meter championship. Yearwood, who is also transgender, finished third in the 100 meters in Class S and fourth in the 100 in the State Open.
In the Trump administration we know how the Department of Education is going to respond they are going to back the cisgender athletes.

What does the NCAA have to say about trans athletes?
NCAA Inclusion of Transgender Student-Athletes

As a core value, the NCAA believes in and is committed to diversity, inclusion and gender equity among its student-athletes, coaches and administrators. We seek to establish and maintain an inclusive culture that fosters equitable participation for student-athletes and career opportunities for coaches and administrators from diverse backgrounds. Diversity and inclusion improve the learning environment for all student-athletes and enhance excellence within the Association.
NCAA Policy on Transgender Student-Athlete Participation

The following policies clarify participation of transgender student-athletes undergoing hormonal treatment for gender transition:
1. A trans male (FTM) student-athlete who has received a medical exception for treatment with testosterone for diagnosed Gender Identity Disorder or gender dysphoria and/or Transsexualism, for purposes of NCAA competition may compete on a men’s team, but is no longer eligible to compete on a women’s team without changing that team status to a mixed team.
2. A trans female (MTF) student-athlete being treated with testosterone suppression medication for Gender Identity Disorder or gender dysphoria and/or Transsexualism, for the purposes of NCAA competition may continue to compete on a men’s team but may not compete on a women’s team without changing it to a mixed team status until completing one calendar year of testosterone suppression treatment.

Additional considerations

The student’s responsibilities
1. In order to avoid challenges to a transgender student’s participation during a sport season, a student athlete who has completed, plans to initiate, or is in the process of taking hormones as part of a gender transition should submit the request to participate on a sports team in writing to the director of athletics upon matriculation or when the decision to undergo hormonal treatment is made.
2. The request should include a letter from the student’s physician documenting the student-athlete’s intention to transition or the student’s transition status if the process has already been initiated. This letter should identify the prescribed hormonal treatment for the student’s gender transition and documentation of the student’s testosterone levels, if relevant.

The school’s responsibilities
1. The director of athletics should meet with the student to review eligibility requirements and procedure for approval of transgender participation.
2. If hormone treatment is involved in the student-athlete’s transition, the director of athletics should notify the NCAA of the student’s request to participate with a medical exception request.
3. To assist in educating and in development of institutional policy and practice, a Transgender Participation Committee should be established. Members of the committee should represent a cross section of the institutional staff with student well-being interests, and include representation from the following departments: office of general counsel, health and counseling, faculty/academic affairs, and athletics.
4. All discussions among involved parties and required written supporting documentation should be kept confidential, unless the student-athlete makes a specific request otherwise. All information about an individual student’s transgender identity and medical information, including physician’s information provided pursuant to this policy, shall be maintained confidentially.
So under the NCAA policy a student who identifies as trans women as long as she has been on spiro for at least a year.

There probably a lot of trans athletes in the state and only two of them have won but they ignore that little fact they all the others lost. If they had such unfair advantage then you would expect a lot more would be winning.

Updated 9:30 AM

In a Fox 61 article this morning at the law suit...
“Just like life, sports is not always fair,” said Dawn Ennis, the Managing Editor, for Outsports a website that covers LGBTQ sports and a transgender woman from West Hartford. “Those girls didn’t ask to be transgender. They didn’t decide to be transgender. They are transgender. What these girls want to do is run as their true selves.”
“Should we take tall athletes out of pole vaulting?” Ennis wonders. “Should we take fastest runners out of track?”

With Trump packing the courts right-wing fanatics we are going to have a harder time winning case like the one above.
Anti-LGBTQ Attorney Matthew Kacsmaryk Confirmed as Federal Judge
The Advocate
By Trudy Ring
June 19, 2019

Matthew Kacsmaryk, who has endorsed the view that being transgender is a “delusion” and referred to the Equality Act as the “inequality act,” was confirmed by the U.S. Senate today to be a federal district judge for the Northern District of Texas.

Kacsmaryk was confirmed to the lifetime appointment by a vote of 52-46, with Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine joining united Democrats in voting against him, the Washington Blade reports. Collins, often considered a moderate, drew criticism for her vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court last year, but she said she would oppose Kacsmaryk for his stances against LGBTQ and reproductive rights.

LGBTQ groups and other civil rights organizations denounced his confirmation. Matthew Kacsmaryk is among the most anti-LGBTQ judicial nominees put forward by the Trump-Pence administration,” said a statement issued by Human Rights Campaign Legal Director Sarah Warbelow. “He has a long history of virulently anti-LGBTQ opinions and positions — including his deeply disturbing opposition to same-sex marriage, his vocal hostility towards legal protections for gender identity and sexual orientation, and his shocking refusal to recognize the basic humanity of transgender people. Kacsmaryk fails the basic expectation of impartiality and commitment to equality under the law that we demand of every member of the bench. The Human Rights Campaign will continue to raise the alarm about Kacsmaryk and future nominees who refuse to protect the rights of all Americans.”
With more discrimination cases coming before the federal courts this is going to impact us. Trump is getting the judicial nominees from a list compiled by anti-LGBTQ+ and pro-far right Christian organization, these judges are biased and prejudicial against us and put the Bible before the Constitution.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

The Umbrella

From Clipart Library
There is a meme that is making the rounds on Facebook and it says “At the end of the day, I rather be excluded for who I include, than be included by those who I exclude!”

Words definitions continue to morph into other definitions and word come in and go out of use all the time but somethings those changes are not for the best. The word “Trans” is one of those words that are continuing to morph.

This article from 2014 was recently posted on Facebook…
Trans Women Are Not Drag Queens
Everyday Feminism
By Maddie McClouskey
April 14, 2014
The headline could be seen as exclusionary.

For me I subscribe to the umbrella definition of trans, that it covers anyone who crosses the gender norms; from drag Queens and Kings to post op trans people.
Many people do not know the difference between trans women and drag queens!

There seems to be an assumption that all people assigned male at birth who grow up to wear clothing from the women’s section identify the same way.

And that couldn’t be further from the truth.
I agree with this there are differences between a drag queen and a trans woman.
Performance vs. Identity
I am sure you have heard confusing (and sometimes offensive!) terminology used interchangeably about drag queens and trans women.

Using identical labels (and insults) for entirely different groups of people is a rhetorical way to imply that those groups are the same.
There are nuance between “drag queen,” “trans woman,” and “trans”

For many outside of the community might not see the differences and even those who are in the community can argue over the differences.

I did a training recently and reading the comments someone wrote (they must have been trans) that my definitions were old and I used offensive words. They didn’t elaborate so I don’t know exactly what words they were talking about but I can guess.

My guess is that the person was referring to was “Transgender” because I use the word as an umbrella term and I also used “Transsexual” but I add that the community does not like or use the word and I use it only in training to distinguish between those who have transitioned.

So today I want to talk about inclusion.

Those who use the word transgender or trans to exclude crossdressers and drag queens/kings from those who have transitioned I see them as trying to exclude "them" from "us:. To me, I rather be inclusive than exclusive When we exclude people from our umbrella we are being elitists, we are prescribing to a pecking order.

Every once in a while I get a comment to post saying that I am “just a man in a dress” obviously that is exclusionary. The same for those who use “just a crossdresser” and for me I see those comments as internalized transphobia or lateral hostility, they want to disassociate from those they see as inferior.

Let’s move away from creating silos and instead look at the commonality between us.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

A Very Bad Omen!

I hope that this is not a harbinger of court rulings to come from the Supreme Court.
Supreme Court sides with Oregon bakery that refused to make cake for same-sex wedding
By Ariane de Vogue and Devan Cole
June 17, 2019

Washington (CNN) The Supreme Court on Monday wiped away a ruling that went against a bakery in Oregon that refused to make a cake to celebrate the wedding for a same-sex couple.

The justices sent back the case pitting religious liberty concerns against LGBTQ rights to the lower courts for further consideration in light of last term's ruling in favor of a Colorado baker who refused to make a cake for a same-sex couple.

The move puts off a major case that could have been heard next term during the heart of the presidential election and allows the issue to further percolate in the lower courts.
It was an order of two sentences with no noted dissents.
From what I could tell of the case, the Oregon courts were very cognizant of the Colorado case and avoided all references to religion.

For almost 240 years the First Amendment has been interpreted to mean that laws aimed at certain religion are prohibited while laws that are equally applied to everyone do not violate the First Amendment and now that is being challenged by the religious far right who want to be able to discriminate against people.

At one time there was a compelling government interest test where the government's interest is balanced against the individual's constitutional right to be free of law. But that is being chipped away and is giving carte blanche to “religious freedom.”

What I think is that the Trump courts are narrowly focused on LGBTQ+ discrimination and ignoring the broad issue of using “religious freedom” to overture all discrimination laws protesting minorities.

You can find in religious scripture bases to discriminate against anyone; interracial marriages, other religions, the mixing of sexes, and scriptures were used to justify slavery. The Southern Baptists used the doctrine of the “Curse Of Ham” as a justification for racism so when I see the courts using “religious freedom” to justify discrimination against us I see it as a “slippery slope” opening the door to all discrimination.

Monday, June 17, 2019

A New Frontier and A New Pride

Another trans person wants to break new ground, but her dream is snatched away.
'It Feels Very Possible.' How This Transgender Racing Driver Is Hoping to Make Sports History
By Suyin Haynes
June 12, 2019

Charlie Martin hurtles around the racetrack, her gloved hands gripping the steering wheel with only blond hair visible from the top of the driver’s seat. She zooms underneath banners emblazoned with the logo of the 24 Hours of Le Mans motorsport race, her focus unbroken. Eventually slowing to a halt after a 30-minute run, Martin unbuckles her seatbelt. It’s not a helmet that she takes off, but a VR headset; not a racing car that she lifts herself out of, but a state-of-the art simulator at Cranfield Simulation, an aerospace facility about two hours north of London.

The simulator is just one of the many ways Martin, 37, is preparing for the biggest race of her career so far — and the chance to make history. She plans to be the first transgender driver to ever compete at the 24 Hours of Le Mans race in France — one of the world’s most prestigious motorsport races. Her journey begins June 15, where she will compete in the Road to Le Mans race as part of the Michelin Le Mans Cup, marking the start of a three-year program setting her on the road toward the 24 Hours race, and towards making LGBT history. Her story is a rare one in a sport not known for its diversity, and comes at a time when many transgender people are facing a rising backlash for their participation in different sports.
But her dream was suddenly dashed, according to CNN
But Martin's Le Mans date with destiny was suddenly snatched away when the funding she needed fell through just two weeks before this weekend's race.

"It's a real shame," says Martin, whose place in the team has been filled for the Le Mans weekend only. "Unfortunately because of last-minute delays with sponsorship we couldn't continue.
But that doesn’t mean she is not involved with racing, in the same CNN article,
A decision to go to France and compete in a one-off round of the French Hill Climbing Championship in St-Goueno renewed Martin's passion and her hopes of becoming a professional racing driver. She had broken the class record and won the race by three seconds, a positively monumental margin by hill climb standards.

"People were a bit surprised that this English girl who no one had heard of had come over and blown everyone away," Martin recalls with a smile.
Being an “out” trans woman she is a role model for many trans women who are hesitant to jump into male dominated sports and she shows the world that we will not be forced back into the closet… that we are trans and we are proud.

Saturday was the first Middletown Pride Parade and I thought that they did an excellent job. I didn’t see the parade but from the Facebook photos and from what others had to say it looks like the parade was a success.

I got there a little after 3 when the parade had ended, I looked at Google Maps and it showed that Rt. 9 was a solid black, not red but at a standstill and most of the streets on Rt. 9 side of the parade route were red. So I decided to come in from the western side of Middletown going by Wesleyan University, as I drove by the side streets that headed toward Main St cars were parked all along the roads, finally I found a parking space about a half a mile away (I did luck out a little, the space was in the shade) after walking down the park I found our table for the CT TransAdvocacy Coalition and it was also now in the shade.

After checking in at the table I wandered around the Pride and said “hi” to many of the people that knew including my endo. At one booth I talked to a former classmate at UConn School of Social Work and is now a lobbyist and she told me that the legislative committee that I was appointed to was funded for two years and that it can be renewed every two years.

I went back to the CTAC and took over there while they got their turn to walk around the Pride.

We packed up and left around 5, I talked to the police officers first about where to load the car up with the table and chairs so they allowed me to pull right up to the curb which save a lot of walking with the table and chairs.

Something that I noticed at all the Prides that I have been to is loud music, the vendors and non-profits pay good money to be at the Pride events only to have visitors stop at their booths and they have to shout in their ears to be heard. At the Hartford Pride the booths near the stage on the Trumbull St end of Pratt St have shout to be heard and the same thing for our booth in Middletown we had a radio station ten feet from our table. Ditto for Norwalk and Providence Prides.

It would seem to me that those who are organizing the various Prides would create some type of buffers between where loud music is played and where the vendors are located. Maybe have food trucks in-between the vendors and the music.

But all in all it was a beautiful day, perfect weather for the Pride.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Trans Health

While violence against us is increasing and the Trump administration is doing everything it can to deny us healthcare the AMA is trying to cover our back.
U.S. physicians adopt new policy against anti-trans violence
Washington Blade
By Chris Johnson
June 10, 2019

Amid an ongoing struggle with anti-transgender violence, the American Medical Association approved a resolution Monday to take action on the issue.

The AMA House of Delegates, which is comprised of U.S. physicians and medical students, approved the new policy, Resolution 008, at its 2019 annual meeting in Chicago. The goal of the policy to bring national attention to the issue of anti-trans violence, especially its disproportionate impact on transgender women of color.

AMA board member Bobby Mukkamala said in a statement violence against transgender people is “on the rise and most victims were black transgender women.”

“The number of victims could be even higher due to underreporting and better data collection by law enforcement is needed to create strategies that will prevent anti-transgender violence,” Mukkamala said.
The resolution says,
1 Whereas, A recent event has increased attention on violent crimes reported by the Lesbian,
2 Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning (LGBTQ) or gender non-conforming communities
3 yet most media outlets have failed to accurately educate the public regarding the reality of the
discrimination and physical dangers faced by members of the LGBTQ community, especially
5 Black transgender people and other transgender people of color; and
7 Whereas, Transgender individuals are people whose gender identity or gender expression
differs from their sex assigned at birth; and
10 Whereas, Transgender people who are People of Color, disabled, female identified, or a
member of another oppressed group may struggle with discrimination on multiple levels; and
13 Whereas, Violence against transgender people is often underreported due to transphobia and
mistrust of law enforcement; and
21 RESOLVED, That our American Medical Association partner with other medical organizations
22 and stakeholders to immediately increase efforts to educate the general public, legislators, and
23 members of law enforcement using verified data related to the hate crimes against transgender
24 individuals highlighting the disproportionate number of Black transgender women who have
25 succumbed to violent deaths (Directive to Take Action); and be it further
27 RESOLVED, That our AMA advocate for federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies to
28 consistently collect and report data on hate crimes, including victim demographics, to the FBI;
29 for the federal government to provide incentives for such reporting; and for demographic data on
30 an individual’s birth sex and gender identity be incorporated into the National Crime
31 Victimization Survey and the National Violent Death Reporting System, in order to quickly
32 identify positive and negative trends so resources may be appropriately disseminated (Directive
33 to Take Action); and be it further
35 RESOLVED, That our AMA advocate for a central law enforcement database to collect data
36 about reported hate crimes that correctly identifies an individual’s birth sex and gender identity,
37 in order to quickly identify positive and negative trends so resources may be appropriately
38 disseminated (Directive to Take Action); and be it further
40 RESOLVED, That our AMA advocate for stronger law enforcement policies regarding
41 interactions with transgender individuals to prevent bias and mistreatment and increase
42 community trust (Directive to Take Action); and be it further
44 RESOLVED, That our AMA advocate for local, state, and federal efforts that will increase
45 access to mental health treatment and that will develop models designed to address the health
46 disparities that LGBTQ individuals experience (Directive to Take Action); and be it further
48 RESOLVED, That our AMA issue a press release following the conclusion of the annual House
49 of Delegates meeting with updates to be published in both scientific and mainstream
50 publications regarding the prevalence of physical and mental health conditions and barriers
51 faced by the LGBTQ community. (Directive to Take Action)
I doubt that the current administration really cares about the AMA or anything trans but I it very good that the AMA came out with public support and to condemn the violence.

Wherever we look we can see violence targeting trans people, we are not safe anywhere even in prison.
A community mourns Layleen Cubilette-Polanco, a trans woman found dead in her cell at Rikers Island
"This city has failed Layleen."
By Casey Quinlan
June 11, 2019
On Monday afternoon, more than 600 people gathered in Foley Square in New York City to mourn Layleen Cubilette-Polanco, an Afro-Latinx transgender woman, and demand justice after she died in her cell in Rikers Island. Activists and family members expressed outrage over what they say is a lack of information around the circumstances of her death.

Cubilette-Polanco, also known as Layleen Xtravaganza, was being held in solitary confinement when she died, and her cause of death has not been determined yet.

She was arrested in April on misdemeanor assault charges, Bail was set at $500. Although a judge ordered her release on the assault charges, she was still being held for low-level drug charges and prostitution charges from 2017, according to the Gothamist. She was in a unit for transgender women before being placed in solitary following a fight.

According to ABC News, her family said she suffered from an acute medical condition and that considering her fragile health, she should have been placed in supervised detention.
Two people may get into a fight, and there are lots of ways to handle that that don’t involve locking up one or both of them in a cell,” he said.

Cubilette-Polanco’s death marks yet another untimely death for the trans community and black trans women. In 2019, at least eight transgender people have been fatally shot or killed by other means, according to the Human Rights Campaign, and they were all black trans women.
“Correction” facilities seem to be in their own little world and feel that they can ignore non-discrimination laws.

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Saturday 9: I Learned from You

Sam’s Saturday 9: I Learned from You (2007)
... Because it's Father's Day weekend.

On Saturdays I take a break from the heavy stuff and have some fun…
It is going to be a long day today; I will be at the Middletown Pride at the CTAC booth so it might be tomorrow when I reply to your comments

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

1) This song is a duet by the father/daughter team, Miley and Billy Ray Cyrus. Is your family musically inclined?
No. But my brother’s family inherited music from my sister-in-law’s family

2) This song is about life lessons. Who has been a major influence on your life?
Well of course my parents but also in starting my second career social work friends who suggested getting my MSW.

3) Miley's given name is "Destiny." Her nickname as a baby was "Smiley," which is where Miley came from. What's something that can always be depended upon to make you smile?
Or a chocolate milkshake

4) Miley's father, country singer Billy Ray Cyrus, has 5 children in addition to Miley (6 in all). Are you the oldest, the middle or the youngest sibling? Or are you an only child?
I only have an older brother

5) Sam's own father often traveled for business, and always remembered to bring her the little complimentary soaps, shampoos or body lotion he got from the hotel. Tell us about an inexpensive but treasured souvenir from a trip you've taken.
I don’t have any… I am too frugal to buy souvenir. But I was looking a glasses from Highland Lighthouse that had the lighthouse etched on the glasses.

6) Back when Sam was in high school, it was her father who gave her driving lessons. Are you patient when teaching someone something new?
Yes, I get enjoyment watching them learn

7) Sam's father is easy to buy for: every year he wants a new pair of loafers, so every year for Father's Day she gives him a DSW gift card. Is there anyone on your gift list that you find it easy to buy for?
We’re too old to give and get gifts… when you are in your seventies gifts don’t matter much friendship is more important.

8) For family barbecues, Sam's dad dons his "Kiss the Chef" apron and mans the Weber. What's the last thing you cooked on the grill?
A steak.

9) Sam's father satisfies his afternoon sugar craving with an almost endless stream of Butter Rum Lifesavers. When you crave a snack, do you usually reach for something sweet or salty?
I have a big sweet-tooth that gets me into trouble.
But I did have some chocolate that was covered with salt, it was a unique taste.

Thanks so much for joining us again at Saturday: 9. As always, feel free to come back, see who has participated and comment on their posts. In fact sometimes, if you want to read & comment on everyone's responses, you might want to check back again tomorrow. But it is not a rule. We haven’t any rules here. Join us on next Saturday for another version of Saturday: 9, "Just A Silly Meme on a Saturday!" Enjoy your weekend!

Friday, June 14, 2019

Not Everyone Likes Us

The rest of the world has not problems with us but the religious fanatics have forced their bigotry on all of us.
Transgender ex-Army officer awarded MBE by Prince William
12 June 2019

A transgender former Army officer has been made an MBE [for those of us on this side of the pond… Most Excellent Order of the British Empire] by the Duke of Cambridge at Buckingham Palace.

Capt Hannah Graf, from Cardiff, rose to become the highest ranking transgender woman in the British army.

After collecting the honour for services to the LGBTQ community in the military, she celebrated the Army's embrace of transgender people.

Capt Graf called US President Donald Trump's move to ban certain transgender people from the military "archaic".
The 32-year-old, who lives in London and served with the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, attended the ceremony with her family including her husband Jake, who is also transgender.

Capt Graf said: "I think it (the MBE) is particularly important when considering what's going on in the United States where their commander-in-chief is saying transgender people don't deserve to serve.
There was even a trans woman who taught at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and both princes had her for an instructor. She could be one of the reasons that the princes support the trans community.
Capt Graf said: "I think it (the MBE) is particularly important when considering what's going on in the United States where their commander-in-chief is saying transgender people don't deserve to serve.

"It's a stark contrast and I'm very proud to be in the British army today and my heart goes out to all those people in the US who don't get these opportunities."
One of the strong backers of the band that has Trump’s ear is the Family Research Council which is headed by Tony Perkins. The Family Research Council has been labeled a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Our History

The two couples that sued the state for marriage equality
As my generation passes the torch to the new generations we must make sure that our history is not lost. All we have to do is look how the uprising at Stonewall is being made in to a white gay movement (and the lesbians that were also leaders in the uprising are also being written out of the history).

Last night I attended a reception at the Connecticut Historical Society for a traveling exhibit on LGBT history.

The exhibit was a collaboration between the historical society and Central Connecticut State University’s class in LGBT history and will be on exhibit around the state. It is heavy in LG history and weak on the b & t but hopefully that will change with more contributions by trans people are made.

So what was covered?

The exhibit is made up of five panels, an introduction panel, a 1600 – 1899 panel, a 1900 – 1945 panel, a 1946 – 1969 panel, and a 1970 – Present panel*. Some of the highlights from the panels…
1600 – 1899 (I am not linking this yet because the website is not public.)
Among some Native American nations, those who transcended the binaries of gender and sexuality (known today as the Two-Spirit tradition) were often honored and revered. But for European colonists, the LGBTQ experience was one of isolation and persecution. Behavior that expressed same-sex love or transgressed gender through cross-dressing or other means, while not yet the basis for identity, was nonetheless defined as criminal, and was sometimes punishable by death. Still, court records, personal letters and other documents provide evidence of LGBTQ lives and relationships. Not yet a recognizable community, people still fought against lives of isolation.

Brigadier General Griffin Alexander Stedman came from a wealthy family in Hartford. He was well-educated and a decorated Union soldier. Stedman never married; there is no record of correspondence between him and women. The only evidence of any close relationship comes in letters exchanged with Charles Jeremy Hoadley, an unmarried lawyer also from Hartford. The correspondence is intimate and reveals a close, affectionate friendship between the men.

1900 – 1945
Her mother a prominent Connecticut suffragist, movie icon Katharine Hepburn was encouraged from a young age to defy norms and go her own way. “Being a girl was a torment,” she said, and during her gender-noncomforming youth she shaved her head, dressed in boys’ clothes, and called herself “Jimmy.” “I put on pants fifty years ago,” she said later in life, “and declared a sort of middle road. I have not lived as a woman. I have lived as a man.” Hepburn, who loved both men and women, brought her gender defiance and independent spirit to dozens of classic movies.

In January 1927, Mae West previewed her play, The Drag: A Homosexual Comedy in Three Acts, at Bridgeport’s Poli Theater. (A Stamford theater had refused to show it, calling it “obscene.”) The Drag, featuring an all-gay cast, depicted homosexuality and the cost of living a secret life. Although well-received by audiences, the play was called “inexpressibly brutal and vulgar” by critics and was quickly shut down. As a result, The Drag was banned from Broadway.

In 1934, Chick Austin, the risk-taking director of the Wadsworth Atheneum, debuted lesbian writer Gertrude Stein’s Modernist opera, Four Saints in Three Acts, with music by the gay composer Virgil Thompson. Four Saints, a queer reinterpretation of sainthood, brought bohemian Paris to America and Modernism to mainstream culture. The musical director was Eva Jessye, noted choral conductor during the Harlem Renaissance, who directed an all-black cast. Austin also brought Alwin Nikolais, gay pioneer of modern dance, several times to the Wadsworth.

1946 – 1969
Hartford judge S. Burr Leikind, announced in June 1952 his intention to clean up all areas of the city where “sex deviates” gathered. Dozens of men were arrested for meeting at train stations and public parks, and their names were published in local newspapers. Since most men at the time were not open about their gayness to their families or employers, many lives were ruined. “This court intends to back up police in cleaning up areas of the city where sex deviates gather and see to it that such offenders are properly punished.” –Judge S. Burr Leikind

One early attempt to mobilize the gay community of Hartford was led by Canon Clinton Jones of Christ Church Cathedral, whose sympathetic research into homosexuality inspired the formation of “Project H,” a group of psychologists, social workers, and clergy who provided counseling services. Out of Project H [more on Project H later] emerged the state’s first gay organization, the Kalos Society, in the mid-1960s. Kalos predated by several years the Stonewall uprising in New York, generally considered the birth of the modern LGBTQ movement.

Project H in Hartford received a complaint that the CT Department of Corrections had established "Cell Block G" to “house all transvestites and gays.” Canon Clinton Jones began negotiations to visit the prison and held a meeting with the warden. It was explained by the warden that this was for protection from the general population of the prison. At the meeting with some prisoners Jones found that separate was not equal, that the prisoners in Cell Block G had limited access to prison yard exercise, and that they had to eat dinner at 3:30 so as not to be seated with other prisoners. Jones was allowed to begin counseling individual prisoners which he continued until his retirement in 1986.

1970 – Present
The Gay Liberation Front was founded in Hartford, CT. The Front opened an information center on Farmington Ave. The Gay Liberation Front planned to supplement the activities of the Kalos Society.

In 1971, the Twenty Club was founded in Hartford as a support group for transgender people by Canon Clinton Jones of Christ Church Cathedral and Dr. George Higgins, a professor at Trinity College. The club met at Christ Church Cathedral for more than 30 years.

In March 1976, the State Liquor Commission shut down a drag show performed by Ivan Valentin, a Latinx gender-fluid dancer, at West Hartford’s Finnochio bar. The UCONN School of Law took Valentin’s case and won—ending the ban on male and female “impersonators” and registering a major win for gender-fluid and non-binary people.

Gay Spirit Radio, based at the University of Hartford, went on the air in 1980. With longtime host Keith Brown still at the mike, it is America’s longest continuously running LGBTQ radio show. [I have been on the show probably over a dozen times]

The Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles began allowing transgender individuals to correct their gender on driver’s licenses.

ITS TIME CONNECTICUT [1998 – ITCT became the CT TransAdvocacy Coalition in 2002]
Its Time Connecticut is founded by Jerimarie Liesegang. The group focused in conjunction with other state level advocacy groups to build a grassroots coalition to effect social and legislative change for the Transgender Community. Much of the early work was one on one advocacy for numerous trans folks who contacted ITCT for assistance.

In the 2000s, Connecticut’s transgender and gender nonconforming communities organized for their own safety and protection while pressing for inclusion in legislation that had, sometimes deliberately, excluded them. In 2000, the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities ruled that sex discrimination encompassed discrimination against transgender individuals.

It’s Time Connecticut (ITCT), founded in 1998 by Jerimarie Liesegang, held Connecticut’s first Transgender Day of Remembrance in 2002, an annual event commemorating those lost each year to anti-trans violence. The vigil was co-sponsored by over twenty statewide LGBTQ organizations and attended by nearly 100 trans people and allies. Following the overwhelming success of this event, ITCT transitioned into the Connecticut TransAdvocacy Coalition.

Connecticut became the first state to pass a law that protects the safety and dignity of transgender people who are incarcerated by acknowledging a person by their gender identity, providing services, clothing, commissary items, programming and educational materials that are consistent with their gender identity. People will also have the right to be searched by a correctional staff member of the same gender identity and will be placed in a correctional institution which is consistent with their gender identity.
These are just a few of the topics highlighted on the panels and there are dozens more topics on the panels and they will be traveling around the state, currently it is at the CT Historical Society. If you have any memorabilia or photos you want to donate to the exhibit once the website becomes public you will be able to submit them.

I have been donating my memorabilia to the Central Connecticut State University’s Elihu Burritt Library LGBTQ+ collection. So far I have donate at hundreds items including the actual law the Governor Malloy signed, buttons and badges, meeting minutes of the Anti-Discrimination Coalition, talking points and other legislative strategies.

* The Twenty Club was a spinoff of Project H

I attended the Twenty Club (You can read some of their newsletters here) when it was still moderated Canon Clinton Jones and meeting at Christ Church Cathedral in Hartford in 2002. On slower days we sometimes could get Rev. Jones to talk about the early days of the XX Club.

Rev. Jones said in the early days of Project H they changed the name from Project Homosexual to Project H because the management of the YMCA where they were meeting objected to signs on the meeting days pointing “Project Homosexual” so they changed the name to innocuous “Project H.” At the meetings they we having men attend them who said they were not “gay” but women who were attracted to men.

The Rev. Canon Clinton Jones, Dr. George Higgins, Kathleen Sterner, Ph.D., and if I remember correctly Dr. Snow formed the Gender Identity Clinic of New England. They also had a surgeon who was from the John Hopkins and worked with Dr. Harry Benjamin. Together they created the Twenty Club or XX Club. They chose the name once again to be innocuous and to reflect the female chromosomes.

The Twenty Club is still going strong and meets at the Hartford Gay and Lesbian Health Collective on the second Saturday of the month at 2 PM. The Twenty Club is the oldest trans support group in the nation.