Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Flight Or Fight

That is what parents of trans children has to consider in a state like Florida, Texas and other states as they consider banning healthcare for us.

Parents raise concerns as Florida bans gender-affirming care for trans kids
By Melissa Block
February 20, 2023

When 13-year-old Liz Bostock thinks back, she remembers feeling in-between genders as early as preschool.

Assigned male at birth, she identified as nonbinary by fifth grade and decided to use they/them pronouns. Now a seventh-grader in Gainesville, Fla., with a passion for manga and anime video games, and a bedroom filled with stuffed animals, Liz identifies as female and transgender.

Liz's birth certificate now bears her new legal name and gender marker.

After months of counseling, and with a diagnosis of gender dysphoria, Liz started receiving puberty blockers last August. Every three months, she gets a shot of Lupron, a gonadotropin-releasing hormone, or GnRH, that essentially presses the "pause" button on male puberty.

Contrary to Republican beliefs it is not experimental treatment! It has been around since the late 1970s. Also another Republican lie, it has no lasting side effects.

However, they live in Florida…

Florida is one of a growing number of states to prohibit gender-affirming care for transgender minors. It is the only state to do so not through legislative action, but through a vote of its medical boards.

With the encouragement of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, the state's Board of Medicine and Board of Osteopathic Medicine both passed rules that will ban gender-affirming care such as puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones, as well as surgical procedures, for new patients under age 18.

Notice two things: who are saying trans healthcare is okay and those who say it is not. One side has national medical associations and the other side has politically appointed doctors on the Board.

Politicians disagree with the medical consensus on the safety of gender affirming care for minors

Dozens of leading U.S. medical groups, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Medical Association and the Endocrine Society, endorse gender-affirming care as time-tested, effective, medically necessary, and potentially life-saving.

But Gov. DeSantis has called the treatment "an example of woke ideology infecting medical practice." The state's surgeon general, Dr. Joseph Ladapo, who was appointed by DeSantis, called the treatments "highly experimental," "risky and unproven." Board of Medicine member Dr. Hector Vila said that by banning gender-affirming care, the board was acting to protect children from "irreversible harm."

You can read what I wrote about the state board here.

Doctors say medical care is being politicized and creating a climate of fear

The new rules haven't taken effect yet, but providers and advocates say they've already had a chilling impact. Several gender clinics in Florida have shut down.

Under the new rule, violators could lose their medical license and face steep fines.

So what is a parent to do?

Flight? Move out of state, send their child to another state boarding school?

Fight? Take legal action against the state?

Things to remember. First all court cases are a crap shoot, you can lose as easily as win. Second, there are many Trump appointed judges in Florida. Third, all this legal wrangling is taking its toll on the children and families. And fourth, this is exactly what the transphobic and homophobic Republicans want… us back in the closet or fleeing the state to make it pure… just white straight Anglo-Saxon Christians left in our wake.

I cannot fault the parents for whatever they do because they are doing it for their children. They are damned if they do and damned if they don't, it is the Republican party that put them into this bind.

I see this going down in history as being like some of the greatest failings of our country. It is on the level of the Red and Lavender Scares, and the court cases of Dred Scott v. Sanford, Buck v. Bell, and the  Bowers v. Hardwick.

Anti-transgender rules, rhetoric and legislation are a shameful stain on America's soul
Is another person’s identity threatening to you? Do you have so little respect for your own children that you think the mere mention of gender identity is going to turn them into someone they aren’t?
USA Today
By Rex Huppke
February 20, 2023

To the politicians, people and pundits who’ve decided that the best use of their time, platforms and power is to make life more difficult for transgender people, particularly children, I have a question: What the hell is wrong with you?

I know leading with that question will put you on the defensive. That’s OK. I want you on the defensive. I want you to search your soul, or whatever inhabits the space where your soul once resided, and defend the decision to aggressively attack an already vulnerable group of people for … for what? For political gain? For clicks? So you don’t have to expend the small amount of intellectual energy it takes to understand an issue that, for whatever reason, makes you uncomfortable?


Before attacking transgender people, maybe try to understand the issues

And yet, the bills keep coming. And nobody involved seems willing to learn that gender-affirming care – a highly individualized and carefully monitored psychological and medical treatment – saves lives. Heck, even using a young person’s preferred pronouns and acknowledging that they exist can save lives.

People gather in support of transgender youths during a rally at the Utah Capitol on Jan. 24, 2023, in Salt Lake City.

Consider these facts:

►A recent Canadian study found that “compared with cisgender, heterosexual adolescents, transgender adolescents showed 5 times the risk of suicidal ideation and 7.6 times the risk of suicide attempt.” The 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, the largest data set of its kind, found that 40% of transgender adults report attempting suicide at some point in their lives.

►Research has shown repeatedly that gender-affirming care reduces depression and suicidal ideation. Last year, a study by researchers at the University of Washington found that for “youths aged 13 to 20 years, receipt of gender-affirming care, including puberty blockers and gender-affirming hormones, was associated with 60% lower odds of moderate or severe depression and 73% lower odds of suicidality” over a 12-month period. A poll released in January by the Trevor Project found that “86% of transgender and nonbinary youth say recent debates around anti-trans bills have negatively impacted their mental health.”

Over the course of my seventy plus years I have learned a few things. First you cannot educate someone who doesn’t want to learn. Second, when you get hold of a person’s irrational fears you control them and facts do not matter.

If you support anti-trans rules and legislation, ask yourself these questions

What damn difference does any of this make to you? Did a pronoun pants you and stuff you in a locker in high school? Do you have so little respect for your own children that you think the mere mention of gender identity is going to turn them into someone they aren’t?

Is another person’s identity threatening to you? Have you tried actually speaking with a transgender person? Have you made any effort to understand that which you’re railing against?

You can't change the far right. So go for the movable middle! Those are the ones we have to educate.


We need them!

And we have a powerful one in Shania Twain.

Shania Twain Reacts to Anti-Drag Legislation: ‘We Need Drag Queens to Share Their Talent With Us’
She also sang label-mate Kim Petras' praises in a new interview with GLAAD.
By Stephen Daw
February 23, 2023

When it comes to attacks on drag artists around the country, they don’t impress Shania Twain much.

In a new interview with GLAAD’s Anthony Allen Ramos, Twain spoke about her ongoing support for the LGBTQ community, including drag queens who “inspire” her to this day. When asked about the wave of legislation attempting to ban public drag performances around the U.S., Twain was clear with how she felt.

“Oh my god, drag shows are so fun,” she said. “I so admire the talent there, it takes a lot of courage — fashion in itself takes courage … I’m very inspired by it, and I think we need this inspiration; we need drag queens to share their talent with us.”


The “Man! I Feel Like a Woman” singer also made clear her unwavering support for the LGBTQ community, saying that despite ongoing legislative attacks against queer rights, she had hope for the future.

We need allies, when we speak up we have an ax to grind while allies speak from the heart. 

Monday, February 27, 2023

Here Comes "The Handmaid's Tale"

The right-wing conservative want to turn our country into a “Christian Nation” just like the Islamic nation they so strongly despise.

The Christian Nationalist Machine Turning Hate Into Law
The National Association of Christian Lawmakers is enacting its "biblical worldview," one state legislature at a time
Rolling Stone
By Tim Dickinson
February 23, 2023

Jason Rapert has likened himself to an Old Testament seer, conveying hard truths on behalf of an angry God. On his broadcast Save the Nation, the 50-year-old preacher and former Arkansas state senator calls himself a “proud” Christian Nationalist, insisting: “I reject that being a Christian Nationalist is somehow unseemly or wrong.”

Long a shadowy force in American politics, Christian Nationalism is having a coming out party. The movement seeks a fusion of fundamentalist theology with American civic life. “They believe that this country was founded for Christians like them, generally natural-born citizens and white,” says Andrew Whitehead, author of Taking America Back for God: Christian Nationalism in the United States. Whitehead emphasizes that the danger of Christian Nationalism to democracy is that the movement “sees no room for compromise — their vision must be the one that comes to pass.”

Thanks to Rapert, the Christian Nationalist movement now commands a burgeoning political powerhouse, the National Association of Christian Lawmakers. A first-of-its-kind organization in U.S. history, NACL advances “biblical” legislation in America’s statehouses. These bills are not mere stunts or messaging. They’re dark, freedom-limiting bills that, in some cases, have become law. 

NACL’s impact has already been felt nationally. The group played a significant role in the legal fight that culminated in the Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade. NACL member Bryan Hughes, who serves in the Texas legislature, led passage of S.B. 8, the bounty-hunter bill that all-but outlawed abortion in Texas by allowing private citizens to sue women who terminate pregnancies after six weeks, and their doctors, in civil court. 

And it is only one sect that they want the nation to follow, religious sects that are affirming of LGBTQ+… Nein. Religions that allow abortions… Nein.  Religions that allow women ministers… Nein.

Today, NACL has legislative members in 31 states, and touts a dozen “model laws” that its members can introduce “in legislative bodies around the country.” NACL previously made four of its model laws public — including the Texas-style anti-abortion bill and a bill to mandate the display of “In God We Trust” in public buildings. 

It is through them and the Alliance Defending Freedom that all these anti-trans and anti-LGBTQ+ bills are being introduced.

With a national agenda and a state-by-state focus, NACL is emulating the American Legislative Exchange Council. An infamous corporate front group, ALEC pioneered the strategy of pushing for national political goals by advancing carbon-copy bills through state legislatures. But where ALEC serves far-right billionaire masters and polluting special interests, NACL sees itself as serving the Lord on high. Rapert has touted NACL as “basically ALEC from a biblical worldview.” 

Founded in Aug. 2020, NACL is tied to top Christian spiritual and political leaders. The group’s advisory board includes onetime presidential candidate Mike Huckabee — the former governor of Arkansas and father of the new governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders — Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, Family Research Council president Tony Perkins, and Mat Staver, president of Liberty Counsel. (Liberty Counsel is a frequent litigant before the Supreme Court; the head of its ministry, Rolling Stone exposed, bragged of praying with SCOTUS justices.)

Rapert declares that America was founded as a “Judeo-Christian nation.” And he believes that from the moment the founding fathers “dedicated this nation to God” that “Satan and his forces [have] put a target on the United States of America, trying to take us out.”

What I am concerned about is that if the Republicans get the trifecta (The presidency, the Senate, and the House) and get a trifecta in 34 states (They have 22 already!) that they will try to pass a constitutional amendment codifying their attempt to be a Christian nation. The “Handmaid's Tale” is becoming reality! 

So You Didn’t Get The Job.

And in the back of your mind you wonder why? Was there any bias in why I didn’t get the job? Was it because I’m trans?

These are the questions that we wonder about and now there is a new villain… AI

AI has been in the news lately thanks to ChatGPT, I wrote about “An Experiment: ChatGPT & Trans Children” and here "AI Bias In Surveillance Of Transgender People" but AI is being used in so many other locations and application. PBS’s Independent Lens had a show about AI discrimination “Coded Bias.”

Premiered March 22, 2021
Directed by Shalini Kantayya
Coded Bias exposes prejudices and threats to civil liberty in facial recognition algorithms and artificial intelligence.


In an increasingly data-driven, automated world, the question of how to protect individuals’ civil liberties in the face of artificial intelligence looms larger by the day. Coded Bias follows M.I.T. Media Lab computer scientist Joy Buolamwini, along with data scientists, mathematicians, and watchdog groups from all over the world, as they fight to expose the discrimination within algorithms now prevalent across all spheres of daily life. 

While conducting research on facial recognition technologies at the M.I.T. Media Lab, Buolamwini, a “poet of code,” made the startling discovery that some algorithms could not detect dark-skinned faces or classify women with accuracy. This led to the harrowing realization that the very machine-learning algorithms intended to avoid prejudice are only as unbiased as the humans and historical data programming them.

I don’t know if you read about lawyers being barred from Madison Square Garden using facial recognition. And companies are using AI recognition software for employment.

AI tools fail to reduce recruitment bias - study
BBC News
By Chris Vallance
13 October 2022

Artificially intelligent hiring tools do not reduce bias or improve diversity, researchers say in a study.

"There is growing interest in new ways of solving problems such as interview bias," the Cambridge University researchers say, in the journal Philosophy and Technology

The use of AI is becoming widespread - but its analysis of candidate videos or applications is "pseudoscience".

A professional body for human resources told BBC News AI could counter bias.

In 2020, the study notes, an international survey of 500 human-resources professionals suggested nearly a quarter were using AI for "talent acquisition, in the form of automation".

But using it to reduce bias is counter-productive and, University of Cambridge's Centre for Gender Studies post-doctoral researcher Dr Kerry Mackereth told BBC News, based on "a myth".

"These tools can't be trained to only identify job-related characteristics and strip out gender and race from the hiring process, because the kinds of attributes we think are essential for being a good employee are inherently bound up with gender and race," she said.

But the question remains what about discriminating against minorities?

In 2018, for example, Amazon announced it had scrapped the development of an AI-powered recruitment engine because it could detect gender from CVs and discriminated against female applicants.

We know that it discriminates against women and Blacks but what about trans people? 

Can bots discriminate? It's a big question as companies use AI for hiring
By Andrea Hsu
January 31, 2023

AI may be the hiring tool of the future, but it could come with the old relics of discrimination.

With almost all big employers in the United States now using artificial intelligence and automation in their hiring processes, the agency that enforces federal anti-discrimination laws is considering some urgent questions:

How can you prevent discrimination in hiring when the discrimination is being perpetuated by a machine? What kind of guardrails might help?

Some 83% of employers, including 99% of Fortune 500 companies, now use some form of automated tool as part of their hiring process, said the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's chair Charlotte Burrows at a hearing on Tuesday titled "Navigating Employment Discrimination in AI and Automated Systems: A New Civil Rights Frontier," part of a larger agency initiative examining how technology is used to recruit and hire people.

Whoa! And we still don’t know if AI discriminate against us.

Resume scanners, chatbots and video interviews may introduce bias

Last year, the EEOC issued some guidance around the use of cutting-edge hiring tools, noting many of their shortcomings.

What about us?

Take, for example, a video interview that analyzes an applicant's speech patterns in order to determine their ability to solve problems. A person with a speech impediment might score low and automatically be screened out.

Or, a chatbot programmed to reject job applicants with gaps in their resume. The bot may automatically turn down a qualified candidate who had to stop working because of treatment for a disability or because they took time off for the birth of a child.

Older workers may be disadvantaged by AI-based tools in multiple ways, AARP senior advisor Heather Tinsley-Fix said in her testimony during the hearing.

Still nothing about us.

In an article in Forbes last year,

What once was touted as the solution to hiring bias, both conscious and unconscious, AI is now considered by some government leaders as having the potential to “reproduce and deepen systemic patterns of discrimination.” Local governments from New York City to Illinois have enacted legislation regulating the use of AI in hiring, hoping to curb the biases AI might create.

But private companies still use it and the question remains… does it discriminate against us?

On a lawyer's website I found,

The EEOC appears concerned that similar algorithms and other artificial intelligence (AI) used in employment and hiring might similarly have unforeseen adverse consequences on the employment process.  In 2016, the EEOC began to examine the issue of AI, people analytics, and big data in hiring and other employment decisions.   This year, the EEOC launched a new initiative to ensure that these emerging tools comply with federal civil rights laws that the agency enforces, including Title VII.   The EEOC Chair stated that “the EEOC is keenly aware that these tools may mask and perpetuate bias or create new discriminatory barriers to jobs. We must work to ensure that these new technologies do not become a high-tech pathway to discrimination.”

And I haven’t found anything about trans people and AI facial recognition nor employment AI and I think that there is no data because no one cares about us we are too small of a minority.

Sunday, February 26, 2023

I Would Do More Than That!

The students are planning on a walkout I would do more than that! I would sue the pants off the colleges that sent the medical information.

Ron DeSantis requested the information of trans students who sought care at Florida's public universities. Now students are planning a statewide walkout.
By Annalise Mabe
February 22, 2023

  • Ron DeSantis told all public universities in Florida to hand over medical data on services performed related to gender dysphoria.
  • Insider has confirmed six of the 12 universities have complied with the request.
  • Now, college students across the state are planning a walkout to protest the governor's request.

Students across Florida are planning a statewide walkout after Gov. Ron DeSantis requested all public universities comply in delivering data from student health services on transgender students who sought gender-affirming care at the institutions.


Insider has confirmed that University of Florida, Florida State University, University of Central Florida, Florida A&M University, Florida International University, and the University of North Florida have complied with the request, but has yet to hear back from the rest. 

Students at these universities are now planning rallies for next week along with the statewide walkout on February 23. Ben Braver, a junior at the University of South Florida and the outreach officer for the school's College Democrats chapter, is leading the initiative, known as the Stand for Freedom Florida Walkout. 

First I would request all correspondence between the university and the state regarding medical records, next I would ask for a copy of you release of HIPAA information to a non-medical facility. Then I would sue them!

"The governor's abusing his power," Frost told Insider. "He's targeting folks that disagree with him — people who might not see eye to eye with him, marginalized communities."

It will be interesting in see what medical records were sent to the state. Was it just… “We have 100 trans students” or was it “here is a list of the individuals and their medical records,” That is a big difference! One is a violation of HIPAA and one isn’t.

It seems that maybe they didn’t violate HIPAA,

"As a state university, USF has an obligation to be responsive to requests from our elected officials," the university said in a statement, according to WUSF. "However, the university will not provide information that identifies an individual patient or violates patient privacy laws."

If that is true of all the university it is not quite as bad as first reported, but…

It still has a chilling effect on the trans and LGBTQ+ community. When government starts a witch hunt it hurts everyone. People wonder who’s next? What minority is the governor going to go after next? It is Big Brother running amok. 


Update 4:25 PM: What the students need to do is organize! Get out the vote! Go door-to-door! Have town hall meetings! Start a phone bank! Public access cable TV shows!

When we were trying to pass the gender inclusive non-discrimination law I was on a cable access show down in New London about once every couple of months. I did phone banking for the Lamont senate campaign (Which I hated and will not do it again. Why, because I am an introvert. Do you know how hard that was to come out of my shell?).

The Chilling Effect.


Stop and think, what this witch hunt is doing.

When I went to college you chose your classes, there were three or four taught at the same time and you picked which class you wanted. There were hard professors, there were easy professors. There were some neat classes and some boring classes. There were liberal professors, there were conservative professors. And there were some liberal colleges and some conservative colleges… You picked your choices.

PBAU professor is being investigated for teaching racial justice in class. Here's what university says.
Palm Beach Post via Yahoo
By Andrew Marra
February 21, 2023

Samuel Joeckel has taught the same writing composition class at Palm Beach Atlantic University for more than a decade. And while he says the course has not changed much in years, the world he teaches in has.

The veteran English professor says he learned just how much last week when he received a visit after class from a dean and the school’s provost.

The somber-faced administrators told him Wednesday that his annual contract renewal, usually a formality, was being postponed while they investigated a claim he was “indoctrinating” students with discussions about racial justice, he recalled.

A parent, it seemed, had called to complain.

OMG! A parent complained!

“PBAU administration has never voiced any concern about my racial justice unit over the last 12 years,” he said. “This was the first time. And it’s also the time when they informed me that they may not renew my contract.”

His teaching was never a problem until the conservatives started their offensive on “Woke” and liberal professors.

Some of Joeckel’s former students say the move against him coincides with what they see as a move by school leaders to identify more visibly with conservative politics and political leaders

A turning point, some said, was in 2020, when it angered some students by naming first lady Melania Trump as its annual “woman of distinction.”

“I think that was the mark of when things really started to change and the culture started to change,” said Danielle Hawk, a former student and school employee who is now among those clamoring for Joeckel to keep his job.

They are banning books claiming that the books are obscene and phonographic but what the books really are is a threat to the right-wing ideology. They are books on LGBTQ+, and they are books on Black history.

They say that we are “indoctrinating” and “grooming” but in reality they are the one who are want to control the children and make then fear those who are different! They are the ones who want to wipe out “liberals” and “free thinkers.”

This has a very chilling effect on professors and teachers!

This has a very chilling effect on society!

This has a very chilling affect on the LGBTQ and Black children!

This teaches that it okay to discriminate and bully those who are different from them.

The conservatives want to turn us in to an authoritarian banana republic.

A Night Out On The Town.

Six of us went out to dinner last night at an Italian restaurant, three trans and three cis and you know what happened? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

I was the first to arrive, I was sitting there and everyone was staring at ME! Fuck, it is going to be one of those nights! But wait they are not looking at me but slightly over my head, I turn around and look up. There is a TV and they are doing the sports… Ah.

It was very crowded and the service was slow but what do you expect on a Saturday night?

The table next to us had four senior ladies and they were telling one joke after another laughing, we could hear some of the joke and were giggling along with them. On the way out they stopped at our table and talked a while.

The food was above average for a pizza joint, I had chicken Saltimbocca and a beer. The Saltimbocca didn’t have the traditional sauce but more of a gravy with a ton of mushrooms.

Oh I should add how we were dressed; sneakers, jeans, and a nice top. I had a red turtleneck with a denim jacket.

Saturday, February 25, 2023

Saturday 9 -- Mahler: Symphony No. 8

Sam's Saturday 9 -- Mahler: Symphony No. 8 (1968)

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

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

1) Mahler's No. 8 is sometimes referred to as "Symphony of a Thousand" because it was scored for a large orchestra and choral force. Do you often listen to classical music?

Once in a great while and I have only one album that it like, Ferde Grofé: Grand Canyon Suite

2) This piece has solos for each of the main vocal ranges: soprano, alto, tenor, bass. Do you know which range your voice is in?

That of a frog croaking.

3) Historians tell us Mahler kept fit by swimming and riding his bike along the Alpine trails. What's your favorite form of exercise? 

Well since the great plague I haven’t done any exercise which I have to correct because lack of exercise is causing medical problems which makes it even harder to exercise.

4) Mahler could be difficult to work with because when it came to his music, he was a stickler over even the most minor details and wouldn't give an inch. Would you rather work as part of a team or on your own?

Yes. I’m on several committees but I also like working on my own, it really depends on what the tasks are. Some jobs lend themselves to be group work while other are individuals jobs. And some jobs even are both group and single jobs.

5) This week's featured artist, Leonard Bernstein, said his father didn't want him to pursue music. Instead the elder Bernstein wanted his son to either join the family business (a beauty supply company) or become a rabbi. Did your family try to influence your choice of career?

Not directly… my father was an engineer (Civil) and my brother was an engineer (System) and I liked electronics.

6) Bernstein's best-known work is West Side Story. Without looking it up, can you name a song from this beloved Broadway classic?

Yeah, it was about… about… wait it coming to me. It was sung by the leading lady. Ah… America. How could I forget that name.

7) Born in Lawrence, MA, Bernstein "went home" when he performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood in Lenox, MA. Tanglewood has played host to a variety of musical artists. In 2022, Ringo Starr, Bonnie Raitt, and James Taylor all performed there (with James Taylor scheduled to return this summer, as well). What's the first concert you ever attended?

Here we go again with 50 year old memories… I think it was a brand new group called Genesis with a no name called Phil Collins and it was their first US tour back in 1972.

8) In 1968, when Bernstein released this album, a sitcom called Mayberry R.F.D. premiered. It was a spin off of the highly successful Andy Griffith Show, which ran from 1960 to 1968 and is still broadcast and streamed today. Were you an Andy Griffith Show fan?

Nope, I did watch the  Andy Griffith Show but none of the other spin offs.

I am currently watch YouTube videos "The trip between Oslo and Bergen with Bergensbanen is just stunning"

9) Random question: When people ask for your advice, what do they usually ask you about?

Three guesses what question that I get asked about.

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, February 24, 2023

Round Two… Here We Go Again!

The Republicans are trying it again and we are the ping pong ball.

Upset by military ‘wokeness,’ Rubio proposes bill to ban many trans people from serving
McClatchy DC
By Grethel Aguila
February 17, 2023

Republican U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio is bringing forth a bill that in many cases would bar transgender people from serving in the military.

While the proposal outlines a few exceptions, it seeks to disqualify anyone who identifies as transgender and who seeks or has undertaken gender reassignment surgery. A transgender person without a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria, Rubio’s draft says, can serve under their sex assigned at birth.

If passed and signed by President Joe Biden — an unlikely scenario — the law would also require the Secretary of Defense to limit the service member database to only collect sex assigned at birth and change any gender markers that “do not match a service member’s biological sex.”

They did it once and they want to punish us for being difference and upsetting their tiny world view. They want to distract people from the real problems.

The Washington Blade wrote,

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and U.S. Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) introduced a proposal on Thursday to ban Americans who have a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria from serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.

The lawmakers’ “Ensuring Military Readiness Act” would go further than the transgender military ban enacted in 2017 under former President Donald Trump that was revoked by President Joe Biden just five days after his inauguration in January 2021.


Rubio and Banks characterized the Biden administration’s revocation of the Trump era ban as, respectively, a move that “turned our military into a woke social experiment” and a “purely political” decision grounded in “far left ideology.”

Republican U.S. Sens. Marsha Blackburn (Tenn.), Ted Budd (N.C.), Tommy Tuberville (Ala.) and Mike Braun (Ind.) are the original cosponsors for the bill, which has been endorsed by a coalition of right-wing organizations including the Family Research Council, which the Southern Poverty Law Center has designated a hate group.


People are waking up to the bigotry, the animosity, and the lies from the right.

When asked;

Spokespeople for Rubio and Banks did not immediately respond to questions about whether efforts would be better spent helping service members and their families with real challenges like housing affordability and food insecurity, or whether they could provide evidence that Biden’s reversal of the Trump-era ban negatively impacted the readiness or performance of the U.S. Armed Services.

Meanwhile at the White House.

“There are a lot of things Marco Rubio could be working on for the American people, including:

  • Keeping Americans safe from gun violence with common sense gun legislation
  • Lowering prescription drug prices for America’s seniors, including a universal insulin cap
  • Protecting and strengthening Medicare and Social Security for America’s seniors.

But at a time when recruiting is a critical priority for our military, Sen. Rubio is instead focusing on blocking patriotic transgender Americans who would die for the United States of America from serving our country. That says a lot more about his priorities than it does about the brave transgender Americans willing to fight and die for our country.”

As Rubio and Banks announced their proposed ban on Thursday, a bipartisan group lawmakers on the Senate Armed Services Committee led by U.S. Sens. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) reintroduced a bill that would aid service members and their families who are experiencing hunger and food insecurity.

Smoke and mirrors.

That is what the Republicans are doing… look at these horrible trans people in the military that are causing no one to volunteer! Maybe, just maybe the low volunteer rate might be caused by military families having to go on SNAP, living in dilapidated base housing, and the low pay.

Maybe it is because Trump took billions from the Defense Department's budget to build his wall! The funds were destine for base housing, and schools!

But somehow the Republicans don’t want to talk about that, instead they make us the scapegoat.


 Know Thy Enemy. One of the leading groups banning books and going after the LGBTQ+ community is Moms for Liberty (I think that it is very ironic that these groups that want to oppress us have "Liberty" and "Freedom" in their names.).

Meet Moms for Liberty, the group leading LGBTQ book bans in Pa. schools
At least 27 Pa. counties in have active chapters of the group, which was founded in Florida in 2021
The Pennsylvania Capital-Star
By Gary L. Day
February 18, 2023

In the ongoing battle over school book bans in Pennsylvania and nationwide, one group is speaking with an outsized voice.

Founded in early 2021 in Florida, Moms for Liberty (M4L) has expanded since then and now has over 200 county chapters nationwide in 35 states. The organization currently claims over 200,000 members.

Originally focused on opposing mask mandates in schools during the COVID-19 pandemic, Moms for Liberty quickly expanded its agenda to oppose LGBT-positive policies in schools, LGBT-themed materials in school libraries, what they believe is critical race theory in curricula, and many other diversity-positive issues related to schools and students.

The organization has seen success in Pennsylvania, with chapters in at least 27 counties across the commonwealth.

Thanks to efforts by M4L and its Republican allies, Pennsylvania ranks third in the nation in the number of school library book bans. Between July 2021 and June 2022, the commonwealth saw 457 book bans across 11 school districts.

These buttinskies are trying to tell parents what to teach their children.

M4L tends to follow a predictable playbook. If a particular school board is not responsive to the organization’s demands, M4L mobilizes its membership to put forth a slate of right-wing candidates for the next election. According to Karen Smith, board member for the Central Bucks school district, that was exactly the strategy that gave M4L supporters a majority in Smith’s district. The result is that Central Bucks is undergoing a new round of efforts to ban a fresh list of LGBT-themed and racially inclusive books from the school library.

They want to stick their noses in our raising of our children.

In response to M4L’s expanding presence, organizations are springing up to push back against the conservative takeover of local school boards. These include: Parents for the Freedom to Learn, whose purpose is to mobilized progressive parents to oppose oppressive education policies and book bans; School Board Partners, which seeks to challenge the growing conservative presence on school boards; and Truth(Ed) advocates to protect students’ rights to an unencumbered education. All these organizations have a strong, vocal online presence, as they attempt to combat Moms for Liberty’s expansion.

Animosity against us is what is driving this. The Republicans want to keep their voting base angry and we have counter with our love of inclusion. We have to organize of all who are against this invasion of our rights.

The New York Times wrote in A Fast-Growing Network of Conservative Groups Is Fueling a Surge in Book Bans,

Traditionally, debates over what books are appropriate for school libraries have taken place between a concerned parent and a librarian or administrator, and resulted in a single title or a few books being re-evaluated, and either removed or returned to shelves.

But recently, the issue has been supercharged by a rapidly growing and increasingly influential constellation of conservative groups. The organizations frequently describe themselves as defending parental rights. Some are new and others are longstanding, but with a recent focus on books. Some work at the district and state level, others have national reach. And over the past two years or so, they have grown vastly more organized, interconnected, well funded — and effective.

The groups have pursued their goals by becoming heavily involved in local and state politics, where Republican efforts have largely outmatched liberal organizations in many states for years. They have created political action committees, funded campaigns, endorsed candidates and packed school boards, helping to fuel a surge in challenges to individual books and to drive changes in the rules governing what books are available to children.

The $64,000 question is their money coming from?

The 74 (The 74 is a nonprofit news organization covering America’s education system from early childhood through college and career.) had an article…

Moms for Liberty, one of the fastest-growing and most recognized conservative parent advocacy groups in the nation, paid $21,357 to a company owned by the husband of one of its founding members, campaign finance records show. 

The group doled out the money to Microtargeted Media, founded by Christian Ziegler, a current Sarasota County commissioner and vice chairman of the Florida GOP, in late August. 

Moms for Liberty was founded by three people, Tina Descovich, Tiffany Justice and Bridget Ziegler, Christian’s wife, who served as its director through February 2021. Bridget Ziegler joined the Sarasota County School Board in 2014 and was re-elected this summer. 


Almost all of the money donated to Moms for Liberty Florida came from a $50,000 donation from Publix heiress Julie Fancelli in late June and nearly half of it went to Microtargeted Media. The contribution from Fancelli, a prominent financial backer of the Jan. 6 rally that led to the attack on the Capitol, accounted for all but $837 of the cash raised by Moms for Liberty Florida. Almost all the rest of the committee’s funds went in $250 donations to dozens of politically aligned Florida school board candidates.

These pogroms against us are well funded and lead by right-wings conservatives. They are anti-LGBTQ and are trying spread their animosity toward us.

Even books without sexual content can be problematic if they include L.G.B.T.Q. characters, because they are “sexualizing children,” she said: “It is normalizing a lifestyle that is a sexual choice.”

“Those kinds of lifestyles,” she added, shouldn’t “be forced down the throats of families who don’t agree.”

It is seen by their words and deeds that they have a warp senses of beliefs that somehow being LGBTQ+ is a choice that we somehow make. They still believe that only chromosomes determines gender and being gay or lesbians is not inborn in us.

And it is not only us they are against but also… Blacks and other minorities.

Campbell called Moms for Liberty and another highly watched group, The 1776 Project Political Action Committee, which has raised $3 million to advocate for conservative school board candidates nationally this year, “a weird combination of single-issue organizing,” in this case around the topic of education, “and a fairly diffuse set of goals — either focused on a hot-topic issue that will fade quickly, like CRT [critical race theory] — or on goals that are too amorphous to actually be accomplished, like ‘patriotism.’’’ 

These are the far right-wing Republicans who want to tell you how to raise your children. These buttinskies, busybodies, meddler… no, no those words don’t describe them… words more like fascist, authoritarians, jingoistic fit them much better.

For them words like diversity, inclusion, cross-cultural, and multiracial are swear words and arouse anger.

Thursday, February 23, 2023

Mama Bears

You don’t want to awake the mama bears.

God loves all kids, including my trans son. Missouri lawmakers bring out my mama bear | Opinion
Kansas City Star
By Dawna Daigneault
February 21, 2023

Like many folks in Missouri, I was raised in a conservative household. Growing up, I did not know anyone who was openly LGBTQ, and my church taught me that LGBTQ people were sinful. Now, I’m the proud mom of a trans son. I’ve learned so much from him and on this journey as a parent. But one thing hasn’t changed since I gave birth to him years ago: I know that God loves him, and all children.

Early in my professional career as a therapist, I had clients who came out to me because they trusted me. Witnessing their honesty and courage moved me further toward understanding that LGBTQ people want the same things we all want: to love and be loved, and to be accepted for who they are.

When my son told me he was transgender, I was afraid. Like many Missourians, I didn’t know anyone who was trans, and I worried that people would be unkind. I’m not proud of my initial response. I know I contributed to his pain and distress as a teenager.

But what I came to realize is that my kids are evidence of God’s great accepting love of all children. I am grateful to know my children and be taught, by them, how to love them best. I learned that you don’t have to understand everything about being transgender to love someone for who they are.

I have always thought that we were put here by god for a reason, he made LGBTQ+ people to test others. Now I am not a religious person but I believe in god but I feel that it is how you live your life that counts. Having compassion for other, and empathy for those in needs and I feel that god put us here to test others.

I remember reading in Catholic Catechism class that Jesus said “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: Just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.”

I believe that we are here to test that love. But I feel that a lot of people are failing.

Between us, my husband and I have four delightful children. Our kids are precious to us. We love to get together to celebrate their birthdays, when they get to pick their favorite meal (often my husband’s four-star meatloaf). As a therapist and as a mom, I want the same things for all children: support, safety and the freedom to become who they really are.

And parents in Florida…

Parents raise concerns as Florida bans gender-affirming care for trans kids
NPR News
By Melissa Block
February 20, 2023


"It's been amazing," says her mother, Virginia Hamner, who says she's seen her daughter "light up" with gender-affirming care. "It's fun and exciting for her to be able to be exactly who she wants to be," she says.

But under new rules passed by Florida's medical boards, it's unclear whether Liz will be able to continue on to further treatment.


In the current climate, she worries about what she calls "the constant invalidation" of who River is. "Constantly seeing that who you are is a political debate, [or] an agenda item on anyone's list," she says, "makes you feel less than human."

We hear the rallying cry of "Parental Rights!" all the time from Republicans... but it is always one sided. What about the rights of parents who support LGBTQ+ children?

They better watch out the conservatives have awaken the “mama bears” and there is one thing that we have learned in nature you don’t want to get between a mama bear and its club.

The Superbowl!

I watched the Superbowl with some friends and when the ‘He Gets Us’ ad came on my reaction was “Hun?” it looked like an affirming ad, that it was for diversity, women rights, etc. but I was still confused about the ad.

The ‘He Gets Us’ Super Bowl ads brought back bad memories
How the Christian ‘seeker’ movement can cause serious harm.
Christian News Service
By Kirsten Powers
February 14, 2023

Almost 20 years ago, in early 2005, I tagged along with a boyfriend to a Presbyterian church service on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. I assumed it was a mainline Protestant church and didn’t bother to get any further information because I honestly didn’t care. I was a lapsed Episcopalian and, depending on which day you asked me, agnostic or atheist. I was just going to church to please my boyfriend.

Long story short, it was an evangelical church that sought to be “seeker friendly.” They led with the good stuff: Jesus was an immigrant, a radical when it came to treating women equally and a champion of the downtrodden. It was an intellectually stimulating format, including sermons that were laced with poetry, art references, philosophy and pop culture. I was intrigued, to say the least.

I remember back in high school when I attended Catholic mass they had a folk music to bring in the youth (I attended the mass because my girlfriend at the time played in the folk band). It was the hook that they thought would pull in the teenagers and young adults.

The organization “He Gets Us” has pledged to spend a billion dollars to target skeptics, seekers and lapsed Christians by “reintroducing Jesus” to them. From CNN:

The campaign is arresting, portraying the pivotal figure of Christianity as an immigrant, a refugee, a radical, an activist for women’s rights and a bulwark against racial injustice and political corruption. The “He Gets Us” website features content about of-the-moment topics, like artificial intelligence and social justice. “Whatever you are facing, Jesus faced it too,” the campaign claims.

These things are all true about Jesus. The problem is that while the organization won’t disclose its financial backers, the billionaire Hobby Lobby founder David Green told Glenn Beck that his family is a major funder. If Green expressed his views on what the phrases “women’s rights” and “racial justice” mean, they very likely would not be what most people think of when these subjects come up. (Green’s family sued the government over the Affordable Care Act because they didn’t want their employees’ insurance plans to cover drugs that might cause an abortion.)

When I asked “He Gets Us” representatives what they meant by “women’s rights,” they pointed me to a link on their website that lays out the various ways that Jesus was extraordinary for his time in the way he treated women. It’s true, he was. But they must know that when most people — especially those they are targeting — hear “women’s rights,” they don’t realize that just speaking to a woman was a radical act for Jesus.

A religious non-profit here in Connecticut was opposed to a law requiring “abortion clinic” to list their services and they fought it tooth and nail!

Here in Connecticut in 2021 the legislature passed a bill requiring truth in advertising for abortion clinics, AN ACT CONCERNING DECEPTIVE ADVERTISING PRACTICES OF LIMITED SERVICES PREGNANCY CENTERS. Why did conservative Christian non-profits oppose it? Because they thought that “religious freedom” gave them the right to lie to save the unborn!

What they were doing was calling themselves “Abortion Clinics” when they didn’t proved any abortion services they only counseled against abortions, they strung along the woman until it was too late to have a legal abortion.

The CT Mirror reported that,

Critics have said that staff at the pregnancy centers sometimes pose as medical professionals to lure in women and hand out misleading information about abortions.

The CNS article goes on to say,

If the day I walked into that Upper East Side church service the pastor had given a sermon calling homosexuality a sin or said that women should submit to their husbands, I would have gotten up and walked out. I only learned that these were core teachings after I had been attending a year and a half and was in too deep. Abortion was never addressed from the pulpit (at least to my knowledge), but once I started asking, I found the church community fairly homogeneous in its anti-abortion beliefs, a view that the pastor expressed publicly many years after I left the church.

Lies by omission.

We see this in many organizations that want to control their disciples.

Case in point:

Do you remember prominent GOP Representatives and Senators saying that they want to cut Social Security and Medicare and then quickly backing off saying that they didn’t mean it? They still want to do it but those representatives and senators broke a cardinal rule… they talked about it!

The problem of the lack of up-front honesty about theological beliefs in evangelical churches led to the creation of the organization Church Clarity. My story is not a one-off. It happens all the time.

Which is why the refusal of “He Gets Us” to disclose their donors is so problematic.

The link they sent me explained that they are keeping their donors a secret to keep the focus on Jesus, which doesn’t really make sense. How would saying that there are progressive Christians funders in addition to the conservative funders violate anyone’s desire to keep their involvement secret or distract from Jesus?

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Now They Are Going After The Adults Healthcare!

Their motto was “Save the Children” for all the laws they are passing against trans youth, well now their true motive has come out. It is really about trans people and not saving trans youth.

Transgender care targeted into adulthood in these states
Several states have introduced bills to restrict care access for young adults.
ABC News
By Kiara Alfonseca
February 17, 2023

In some states, being able to take hormone therapies may soon become banned or restricted for adults like Spero [A 25 yo trans activist].

Though Spero was protesting a ban against care for minors, they know they’re not in the clear. They believe their access to care in adulthood also could be restricted or limited.

Across the country, Republican-led efforts include seeking to ban or restrict gender-affirming care for people into adulthood or placing barriers for adults trying to access such care.


In Oklahoma, a proposed bill would make it a felony for anyone under the age of 26 to access gender-affirming care in the state.


In Virginia, a proposed bill would ban gender-affirming surgeries for people under the age of 21. The legislation was amended to remove bans on hormone therapies.


A bill in South Carolina is identical to the original Virginia bill in that it bans gender-affirming procedures for people under 21 and makes it harder for people to access that care when they’re over 21.

Then we have this Republican who said,

State Sen. Mark J. Peake, who is behind the bill, told ABC News that he wants to restrict gender-affirming surgeries until patients are 21 because “juvenile brains really are not developed as a teen."

But Republicans across the country want to lower the age that children can buy assault weapons!

“Save the Children”…. Bull! The next thing is the Republicans will have pushed the age limit to 65 and above. For a party who’s motto is get the government off our backs they sure are stepping between a doctor and their patients.

When will this Republican pogrom against end?

Listen To Us!

We know, if you want to know anything about trans ask us!

There were only two people who were cis gender that I trusted to talk about trans issues and one of them passed away. I trust them because they are/were immerse in the trans culture.

The New York Times was criticized for its reporting on trans issues. Good.
USA Today
By David Oliver
February 20, 2023

The New York Times has faced an onslaught of criticism for its coverage of the transgender community for years – but it reached a fervent fever pitch last week after the publication of several open letters.

One letter came from more than 100 New York Times contributors, and another from GLAAD and other organizations like the Human Rights Campaign and Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund.

“The Times has in recent years treated gender diversity with an eerily familiar mix of pseudoscience and euphemistic, charged language, while publishing reporting on trans children that omits relevant information about its sources," the letter from New York Times contributors reads.

And I agree with them. I've read several stories from the Times that have been written under the guise of responsible reporting, only to shepherd false narratives about the transgender community and particularly transgender youth when it comes to transitioning. I don't want to give them more attention, so I won't link to them here.

Comcast Newsmakers
I have have been interviewed by around a dozen different reporters, there are good one who did their homework and bad one who didn’t.

The transgender community faces hardships like these on a daily basis – not to mention a continuing tidal wave of discriminatory legislation. Trans people are like Sisyphus, forever barreling a boulder up a never-ending hill. Their journey to acceptance is only that much harder when news organizations paint false narratives about them – i.e. doubling down on fringe medical opinions as opposed to focusing on substantial research. And that's if media covers them at all.

He is right!

We also need heartwarming stories.

In the face of trauma, trans people often persevere and find joy. Experts say the two are inextricably linked.

"It is not only important but essential to celebrate," Sara Warner, director of Cornell University's LGBT studies program, previously told USA TODAY. "Our pleasure is our resistance to the hate, homophobia/transphobia, and fearmongering aimed at LGBT individuals and communities."

Joy and happiness are very important. I have entered a number of my photos in the local agricultural fair, I just about won a prize each year for my entries… except one year*. They brought me pride and joy. That’s one of the reasons I donate photos to non-profits, the joy? Amusement? Delight?

Listen to trans people

Trans people also must confront the mental toll associated with media coverage. Negative headline after negative headline can hurt anyone. But statistics show the transgender community – specifically transgender youth – is particularly vulnerable to a lack of acceptance. 

Before I retired and I was Executive Director of CTAC I researched the topic that I was going to be interviewed about. Both for and against, I listened to all the bile from the conservatives so I could form replies in case I was asked something on that topic. That is what I do for this blog, I research the topics. However, it does take a mental toll reading all the bitterenss.

The best way to teach people about trans issues? Treat them like humans. Meet them, employ them and above all, listen.

Sit down and ask us. When I went to a doctor for the first time before I transition we were going over the list of my meds. Estradiol…? What are you taking that for? I’m trans. Oh you’re my first trans patient can we talk? I was glad he wanted to learn but I didn’t like that he had to ask and didn’t learn before me.

I am a gay, cisgender man, and I can't ever fully understand the transgender experience. But it's not about that, or about me, other than gaining an education. It's about them, and being an outspoken ally.


*Oh. That year that I didn’t win, there is a story with that. Each year I bring in my mounted 8X10 pictures and every year a lady at the table did the paperwork and said I hope you win these are very nice pictures. Well the year that I won nothing I walk in to the exhibit hall and a man was sitting next to a woman. The woman did the paperwork as usual but the man was looking at my photos, at me, at my photos and he look like he just ate a lemon. He got up and left, the woman completed my paperwork and I asked who he was, she said the head judge. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Thinking For Ourselves.

Whoa for the conservatives that is anarchy. We can’t have the voters thinking for themselves, they might realize what our real goals are and we will not be able to control those, those… “free thinkers”!

Florida’s Attack on Education Should Ring Alarm Bells at Harvard
By Clyve Lawrence, Crimson Opinion Writer
February 13, 2023

Intellectual diversity and academic freedom have long been crucial tenets of education. But these ideals are under attack in Florida — a development that should worry us all.

On the first day of Black History Month, the College Board announced it was altering the curriculum for its Advanced Placement course in African American Studies after Florida’s Department of Education rejected the course days earlier, arguing it violated Florida law and “lack[ed] educational value.” Seemingly succumbing to the department’s demands to come “into compliance,” the College Board stripped away and minimized many scholars and subjects central to Blackness in the United States, from Black feminism to Black Lives Matter.

This dispute is the latest ideological swing against education in Florida. As the state plans to overhaul its higher education system by eliminating diversity and equity programs, Florida teachers are hiding their classroom books to avoid felony charges for controversial material.

We can’t have these diversity trainings the people might get wrong ideas and sit around singing Kumbaya.

At the helm of this effort is the culture warrior Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who appears to be throwing the Republican base red meat before a rumored 2024 presidential bid. Indeed, the subjects cut from the AP African American Studies curriculum read like a laundry list of Republican complaints about “wokeness” in education. Riding a dominant re-election win, DeSantis declared in his victory speech, “Florida is where woke goes to die.”

We can’t have those little minds thinking impure thoughts, like being LGBTQ is not a choice. That Blacks are not inferior to Whites. That slavery was bad. That we are not a Christian nation. It might wake them up and we don’t want them “Woke!”

I am the first to admit that elitism exerts itself in tangible ways here at Harvard and, undoubtedly, at many prestigious institutions of higher learning. But the recent push from DeSantis — a graduate of Harvard Law School himself — distorts and places undue blame on academic institutions for infecting young people with “woke” ideologies.

And now, anti-intellectualism is the letter of the law in the state of Florida. This should set off alarm bells for anyone who cares about academic freedom.

That is exactly what the Republicans want to keep us dumb and believing all the right-wing bigorty.

A Sisyphean Task

variants or less commonly Sisyphian
: of, relating to, or suggestive of the labors of Sisyphus
specifically : requiring continual and often ineffective effort
a Sisyphean task
Merriam-Webster Dictionary

You might remember last year at the Senate hearing on the Ketanji Brown Jackson confirmation hearings for the Supreme Court she was asked by Sen. Marsha Blackburnto to define "woman." 

That is now the task that the Republicans have given themselves; to define sex & gender!

States’ push to define sex decried as erasing trans people
AP News
By John Hanna
February 15, 2023


Nationally, conservatives are pushing dozens of proposals in statehouses to restrict transgender athletes, gender-affirming care and drag shows. But in measures like Kansas’, LGBTQ-rights advocates see a new, sweeping effort to erase trans people’s legal existence, deny recognition to nonbinary or gender-fluid people and ignore those who are intersex — people born with genitalia, reproductive organs, chromosomes and/or hormone levels that don’t fit typical definitions for male or female.


The Kansas bill had a hearing Wednesday before the state Senate’s health committee and is similar to a Republican measure introduced in the U.S. House last year. Oklahoma’s Legislature is weighing a similar proposal, while North Dakota lawmakers are considering a resolution that would urge public schools and other “public entities” to distinguish “between the sexes according to biological sex at birth.” Mississippi lawmakers had three proposals like Kansas’, but none advanced this year.

New Hampshire, Tennessee and Texas also have proposals to define male and female in state law, and a Republican lawmaker in South Carolina has proposed an amendment to the state’s constitution to declare that legally, a person’s gender would be based on anatomy at birth, not a “psychological, chosen, or subjective experience of gender.”

That is an impossible task, Mother Nature does not like to be put in boxes!

Brandi also said proclaiming that sex is binary ignores that intersex conditions and differences in gender identity exist.

At birth, external genital anatomy can be ambiguous, sometimes because of differences in sex development, or intersex conditions, which affect about 1% of the population.

Intersex conditions can involve external genitals that don’t match a person’s sex chromosomes. In one condition, testes develop internally but external genitals and breasts appear female. These babies are usually assigned female at birth, but their bodies will never produce eggs.

“There’s variation,” Brandi said. “Not everyone fits into this exact box.’’

There has been much research into how people identify their gender and guess what? They determined that gender is in our heads. The researchers looked at intersex people who were operated on to “correct” gender. In a New York Times article…

Declaring With Clarity, When Gender Is Ambiguous
By Claudia Dreifus
May 31, 2005

Dr. William G. Reiner, a faculty member at the University of Oklahoma and Johns Hopkins, says he is just a "dull guy leading a dull life."

That seems unlikely. A 57-year-old psychiatrist and urologist, Dr. Reiner is a leading specialist in the treatment of children with the intersexual condition, boys and girls born with ambiguous genitalia.

"I like working with these children," he said on a break in a meeting in Washington, where he had made a presentation before the American Association for the Advancement of Science. "They've had atypical life experiences, and they tend to be extraordinarily sensitive and vulnerable. They see an aspect of what it means to be alive in a different way from the rest of us."


Q. Aren't these intersex conditions rather rare?

A. There are probably around 1,000 intersex babies born every year in the United States. The numbers can add up. The term actually refers to six different conditions where children are born with ambiguous sexual structures.


You can get genetic girls who look from the outside like males because they were exposed to male hormones at a critical stage of fetal development. Conversely, you can get genetic males looking like females because they didn't get enough male hormones in utero.

So what did he find?

Q. How do you know what constitutes gender identity?

A. As part of a research study, I've personally seen and assessed 400 children with major anomalies of the genitals. Of those, approximately 100 might be called "intersex." Our findings have been many and complex. The most important is that about 60 percent of the genetic male children raised as female have retransitioned into males.

Did you get that? There is something inside us that tells us that we are male or female… not what’s between your legs!

Q. What conclusions do you draw from your study?

A. That sexual identity is individual, unique and intuitive and that the only person who really knows what it is is the person themselves. If we as physicians or scientists want to know about a person's sexual identity, we have to ask them.

And here these Republicans in their animosity against us have given themselves a Sisyphean Task, to define the impossible, I can see many, many lawsuits going to the Supreme Court for the courts to rule on something that can’t be defined.

Can you imagine what garbage is going to come out of this animosity will be? Can you imagine what it will be like if you are a cis gender woman and you have to prove your gender because you look too masculine... how degrading! 

I am a woman because I know myself to be a woman.

Monday, February 20, 2023

Shock Troops*

As a matter of fact the Proud Boys are down right disgusting! The are white supremist bigots 

They are the shock troops of the Republican party, just like the Brownshirts were shock troops for the NAZIs in the 1930s.

Anti-LGBTQ+ protests are at an all-time high. A Proud Boys war on drag is a big reason why.
Business Insider
By Laura Italiano
February 4, 2023

  • Once a week on average in 2022, Proud Boys joined or led anti-LGBTQ+ protests held across the US.
  • Most of their demonstrating targeted drag performances; many involved violence and armed protesters.
  • Insider's interactive map shows what happened each time they joined anti-LGBTQ+ protests last year.

The Proud Boys are on the march against the LGBTQ+ community — and especially against drag performers.

No other militant, far-right group comes close to the Proud Boys' new-found dedication to public displays of homophobia, alarming new numbers show.


Out of 53 anti-LGBTQ rallies the extremist group led or joined in 2022, 60 percent were attempts to disrupt drag events with baseless taunts of "grooming" and "pedophilia" — efforts equally divided between adult-only performances and family-friendly parties and story hours. 

What is different now than before is that they are armed!

Weapons — including paint guns, mace, pepper spray, fireworks, handguns, and rifles — are also turning up at these protests more often, the data shows.

Firearms were reported at 13 anti-LGBTQ protests in 2022, including in the hands of pro-LGBTQ+ counterprotesters. Nine of these armed protests happened in the last four months of the year. 

"The only scary thing about a drag story hour is one of these conservative white men with a gun — it's not what we're reading, it's not what we're singing, it's not our arts and crafts projects," said Jonathan Hamilt, founder of the national Drag Story Hour organization, which supports 50 chapters around the US, bringing readings to public libraries and schools for seven years.

A conspiracy of far-right organization has formed where these white supremacists are coordinating their movements.

And it is only going to get worst as the anger on the right grows.

*Shock Troops

1: troops especially suited and chosen for offensive work because of their high morale, training, and discipline

2: a group of people militant in pressing for a cause

Merriam-Webster dictionary

Red v. Blue States

Whew! Where to begin?

There is a difference.

Republicans states are piling on legislation that are taking away our rights and it is not just us in the LGBTQ+ community. They having introduced legislation to ban Chinese owning property. They have banned books like The Great Gatsby, The Lord of the Flies, 1984, Of Mice and Men, and Catch-22. They have banned teaching Black history, and they are banning us.

While Blue states are embracing diversity and inclusion.

Amid tidal wave of anti-trans legislation, Democratic states race to become refuges for gender-affirming care
The Hill via Yahoo News
By Brooke Migdon
February 16, 2023

Democratic state lawmakers are mobilizing against a tidal wave of proposed legislation to heavily restrict access to gender-affirming health care, combating stringent measures that can carry prison sentences as long as a decade with bills that plan to establish sanctuary states to shield doctors, transgender youth and their families in all 50 states from potential legal retribution.

In Minnesota, freshman Rep. Leigh Finke (D) hopes to make the state a safe haven for transgender youth seeking gender-affirming medical care.

Democrats flipped the Minnesota Senate in November’s midterm elections with a string of surprise victories, giving the party control of the legislature for the first time since 2014.

Finke, who is the first openly transgender representative to serve in the state legislature, said she and other Democrats had up until election night expected to spend the next two years in a divided government “playing defense” against Republicans on issues including LGBTQ rights.

But after election day, “everything changed,” Finke said. Taking advantage of a fortuitous opportunity to pass more ambitious legislation, Finke in January introduced House File 146, which seeks to prevent out-of-state laws from interfering with gender-affirming health care offered in Minnesota.

Meanwhile up in South Dakota the Republicans came up with this,

South Dakota House passes anti-drag bill banning state funding of the 'lewd and lascivious'
Sioux Falls Argus Leader
By Morgan Matzen
February 15, 2023

Sixty lawmakers in the South Dakota House of Representatives voted in favor of a bill that might prevent events like the South Dakota State University’s Gender and Sexualities Alliance’s drag show from ever happening again.


Bill sponsor Rep. Chris Karr (R-Sioux Falls) said his bill came as a reaction to the SDSU student drag show and that he found it hard to believe both SDSU and the Board of Regents would be OK such an event, and again said he believed tax dollars were spent on the event.

However, SDSU President Barry Dunn clarified in a Nov. 15 statement the event wasn’t supported by university funds.

Sioux Falls Democrats like Reps. Kadyn Wittman, Linda Duba and Kameron Nelson peppered Karr with questions about his bill Wednesday.

Then we have the Democrats in Virginia…

Virginia Dems Block 12th Republican Bill Targeting Transgender Kids
In the Commonwealth of Virginia, Democrats are standing in the way of Republican-led efforts to legislate transgender people out of existence.
The Advocate
By Christopher Wiggins
February 16, 2023

Thursday, Virginia Senate Democrats mustered a bipartisan effort to kill an anti-trans bill put forth and passed by the Republican-controlled state House.

Legislators voted down a bill that banned transgender athletes of all ages from participating in sports teams aligned with their gender identity from kindergarten through college, the Richmond Times-Dispatchreports.

During a Thursday morning committee meeting, the legislation was defeated 10-5, with Republican Sen. Siobhan Dunnavant of Henrico County voting with the Democratic majority.

When the bill passed the lower chamber of Virginia's legislature last week, the Human Rights Campaign issued a statement critical of the bill's advancement.

"In a coordinated push led by national anti-LGBTQ+ groups, which deployed vintage discriminatory tropes, politicians in state houses across the country introduced a record 315 discriminatory anti-LGBTQ+ bills in 2022," HRC wrote. "The majority of the discriminatory bills targeted the transgender and non-binary community, with the majority targeting children receiving the brunt of discriminatory legislation. Anti-transgender legislation took several forms, including bills aimed to prevent transgender youth from playing school sports consistent with their gender identity and bills to prevent transgender and non-binary youth from receiving life-saving, medically-necessary gender-affirming healthcare."

So you say there is no difference between the Democrats and the Republicans. I beg to differ, one party believes in inclusion and diversity, the other party believes in exclusion, white supremacist, and getting between you and your doctor.

Sunday, February 19, 2023

It Was Only A Matter Of Time!

For them to come after Pride celebration, and now it is happening in Florida (Where beside Florida and Texas would they do this.)!

Naples Pride Fest in jeopardy? Public speaks out at City Council meeting
Naples Daily News
By Kendall Little
February 15, 2023<

The Naples City Council may block Pride Fest, a recurring LGBTQ event in Cambier Park, after protests from groups against drag queens and the LGBTQ community. There won't be a decision for another two weeks.

At the Feb. 15 City Council meeting, over 40 people spoke about Pride Fest and the effects it has on the community.

Most of the uproar against the festival was from people who don't feel that Cambier Park is the right place for it.


Will changing the location 'protect children'?

Some suggested that the City Council move Pride Fest to a different location because they're concerned about their children seeing drag performers from the playground at Cambier Park.


Several speakers said that last year's Pride Fest involved performers in revealing outfits, which is something they don't want their kids to see. Naples Pride board member Callhan Soldavini maintains that all performers were appropriately dressed.

Well I guess that they never saw the Dallas Cowboy’s Cheerleaders!

Naples Pride Fest organizers say closing off the festival in a building defeats the purpose of the festival, which is to create a sense of belonging and openness in the LGBTQ community.


Is Pride Fest family-friendly?

Pride Fest has been a recurring event in Naples since 2017 where the LGBTQ community can come together and celebrate their pride through performances, parades, and visiting LGBTQ-owned small businesses' booths.

"Our biggest thing is making it family-friendly," Soldavini said. "There is no sexualization. No more than a cheerleader or Dolly Parton."


Naples Pride Festival was created by Naples Pride members in 2017 as an "all-inclusive annual festival [that] draws thousands of people together to celebrate the unity and diversity of the LGBT community and to promote equal rights for all," according to its website.

"Every child has the right to feel that they belong in our society," Naples resident Michael Sales said. "LGBTQ kids are legitimized by the Naples Pride Festival."

This will be number seven, the seventh Pride festival in Naples. It seems to me if the Pride is so wicked why wasn’t there any arrests for indecent exposure?

"We are confident that they won't deny it because we've been presenting the same application with the drag performances since 2017," Soldavini said. "This has only become an issue this year because it's become such a politicized issue."

Like A Bad Penny.

That keeps turning up over and over again.

Court to reconsider Connecticut’s transgender athlete policy
AP News
By Dave Collins
February 13, 2023

A federal appeals court has reinstated a challenge to Connecticut’s policy of allowing transgender girls to compete in girls high school sports, two months after a three-judge panel upheld the rules.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York City said the full court will rehear the appeal of four cisgender runners who said they were unfairly forced to race against transgender athletes in high school competitions.

The court said in a decision Monday that a majority of its judges voted in favor of rehearing the appeal, a rare move by the court. The court did not say why it voted on whether to rehear the case, and none of the parties to the lawsuit requested a rehearing.

Because of Trump there are a number of new conservative judges.

Christiana Kiefer, a lawyer with the conservative Alliance Defending Freedom, which represented the four Connecticut cisgender athletes, said the group was pleased by the court’s decision.

The ADF is anti-LGBTQ+ they are also behind many of the anti-LGBTQ+ legislation that the states are introducing.

Last year the court said that their claims that they were deprived of wins, state titles and athletic scholarship opportunities were speculative.

Now we are back in court thanks to Trump.

“As the initial ruling found, cisgender girls lose nothing from the participation of transgender girls and Connecticut’s policy simply recognizes the right of all student athletes to equal participation and protection under Title IX,” Joshua Block, an attorney for the ACLU, said in a statement.


In all fairness I was on a panel with the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference executive director and a lawyer from the American Civil Liberties Union about this case.

Saturday, February 18, 2023

Saturday Night's Alright

Saturday 9: Saturday Night's Alright (1973)

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

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

1) In this song, Elton John tells us it's 7:00 PM on Saturday evening and he's ready to rock with his friends. What will you be doing at 7:00 this evening?

Watching TV or listening to an audiobook.

2) His sister is ready to party, too. The lyrics tell us she looks cute with "a handful of grease in her hair." What haircare products would we find in your bathroom right now?

Um… once again you have to have hair to have haircare products.

3) He sings that by Saturday, he's had it with the aggravation and discipline of the past week and now he's ready to cut loose. How did last week treat you?

So, so, nothing special… I forgot about a Zoom meeting Wednesday.

4) This Saturday night finds Elton and his friends "packed pretty tight" in their bar of choice. Agoraphobics have a hard time feeling safe in busy, crowded places. How about you? Are you comfortable in a crowd?

Well I will say that I don’t have agoraphobia but I don’t like crowds, I following in my father footstep he didn’t like crowds either.

5) The lyrics were written by Bernie Taupin, Elton's frequent collaborator. Bernie ranks this near the top of his favorite Elton John records. What's your favorite?

 "Candle in the Wind"

6) Elton has turned his bad eyesight into a hobby, claiming that over the years he has purchased well over 200,000 pairs of glasses. Do you wear glasses? If so, how many prescription pairs do you own?

Yes, since elementary school and I have only one pair but I keep an old pair in the glove box in the car.

7) Elton once had to cancel an international tour because of an emergency appendectomy. Do you still have your appendix?

Yes, it is in the back of the book I’m reading.

OH! You mean my appendix, yes.

8) In 1973, when this song was popular, M*A*S*H was at the top of the ratings. Who is your favorite M*A*S*H character?

Gee… the cast was good and picking one out is hard but I’ll good with Colonel Potter… he was the one ray of sanity in the show.

9) Random question: Who is the wisest person you know?

Now there is a difference between smartest and wisest, I never really thought about the wisest. Hm… I think wisdom comes with age.