In Defense of Basic Health Care for Transgender New Yorkers

From Huffington Post:

Posted: 10/14/11

Recently the New York Post incited concern over the much-overstated prospect of New York “taxpayers [footing] the bill for transgender residents to get ‘sexual-reassignment surgery.'” The reality is that the proposal by members of the Health Disparities Committee of the New York Medicaid Redesign Team to repeal a discriminatory provision of New York’s Medicaid regulatory scheme does little more than ensure equal treatment for Medicaid-eligible transgender New Yorkers.   As one Medicaid recipient explains of the exclusion: “You see, they think we take these medications just to take them… but these are not recreational things that we just do on the side just to feel pretty… this is our lives.”

Medicaid recipients who are diagnosed with Gender Identity Disorder (GID) are currently refused treatment because of a biased and outdated regulation that discriminates against transgender individuals.   A proposal to New York State Governor Cuomo’s Medicaid Redesign Team attempts to repeal this provision of the State’s regulatory scheme that precludes coverage for medical care related to gender transition.   While the Metro and New York Post report that the proposal would cost the taxpayers of New York significantly, the reality is that the proposal saves on health costs and brings the state’s program in line with state and federal law.

Coverage for all transition-related health care is currently excluded under New York regulation N.Y.Comp.Codes R.& Regs.tit.18,§505.2(l).  What this means is that medically necessary hormone care that costs as little as $20 a month is excluded from coverage only for transgender individuals.  This blanket exclusion leaves transgender Medicaid recipients unable to access health care that prevailing medical standards confirm is medically necessary for patients with Gender Identity Disorder (GID). The American Medical Association, the American Psychology Association (APA) and the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) have supported access to transition-related health care when a patient’s doctor finds the treatment to be medically necessary.

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Anti-LGBT Hate Group’s Event Draws Protest, Vandalism In Suburban Chicago

From Huffington Post:


A banquet hosted by a “hate group” in honor of an Evangelical leader tied to a controversial Ugandan anti-gay bill drew protests from LGBT activists in suburban Chicago Saturday.

The event, sponsored by Americans For Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH) to honor “The Pink Swastika” author Scott Lively with an “American Truth Teller” award, also attracted vandalism. Police are in the midst of trying to identify who is responsible for throwing bricks into the window of the Christian Liberty Academy, located at 502 W. Euclid Ave. in Arlington Heights on Saturday.

The Gay Liberation Network, the Chicago-based LGBT advocacy group which sponsored the protest, said in a statement that they “do not know who did this” and claimed the vandalism occurred several hours prior to their protest.

But AFTAH president Peter LaBarbera says that the gay organization has “claimed responsibility for the crime.” LaBarbera referred to the group as “‘gay’ domestic terrorists” and claimed that neither his group nor Lively condone violence against LGBT people. Fox News picked up the story on Sunday and called the unidentified vandal a “gay militant.”

In response, GLN added that, “given AFTAH’s often tenuous relationship with the truth, as evidenced in its use of scientific quackery to frequently promote lies about LGBT people,” they would not put it past the group to “commit this minor vandalism against the Academy themselves so that they could put upon themselves the mantel of ‘victim.'”

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OWS Has 300K in the Bank

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Across the world, a new spirit took hold – power was taken back by the people

From The Independent UK:

More than city squares are being occupied. What is being reoccupied is a sense of collective possibility

By Laurie Penny
October 17, 2011

Something enormous happened on Saturday night. In over a thousand towns and cities around the world, people from all walks of life took to the streets and occupied the squares in an international “day of action” against austerity and corporate greed. In Madrid, I watched 60,000 stamp and cheer in Puerta del Sol as protesters took over a nearby building and dropped a banner reading “Somos El 99%” (“we are the 99 per cent”), a slogan from the Occupy Wall Street movement which has become a mantra for new global resistance.

As thousands streamed into the main square of the Spanish capital, a projector was showing hundreds facing down police to camp outside the London Stock Exchange. Protest, like profit, has become globalised.

The fact that politicians and pundits are asking what all these people want can be considered a victory for the “occupy everywhere” movement. It’s not a question many in public life have seemed much concerned with in the past decade.

What commentators fail to understand is that occupation is itself a demand. It’s a new, practical politics for those disillusioned with representative democracy, which demonstrators claim is a private club run by the rich, for the rich.

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40 Seattle cops arrest woman for sitting down, opening umbrella

From Raw Story:

By Stephen C. Webster
Monday, October 17, 2011

bout 40 police officers were needed to arrest a single woman who sat down and opened an umbrella in a Seattle park this morning, according to local media.

Amid the ongoing “Occupy Seattle” protest, city officials decided to ban sitting down with umbrellas in public spaces, ostensibly because they become “makeshift structures,” which are forbidden.

In a scene from earlier today, a single woman, who identified herself as Debra Lynn Peardon, put that law to the test, opening an umbrella and sitting down on the ground.

 That’s when, according to Seattle blog The Slog, “40 police officers surrounded” the woman. With her hands bound, at least four officers then carried her out by her arms and legs, with protesters all the while chanting, “Show me what oppression looks like? This is what oppression looks like!”
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Global Occupation: 1,000 cities unite in ‘Wall St’ anger worldwide

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Bosses Four Times As Likely To Be ‘Psychopaths’: Survey Says

From Huffington Post:


What’s the key to business success? Well, being a psychopath might actually give you an edge. While most workers would prefer not to have a crazy boss, their attitudes toward female bosses are changing. And it’s possible the high percentage of crazy bosses explains the average worker’s weight gain. (Or maybe it’s just the donuts in the break room). Here’s a closer look at some of the latest small-business surveys.

Crazy Talk

A study of more than 200 executives by researcher Paul Babiak found that almost 4 percent were considered psychopaths when ranked on the Psychopathy Checklist, a tool therapists use to assess this personality disorder. Babiak, whose findings were reported in his book Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work, found that in comparison, only 1 percent of the general population shows psychopathic tendencies.

In other words, those who are successful in business could be four times more likely to be psychopaths than the average person. What exactly does that mean? Psychopaths lack empathy and don’t feel remorse for their actions. That makes them great at manipulating their way to the top.

Who’s the Boss?

While views continue to change, more Americans still prefer to work for a man (32 percent) than a woman (22 percent). Thankfully, nearly half (46 percent) of Americans say they wouldn’t care if their next boss were male or female. That’s a big change from 1953, when Gallup first asked this question and a whopping 66 percent of Americans said they would prefer a male boss. (Amazingly, even back then, 5 percent would prefer a woman.) The next time Gallup asked the question in 1975, 60 percent voted for a male boss.

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