Remove Transgender from the DSM-5

From Change.Org:

The DSM is regarded as the medical and social definition of mental disorder throughout North America and strongly influences international psychiatric nomenclature.

On January 10th, 2010, the American Psychiatric Association released proposed draft revisions for the Fifth Edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) to be pulished 2013.

Transgender people’s civil rights advancement has been severely limited by our diagnosis in DSM because we are considered mentally ill by the American Psychiatric Association.

Although the propose changes for the DSM-5 has substituted “Incongruent” a less offensive word for “Dysphoria”, the ramifications from this diagnosis still exists as illustrated recently by our exclusion from the DADT repeal.

Anti transgender organizations cornerstone evidence for our dehumanization is the DSM which links our identities with with autogynephilia and pedophilia.

We will never seriously be considered ‘normal’ enough for inclusion in meanngfull human rights legislation untill we are removed from the DSM, a fact the gay community realized and acted on thirty years ago.

Our diverse gender identities are a natural gift, not a psychiatric disorder.

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Transgender Man Responds To Critics After Marriage Proposal Video Goes Viral

From Huffington Post:

Posted: 06/22/2012

WASHINGTON — A week after popping the marriage question to his girlfriend at a White House LGBT reception, a transgender man has released a video response to conservative talk show host Laura Ingraham and others who condemned the proposal, which was caught on tape and posted on YouTube.

“Somehow our proposal unleashed a wave of anti-trans and LGBT backlash,” reads the description of the video response posted by Scout, whose name is legally one word. Scout goes on to say in the video that there are “a few people who seem to have a problem with a trans guy proposing to his girlfriend at the White House. We just wanted to respond to a few of those folks.”

The video shows Scout reading aloud some of the criticisms he has gotten since news of his proposal gained traction on the Internet.

“For the people who titled the post, ‘She-Man Proposes To Girlfriend,’ we just want to note that I am actually not a superhero. I, of course, play one on TV,” he says. “To the blog that was titled, ‘Freak Show,’ we just want to remind you that it’s actually Dr. Freak Show show to you.”

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Pride, Politics, and Liberation: Pride Isn’t Just About Parades

From Huffington Post:


It’s that time of year again. Pride is in the air around the world for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and ally community now that June has arrived. Parades, festivals, music, parties, shirtless boys, dykes on bikes, and more rainbows than you can shake your high heels at will abound in cities all over the country.

As always, it is a time for celebration, community, and visibility. Yet now more than ever, LGBT Pride celebrations need be something more. We need to put the politics back in Pride. We need to be asking people to not only celebrate our community but educate and agitate, as well.

Most Pride parades fall in June to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall riots, a pivotal and defining moment in the modern LGBT-rights movement. The spirit of Stonewall, where a tired and oppressed community finally had enough and took to the streets, inspired the early Pride demonstrations. In fact, the early marches were about “gay liberation” and “gay freedom.”

In fact, my new hometown of Chicago has a long history of taking to the streets for both protest and Pride, with one of the earliest protests marches being organized here in the city by Chicago Gay Liberation on June 27, 1970. That early Liberation March in Chicago was from Washington Square Park (“Bughouse Square”) to the Water Tower at the intersection of Michigan and Chicago Avenues. Marches then continued to the Civic Center (now Richard J. Daley Plaza) so that their message could reach the maximum number of Michigan Avenue shoppers and tourists. The message of these early marches was clear: Visibility and organization can bring attention to the inequality faced daily by the LGBT community.

Over the years, Pride celebrations have shifted from their earlier protest-march forms to more celebratory parties as LGBT people have felt safer, come out of the closet, and been more visible in society and pop culture. Yet even as our parties grew larger, our legal rights and battles for equality have too often stalled, with major hurdles still facing the community every day. A level of cultural acceptance brought a sense of political apathy to the events, even though in most states even the most basic rights (like employment-discrimination protection or housing and public-accommodation rights) are denied to LGBT people.

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What Do Republicans Love about Rape?

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Sandusky Guilty of Sexual Abuse of 10 Young Boys

From The New York Times:

By Joe Drape
Published: June 22, 2012

BELLEFONTE, Pa. — Jerry Sandusky, a former Penn State assistant football coach, was convicted Friday of sexually abusing young boys, completing the downfall of a onetime local hero in a scandal that shook a proud Pennsylvania community, a prominent American university and the world of major college football.

A jury in Centre County Court convicted Sandusky, 68, of sexually assaulting 10 boys, all of them children from disadvantaged homes whom Sandusky, using his access to the university’s vaunted football program, had befriended and then repeatedly violated. The jury, seven women and five men, more than half with ties to Penn State, returned a verdict on the second day of deliberation.

Sandusky stood stoically as the jury foreman read off the verdicts on the 48 counts against him. The foreman said guilty 45 times. Many of the charges, which include rape and sodomy, carry significant prison terms, and it seems likely that Sandusky will spend the rest of his life behind bars. Sandusky was taken into custody after the verdicts were read.

The case against Sandusky, even before his trial, had exacted an enormous toll. Joe Paterno, the university’s famed head coach who had been alerted to at least one of Sandusky’s attacks on a boy, was fired, went into a kind of exile and was dead of cancer within months. The university’s longtime president, Graham B. Spanier, was dismissed as well, and Penn State officials, alumni and students were forced to confront the possibility that the interests of big-time college sports had trumped concern for the welfare of vulnerable children.

Sandusky, who had been Paterno’s longtime defensive coordinator, had also founded a charity, the Second Mile, to work with troubled youths. In a trial that lasted two weeks, prosecutors asserted that Sandusky had used the charity as his private hunting ground, scouting for potential victims. He gave them gifts and money, invited them to his home, took them to Penn State football games, showered with them at the university’s football building and slept with them in hotel rooms on the road.

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Who’s Afraid of Secular Government?

From The Nation:

June 22, 2012  

When forty-three Catholic dioceses, universities and charities simultaneously filed lawsuits against the Department of Health and Human Services last month, charging that the proposed regulation requiring insurance coverage for contraception violated their religious freedom, a simmering conflict between the First Amendment’s protections for religious freedom and against government preference for a particular religion once again took center stage.

The plaintiffs accuse the Obama administration of violating their religious freedom, a right enshrined in the Free Exercise Clause. They elevate the Free Exercise Clause above the equally important Establishment Clause, which prohibits the government from endorsing or favoring a particular religious view.

The Catholic institutions’ prospects for prevailing in these lawsuits are far from certain. Two state supreme courts, in New York and California, have ruled against Catholic groups’ religious freedom claims in challenges to substantially similar state laws. Constitutional experts believe they will fare no better in federal court. Nonetheless, by filing suit in multiple districts, the Catholic groups are aiming to succeed in at least some circuits, and to create a legal conflict that will eventually be resolved by the Supreme Court.

In the meantime, they will litigate their claims in the court of public opinion. The constituency most receptive to these religious freedom arguments, the Christian right, represents an outsize segment of the Republican Party. Savvy political organization has fueled the intensity of activist reaction, giving their arguments disproportionate attention and legitimacy.

Democrats, meanwhile, have failed to articulate a consistent rebuttal to these claims of religious discrimination and to the claim that often follows, that the United States should be governed as a “Christian nation.” Rather than forcefully arguing that the government cannot, constitutionally, be beholden to or impose upon its citizens any particular religious view, Democrats are frequently caught flat-footed reacting to charges they are secularists waging a “war on religion.” They often respond, instead, with self-defenses that they are indeed pious, their policy views guided by their own sincerely held religious beliefs. They rarely utter the words “separation of church and state,” or elevate the Establishment Clause and secular government in the same way their adversaries do the Free Exercise Clause and religious liberty.

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Julian Assange beyond the point of no return?

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