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Sorry, liberals, there are only 23,328 genders August 6, 2019

Posted by Erin Ptah in News Roundup.
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[Boag] was shocked at the size of this population, which he’d never before encountered in his time as a queer historian of the American West. Trans people have always existed all over the world. So how had they escaped notice in the annals of the Old West?” (Some not-well-thought-out use of the phrase “assigned sex”, but worth reading anyway.)

““M” and “F” didn’t always appear on the federal identity document. In fact, sex was not directly listed on U.S. passports until 1977.

“I believe that gender reassignment surgery is a right but I didn’t know what surgery would mean for me. […] Even my friends who’d had the procedure couldn’t really explain what would happen, so I made my decision without proper information about possible outcomes. I’m writing this essay to offer a small window so that other trans girls have more information than I did.

“‘He was rightly classified as a man’ in the medical records and appears masculine, Stroumsa said. ‘But that classification threw us off from considering his actual medical needs.’

“And that, these devout fundamentalist Baptist women all knew and believed, was simply wrong. The life of the mother, they all knew — with utter confidence and moral certainty — was more important than the potential life who wasn’t expected to survive this difficult pregnancy.

The idea that millions of sperm are on an Olympian race to reach the egg is yet another male fantasy of human reproduction.”

We couldn’t see the [Alzheimer’s] plaques in the brain until 10 years ago because we didn’t have the technology. So now that we have the technology to find the plaques, we actually understand that we probably misdiagnosed women forever. And that could be one of the reasons why some treatments don’t work that well in women.”

“Until the 1960s, scientists considered the idea of a cancer-causing virus to be preposterous. At the same time, more than 8,000 women a year were dying of cervical cancer, and researchers couldn’t figure out what was causing it. […] Way back in the 1950s, bacteriologist Sarah Stewart pioneered the concept that viruses could lead to cancer—and was almost thrown out of the scientific community for her heretical ideas.

There’s a species of fungus that has 23,328 distinct sexes. “Individuals of any sex are compatible for mating with all but their own sex. However, there are two genetic loci determining the mating type, locus A with 288 alleles and locus B with 81 alleles. A pair of fungi will only be fertile if they have different A and different B alleles; that is, each sex can enter fertile pairings with 22,960 others.” Sorry, liberals, there are only 23,328 genders. And 368 ways for these mushrooms to be gay.

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Some thoughtful personal identity reads. October 10, 2016

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Because after that debate I think we’re all thirsty for some substance.

“If you can distinctly recall the excitement of walking into your weekly computer lab session and seeing a room full of Apple 2Es displaying the start screen of Oregon Trail, you’re a member of this nameless generation, my friend.” (Calling myself a millennial is usually not a bad fit, but yeah, this is my subcategory.)

“Five months in, I can’t remember the last time a stranger read me as a woman, and my mask of manliness is melding into my being, becoming part of me. It’s becoming comfortable. I don’t have the same sudden clarity that came with top surgery, but every new difference – smaller hips, bigger shoulders, a thicker neck – removes another layer of noise. Changing my physical self and my social self didn’t have to change my identity, but I think it might have. I still call myself genderless, but I also lump myself in with trans guys without thinking. ”

“At first, I didn’t believe I had anything wrong with me. But after meeting my current therapist, Dr. Samoon Ahmad, I began to understand and accept my diagnosis — I was bipolar, and my nude jaunt was part of a manic episode. It wasn’t until I got out of Bellevue three weeks later that I saw the front page of The Post with the headline ‘Ball Drop in Times Square.'”

“I am dark enough to not live within the tent of whiteness, but I am light enough that many people experience significant confusion when trying to class what level of ‘not-white, maybe heading toward-Black, deficient’ I am. Depending on the year and location, I am a ‘dirty Arab/Muslim,’ a fellow Latina, a Mulatto, a Mizrahi Jew, a half-white person who suspiciously may not be down with Black folks.”

“I didn’t want some American sales clerk knowing I couldn’t understand simple, elementary-school English. We’d look for that Ziploc bag in another store. I wasn’t about to let anyone think we were Middle Eastern immigrants coming here to steal jobs from honest Americans. I would not be responsible for a surge in Islamophobia over a Ziploc bag.

Cool politics, past and present September 17, 2016

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Harriet Tubman: Civil War military operation director.

Deadshot Mary, real-life hotshot 1930s undercover detective.

I can’t believe that, when I studied the House Committee on Un-American Activities in school, nobody ever mentioned to us that it was established by an actual paid KGB spy.

June 2016: “The sex of Jamie Shupe is hereby changed from female to non-binary. Notice of this legal change shall be posted in a public place in Multnomah County as required by law.”

“A leading news reporter for Ireland’s national broadcaster, RTÉ, has been ‘overwhelmed’ by the support he has received from his employers and the public since he revealed that he identifies as ‘gender fluid.’

“The quarantined area that Lazowski and Matulewicz created became a haven for Polish Jews, who could hide in Rozwadów under the cover of the fake epidemic without fear of the Nazis discovering them. All told, the doctors saved an estimated 8,000 people from being killed or imprisoned during their three-year campaign.”

Graphic: Hillary vs. Trump on their law-breaking, relationships with shady parties, and general transparency.

Legally Recognize Non-Binary Genders March 17, 2014

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Petition the Obama Administration to: Legally Recognize Non-Binary Genders. More than reasonable, long overdue. Deadline is in a few days — let’s go give it the push it needs.

Historical same-sex weddings, fantasy female armor, texting in West African languages, and more January 7, 2012

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How to talk about gender with first graders in a way that gets them thinking and not bullying.

Musings on fantasy armor versus female figures, as crafted by someone who actually makes armor.

A history of Chicago’s underground abortion services in the years before Roe v. Wade.

A cryptographer takes a closer look at Biblical Greek and inadvertently discovers that Paul’s only clear condemnation of homosexuality…was a mistranslation.

Debunking the myth that pre-colonial Africa had no homosexuality. With research!

The tensions faced by a mixed-race family.

How do you keep a language from dying out? Make it available to text in, as is being done with the Mande family of West African languages and hopefully plenty more to come.

Next time someone tells you they support traditional marriage, send them this link: records of Christian same-sex weddings from the 300s through the 1600s.

Erin Watches Simoun (and apparently Has A Lot Of Feelings) July 16, 2011

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I just finished watching Simoun (info: Wikipedia, TVTropes), and I feel a serious need to complain.

The setup: In the world of the series, humans are all born female-sexed, and remain that way throughout childhood. There’s a magical/holy spring in the country of Simulacrum that citizens visit at age 17, where they choose the adult sex they’re going to grow into (with male and female being the only options). Also, there’s a war on, and the magical/holy aircraft used to fight it (the titular Simoun) can only be piloted by youths who haven’t chosen their adult sex yet, which has led to a couple of pilots (called Sibyllae, a type of priestess) putting off going to the Spring so they can keep fighting in the meantime.

This sounds like a jumping-off point for all kinds of fascinating exploration of sex and gender and sexuality, and all the recs I’ve seen have raved about the way it plays with and subverts and is generally nifty about those issues. And…well.

(Spoilers ahead.) (more…)

Some srs bsns for your Saturday night. May 28, 2011

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The Cute Cat Theory of Digital Activism: a Web 2.0 tool is only useful if it works for activists and cat macros.

Diary of a Newly Diagnosed Dissociative: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4. Plus a video about the initial shame, and some tips for how to make peace with it.

How to find out the gender (or at least, the sex) of your computer. Cute. (It’s just leaning on Microsoft SAPI; according to the comments, XP comes with a male voice, Vista and 7 with female, and Macs can be easily switched in the system preferences.)

The NYT’s coverage of the first black Senator. In…wait for it…1870. Wikipedia has more, including the legal controversy on whether he had technically been a citizen long enough.

Parents decide to raise a child without telling people its sex. More here, with extra details. (Both the articles and the comments conflate “gender” and “sex” all over the place; the second one has extra tales of people being icky to young boys who wear pink.) The story they’re referring to as inspiration is X: A Fabulous Child’s Story.

How Tokyopop sank wages in the manga translation industry, with hopes that they can still recover. (Translators, not Tokyopop’s manga.)

Gender and sexuality: inevitably weirder than you think. October 25, 2010

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Pulling apart theories about inherent gender differences. Every time you think there’s something simplistic and generic enough to be plausible, apparently, it falls apart under study.

Speaking of gender: Stu Rasmussen is male-bodied, male-identified, and still down with breast implants.

The practice of raising daughters as boys in son-prizing Afghanistan, and the social implications that follow.

The 150-year-long history of the failure of English to come up with a serviceable gender-neutral pronoun.

OKCupid, on the ball as ever, takes the initiative to crunch some actual data on the interests, personality traits, and promiscuousness of their gay users versus their straight ones.

An awesome French commercial. (Transcript/translation in English here.)

A satire of the could-have-been late, great Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, as rendered by puppets.

Five ways of looking at “Sarah Palin feminism”, a post I’ve been meaning to link for a while because it is, y’know, interesting. Doesn’t stop at “WTF”, though I’m sure it could.

Good to read in conjunction with that one: Dirty Girls and Bad Feminists: A Few Thoughts on “I Love Dick”, which, honestly, just plain makes me feel good to read.

Queer stuff, roughly in order from “most depressing” to “most awesome” July 13, 2010

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Going undercover at a Christian gay-to-straight conversion camp. Deeply queasy-making.

To write queer sex scenes, or not to write them? The discussion broadens out into the question of writing sex in general, and tackles a lot of the same issues from the pro-novel-writing perspective as we get so often from the fanfiction one.

Via Genderfork: When even your gender isn’t easy to pin down, how do you describe your sexuality? Clearly we do not have enough words for this stuff.

Vintage lesbians! Pretty old photos delivered on a surprisingly near-constant basis. Om nom nom.

This Onion blurb slips in a reference to lesbian weddings without drawing any attention whatsoever to the lesbian part. Hooray for normalization!

…speaking of which, The Onion has been on fire lately:

Massachusetts Supreme Court Orders All Citizens To Gay Marry: Hundreds of confused but vocal protesters lined the street outside the statehouse Monday night, waving both American and rainbow flags. Their chants, which broke out in pockets up and down the street, included, “Hey hey, ho ho, homophobia’s got to go, but frankly, this is fucked up” and “Adam and Eve or Adam and Steve, but not Adam and Some Random Guy.” Others held signs that read, “On Second Thought, Boston Christians Are Willing To Consider A Compromise.”

Repeal Of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ Paves Way For Gay Sex Right On Battlefield, Opponents Fantasize: “The last thing I need after a 12-hour reconnaissance patrol is to know I’m hitting the showers with some guy who might be checking me out and who might, after seeing what I have to work with, find himself wondering if I too long for the firm yet tender embrace of another man,” Army Cpl. Dale Montgomery said. “So, in conclusion, what were we talking about again?”

This Week, 3/15-3/21 March 21, 2010

Posted by Erin Ptah in Personal, Works Roundup.
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Emeralds: Hearts in Oz
Hello, Ladies (art | Ozma, Dorothy | worksafe)

Fake News
Clover and Shadows, part 5 (fic | “Stephen”/Jon, Gipper | NC-17)
Trading Your Memories For Fortune And Fame (mix | trans!”Stephen”/Jon | spoilers)

Hellsing(/Twilight/Hunchback of Notre Dame, /Calvin and Hobbes)
How Wonderful Life Is (old sketch | IntegraxAlucard | worksafe)
The completely random silly OC meme: Marian (meme | Marian, Edward Cullen, Alucard, Frollo, some budgies | worksafe)
Same Size Suits (old sketch | Integra, Enrico | worksafe)
Calvintegra and Hobbescard (sketches | Calvin!Integra, Hobbes!Alucard | worksafe)

Sailor Moon
Sailormakaiju Trading Card (art | otaku senshi | worksafe)
On The Menu (old sketch | Usagi, Makoto | worksafe)
Fisheye (old sketch | Fisheye | worksafe)

Sandman
Burnt Out Ends Of Smoky Days (ficlet | Dream, Delirium, GNeil, PTerry | G)

General/Miscellaneous
The Big Genderbending Meme (shiny new art meme – do it!)

Next Week in Shine:
Erin attempts to both churn out a respectable strip and find herself an actual job.