Robyn Jane Sheppard is a man who identifies as a woman. He has written a book detailing his transition called “The Unpaved Road.” He also maintains a blog where he speculates that lesbian feminists have an analysis that centers actual women because they have issues with their sexuality. This is a common tactic by Men’s Rights Activists. Rather than engage with the subject matter, such MRAs call women “crazy,” “sexually frustrated,” or “closeted transmen.” Sheppard demonstrates a lack of understanding of a lesbian feminist or radical feminist analysis, which acknowledges that although women are oppressed based on our biological sex, such biological sex does not determine who we are or who we should be as people.
Lisa Vogel has responded to the unprecedented move of the Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the National Center for Lesbian Rights and Equality Michigan to frame the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival as “transphobic.” Her statement follows:
Statement from Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival August 18, 2014
Many demands have been made of the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival (“Michfest”) via the Equality Michigan call for a boycott launched July 28, 2014. We have a few demands of our own.
1. Get Your Facts Straight
As the 39th Festival closes and we turn our hearts and minds to our landmark 40th anniversary, we reiterate that Michfest recognizes trans womyn as womyn – and they are our sisters. We do not fear their presence among us, a false claim repeatedly made. What we resist – and what we will never stop fighting – is the continued erasure and disrespect for the specific experience of being born and living as female in a patriarchal, misogynist world. Read more…
In 2004, Luis Reyes-Reyes petitioned for review of a decision of the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) denying his application for asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). Because the immigration judge (IJ) invoked the wrong standard in analyzing both of these claims, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit granted the petition and remanded for further consideration.
Luis Reyes-Reyes, a citizen of El Salvador, fled to the United States as a teenager twenty-five years ago. Motivated by fear of persecution, Reyes entered this country unlawfully and never legalized his presence. Faced now with the immigration consequences of his undocumented status, Reyes continues to fear persecution should he return to El Salvador.
Reyes is a homosexual male with a female sexual identity. He dresses and looks like a woman, wearing makeup and a woman’s hairstyle. Although Reyes has not undergone sex reassignment surgery, he has had a characteristically female appearance, mannerisms, and gestures for the past sixteen years. He has a “deep female identity” and has gone by female names such as Josephine, Linda, and Cukita. Reyes is currently in custody, where he is held separately from the other inmates for his own protection.
Reyes’s original reasons for leaving El Salvador involve disturbingly violent circumstances. When Reyes was thirteen and living with his family in San Salvador, he was kidnaped by a group of men, taken to a remote location in the mountains, and raped and beaten because of his homosexual orientation. Reyes’s attackers threatened future brutality if he reported their actions. Fearing reprisal, he never told his family or the authorities about these crimes. Believing that “homosexuals are not welcome in my home country,” Reyes fled El Salvador after he turned seventeen.
Reyes now faces the prospect of return to El Salvador. Removal proceedings were commenced after Reyes’s undocumented presence came to the attention of immigration authorities. In 2002, Reyes appeared pro se before an IJ, conceded removability, and applied for asylum, relief under the CAT, and withholding of removal. At the hearing, Reyes explained his fears about returning to El Salvador and related the story of his kidnaping and rape and explained his fears that if he returns to El Salvador, he will be discriminated against, abused, raped, or possibly even killed because of his appearance and sexual orientation. The IJ questioned Reyes repeatedly about why he failed to report the crimes and whether “anyone in the Government or acting on behalf of the Government of El Salvador [would] want to torture you.”
Originally posted on GenderTrender:
It’s the “Transgender Tipping Point”, described by transgenderist Jennifer Finney Boylan in his LATimes Op-Ed as:
“…what seems to be the Year of the Trans, a season of great progress in the movement for transgender equality. And yet commentators, both liberal and conservative, continue to struggle with the right words to describe the transgender experience.”
Boylan, a member of the all-male, all-white, all-heterosexual, all-middle-aged transgender leadership that recently took over the formerly gay lobbying group GLAAD, attempts to analyze this roadblock by drawing a comparison with the trajectory of the Gay Rights movement. As a disinterested bystander to the lesbian and gay movement (and quite a homophobic one at that), Boylan lacks insight into the decades of activism that preceded his arrival on the “LGBT” scene (to beg for scraps from bloated and obsolete gay orgs- the rudderless victims of their own success).
“What the trans…
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The Free State Legal Project settled a complaint brought on behalf of Sailor Holobaugh, a transgender Maryland state employee allegedly denied medically necessary care. FreeState filed an Equal Employment Opportunity complaint on the basis of sex discrimination as well as a complaint with the Maryland Commission on Civil Rights alleging the denial of health care coverage for a transition-related procedure was discrimination on the basis of gender identity.
The settlement includes reimbursement for the employee’s surgery, but also requires removal of transition-related care exclusions from all state employee health plans. The settlement also creates a new comprehensive Gender Dysphoria Benefit in Maryland employee health plans. The benefit covers all medically necessary transition-related treatment, including hormone replacement therapy and various surgical procedures.
Medicare can no longer automatically deny coverage requests for sex reassignment surgeries, a federal board ruled in a groundbreaking decision that recognizes the procedures are medically necessary for some people who don’t identify with their biological sex. Ruling in favor of , Denee Mallon, a 74-year-old transgender Army veteran whose request to have Medicare pay for her genital reconstruction was denied two years ago, a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services review board said there was no justification for a three-decade-old agency rule excluding such surgeries from treatments covered by the national health program for the elderly and disabled.