Lizbeth DeSelm (USA)

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Lizbeth DeSelm, a man who identifies as a transgender woman, will be speaking at the Cambridge/Boston Women’s March on January 20 from 1-3pm at Cambridge Common, Cambridge, across from Harvard Square, with the goal of “rallying support against the ballot initiative that would remove gender identity from the Commonwealth’s Public Accommodations law.”

We do not support the codification of sex-stereotypes (“gender identity”) into law.

DeSelm to speak at Women’s March in favor of gender identity

 

 

 

Andrew Balcer (USA)

Andrew Balcer is a man who murdered his parents and the family dog in October 2016 because he “did not believe his parents would support him in his gender identity struggles.” He was indicted on two charges of murder and one charge of aggravated cruelty to animals.

On January 12, he pleaded, “Not guilty on all.” His trial is tentatively scheduled for November 2018, with jury selection to commence on November 8. Additionally, he has agreed to continue to be held in police custody in lieu of a special bail hearing.

Winthrop teen pleads not guilty to Halloween murder of parents, family dog

Andrew Balcer — Gender Identity Watch

Whitaker v. Kenosha Unified School District No. 1 (USA)

On January 9, the Kenosha Unified School Board voted 5-2 to settle its lawsuit with former student Ash Whitaker, who sued the school district alleging discrimination on the basis of “sex, gender identity, and transgender status” in violation of Title IX of the U.S. Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”) by refusing to allow Whitaker to use “the school restrooms corresponding to his gender identity.”

In May, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled in favor of Whitaker in a ruling stating “[a] policy that requires an individual to use a bathroom that does not conform with his or her gender identity punishes that individual for his or her gender non-conformance, which in turn violates Title IX.” In August, 2017, the school district filed a petition to the U.S. Supreme Court, asking that it overturn the May decision.

The settlement withdraws the school district’s petition and awards Whitaker $800,000, the majority of which will be paid by the school district’s insurer, not taxpayers, who will only be responsible for the $25,000 deductible. $650,000 of the settlement will be used to pay Whitaker’s attorneys, while the remaining funds will be disbursed to Whitaker. According to school district’s attorney, the settlement also permits Whitaker to use the mens’ restroom when returning to the school as an “alumnus or community member,” but does not apply to individuals other than Whitaker.

Unified Settles Transgender Lawsuit — Kenosha News

Wisconsin school district settles discrimination suit brought by transgender student for $800K — The Hill

 

 

 

Denis Finley (USA)

Denis Finley, former editor of the Burlington Free Press, was fired by Gannett on January 8 following a series of tweets regarding a proposal in the Vermont legislature to add a third gender option to driver’s licenses. The company determined Finley’s tweets “failed to adhere to the company’s code of conduct and ethics policy.”

According to Randy Lovely, an executive at the USA TODAY NETWORK, “We encourage our journalists to engage in a meaningful dialogue on social media, but it’s important that the conversation adhere to our overarching values of fairness, balance and objectivity,” Lovely said. Additionally, Burlington Free Press president Jim Fogler was quick to note, “Those opinions are his personal views and are not those of the staff or leadership of the Burlington Free Press.” In fact, Mr. Finley maintains (maintained?) a separate, professional Twitter account.

In an interview, Mr. Finley stated, “I really just wanted to ask the question: ‘Why is that awesome? And why is that necessary?’” he said. “That’s all, and I think any journalist would ask that question.”

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Gannett fires top Free Press editor following Twitter controversy — Burlington Free Press

Federal Court of Justice Recognizes the Role of Biology in Reproduction (Germany)

On January 4, Germany’s Federal Court of Justice (“BGH”), the country’s highest court, ruled that a transgender woman must be listed on his child’s birth certificate as the father of the child, not the mother. The individual is a man who identifies as a transgender woman, and who froze his sperm before undergoing gender reassignment. In 2015, his female spouse gave birth to a child conceived using his frozen sperm.

Although the couple provided a written request to have both individuals listed as “mothers” of the child on the child’s birth certificate, the registry denied this request and listed only the female spouse as the mother. The male spouse, who provided the sperm, was listed as the biological father.

The BGH found that the “trans person’s fundamental rights aren’t breached by the fact that existing ancestry law” assigns legal status of parenting according to one’s biological sex and “the specific contribution to procreation that resulted from this.”

Therefore, consistent with biology and common sense, the court determined that the individual who provides the sperm is the father of a child, and the individual who gives birth is the mother, regardless of legal gender or gender identity. This ruling is also consistent with an earlier ruling in which the court held that a woman who identifies as a transgender man, and is legally recognized as a transgender man, is not eligible to be recognized as the biological father of the child she gave birth to.

Germany’s gender laws need overhaul after trans woman told she can only be recognised as child’s father, say LGBT rights activists

German court rules transsexual woman can’t be ‘mother’

 

 

 

 

Deon “Strawberry” Hampton (USA)

Deon “Strawberry” Hampton, a 26-year-old man who identifies as a transgender woman, is seeking a transfer from the men’s prison where he is serving a 10-year sentence for burglary to a women’s prison.

Hampton alleges he is unable to “comfortably represent” himself as female, citing the fact that he is not permitted to wear is hair or nails long, and that said inability to “represent” as female has been “devastating physiologically.” He additionally alleges the guards and fellow inmates singled him out for “brutal treatment” at both prisons in which he has been detained.

A U.S. magistrate judge will conduct a hearing to help the court determine whether to grant the transfer requisition. The hearing is expected to last several days and focus on “Hampton’s gender identity and on whether [he] could pose a risk to female inmates if moved.”

Placing a male inmate in an all-female facility would violate the civil rights of every woman incarcerated there under the UN’s Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners.

Transgender Chicago inmate seeks rare transfer to female prison

 

Washington Department of Health (USA)

On January 4, the Washington Department of Health announced a new rule allowing state residents who “don’t identify as male or female” to “choose X as their gender on birth certificates” starting January 27. The policy applies only to altering existing documents; it does not apply to new documents.

The Washington Department of Health defines “X” as: “A gender that is not exclusively male or female, including, but not limited to, intersex, agender, amalgagender, androgynous, bigender, demigender, female-to-male, genderfluid, genderqueer, male-to-female, neutrois, nonbinary, pangender, third sex, transgender, transsexual, Two Spirit, and unspecified.”

Washington is the the fourth jurisdiction, following California, Oregon, and the District of Columbia, to allow individuals to “legally recognize a nonbinary gender.”

Washington state offers third gender option on birth certificates — CNN

Washington State Adds Third Gender Option On Birth Certificates — NewNowNext