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Transgender

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Topics: Transgender
Rebekah Forcier
Professor Younkin
English 1010

Transgender Equality
Men and Women have very distinct similarities and differences. Mainly, there is a difference between genitalia and sex traits that establishes what sex we are. But what if the lines of sex became blurred? What if a boy wanted to be a girl and vice versa? This is called Transgenderism. There are now, more than ever, ways to make these things possible. Now, while it’s possible to change your “parts”, is the sex truly changed? This is an issue in America that is hotly debated.
A transgender individual may have characteristics that are normally associated with a particular gender. Many transgender people experience a period of identity development that includes better understanding one's self-image, self-reflection, and self-expression. The degree to which individuals feel genuine, authentic, and comfortable within their external appearance and accept their genuine identity is known as transgender congruence.
To begin, one of the more influential transgender stars today in pop culture is Laverne Cox. Cox stars in the hit Netflix series “Orange is the New Black” as one of the inmates. Even the character on the show is represented as an openly transitioned woman. She is the beauty salon coordinator. Not only is she beautiful herself, she is smart and funny to boot. [1] “She’s also done one now-famous chat on a daytime talk show, where she appeared with Carmen Carrera and gently chastised the host, Katie Couric, for being too focused on questions about genital surgery, which not every transgender person undergoes. After Ms. Couric said to Ms. Carrera, “Your private parts are different now, aren’t they,” Ms. Cox argued that focusing on this objectifies transgendered people and prevents a more meaningful discussion from taking place.”
Moving forward, basic human rights are things each individual on this planet are born with. Some people argue that when a person transitions they are not truly now a “woman” or a “man”. Some people think that no matter what surgery can make you, the sex you are born with will always be what you truly are. But transgendered individuals and some other individuals believe otherwise. Transgendered people describe the feelings of being “trapped in another person’s body.” [2] “It's difficult to imagine what it must feel like to be transgender if you are not. And if you are not transgender then your mind and your body match. One way to try to understand what it's like to be transgendered would be as this example...Let us for instance imagine that you are a genetically born woman who is attractive and feminine. Now imagine that you wake up one day and find that you are suddenly a man. You can no longer wear your earrings or jewelry, your hair will be cut and you can wear no makeup or any of the colorful and expressive feminine clothes you wore. You find that you now have muscles and are covered with hair on your body. You will be treated as a man by your fellow women and must now try to act as a man in order to integrate with them.”
To put it simply, that would be living a life not your own. Your soul would be broken and you would be unhappy. I believe people should live how they want to, as long as they do not harm themselves or others. Even laws now have to be looked at and changed due to this issue. Knowing that someone is transgendered can sometimes have negative consequences. Movies like “Boys Don’t Cry” is a poignant example. The story is based on the life of Brendon Teena. Brandon Teena was a transgendered man, meaning he was born a woman but transitioned to be a man. He was friends with a girl and it blossomed into much more. Brandon was popular and friends with the woman’s brother. Once her brother discovered that “he” was actually a “she”, he drove to find Brandon where he and his friend brutally assaulted him. When Brandon told the Sherriff in town, it did not go so well. [3] “Sheriff Charles Laux, to whom Brandon reported the rape, was less than sympathetic. In an audiotaped interview he conducted with Brandon, he seemed less interested in the crime than in the oddness of the victim sitting before him. His department questioned Nissen and Lotter but did not charge either man. But the fact that Brandon even reported them on the tape enraged Lotter and Nissen. They plotted their revenge.” After that night, they killed Brandon Teena. It is a truly tragic story.
People become so engrossed with what is between these people’s legs, rather than trying to understand these people for what they truly are. And the fact is they are just that, people. The process to transition is not only costly, it can tear apart families. There is something in their mind that has them yearning to be the opposite sex. These individuals have to go through grueling psychology visits and tests to clear them to even begin hormone therapy. It is a lengthy process. And even still, there are people who opt not to have their genitals changed, yet still identify as the opposite sex. Neither option is better than the other, it is a matter of choice and that choice is theirs. The only people that need to know is who they are involved with romantically.
To close, I feel that, especially with today’s technology and medical advancement, why can’t we choose what we want to be? If a person love’s who they are and is living a fully enriched life, who are we to impose judgment onto those individuals? We are born free. If someone wants to change their sex, with or without reassignment surgery, it is their right to do so and be free to express that. We are just at the beginning of this movement and I hope we can all come together to be more open minded in the future. That we can treat everyone with the love and respect we all deserve.

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