Tag: tells

Jen Psaki tells Fox reporter ‘trans rights are human rights’

Joe Biden's press secretary Jen Psaki responded to claims LGBT+ rights will harm women.

Joe Biden’s press secretary Jen Psaki responded to claims LGBT+ rights will harm women. (Getty/Alex Wong)

White House press secretary Jen Psaki has shut down suggestions that enforcing LGBT+ non-discrimination protections will lead to trans athletes taking over women’s sports.

The issue was raised at the White House press briefing on Tuesday (9 February), with a reporter appearing to parrot claims made by conservatives suggesting that Biden’s executive non-discrimination order will disrupt high school sports.

Fox News Radio reporter Rachel Sutherland asked: “What message would the White House have for trans girls and cis girls who may end up competing against each other, in sparking some lawsuits and some concern among parents?

“Does the administration have guidance for schools on dealing with disputes arising over trans girls competing with cis girls?”

Jen Psaki makes clear ‘trans rights are human rights’.

Psaki curtly made clear: “I would just say that the president’s belief is that trans rights are human rights, and that’s why he signed that executive order.

“In terms of determinations by universities and colleges, I certainly defer to them.”

Republicans pushing anti-transgender legislation across the US have recently sought to shift the narrative from bathrooms and locker rooms to sports provisions, as lawmakers seek to establish a legal right to discriminate against trans kids in a number of states.

The tactic bears little reflection on reality, where there are close to zero examples of trans women who have achieved significant prowess in women’s sports.

In the eight Olympics in which trans women have been eligible to compete as women, they have won a total of zero gold medals, zero silver medals, and zero bronze medals.

Biden’s stance that children should not be “denied access” to “school sports” is a reversal of the Trump administration stance, with the Trump-era Department of Education accused of effectively extorting schools into implementing policies discriminating against trans children.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki
White House press secretary Jen Psaki (Getty/Alex Wong)

Former Trump officials have launched attacks over trans issues.

Donald Trump’s former UN ambassador Nikki Haley is among those to launch attacks on the Biden administration over the issue.

Writing for the National Review, she claimed: “In one of his first acts as president, he signed an executive order paving the way for a federal mandate that all schools receiving federal funding let biological men play on women’s sports teams.

“The order was framed as a matter of transgender rights. But really, it was an attack on women’s rights.”

She continued: “If this trend isn’t stopped, the achievements of so many brave women over so many years will be erased. That’s wrong. It’s insulting. And women know it, too… [but] they’re just afraid to speak out, because they know they’ll be silenced and called bigots.”

A Doctor, a Soldier, and a Transgender Man: Picture Book Tells Story of Dr. James Barry

A Doctor, a Soldier, and a Transgender Man: Picture Book

A picture book biography offers an inspiring portrait of Dr. James Barry, a 19th-century British surgeon and soldier who was assigned female at birth but lived his life as a man.

Were I Not a Girl - Lisa Robinson

Were I Not a Girl, by Lisa Robinson, illustrated by Lauren Simkin Berke (Schwartz & Wade Books), first asks us to “Imagine living at a time when you couldn’t be the person you felt you were inside.” James Barry, we learn, “refused to let that happen.”

Barry was born in Ireland around 1789, and given a girl’s name. Girls at the time were not sent to school and could not own property or hold most jobs. “Were I not a girl, I would be a soldier,” Barry wrote. After Barry’s father abandoned the family, Barry (still living as a young woman) and his mother fled to London, but Barry was too uneducated to find work as a governess. He was eventually was taught by a friend of the family, and developed the desire to become a doctor.

Barry then “took charge,” shedding women’s clothing, cutting his hair, taking the name “James Barry,” and emerging as a man. After becoming a doctor and “quite a dandy,” he enrolled in the army and travelled the world, along the way delivering babies, fighting a duel, falling in love, and demanding proper care for people in prisons and hospitals. Eventually, he rose to be Inspector General of Hospitals in the army. His birth sex was found out when he died in his 70s.

We don’t know exactly how old he was when he died, however. That’s just one of many unanswered questions about Barry’s life, Robinson notes. As with much of history, sometimes “answers remain hidden.” What is clear, however, is that “James was living his truth.”

An afterward offers more details about Barry’s life as well as a discussion of what it means to be transgender. Robinson gives two other examples of early modern people who were assigned female at birth, lived as men to serve in the army, but then returned to living as women. Barry, in contrast, “strived to maintain that identity throughout his life,” making it likely that he was what we would now call transgender. Robinson uses female pronouns for Barry in the part of the book discussing his childhood, but switches to male ones once he transitions.

Berke’s illustrations capture muted 19th-century tones, brightened by the red of Barry’s army uniform. This project was “particularly meaningful,” they say in an Illustrator’s Note, since they identify as nonbinary, and the book “highlights that transgender people have always existed and were able to figure out how to succeed on their own terms.”

One fact seems wrong: In the afterward, Robinson says that in 1826, Barry performed “the first documented caesarean in which both the mother and the baby survived”—yet there was one (not by Barry) in 1794; I think the best we can say is that Barry might have done the first successful, documented one by a European surgeon in the British Empire (but I’m not enough of an expert to know if even that is correct).

That small point aside, I love this story, which blends a knowledge of the limits of history with a respectful desire to try and reflect Barry’s life as he saw it. Contrast this with Rough, Tough Charley, the 2007 book by Verla Kay about 19th-century stagecoach driver Charley Parkhurst, which calls Parkhurst “a woman in disguise” upon the deathbed reveal of his birth sex and uses female pronouns for him on the last page. Were I Not a Girl is much the better book for an LGBTQ-inclusive collection. Kudos, too, to the publisher, Schwartz & Wade (an imprint of Penguin Random House) for noting in its promotional blurb that Barry “would live a rich full life.” That’s a model transgender children today deeply deserve (and one that can benefit their cisgender peers as well).

Were I Not a Girl is in fact the second picture book published in 2020 about a historical figure whom we would today call a transgender man: The Fighting Infantryman, by Rob Sanders, tells the story of Albert D. J. Cashier, who fought in the U.S. Civil War. (Full review.) Let’s hope that these two titles, good as they are, aren’t the last.


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Audible Original tells story of Anne Bonny and Mary Read

Anne Bonny and Mary Read as Michelle Fox and Erin Doherty

Hell Cats is a new Audible Original about two queer pirates. (Audible)

Hell Cats tells the amazing true story of notorious female pirates Anne Bonny and Mary Read, and their queer romance that has been buried by history.

As young women in the 18th century, Bonny and Read defied every expectation placed on them.

Both were born out of wedlock and into poverty, and were raised as boys to give them a better chance in life.

But despite pressure from their families to become respectable members of society, the two women broke free, as the new Audible Original podcast Hell Cats reveals.

While Anne burned down her father’s slave plantation and, at just 18 years old, ran off to the Bahamas with her male lover, Mary continued to dress as a man to escape to sea and work on a ship.

Through dramatic twists of fate, Anne and Mary found their way to piracy and to each other.

Close-up of two women holding hands
Hell Cats is a thrilling tale of love, defiance and adventure. (Audible)

Embarking on an incredible adventure together, while also finding revenge on the men who had wronged them, the two pirates became possibly the most impressive power couple – and the most well-known female pirates – of all time.

Hell Cats, written by Carina Rodney and directed by Kate Saxon, captures the whirlwind drama of the pirates’ lives in a gripping tour de force of audio drama. The series immerses the listener in high-seas drama with a diverse cast of 52 voice actors.

Michelle Fox (Overshadowed, A Very English Scandal) plays Bonny, with Erin Doherty (The Crown, Les Miserables) as Read and Fisayo Akinade (Russel T Davies’ Cucumber and Banana) as Pierre Bouspeut.

 Anne Bonny and Mary Read as Michelle Fox and Erin Doherty
Anne Bonny and Mary Read are voiced by Michelle Fox and Erin Doherty. (Audible)

While the podcast series has healthy doses of treasure, duelling and swashbuckling, it also artfully explores themes of queer love, gender expression, equality and freedom.

It’s a poignant tale for queer listeners and an exciting piece of LGBT-storytelling, refreshingly different from the norm.

You can feel the action swirling around you as Bonny and Read subvert expectations, outsmarting law enforcement and leaving a line of scorned ex-lovers in their wake.

At its core Hell Cats is a story of two fearless queer women, bringing to life erased and forgotten LGBT+ history, and giving Bonny and Read the recognition they deserve.

Hell Cats is available exclusively on Audible, and an exclusive limited run of Hell Cats merch is available through Audible’s Instagram.

 

‘Seventeen’ tells story of secret lesbian crushes at boarding school – Lesbian.com

‘Seventeen’ tells story of secret lesbian crushes at boarding school

What happens when you fall in love with your best friend? Seventeen year old boarding school pupil Paula is secretly in love with her friend Charlotte. But Charlotte’s going out with Michael. Lovelorn, Paula decides to try and take her mind off things by getting involved with schoolmate Tim, whose feelings for her are genuine. And then there’s Lilli, who is just dying for someone to fancy her and tries to play the wild seductress. Paula must decide if she wants to follow her own feelings or yield to other people’s.

104 min
German with English Subtitles

Tags: Alexander Wychodil, Alexandra Schmidt, Anaelle Dézsy, Elisabeth Wabitsch, Indie film, Leo Plankensteiner, lesbian, lesbian movie, Lesbian.com, LGBT, LGBT film, monja art, seventeen, Wolfe Video

Posted & filed under Movies.

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