Trans Rights are Human Rights

I join the revulsion in response to Trump’s ludicrous ban of transsexuals from military service.  They deserve better. People who want to serve this country should not be prevented from doing so because one day they realized that they were a differ gender inside from the one they were on the outside. They are human beings and have human rights.

Thec alleged expense of transition is used as an excuse for this denial of human rights. Such expenses would surely be less than the expenses incurred treating soldiers’ injuries.  Additionally, many trans people will have completed their sex changes by the time they enlist. They will still be taking harmone pills, but if they are to be excluded for that, does that mean all soldiers taking medication should be excluded? Utter nonsense!


Many trans serve and have served. They even have their own veterans organization, the Transsexual American Veterans Association, whose website I have already posted on this blog. Can anyone deny that they have contributed to their services?


Trump’s transsexual ban is a bigoted mistake and a cheap political stunt to pander to  the Republican base and possibly to distract from the train wreck that is his administration. It is a violation of  common sense and of decency. It is unamerican.  This country was founded on a shared be.ief that human beings had “inalienable rights.”  None are more important than HUMAN rights and trans rights are human rights.


Black Trans History Is Inspirational by Monica Roberts

Black Trans History Is Inspirational by Monica Roberts. -this is an article from the Transgender Law Center.

Black Trans History is an appropriate topic during Black History month. Transgendered African-Americans have rich history, as Ms. Roberts points out. Let us not forget that.

Marriage Equality Rules!

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Marriage equality became the rule in all 67 of the counties of Florida today! Even rogue AG Pam Bondi had to concede the inevitability of this development and wished couples well. Clerks in some counties have resorted to ceasing to perform marriages at all, but they are still required to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Now we need a statewide ENDA in Florida and one nationwide. Rights for transgendered people are also essential.

Marriage equality is also sweeping the country, as the above chart from shows. They estimate that 70% of gay men and lesbians in this country live in a place where same-sex marriage is legal. Sometimes the “good guys” win in the end.


Happy New Year! Here’s to a great 2015! | MoveOn.Org | Democracy In Action

Here’s to a great 2015! | MoveOn.Org | Democracy In Action. – Happy New Year! Finally emerging from the long year that was 2014 feels wonderful! Things were still accomplished, though. In this video Robert Reich shows that even in the dark days of a year like 2014 progressives working together made strides. This should remind us be undaunted by setbacks and energize us to keep our heads up and make even more progress this year! Despite the “GOP” takeover of the U.S. Senate (and gain of governorships) 2015 can be a great year

Pride Days in Gainesville This Week

Pride Days are being celebrated in Gainesville this week. They began on October 18th (last Friday) and end on the 27th (Sunday). Here is a list of events, mostly taken from the Pride Guide,  in case your haven’t seen a one:

Tuesday night : The film “Beautiful Boxer” at the Hippodrome. This feature is about the real life story of Parinya Charoenphol and is sponsored by LGBT Affairs of the University of Florida.

Wednesday night: Be More Heroic, an anti-bullying campaign, is being held at Ustler Hall at the University of Florida. This event is co-sponsored by UF APIA Affairs, The River Phoenix Center for Peacebuilding, and UF Intercultural Engineers.

Thursday night : “Living History.” This presentation will be held at the Pride Center (3131 NW 13th Street) by the Human Rights Council of North Central Florida (HRCNCF).

Saturday Afternoon : Pride March. Starts at noon. Marchers assemble at NW 7th Street and the South Side of W University Avenue in the parking lot next to the Ayers Medical Plaza. The March will then proceed to the Bo Diddley Downtown Plaza.

Saturday Afternoon : Pride Festival. Runs from 1 to 9 P.M. on the Bo Diddley Downtown Plaza with many local venders and tabling by activist groups. Sponsored by the City of Gainesville. “A Kids Space” also available.

Sunday Morning: Pride Service at the United Church of Gainesville (local branch of the United Church of Christ):

Alachua County Commission to vote Aug. 13 on adding sexual orientation and sexual identity to anti-discrimination ordinance

A decades old wrong is about to be righted in Alachua County, Florida this month. Nineteen years ago, in 1994, the Alachua County Commission voted to add sexual orientation to the county anti-discrimination ordinance. Opponents of gay rights responded with a county ballot referendum repealing the above mentioned measure and forbidding commissioners from taking such action in the future.

Supporters of gay rights formed an organization called No On 1 and fought the anti-gay initiative, but they lost. They then filed suit. The judge in the case chose to wait for a decision pending in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Romer v. Evans, in which the Colorado Supreme Court overturned a state anti-gay measure similar to the one in Alachua County.

The SCOTUS decision, authored by Justice Anthony Kennedy, while reversing the Colorado Court’s striking down of the portion of the anti-gay law repealing gay rights legislation, upheld the portion of the state court’s decision striking  down the section forbidding the state government from enacting gay rights laws in the future. The judge in the Alachua County case responded by treated the Alachua County initiative similarly: uphold the repeal of gay rights protection but invalidated the prohibition against passing any such measure in the future.

Although the future was left open, for the time being gay rights advocates unfortunately had to settle for inclusion of sexual orientation in the City of Gainesville’s anti-discrimination ordinance and inclusion of gender identity later. People were thus protected from discrimination on those bases in  Gainesville but not in the rest of the county. For nineteen years lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and the transgendered had no recourse at the county level.

That was how things stood until June 25, when the County Commission voted 4-1 to vote, on Aug. 13, on once again including sexual orientation, and this time gender identity as well, in the county anti-discrimination ordinance where they belong, the dissenting vote coming from the lone Tea Partier on the commission. Romer v. Evans has finally led to the opportunity to rectify the wrong that was done in 1994.

The time for this action has come. Actually, it came long ago but was thwarted by a vocal, well-funded minority. It is indeed past time for lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and the transgendered to get their due, to be granted equal protection under the law. Alachua County and Gainesville should be ahead of the curve on progressive change. Hopefully the county commission will put Alachua County there on LGBT rights.

VAWA Lite Being Voted On Today

The House is voting on the Republicans’ watered down version of the Violence against women act today. This version exempts Native Americans and gays from coverage, weaken provisions dealing with subsidized housing, and removing provisions strengthening another law’s protection against sexual assault. The GOP has received so much heat on this issue that, according to Daily Kos, they have invited women’s groups such as the National Organization for Women and the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence to air their concerns and are said to be planning to offer amendments to address these groups concerns, but gays will still be excluded. It is amazing the lengths Republicans will go protect their image. What an example of talking the talk without walking the walk. Please e-mail and/or write your congressperson and tell them to vote against this lite version of  VAWA.

President Obama Made Historic Statement in Support of Gay Marriage Rights Yesterday; Ripples Being Felt At Home and Abroad

Yesterday President Obama made an historic declaration of support for same-sex marriage in an interview with Robin Roberts on “Good Morning America”. Not only has this elated the LGBT community and their allies, but the ripples are already being felt at home and abroad. The Nation reports that seven Democrats in Congress:   Senate Majority Leader Harry Read of Nevada, Senator Clair McCaskel of Missouri, Senator Bill Nelson of Florida, Sentor Bob Casey of Pennsyvania, Senator Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, Representative Steny Hoyer of Maryland, the number two Democrat in the House, and Representative  Jim Clyburn, the number three Democrat and highest-ranking African American in the House, are now under pressure to come out in support of gay marriage themselves.

In addition, the Israeli newspaper the Jerusalem Post reports that an Israeli parliament member has been inspired by the president’s declaration to propose same-gender marriage legislation. Knesset member Nitzan Horowitz of the Meretz party had submitted the bill, the  “Freedom of Choice in Marriage Act”, twice before but it was rejected both times in preliminary reading. Now, after President Obama came out in support of gay marriage, Horowitz has resubmitted his bill. The potentially historic legislation will come up for a vote in the Knesset next week. It not only allows same-gender couples to marry, it also grants Jewish people the right to marry gentiles and vice versa.

What an exciting 24 hours it has been!