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Tell Legislators To Support Gender Non-Discrimination

May 26, 2013

To The Reader’s Forum: The Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA) was passed by the NYS Assembly for the sixth time on Tuesday. Our Assemblyman, Andrew Goodell, voted against this bill....

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(28)

HelenW

Jun-07-13 8:24 AM

What is it about trans women's bodies that your find so dangerous, loneriderrr1? Do you really want testosterone soaked trans men, with beards, muscles and balding heads, going into the ladies room?

I really don;t understand your reasoning.

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Emelye

Jun-04-13 11:17 PM

Why should they remove public accommodations, loneriderrr1? Do you really believe it's OK for people to be refused service in restaurants and hotels? Do you really think people should suffer pain and even medical problems because they are unable to access public restroom facilities? If a person wanted to go to a bakery to buy their family member a cake, say for a birthday, should it be OK for the bakery to refuse service? Remember, loneriderrr1, that there is ZERO credible evidence of any harm caused by this kind of nondiscrimination law in any of the 160+ places they've been enacted. No assaults, no harassment, no crimes reported that involve a trans person as the perpetrator. And don't forget, gender identity was first placed in a nondiscrimination law back in 1976!

ALL other categories are protected in public accommodation. Singling out trans people for no good reason by leaving them out of this vital part of the law would cause great harm.

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RationalThinker

Jun-04-13 2:54 PM

I will have to peruse the bill in full detail. I admit that I have no knowledge as to what it entails specifically.

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Emelye

Jun-04-13 1:40 PM

Nobody is blaming "everything" on gender discrimination, RationalThinker. Plus, your view that this bill isn't necessary is evidence that you are willfully ignorant of the real and continuing harm that people suffer from through unfair and prejudicial discrimination based on their gender expression/identity. It isn't unnecessary just because it doesn't seem necessary to you.

That discrimination on the basis of gender identity is a reality is proved by this report on the harmful discrimination that trans people suffer:

ht tp://w ww.thetaskforce. org/reports_and_research/ntds

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Emelye

Jun-04-13 1:35 PM

"Under the NYS Human Rights Law, it is illegal for an employer or licensing agency to refuse to hire or employ, or to fire an individual on the basis of his or her creed, race, color, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, marital status, disability, military status, domestic violence victim status or predisposing genetic characteristics. It is unlawful to discriminate against an individual in compensation, training programs, or in terms, conditions or privileges of employment because of a protected category."

htt p://ww w.ag.ny.gov/civil-rights/new-york-state-human-rights-law

GENDA would add the words, "gender identity" to the list of categories above. It will also add "gender identity" to our state's existing hate crime laws. No quotas, no "special rights," nothing about legalizing illegal behavior in public bathrooms, or anywhere else.

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Emelye

Jun-04-13 1:32 PM

This bill is about nondiscrimination protections, adding gender identity as one of the protected categories. There is nothing in there about quotas or any other "special rights." Stop wasting your time arguing against provisions that aren't there. Here's a link to the text of the bill in question, S00195

htt p://ww w.assembly.state.ny.u s/leg/?default_fld=&bn=S00195&term=2013&Summary=Y&Text=Y

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RationalThinker

Jun-04-13 12:09 PM

What exactly is this GENDA bill attempting to accomplish? Are we talking about ‘affirmative action’ for trans? So if this bill passes then a business will be required by law to hire a certain percentage of transgender individuals? Does anyone else think that’s absurd? So, what, if I want a new/better job all I have to do is throw on a skirt and some eyeliner and I’m in? Did it ever occur to you Emelye, that these people might have missed out on employment for being unqualified, or were denied certain other things due to other factors? Why must everything be blamed on transgender discrimination? GENDA, while full of good intentions, seems to me to be unnecessary legislation.

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Emelye

Jun-04-13 9:27 AM

The issue of clothing choice isn't germane to the issue, however. Whether something is a choice or not doesn’t preclude inclusion in non discrimination law in New York. It already covers religion, which is a definite choice.

There is no good reason not to pass this bill into law.

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Emelye

Jun-04-13 9:26 AM

You display a complete misunderstanding of gender dysphoria and its effects with this question. Being forced to assume an identity that doesn’t match your inner sense of who you are is more than an egregious affront to personal integrity. The evidence shows that trans people who are forced to live in their assigned gender suffer from severe depression, anxiety and self loathing to the point of suicide. The scientific and medical community overwhelmingly look at gender dysphoria as a medical condition. What you are suggesting is that trans people ignore a recognized and valid medical condition, inflicting debilitating pain and suffering upon themselves for no good reason.

Why do you choose to wear the clothes that you do? Do you think your choices more valid than the choices a trans person makes? I don’t think so. What harm is caused by a person’s gender transition? Why shouldn’t a trans person dress they way they want?

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Emelye

Jun-04-13 9:23 AM

Employers have a great deal of latitude in determining dress codes for their employees. The do not, however, have the right to enforce gender stereotypes, according to the Supreme Court in Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, 490 U.S. 228 (1989). Doing so violates the federal prohibition against sex discrimination.

When a trans person is hired, it’s perfectly OK for their employer to expect them to conform to company policy on what apparel is appropriate as long as they apply the rules in place for the gender the trans person presents as. In other words, a trans man would be expected to conform to the male dress code. A trans woman is expected to conform to the dress code that applies to all female employees.

GENDA doesn’t address the issue of dress codes at work. It covers employment discrimination on the basis of gender expression/identity in hiring, firing and promotion. Reasonable employer regulations are not prohibited by this law.

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RationalThinker

Jun-03-13 12:24 PM

Emelye 2:11 - Is being 'trans' a choice? No. But how you present yourself to the outside world IS very much a choice. You say that a choice of shirt color is not the same as being trans. Ok, you give me just ONE example of something a man, living as a woman, cannot get by without that is not a choice. Makeup? Choice. Long hair/wig? Choice. Women's clothing? Choice. You tell me one thing that is keeping a trans from functioning in a trans unfriendly environment that is not a choice.

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RationalThinker

Jun-03-13 12:09 PM

I have tattoos. I have to cover them up at work. Is it moderately inconvenient? Sure. Does it bother me? No. We're also not allowed to wear shorts where I work. Would I like to occasionally wear shorts? Sure. Am I making a crusade out of these situations? No. It's my employer's choice on how they want their employees to present themselves. It's their call. And they're the one paying the bills. That's simply how it is and I'm ok with that.

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HelenW

Jun-03-13 11:17 AM

It's unfortunate how much ignorance and fear there is about trans people. There really is no good reason not to pass this bill into law, it's been done in hundreds of places around the country and none of the bad things that people predict have ever happened.

Demand that this bill be brought to a vote!

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Emelye

Jun-01-13 2:11 PM

Your point fails because wearing a particular color is a choice, being trans is not. The best medical and scientific evidence shows that transsexual people are born that way and have no choice about who they are. If they choose to remain living a lie as their assigned sex/gender then they suffer from numerous mental health issues, substance abuse and suicide. When given the opportunity to transition and live authentic lives in their true gender these issues are largely resolved.

The American Psychological Association, American Medical Association and the World Professional Association for transgender Health, and all other mainstream medical and scientific organizations support nondiscrimination laws based on gender identity. The law is necessary, fair and should be passed now.

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RationalThinker

May-31-13 7:21 PM

Sounds to me like political correctness gone haywire. Consider this: If I was maligned, ridiculed and subjected to discrimination, such as losing out on employment opportunities, because of wearing a green shirt all the time and no employers wanted to hire any one with a green shirt, would I A. Go on a political crusade to make it so businesses were legally *required* to hire me, regardless of my green shirt, or would I B. Change my shirt? I understand the shirt analogy is rather shallow, but I think it illustrates my point.

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Emelye

May-31-13 2:30 PM

The prejudicial and harmful discrimination that trans people face is based on fear and ignorance. The prejudicial and harmful discrimination that trans women face has a very large dose of misogyny built into it as well. This causes harm to trans people and also causes harm to our society. The Gender Expression Non Discrimination Act (GENDA) should be passed immediately!

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Emelye

May-31-13 2:29 PM

It's interesting how someone who calls themselves a "Rational Thinker" is anything but. The kind of "rational" thought displayed in their reply, when it is based on ignorance - for which there is no excuse when you are on a computer with internet access - is irrationality at its worst because it assumes correctness in itself without doubt.

Genitals do not make you a man or a woman. Do you really think that if a man, through some unfortunate accident or act of war, lost their genitalia that they would start wearing dresses and heels? The idea that biology somehow equals destiny is one that is repudiated every day.

The prejudicial and harmful discrimination that trans people face is based on fear and ignorance. The prejudicial and harmful discrimination that trans women face has a very large dose of misogyny built into it as well. This causes harm to trans people and also causes harm to our society. The Gender Expression Non Discrimination Act (GENDA) should

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RationalThinker

May-31-13 2:11 PM

I like to think of myself as a rather open minded individual, but come on… transgender equality? Is this *really* a problem? You know what? If you have a penis you are a man, whether you feel like it or not. If you want to dress as a woman on your own time? Great. More power to you. But if your employer/potential employer doesn't want to hire a man wearing a dress then tough cookies princess. That’s their prerogative. Put on some pants and deal with it.

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Emelye

May-29-13 5:22 PM

Stop assuming that trans women are "really men" or that trans men are "really women" and most of the questions being raised against this bill resolve themselves. Narrow mindedly insisting that genitalia trumps brain sex, despite overwhelming scientific evidence against that view, is simply incorrect.

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Emelye

May-29-13 5:19 PM

"Men-only or women-only dormatories [sic] at colleges?" - many colleges are now offering dormitories that have no gender criteria in their eligibility rules. No problems have been reported, as far as I know.

"Scholarships that are available only to women?" - If a trans woman applies and qualifies in all respects then she ought to get one, under this law. Why is that a problem?

"Private clubs like Cresh, American Association of University Women, National Association for Women?" - Like the BSA, these are private organizations and can enforce their own rules for membership as long as they don't receive state funding. Many of them, by the way, fully accept trans women as members.

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Emelye

May-29-13 5:14 PM

"Girl Scout or Boy Scout membership?" - Girl Scouts already accept trans members. Boy Scouts, as far as I know, still don't, even after the vote last Friday to allow for gay scouts. As private organizations they can discriminate as they wish, as long as they aren't receiving state funding.

"Segretated [sic] jail populations?" - These are still segregated by genital appearance although putting a trans woman into a men's jail causes problems with rape and assault. Many jurisdictions place trans people into segregation for their own safety which helps a little but present problems because it usually involves solitary confinement which is normally used as a punishment and can harm people as well.

"Military service restrictions?"

Numerous militaries allow trans people to transition and serve. US military currently does not. Trans people are currently serving but are still under a "don't ask don't tell" regime.

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Emelye

May-29-13 5:06 PM

"What about showers at the YMCA/YWCA or at public beaches?"

What about them? I assume there are showers and public beaches in NYC, Albany, Rochester and Buffalo. All of these places have gender identity in their nondiscrimination laws. Is there any record of a problem in these places? No, none that I know of.

"What about women-owned businesses?"

What about them? If a woman owns a business then what difference does it make when gender identity is added to nondiscrimination law? Your question is vague and ambiguous.

"Official ID such as driver's licenses and passports?"

NYS driver's licenses and US passports can already be amended to show the true gender of trans people. Your question is moot, that ship has already sailed.

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Emelye

May-29-13 4:46 PM

That discrimination on the basis of gender identity is a reality is proved by this report on the harmful discrimination that trans people suffer:

ht tp://w ww.thetaskforce. org/reports_and_research/ntds

Here's a report on the cost of anti-transgender discrimination in our state:

ht tp://williamsinstitute.law. ucla.edu/research/transgender-issues/ny-cost-of-discrimination-april-2013/

Unfair and harmful discrimination on the basis of gender identity costs the state millions of dollars a year in increased welfare, medicaid, subsidized housing and law enforcement costs. As a society we harm ourselves by shunning intelligent and useful people because they express their gender in ways that our prejudice deems wrong. Call and write Sen Young and urge her to press upon the Senate leadership to pass this vital legislation!

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Emelye

May-29-13 4:41 PM

Gee, I just noticed this today. Ms Walther and I agree completely, this bill SHOULD be passed.

My reasoning is expressed most recently in this discussion thread: ht tp:// .post-journal.c om/page/content****ment/id/622705/In-Defense-Of-A-Pastor-s-Views.html?nav=5006

The idea that adding gender identity to New York's existing nondiscrimination laws would create dangerous circumstances in restrooms, showers and locker rooms is completely spurious. Over 160 governments, states, counties, cities and towns, have already included gender identity into their nondiscrimination laws. The first was in Minneapolis in 1976! One would think that real life examples of the harm opponents of this bill are describing would be common and easy to find. People who think that, however, are quite wrong, however. There are NO widespread examples of any harm that these doomsday scenario speculators are throwing at us. None.

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Gentleman

May-28-13 3:29 PM

This bill is not just about bathrooms! What about showers at the YMCA/YWCA or at public beaches? What about women-owned businesses? Official ID such as driver's licenses and passports? Girl Scout or Boy Scout membership? Segretated jail populations? Military service restrictions? Men-only or women-only dormatories at colleges? Scholarships that are available only to women? Private clubs like Cresh, American Association of University Women, National Association for Women? The list goes on and on....

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