Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Amanda Lear

Amanda Lear is a model, actress and recording artist from the 1960s, 70s, 80s. She has NEVER admitted to being a post-op transsexual, but her SRS in the early 1960's was performed at Dr. Georges Burou's clinic in Casablanca, Morocco (although in an interview many years later stated that being a transsexual was a ruse created by David Bowie who she lived with for a time). 

At the age of 16 she went to Paris to study painting, then in 1964 to the famous St Martins School in London. During this time she started modeling for Catherine Harlé, head of the famous European model agency and became friends with Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones.
In 1965 she began to model for the likes of Paco Rabanne and Yves St Laurent, and then became a muse for Salvador Dali.  She appeared on the cover of Brian Ferry's album "For Your Pleasure" in the early 1970s and then later started dating (and lived with) David Bowie. In 1977 She recorded her first album, "I'm just a Photograph," and it stayed on the German record charts for 33 weeks. Her low voice once again had people wondering about her gender.  In the 1990s she appeared in the French film, "A Woman For Me," and several television shows as well.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

From the Country That Gave Us Forced Sterilization

In a pretty outrageous decision, a Swedish court found that a man on trial for attempted rape (of a transgender woman) could not be convicted of that because, according to the judge, the victim was a man, and therefore the attacker could not "Complete the act on a man." 

He went on the say that "We believe that he wanted to rape this woman in particular. But, as she turned out to be a man, the crime never was actually committed."

Throughout the trial, the judge referred to the victim as Her and She, but clearly missed the point that she didn't need a vagina to be raped. And she didn't escape the rape because the attacker couldn't "complete" it, but rather, because her ex-boyfriend saw the attack from a window and came to her aid; fighting off the attacker and then holding him down until police arrived, according to The Local.

While the man was convicted of assault, he should have also been convicted of attempted rape.  

Does Celebrity Trans-Kids Help Our Profile?

There is no doubt that when the transgender children of famous celebrities come out, so does the media, but is the added attention helpful?  

Most recently, Stephen Ira Beatty, the trans-son of Warren Beatty and Annette Benning, recently made news with the release of a new video clip.  It's always good when the media promotes transpeople speaking candidly, to provide an insight to who they are, how they feel and so on, and Stephen does that in a very honest and revealing way -- if not dizzyingly rapid speed..

And yes, this is the same Stephan that blasted Chaz Bono (the trans-son of Sonny and Cher) in the media eight months ago: "Chaz is a misogynist ... This man doesn't represent our community. He especially does not represent  those of us who are non-binary, non-op, or feminist men. Chaz needs to do some hard thinking about what it means to appoint oneself representative of a whole group without considering the desires of all the group's members," going on to say that "he seems like a good guy, and from what I could see really good at the Cha-Cha."

The question becomes whether this sort of in-fighting helps or hurts our cause; does it further confuse the mainstream that still asks us "Why do you want to be someone else?"

The Wrong Kind of Male

Gay friends have often asked me "Why do you want to be someone else?" To them I was clearly a guy, and any effort to dress or present myself as female was an effort to become someone else.

The trans community started a riot and the gay community attained equal rights from it, yet they have never understood, nor for that matter, in many cases, respected us either.

In an article in Huffington Post Joe Kort Ph.D  reflects on his own transphobia; also the shared experiences he as a gay man with transgender girls.

For too long the gay community has been ignorant and stubbornly rooted in their opinions of transpeople, much in the same way that noe conservatives have been about them.

Have we reached a tipping point where the mainstream is opening up their views about gays, while the gays are opening up their opinions about us?

One can only hope.