The Official Trans Rules
In an effort to limit bias, the big news agencies publish Stylebooks that present standardized guidelines for reporting events. There are minor differences between each of the books. Here are links to the "big three":
The Associated Press (AP): http://www.apstylebook.com/
Reuters (negligable reference to transsexuality): http://handbook.reuters.com/index.php?title=Main_Page
New York Times (NYT): https://www.nytimes.com/store/the-new-york-times-manual-of-style-and-usage-2015.html
GLAAD is an advocacy organization for the LGBT community. Their Media Reference Guide goes into greater detail on gender issues (with examples) than other guides.
The basic principles include:
-- Use the name that the individual currently uses in daily life.
-- Use the pronoun appropriate to how the individual currently lives from day-to-day. However, the NYT recommends writing so that pronouns aren't needed (often resulting in name repetition.) Androgynous people are asked for pronoun preference.
-- Don't reveal an individual's gender status (including birth name & genital appearance) unless it's directly relevant to the subject being addressed.
-- Tthese style guides are inconsistent, misleading and confusing about the words "transgender" & "transsexual". Usually "transgender" is defined by comparison to "gender assignment at birth" or by genital appearance at birth.
"Transsexual" doesn't refer to a human being, it refers to their medical history. And "Crossdressers" simply don't exist.
Athletic participation sections offer avoid mention of trans inclusion.
Inevitably, every rule book must be based on a certain set of priorities, perspectives and values. The values currently being promoted are those of the "Social Construct" mythology: Gender is a "claimed identity" with no need for any supporting facts -- either in personality traits or in biology. Unfortunately, these style guides are inconsistent, misleading and confusing about the words "transgender" & "transsexual".
The "Social Construct" myth is popular in liberal, feminist and psychology circles. It's angrily rejected by fundamentalist conservatives, who have their own biases to hand out to anyone willing to accept them.
The Mythology Portal
For most people, getting the news is part of the morning routine. ...And then repeating the ritual in the evening after work. Everyone has an insatiable hunger for knowing what's going on around them, seeing how other people live, and watching major events as they unfold.
Nowadays, information comes from various sources: Internet news reports, broadcast media, newspaper headlines and so on. On top of that, there are countless commentaries, editorials and blogs that eagerly explain the ongoing trends and looming threats. Behind the scenes, internet monitors decipher everyone's attitudes, interests and desires. Media managers use that data to create ad campaigns that are individually tailored to influence values and behavior.
The bottom line is that reporters, commentators and producers define a culture and mold its social values. No presentation is ever objective, fair or balanced. All information has been carefully distorted, so the audience will think the way information managers want them to think, and do what the manipulators want them to do.
For the general public, distorted information leads to misguided public opinion and harmful social policies.
If general society is hostile to transsexuals, it's a direct result of how the media presents the issues. Every instance of violence & harassment has ultimately been sponsored by some reporter, commentator or opinion manager.
The New Gender Paradigm
The Gender Portal
Let's begin with an example of good reporting:
Although Antonia Barrone is alleged to have committed a lot of very dangerous traffic violations, the reporter Nick Fusaro found no need to cite Antonia's medical history.
Note, however, that there are no pronouns in the article -- although the work is written so their absence is barely noticeable.
For the full article, go HERE.
At right is the person who was assaulted. She doesn't look like a "man" to me.
The rent-a-cop grabbed her and roughly pushed her through the front door of the store, while shouting ethnic & gender slurs.
Washington DC law protects trans people who use the appropriate restroom.
Other Examples of
Horrible Example (left)
To compare, here's an appalling display of a reporter distorting reality to support his own biases.
For full article, see HERE
Wouldn't it be great if there were more GLBT people in government? ...Not only to act as role models, but to remove anti-GLBT bias from legislation and government policy.
Apparently the Media doesn't think so. Here's an example of how the political career of a rising star was intentionally destroyed. Read more HERE....
Some quotes from the body of Peter Hasson's article:
"...The security guard followed him in and ordered the man to leave. When he refused, the security guard had to physically escort him out of the women’s restroom."
"At least one woman was grateful for the security guard’s actions. Shopper Deana Chisholm told WJLA: 'If you was born a man go to the men’s bathroom. You got a penis go to the men’s bathroom. If you are born a woman go to the woman’s bathroom. Period!'"
What actually happened:
The source for Hasson's article was a report from Washington DC's ABC Channel 7 WJLA. The headline of that report read:
"Security guard arrested for assault after pushing transgender woman from women's restroom."
The WJLA article, by Jay Korff et al, went on:
"The signage outside the Giant grocery store on H St. in Northeast Washington says 'welcome.' But it's alleged that a security guard working here did not think a transgender woman was welcome to use the ladies room.
"Sources say a security guard is accused of pushing the transgender woman from the bathroom area to the store's exit. It's also alleged the security guard directed a homophobic slur at the transgender woman.
"Tony Pixley witnessed the incident.
"Pixley says, 'The guy [ie, the security guard] and the girl, the transgender, [were] getting into it and throwing stuff and pushed the girl out the store and they went back and forth.'"
Someone reading Peter Hasson's article wouldn't be aware that the person in the restroom was transsexual. The Deanna Chisholm quote offered the only hint that gender identity was an underlying issue.
How could Deanna Chisholm, Peter Hasson or the security guard know the genital status of the restroom visitor? -- Currently or at the time of birth.
Ultimately, Hasson's article promotes rough handling and verbal abuse of anyone in a restroom who seems masculine.
© Cassandra Branch MD