Should Somebody Born Male Be Able To Alter His(Her) Birth Certificate To Female, And Vice-Versa?
November 12th, 2006
The Daily News publishes opposing views of the proposal by the New York City Board of Health to allow transgendered New Yorkers to change their gender on their birth certificates, whether or not they have had a sex-change operation.
The Yes essay is by Michael Silverman of the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund , who argues that such a move will help make life a little easier for what he calls one of the most discriminated-against communities in the city: “When they apply for jobs, they will no longer need to fear rejection because their ID doesn’t match the way they look; it now will. When they enter office buildings, they will no longer have to explain to security guards why the gender on their ID doesn’t match their appearance; it now will. When police officers stop them from using the bathroom that matches their gender presentation, they’ll have identification that says they have the right to be
The No essay is by James Kirchick, who writes for the Independent Gay Forum. He argues the proposal amounts to “falsifying government documents” and “eliminating a physical standard for determining gender,” and says that it would cause a raft of complicated situations (“What if a man who, despite never having had his gender surgically changed, asserts he is a woman then wants to marry another man, despite gay marriage not being legal in New York State?”). More generally, tacking on transgender issues to gay rights, Kirchick writes, is partly responsible for the fact that “ it remains legal to fire people – just because they are gay – in 36 states.”By Jonathan Mandell on November 12, 2006, 3:21 pm
In category: Civil Rights, Demographics, Gotham City, Health | 7 Comments »