In the spirit of ‘balance,’ journalists are giving credence to the junk science and misinformation of anti-trans activists. Readers are better served with clear facts.
“Helbert screwed up, and she admits that. But she also feels confident that’s not the reason she was fired.”
(Via. Nashville scene)
“Every few months, an influential publication gives platform to a piece purporting to debate the ‘fiercely contested’ or ‘hard to navigate’ questions about transgender identity. Usually focusing on restroom/locker room use or health care, these think pieces by design claim to offer analyses of the ‘different sides’ to some question about the costs and benefits of navigating the existence of trans people in particular ways.”
“Bruce Jenner’s coming out as transgender has greatly increased the visibility of transgender people, but it has likewise increased the number of writers talking about transgender identities. Though guidance is widely available for how to respect trans people, that guidance relies on a bit of understanding about exactly what it means to be transgender. Some recent cases demonstrate that skepticism — or outright antipathy — regarding gender identity remain an obstacles in these conversations.”
Thanks to Chelsea Manning, the subject of how to properly refer to Trans* people when reporting the news is its self news. MediaMatters has an article written by Joe Strupp titled, “News Outlets’ Misgendering Of Private Manning Draws Criticism” which points out the problems news organizations and reporters in general are having when writing about Transgender people.
In many ways having this discussion now is a good thing. As time goes on and more people decide to come out publicly, (as well as the many tragic stories about crimes against Trans* people), there needs to be an effort made towards polite, respectful reporting which is consistent across all forms of journalism, news sites, blogs, and print. By setting standards now it is possible to lay the groundwork for accurate information being passed to the public. It sets a new background from which to go forward and have the conversations which are going to be required for Trans* people to receive equal rights and respect in a bi-gender society which until now has been unable or unwilling to accept the reality of our existence.
It is clear there are going to be those who will seek to be deliberately cruel, who will attack what they do not understand, using any means at their disposal, including language. Yet, just as we have seen with the gay community, time will show such individuals for what they are and their hatred will be viewed with the scorn it deserves.