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Gay groups welcome stand against violence
Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) from around the world have welcomed a landmark statement on human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity, delivered last Friday at the United Nations Human Rights Council by Norway on behalf of 54 States.
The statement condemns human rights violations directed against people because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, commends the work of UN mechanisms and civil society in this area, calls on UN Special Procedures and treaty bodies to address these issues, and urges the Human Rights Council to pay due attention to human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity, including consideration at an upcoming session.
“This is the largest-ever statement delivered at the UN on sexual orientation issues, and the first ever to explicitly highlight human rights violations based on gender identity.” said John Fisher, co-director of human rights group ARC International, who pioneered the campaign.
“We are encouraged by the measurable increase in cross-regional support for sexual orientation and gender identity issues in recent years. The time has come to ensure that human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity receive the international scrutiny and condemnation they demand.”
Chris Sidoti, Director of the International Service for Human Rights, said: “Numerous Special Procedures have documented violations of the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons.
“These violations include use of the death penalty, torture, criminal sanctions, police harassment, violence, rape, beatings, disappearances, denials of freedom of expression, raids and closures of NGOs, and discrimination in education, employment, health and housing. Too often in the past, these human rights abuses have passed in silence. Now, the era of invisibility is over.”
Rosanna Flamer-Caldera, Co-Secretary General of the International Lesbian and Gay Association highlighted the fact that more than 460 NGOs from 69 different countries had joined together to commend Norway for its leadership and support the statement.
“Activists from around the world often work on issues of sexual orientation and gender identity at risk of their jobs, their freedom, even their lives. The Norwegian statement has united States and NGOs from around the world to send a clear message that human rights violations directed against our communities can no longer be ignored.”
Earlier this year, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour in a keynote speech to an International Conference on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights noted that “violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons is frequently unreported, undocumented and goes ultimately unpunished. … This shameful silence is the ultimate rejection of the fundamental principle of universality of rights. … Excluding LGBT individuals from these protections clearly violates international human rights law as well as the common standards of humanity that define us all.”
Battle lines drawn as Italy plans law recognizing gay couples
by Gina Doggett
Sat Dec 9, 5:03 PM ET
Battle lines were drawn over a plan to grant legal status to gay couples in socially conservative Italy, with the Vatican up in arms along with the right-wing opposition.
L'Osservatore Romano, a Vatican mouthpiece, slammed the plan, warning in an editorial: "Eradicating the family is the priority of Italian politics," while the opposition also pledged to defend the traditional family.
Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi said Thursday that his government would draft legislation on civil unions in the Catholic-majority country by January 31.
He said it would "represent a fundamental step forward" as his center-left Union coalition honors its electoral pledges.
The measure would apply to all unmarried couples without reference to their sexual orientation, granting them inheritance rights, joint medical insurance and visiting rights in prisons and hospitals, among others.
Friday's announcement of the planned legislation "confirms once again the hypocritical nature of these initiatives that aim to recognize an alternative form of family," L'Osservatore Romano said.
If the government insists it is defending "individual rights" and that "nothing intends to endanger the traditional family, it will be lying."
The Italian opposition, led by Forza Italia of former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, also blasted the plan, while doubting whether Prodi's motley coalition -- ranging from communists, Greens and radicals to centrist and traditional Catholics -- will be able to unite behind the initiative.
"We will defend the family as we always have," Forza Italia's Isabella Bertolini told the ANSA news agency, while adding: "The false majority won't agree on anything."
Granting legal status to gay couples has been a subject of dispute not only between right and left in Italy but also within Prodi's Union coalition, which promised in its manifesto ahead of April elections to legally recognize common law partnerships, stressing that "their sexual orientation will not be an obstacle."
The head of Forza Italia's group in the Senate, Renato Schifani, said Saturday: "Nothing has been decided, as some in the left want people to believe.
"The debate on civil unions is completely open. Not only are we firmly opposed ... but the Catholics in the Union have already said they would never vote for it," he said.
A member of the Margherita party, a traditional Catholic grouping within Prodi's coalition, however told Saturday's Rome daily Il Messagero that he favored the recognition of gay couples' civil rights but not gay marriage or "parity between civil unions and the family."
A member of the small left-wing Rose in the Fist meanwhile accused "Catholic fundamentalists" of wanting to block the legislation.
"We are in the presence of a veritable cultural and philosophical offensive with the authoritative guidance of the pope who wants to impose on Italy a sort of tutelage by the Church on civil and political life, unknown in other big European democracies," Roberto Villetti told ANSA.
He was reacting after Pope Benedict XVI said Saturday that religious symbols should be allowed in public places.
The Vatican condemned Spain's gay marriage law last year as "a defeat for humanity" and attacked Prodi for "tearing apart the family in a search for votes."
Italy splits over status of gay, unwed couples
By Phil Stewart
7:34 a.m. December 8, 2006
ROME – Italy's political right and Catholic Church officials voiced outrage on Friday at a Senate request that the government put forward legislation giving rights to unmarried couples, including homosexual ones.
One Roman Catholic cardinal warned the move risked 'destroying' the family and centre-right opposition leaders threatened to put up a stiff fight in parliament.
The motion, passed late on Thursday, commits the government to present a bill over recognition to unwed couples by January 31. But it was vague and stopped short of suggesting legally binding marriage contracts to same-sex couples.
It came just days after a city in northern Italy's Catholic heartland became the first in the country to allow unmarried heterosexuals and homosexuals to register formally as couples.
'By opening the door to new forms of cohabitation there is the risk of destroying the family,' Cardinal George Cottier told Italy's left-leaning La Repubblica newspaper.
Cardinal Paul Poupard cautioned that the family taught 'man and woman about how to be social'.
Prime Minister Romano Prodi, who campaigned on giving legal recognition for unwed couples, said the unanimous Senate motion about a form of national legislation 'represents a fundamental step forward'.
Centre-right politicians saw it as a mission-creep toward legalising gay marriage and threatened to block the measure.
CLASH IN PARLIAMENT
'There will be a clash in parliament in January over civic values but (the bill) will not pass,' said Osvaldo Napoli, with the opposition Forza Italia party in the lower house.
Many in the centre left support legal recognition of unwed heterosexual and homosexual couples similar to that in France, which has granted all couples the right to form civil unions, and to joint social security and other benefits.
Family Minister Rosy Bindi said any Italian move would be a far cry from legalising gay marriage, adding 'it should not be a source of concern even for the Church'.
But the Church was already up in arms after the city council of Padua in the northern Veneto region on Monday voted in favour of allowing homosexual and heterosexual couples to register as 'families based on ties of affection'.
It would allow the couples to receive a 'certification of family' document from Padua city hall establishing the date a family was started.
Such certificates are needed in Italy to join waiting lists for public housing, to obtain permission from employers to stay away from work to assist a sick family member at home or in hospital, and for various minor legal proceedings.
In a strongly worded editorial, the Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano condemned the move as an 'incredible' attempt to allow what it called 'a parallel family' and branded its political backers as 'hypocrites'.
Italy's opposition promises to battle proposed legislation giving rights to unmarried couples
The Associated Press
Friday, December 8, 2006
Opposition leaders reacted angrily Friday to a request by the Senate's center-left majority to give unmarried couples — including gays — some of the same rights as married couples, and promised to fight what they said was harmful to families and Italy's Catholic tradition.
The issue is a divisive one in a nation that is home to the Vatican and is still influenced by church positions. It is also sensitive for the coalition of Premier Romano Prodi, which ranges from Christian Democrats to anti-Vatican radicals and has struggled to find a common position on the matter.
At issue is a decision Thursday by the majority in the Senate, which called unanimously on the government to come up with legislation for all unmarried couples by the end of next month.
Barbara Pollastrini, equal opportunities minister, agreed in a statement Friday that the government would do so by the end of January.
"This is an answer to a maiden prayer for the right, because it's something they can raise a big stink about and take attention away from the issue of money and who is responsible for the debt," said James Walston, political science professor at the American University in Rome.
The response from the opposition was swift.
"We will fight this in parliament and in the country, getting the moderate, Catholic and non Catholic groups, involved," Pier Ferdinando Casini, a Christian Democrat and opposition leader, said in a statement carried by Italian news agencies.
Among other things, the proposed legislation would give unmarried couples including gays inheritance rights, joint medical insurance, visiting rights in prisons and hospitals, the right to carry on one another's leases, and the right to take decisions in case one partner becomes ill.
"There is one part of the majority that wants to bring Italy closer to Zapatero's Spain, making the regular family equal to homosexual cohabitants," Casini added, referring to the Socialist government of Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, which legalized gay marriage last year and has pushed through other liberal laws including fast-track divorce and less onerous terms for medically assisted fertilization.
"This is an offense to the identity of the family and the Catholic principles of the majority of Italians," Enrico La Loggia, a deputy with the conservative Forza Italia party, was quoted as saying by the ANSA news agency.
The Senate's majority asked for the legislation after it took out a reference to unmarried couples in a fiscal measure contained in the proposed 2007 budget, which must be approved by parliament by the end of the year.
Prodi called the move a "step forward" in putting the government's platform into effect and said addressing the issue of unmarried unions was "crucial." However, he has said his government would stop short of endorsing gay marriage, which the Vatican firmly opposes.
About 90 percent of Italy's 58 million citizens are at least nominally Catholic.
Senate majority asks Italian government to propose legislation on unmarried couples
The Associated Press
Thursday, December 7, 2006
The center-left majority at the Senate called on Premier Romano Prodi's government on Thursday to present legislation giving legal rights to unmarried couples by the end of next month.
The issue is a touchy one in this overwhelmingly Roman Catholic nation that hosts the Vatican and is still influenced to a degree by church positions. It is also sensitive for Prodi's coalition, which ranges from Christian Democrats to anti-Vatican radicals and has been struggling to find a common position on the matter.
The majority in the Senate has agreed to take out a reference to unmarried couples in a fiscal measure in the 2007 budget, which must be approved by parliament by the end of the year.
But it also unanimously called on the government to come up with the legislation on unmarried couples, including homosexual ones, by the end of next month.
"We have decided to present a motion ... that calls for a government proposal by Jan. 31 on couples," said Anna Finocchiaro, a senator for the center-left coalition.
Finocchiaro said the proposal should "recognize rights, also in fiscal matters, and prerogatives to people who are part of an unmarried couple," without any discrimination over gender or sexual orientation.
Prodi called the move a "step forward" in putting the government's platform into effect and said the issue of unmarried unions was a "crucial" one.
However, finding a common position on what sort of legal status should be given to unmarried couples — and whether that would include homosexual ones — is likely to spur further bickering within the center-left coalition.
Prodi's electoral platform included a generic pledge to give some legal status to unmarried couples, but made no direct reference to homosexual ones and offered no details — a possible sign of the divisions among coalition members.
In another sign of tensions, some leftist lawmakers complained Thursday that the reference to unmarried couples had been taken out of the budget measure.
Prodi has said his government would stop short of endorsing gay marriage, which the Vatican firmly opposes.
About 90 percent of Italy's 58 million citizens are at least nominally Catholic.
"Nobody wants to discriminate against de-facto or gay couples. But it must be clear that in no way can homosexual unions be considered equal to families in our legislation," said Pier Ferdinando Casini, a Christian Democrat and opposition leader.
A boy, 5, left, who identifies as a girl, plays with a friend in Northern California. He began emulating girls shortly after turning 3.
The New York Times
Supporting Boys or Girls When the Line Isn’t Clear
By PATRICIA LEIGH BROWN
Published: December 2, 2006
OAKLAND, Calif., Dec. 1 — Until recently, many children who did not conform to gender norms in their clothing or behavior and identified intensely with the opposite sex were steered to psychoanalysis or behavior modification.
Jim Wilson/The New York Times
Dr. Kenneth Zucker, a psychologist at the Center for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, encourages children to be content with their gender.
But as advocates gain ground for what they call gender-identity rights, evidenced most recently by New York City’s decision to let people alter the sex listed on their birth certificates, a major change is taking place among schools and families. Children as young as 5 who display predispositions to dress like the opposite sex are being supported by a growing number of young parents, educators and mental health professionals.
Doctors, some of them from the top pediatric hospitals, have begun to advise families to let these children be “who they are” to foster a sense of security and self-esteem. They are motivated, in part, by the high incidence of depression, suicidal feelings and self-mutilation that has been common in past generations of transgender children. Legal trends suggest that schools are now required to respect parents’ decisions.
“First we became sensitive to two mommies and two daddies,” said Reynaldo Almeida, the director of the Aurora School, a progressive private school in Oakland. “Now it’s kids who come to school who aren’t gender typical.”
The supportive attitudes are far easier to find in traditionally tolerant areas of the country like San Francisco than in other parts, but even in those places there is fierce debate over how best to handle the children.
Cassandra Reese, a first-grade teacher outside Boston, recalled that fellow teachers were unnerved when a young boy showed up in a skirt. “They said, ‘This is not normal,’ and, ‘It’s the parents’ fault,’ ” Ms. Reese said. “They didn’t see children as sophisticated enough to verbalize their feelings.”
As their children head into adolescence, some parents are choosing to block puberty medically to buy time for them to figure out who they are — raising a host of ethical questions.
While these children are still relatively rare, doctors say the number of referrals is rising across the nation. Massachusetts, Minnesota, California, New Jersey and the District of Columbia have laws protecting the rights of transgender students, and some schools are engaged in a steep learning curve to dismantle gender stereotypes.
At the Park Day School in Oakland, teachers are taught a gender-neutral vocabulary and are urged to line up students by sneaker color rather than by gender. “We are careful not to create a situation where students are being boxed in,” said Tom Little, the school’s director. “We allow them to move back and forth until something feels right.”
For families, it can be a long, emotional adjustment. Shortly after her son’s third birthday, Pam B. and her husband, Joel, began a parental journey for which there was no map. It started when their son, J., began wearing oversized T-shirts and wrapping a towel around his head to emulate long, flowing hair. Then came his mother’s silky undershirts. Half a year into preschool, J. started becoming agitated when asked to wear boys’ clothing.
En route to a mall with her son, Ms. B. had an epiphany: “It just clicked in me. I said, ‘You really want to wear a dress, don’t you?’ ”
Thus began what the B.’s, who asked their full names not be used to protect their son’s privacy, call “the reluctant path,” a behind-closed-doors struggle to come to terms with a gender-variant child — a spirited 5-year-old boy who, at least for now, strongly identifies as a girl, requests to be called “she” and asks to wear pigtails and pink jumpers to school.
Ms. B., 41, a lawyer, accepted the way her son defined himself after she and her husband consulted with a psychologist and observed his newfound comfort with his choice. But she feels the precarious nature of the day-to-day reality. “It’s hard to convey the relentlessness of it, she said, “every social encounter, every time you go out to eat, every day feeling like a balance between your kid’s self-esteem and protecting him from the hostile outside world.”
The prospect of cross-dressing kindergartners has sparked a deep philosophical divide among professionals over how best to counsel families. Is it healthier for families to follow the child’s lead, or to spare children potential humiliation and isolation by steering them toward accepting their biological gender until they are older?
Both sides in the debate underscore their concern for the profound vulnerability of such youngsters, symbolized by occurrences like the murder in 2002 of Gwen Araujo, a transgender teenager born as Eddie, southeast of Oakland.
“Parents now are looking for advice on how to make life reasonable for their kids — whether to allow cross-dressing in public, and how to protect them from the savagery of other children,” said Dr. Herbert Schreier, a psychiatrist with Children’s Hospital and Research Center in Oakland.
Dr. Schreier is one of a growing number of professionals who have begun to think of gender variance as a naturally occurring phenomenon rather than a disorder. “These kids are becoming more aware of how it is to be themselves,” he said.
In past generations, so-called sissy boys and tomboy girls were made to conform, based on the belief that their behaviors were largely products of dysfunctional homes.
Among the revisionists is Dr. Edgardo Menvielle, a child-adolescent psychiatrist at the Children’s National Medical Center in Washington who started a national outreach group for parents of gender-variant children in 1998 that now has more than 200 participants. “We know that sexually marginalized children have a higher rate of depression and suicide attempts,” Dr. Menvielle said. “The goal is for the child to be well adjusted, healthy and have good self-esteem. What’s not important is molding their gender.”
The literature on adults who are transgender was hardly consoling to one parent, a 42-year-old software consultant in Massachusetts and the father of a gender-variant third grader. “You’re trudging through this tragic, horrible stuff and realizing not a single person was accepted and understood as a child,” he said. “You read it and think, O.K., best to avoid that. But as a parent you’re in this complete terra incognita.”
The biological underpinnings of gender identity, much like sexual orientation, remain something of a mystery, though many researchers suspect it is linked with hormone exposure in the developing fetus.
Studies suggest that most boys with gender variance early in childhood grow up to be gay, and about a quarter heterosexual, Dr. Menvielle said. Only a small fraction grow up to identify as transgender.
Girls with gender-variant behavior, who have been studied less, voice extreme unhappiness about being a girl and talk about wanting to have male anatomy. But research has thus far suggested that most wind up as heterosexual women.
Although many children role-play involving gender, Dr. Menvielle said, “the key question is how intense and persistent the behavior is,” especially if they show extreme distress.
Dr. Robin Dea, the director of regional mental health for Kaiser Permanente in Northern California, said: “Our gender identity is something we feel in our soul. But it is also a continuum, and it evolves.”
Dr. Dea works with four or five children under the age of 15 who are essentially living as the opposite sex. “They are much happier, and their grades are up,” she said. “I’m waiting for the study that says supporting these children is negative.”
But Dr. Kenneth Zucker, a psychologist and head of the gender-identity service at the Center for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, disagrees with the “free to be” approach with young children and cross-dressing in public. Over the past 30 years, Dr. Zucker has treated about 500 preadolescent gender-variant children. In his studies, 80 percent grow out of the behavior, but 15 percent to 20 percent continue to be distressed about their gender and may ultimately change their sex.
Dr. Zucker tries to “help these kids be more content in their biological gender” until they are older and can determine their sexual identity — accomplished, he said, by encouraging same-sex friendships and activities like board games that move beyond strict gender roles.
Though she has not encountered such a situation, Jennifer Schwartz, assistant principal of Chatham Elementary School outside Springfield, Ill., said that allowing a child to express gender differences “would be very difficult to pull off” there.
Ms. Schwartz added: “I’m not sure it’s worth the damage it could cause the child, with all the prejudices and parents possibly protesting. I’m not sure a child that age is ready to make that kind of decision.”
The B.’s thought long and hard about what they had observed in their son. They have carefully choreographed his life, monitoring new playmates, selecting a compatible school, finding sympathetic parents in a babysitting co-op. Nevertheless, Ms. B. said, “there is still the stomach-clenching fear for your kid.”
It is indeed heartbreaking to hear a child say, as J. did recently, “It feels like a nightmare I’m a boy.”
The adjustment has been gradual for Mr. B., a 43-year-old public school administrator who is trying to stop calling J. “our little man.” He thinks of his son as a positive, resilient person, and his love and admiration show. “The truth is, is any parent going to choose this for their kid?” he said. “It’s who your kid is.”
Families are caught in the undertow of conflicting approaches. One suburban Chicago mother, who did not want to be identified, said in a telephone interview that she was drawing the line on dress and trying to provide “boy opportunities” for her 6-year-old son. “But we can’t make everything a power struggle,” she said. “It gets exhausting.”
She worries about him becoming a social outcast. “Why does your brother like girl things?” friends of her 10-year-old ask. The answer is always, “I don’t know.”
Nila Marrone, a retired linguistics professor at the University of Connecticut who consults with parents and schools, recalled an incident last year at a Bronx elementary school in which an 8-year-old boy perceived as effeminate was thrown into a large trash bin by a group of boys. The principal, she said, “suggested to the mother that she was to blame, for not having taught her son how to be tough enough.”
But the tide is turning.
The Los Angeles Unified School District, for instance, requires that students be addressed with “a name and pronoun that corresponds to the gender identity.” It also asks schools to provide a locker room or changing area that corresponds to a student’s chosen gender.
One of the most controversial issues concerns the use of “blockers,” hormones used to delay the onset of puberty in cases where it could be psychologically devastating (for instance, a girl who identifies as a boy might slice her wrists when she gets her period). Some doctors disapprove of blockers, arguing that only at puberty does an individual fully appreciate their gender identity.
Catherine Tuerk, a nurse-psychotherapist at the children’s hospital in Washington and the mother of a gender-variant child in the 1970s, says parents are still left to find their own way. She recalls how therapists urged her to steer her son into psychoanalysis and “hypermasculine activities” like karate. She said she and her husband became “gender cops.”
“It was always, ‘You’re not kicking the ball hard enough,’ ” she said.
Ms. Tuerk’s son, now 30, is gay and a father, and her own thinking has evolved since she was a young parent. “People are beginning to understand this seems to be something that happens,” she said. “But there was a whole lifetime of feeling we could never leave him alone.”
Published: December 2, 2006
Gender identity refers to a person’s deep-rooted sense of being male or female, which may or may not correspond with their anatomy.
Gender variance is sometimes called gender identity disorder or gender dysphoria, an intense psychological discomfort with one’s sex.
Transgender is an umbrella term for those who do not conform to traditional notions of gender expression, including transsexuals, who may undergo sex reassignment surgery and hormone treatments. There is a consensus among doctors that a person should be at least 18 before sex reassignment surgery.
Young Children and Gender Choices (3 Letters)
Published: December 7, 2006
To the Editor:
As a transgender child growing up in the late 1950s and ’60s, I can only applaud “Supporting Boys or Girls When the Line Isn’t Clear” (front page, Dec. 2).
In my teens, when I finally made my self-declaration as being identified as a different gender, a result was an almost immediate trip to a psychiatrist.
Until my gender change at age 48, I did not really discuss my identification with anyone. Many gender-variant children ultimately do decide that they will live with their gender assignment at birth.
But the psychological toll on those who make such a choice and never really resolve the issue is big; the number of gender-variant people of all stripes who suffer from chronic depression and/or die of suicide cannot be overstated.
Three cheers for those mental health professionals who support the right of children to be who they think they are and the parents who support their children’s gender-different expression. They are the ones who ultimately allow the celebration of life in all of its natural diversity.
Boulder, Colo., Dec. 2, 2006
To the Editor:
As a child, I desperately wanted to be a boy. Puberty was the one thing that allowed me to figure out my gender and sexual identity.
This is why I am so appalled at the doctors and parents who “block puberty medically to buy time to figure out” who the children are. This is ethically horrifying.
Beyond that, it is also counterproductive: no one can figure out identity without going through puberty. For me, puberty made it impossible to pass as a boy.
My new hormones also made it very clear that I was attracted to boys. I’m still a tomboy, but I’m also perfectly at ease with being a heterosexual woman. I wore a dress at my wedding and liked how it looked.
All I can do is urge parents to understand and accept their children’s gender and sexual identity and let nature take its course.
Greenbelt, Md., Dec. 2, 2006
To the Editor:
As a psychologist who works with transgender adults on a daily basis, I see the long-term effects of forcing transgender children to conform.
Most of my patients have memories of being discouraged or punished for gender-inappropriate behaviors. They made every effort to cooperate with their parents’ wishes and with the messages they received from the people around them.
Later in life, they find the pressure to express their inner gender identity to be unbearable. They may wait for their parents to die, for their children to go to college or for retirement before they finally make a gender transition.
Others are in the middle of building a family and career when they are finally worn down by the internal struggle.
That small group of children who will grow up to be transsexual are clearly best served by being allowed to express themselves in childhood and to make an early transition.
New York, Dec. 4, 2006
Gender Identity (1 Letter)
Published: December 9, 2006
To the Editor:
Re “Supporting Boys or Girls When the Line Isn’t Clear” (front page, Dec. 2):
I felt a complex pang, both joy and pain, seeing the little boy at play in his dress and long hair. Anyone who feels that his parents are wrong to allow it has obviously never been there.
As a transgender child in the 1950s, I found no encouragement and only a merciless campaign to turn me into somebody else. Soon I lost touch with my own validity, and I lived a false life for many decades.
Experts fear that misplaced indulgence will bring trauma. But worse damage is inflicted by rejecting a declaration of gender identity. If a transgender child is pressured to display a false self, her true self is never acknowledged — or loved — at all.
A transgender saying is, “I am who I say I am.” I am the one who knows, and no one else. It is time for other people to start listening and believing. How dare anyone else claim an opinion?
I wish that I could have played in a dress, back then. But I am so glad to witness the happiness of gender-variant children, living an unencumbered life. Katherine Collins
Vancouver, British Columbia
Dec. 2, 2006