In his “New Rules” segment of his HBO show Real Time, Bill Maher took a stand against “outside agitators” who are trying to interfere with California’s liberal agenda. Adopting a good ol’ boy accents while lamenting federal overreach, Bill Maher wrapped up tonight’s Real Time episode with a New Rule: The “States’ Rights” issue now …
San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi has a new plan.
Under a new policy announced yesterday Sheriff Mirkarimi intends to house all inmates in San Francisco County’s jails by their gender identity.
He hopes to have transgender inmates living with their preferred population before 2016.
But transgender inmates who choose to remain in segregated housing or to continue living with other inmates who share the their birth sex can do so, according to Kenya Briggs, a spokeswoman for the sheriff’s office.
I carry the perspective forward that the transgender population is marginalized on the streets of America. Consider how magnified that treatment is inside prisons and jails.
Hello! I have 3 articles for your perusal this Tuesday morning!
First up, California’s got some trouble:
Last summer, scientists recorded the worst sinking in at least 50 years. This summer, all-time records are expected across the state as thousands of miles of land in the Central Valley and elsewhere sink.
But the extent of the problem and how much it will cost taxpayers to fix are part of the mystery of the state’s unfolding drought. No agency is tracking the sinking statewide, little public money has been put toward studying it and California allows agriculture businesses to keep crucial parts of their operations secret.
The cause is known: People are pulling unsustainable amounts of water out of underground aquifers, primarily for food production. With the water sucked out to irrigate crops, a practice that has accelerated during the drought, tens of thousands of square miles are deflating like a leaky air mattress, inch by inch.
I have some picture heavy pieces for you this Monday morning!
First, the difference the drought in California’s made in just a few short years:
The images below illustrate the severity of California’s drought with past and recent images from around the state, now in its fourth consecutive dry year.
Every once in awhile the stories pile up and in trying to remain current, I publish a compendium of transgender news stories. I know that makes for a long read, but if I didn’t do this, some storries wouldn’t get any overage at all.
I hope you’ll at least scan the stories. A better educated public is a fairer public.
Some people refer to it as Thursday morning. To others it was Wednesday night. At 2:30 am in East Hollywood..a transgender woman was shot one time…in the head.
During the robbery, there was a struggle, and there were shots fired, and the victim was struck one time. It appears they were struck in the head.
–LAPD Lt. Joe Losorelli
It’s really, really frightening for all of us, especially out here in the streets and stuff because discrimination is still very high in our community,
–Karina Samala of the Transgender Advisory Board of West Hollywood
There has been a slew of stories lately on the medical front concerning treatment of transgender people by medical professionals, emanating from Ohio, Washington, Oregon, California and Massachusetts.
To quote one of the authors of the pieces I shall link to:
There has been a long history of lack of access to basic healthcare and systematic discrimination for transgender people.
–Pat Magee, MSW, for Rage Monthly
Seven stories on the other side.
Lumberton, TX Independent School District substitute teacher Laura Jane Klug has been suspended for being transgender. The school district says they are “looking into the matter”…and that Klug has not been terminated…yet. Klug is supposed to hear about the resolution of the school board today, after the school board met on Thursday.
Klug substituted for a teacher in a fifth grade class last Thursday, which was the first day she discovered that someone might have “issues”.
Parents of some of the students at the school say, of course, that they don’t have any problems themselves with the teacher being transgender, but that the teacher may be confusing the 11-year-olds who are in her charge.
Within an hour of them being exposed or dealing with this, there’s a few issues here, I think these kids are too young for this issue, so that’s our main focus is, if it happens in older grades, high school, ok but too young for this.
Other parents say there has not been an issue before with Klug and they don’t see why it is an issue now…and that they have no problem explaining to their child what a transgendender person is.
My son knows who he is and I don’t think any outside influence is going to change that, I’m more concerned about straight predatory teachers rather than I am someone who lives an alternative private alternate lifestyle, I don’t worry about my son.
–Jammie Marcantel, parent with a pronoun problem
Texas, of course, has no employment protections for transgender people.
When the fruit and nut trees wake up from winter, they first let their dazzling flowering sexual organs hang out for a few weeks of rampaging intermingling before slowly getting dressed in leaves to fuel their pregnancies with sunlight. Nothing wrong with that! Calling in the flying insects to do half the yeoman’s work of dating and mating is a little kinky, but there’s nothing wrong with that, either. Nature is the most creative and hardest-working sexual machine on the planet. Adam & Eve dressed in fig leaves were stone dullards by comparison.
I can tell you that the oak trees here on Gullyvornya’s central coast breathed a sigh of relief after the recent rainstorms. They looked like dead ducks after another “mild winter,” which more resembled a protracted Indian summer, but now they look refreshed for the time being. We’re sadly looking at blue skies for the foreseeable future. It’s getting so you can’t even have polite conversation about the weather with the cash register clerks. Great weather we’re having! No, not really.
“What digby said” about the drought, but let me add that it ain’t just the water that’s a problem. My understanding is that in autumn the fruit and nut trees synthesize a growth inhibiting hormone that lays them dormant through winter, and cold weather slowly breaks down this growth inhibitor in anticipation of the open-orgy when Spring is sprung. The trees require a certain number of hours of chill-time (say 300-1500 h below 45 degrees F) in order to properly set their fruit, depending on the species.
In general, drought + short chill-times is not a good combo for happy, proliferative sex between our brothers, sisters, and selfers (Geschwister) in the Kingdom of Humanly Edible Green Things, not to mention their kinky little flying match-makers in our own Less-Sessile Kingdom.
The LATimes recently ran an article by Robin Abcarian in its L.A. Now section entitled Right wing frenzied over transgender students choosing bathroom.
Of course the target of all the hate is specifically the School Success and Opportunity Act, better known as AB 1266…and incidentally the state’s transgender students.
The School Success and Opportunity Act, the first of its kind in the nation, did not sit well with California’s waning conservative Christian base, which has lately been in danger of becoming the political equivalent of the polar bear stranded on the ice floe.
Now there’s an interesting image.
This week has a certain nostalgia for me. I am working the last four shifts in my home, Humboldt County. Nestled between pristine redwoods and dramatic cliffs overlooking the west coast of California, I want to stay here, but cannot. I am feeling the full force of the United States health care crisis. In the four years I have worked here eight of ten obstetricians in the southern half of the county have left, and now I find I am one of them.
Two obstetricians, far apart geographically and serving two different hospitals, are all that is left to serve an area once supporting 10 obstetricians. Both doctors are men over 60, who have a tough future ahead of them. Without outside help there is no way they can see all the patients that will need them. They have to remain within 30 minutes of the hospital and can be told to come to work any time of the day or night. They can never have a moment off, a full night’s sleep, a drink of alcohol to ring in the New Year. Watching a full length movie, or having a nice dinner with the spouse without interruption is a thing of the past. Neither of the remaining doctors can get sick or injured. This is really asking them to be super human and there is no cavalry on their horizon. In fact, if Catholic Health Systems is successful at closing one of the two hospitals, only one physician will remain.
As a young person, I wanted to take my medical skills to a disadvantaged third world nation. Looks like I got my wish-right here in the US. How did we get here?
Assumptions can be dangerous to people who are habitually marginalized. One of the big assumptions that people make about the concept of “transgender” is that transgender is a subset of homosexual. It is not. I do not have data to turn to, but I have heard, as I shared in a diary last week, that about 1/4 of transgender people are gay or lesbian, 1/4 are heterosexual, 1/4 are bisexual and 1/4 are asexual.
What exactly that says about the influence of the normalized control of gender and sexuality by our culture is something I’ll let other people discuss.
But the assumption has a large impact on the everyday lives of gender-variant people. Even scientists studying sexually-transmitted diseases jump to the conclusion that transgender women are “men who have sex with men.” And even direct evidence to the contrary often does not dissuade people from adopting the assumption.
Tonight I have two cases in point.