Tag Archives: new york

Five Days of Christine – March, 2017 (Day 1)

I recently acquired a set of five original photographs of Christine Jorgensen, the first “mass media” transgender woman in the world. Four of the photos date from 1953, and one which is autographed by her from between 1957-1962.

I’m going to post one new photo a day this week. Each photo can be found on the Christine Jorgensen page here, and if you click on the photos here and on her page, you can download a very high-resolution version of the work. As always, I never watermark, limit the resolution, or deliberately try to pervert the images, like many other transgender history sites.

Soon after Christine arrived back in America, she was given a very prestigious award by the Scandinavian Societies of Greater New York, where she was made “Woman of the Year.”

The following photograph is labeled March 7, 1953, and has a caption on the reverse which reads in part:

Christine named “Woman of the Year” New York……….. Golden-haired Christine Jorgensen, the former GI transformed into a beautiful woman by Copenhagen (Denmark) surgeons and physicians, is shown this evening as she received the Scandinavian Societies of Greater New York “Woman of the Year” award from the Society’s chairman, Harry Berglind, at the 20th annual concert and ball. Attired attractively in a white evening gown with all the trimmings, Christine made her first public appearance as a woman tonight.

You can click on the photo below to download or view a very high-resolution image.

Christine Jorgensen and at the Scandinavian Societies of New York Ball

The New Girl in School: Transgender Surgery at 18

It was not an easy transition for Katherine Boone, but the question is no longer whether gender reassignment is an option, but instead how soon it should start.

The New York Times is featuring the story of Katherine Boone, a transgender woman who underwent sex reassignment surgery (SRS) at age 18. The article is not entirely positive, and casts SRS for “teenagers” as something new and scary. For the record, at age 18 Katherine is a full legal adult, able to run her own affairs, enlist and die in military service, and be treated as an adult by default by the legal system of this country. So the “teenager” moniker is somewhat deceptive here. In fact, age 18 is not even the youngest at which SRS is performed. In Europe, for example, SRS has been performed at age 16 (such as the case of an anonymous transgender girl in Spain in 2009) or authorized at age 16 (such as English transgender girl Jackie Green who underwent both facial feminization surgery and SRS on her 16th birthday in Thailand).

Katherine Boone

Despite throwing out somewhat discouraging (and not entirely accurate) statements like this:

Given that there are no proven biological markers for what is known as gender dysphoria, however, there is no consensus in the medical community on the central question: whether teenagers, habitually trying on new identities and not known for foresight, should be granted an irreversible physical fix for what is still considered a psychological condition.

The article clearly presents Katherine as a young lady who was clearly suffering deeply from her gender dysphoria, and who very much needed this surgery.

It was the cutting that convinced them that if she could not live as a girl, Kat would kill herself. She still has two angry scars on her left forearm. “It became clear to me that this wasn’t a passing phase or some choice or reaction,” Mr. Boone said. “This was truly the basis of what she was.”

The article further covers the problems of the expense of puberty blockers, which are not covered under pretty much any insurance on this planet, and which can run thousands of dollars per year (unlike estradiol and spironolactone, which are much cheaper). And it does spend some time speaking on how debilitating the surgery was for Ms. Boone, which many of us have either personally experienced, or witnessed via our friends.

There is a lot of information in this testimonial article; it’s worth a look.

Source: The New Girl in School: Transgender Surgery at 18 – NYTimes.com

Police Blotter – 1 September, 2014

Police Woman 01

Quite a lot of sad news here I’m afraid, so stop reading right now if you don’t want to read.

I have four articles to highlight here, and I think by far the most important one is the fact that there may be a serial killer of transgender women in Detroit. The first murder occurred sometime in November, 2013, when the body of a transgender woman was found burned beyond recognition and stuffed into a trash container. The second murder occurred on 15 August, 2014, when a second transgender woman was shot in the head just a block from the first murder scene. And since that time two other transgender women have been shot, with both surviving but seriously wounded – both of them shot within blocks of the two murders. I don’t have anything I can add, save that again, we need to exercise extreme vigilance when we are on the streets. Even in a generally transgender-friendly city like Kansas City, safety first, last, and always.

Gay Pride Parade Winds Through New York City

I wish I could give a more positive update on the investigation into the murder of transgender woman Islan Nettles. Unfortunately, New York City Assistant District Attorney Nicholas Viorst has only said they are still “pursuing leads” more than a year after Nettles was murdered by a group of men in a blatant hate crime. In the photograph above, we see Laverne Cox using her celebrity status to attempt to draw attention to the crime, but to no apparent avail.

Misissippi Murderer

This next story involves a woman who preyed upon the transgender community, but in a different way: by running a silicone “pumping” business. Which unfortunately led to the death of two transgender women, Marilyn Hale and Karima Gordon. Tracy Lynn Garner, herself a transgender woman, was convicted on 29 August, 2014 of the murder of Karima Gordon, and will be facing sentencing on 2 September, 2014. I’ve warned repeatedly of the dangers of pumping silicone, some of which isn’t even medical silicone but rather nothing more than window sealant, and this story is merely sad proof that you can indeed die from this.


The former story is a little unusual because in that case the transgender woman was the murderer. But my final story also features a transgender murderer, in this case Melissa Young, who stabbed a male acquaintance to death in his apartment when he rejected a gift of trainers (shoes) and a calendar. Young is appealing her conviction, claiming that the Archangel Michael had possessed her body, forcing her to kill an “unclean demon.” Young, who is on the right in the photograph above, apparently had a history of threatening people with knives, and is currently serving a 20-year sentence.

UPDATE: Rochester, N.Y., Radio Hosts Fired Following Transphobic Rant

I know I’m a little late with the update here, but I’ve been on a brief vacation (and working on some more science articles). In a follow-up to last weeks controversy where two Rochester New York “shock jocks” took their transphobia to the air, their radio station suspended, then summarily fired them.

From what I know of the radio industry, however, what is likely to happen is these “personalities” will transfer to another station, take on new on-air pseudonyms, and just watch their mouths a little more. In short, the hate will remain, it will just get smarter.

Rochester, N.Y., Radio Hosts Fired Following Transphobic Rant | Advocate.com.

Rochester, NY Extends Health Benefits to Transgender Employees – And Here Comes the Hate!

Like a scattering of cities around the nation, Rochester, New York recently added transgender health care to its city employee benefits package. And, like a scattering of cities around the nation, the haters are striking back at the progressive-minded policy change in Rochester.

In one of two notable examples of intolerance, local minister Jerry Houston, a man who is obviously incredibly ignorant of biology (or unable to use Google), was quoted as blathering:

…the state should not indulge the needs of transgender employees. “God said from the beginning he made the male and female,” said Houston. “And for the state to indulge in these kinds of things, I believe you are supporting and spouting something that’s going to cause a lot of problems, not just for Rochester, but for our country in general.”

I simply relish the irony of those who believe in a God who is omnipotent and omniscient, and yet try to stuff God into their own little frame of reference. First off, Jerry, intersex people exist – they exist in every country on this earth, and have existed throughout every era of history. This is not opinion, this is not conjecture, this is fact. Furthermore, transsexual persons have been proven to have physical differences in their brains. Again, this is not opinion, this is not conjecture, this is fact. So why wouldn’t a “man of God” just accept the most obvious solution – that God intended for transsexuals and intersex people to be born – rather than trying to put God’s powers and abilities into one’s own human-sized box? By doing such, Jerry, you show contempt for the same God you purport to worship.

Then of course we have the morning radio “personalities” of Kimberly and Beck, who upon hearing of Rochester’s health care expansion decided to unashamedly make a string of transphobic jokes and slurs during their morning show.

“Transgender or gender nonconforming. What the hell does that mean? Like you’re not a woman or a man??

“The dude can look like a lady and the city is going to pay for it!” (cue “Dude Looks Like a Lady” music)

“Does that mean then if women want a boob job they’ll pay for a boob job because that’s only right.”

“The services that will be paid for under the new coverage – gender reassignment surgery, PSYCHOLOGICAL COUNSELING, because you’re probably a NUTJOB to begin with!”

“It’s a slippery slope. Then if some woman can go to a doctor and it’d be proven that she’s got mental issues because her rack’s not big enough then you know what? she deserves a boob job, Right Kimberly? Or she deserves liposuction.”

“Right, IF YOU CAN PROVE YOU’RE A NUT, I guess.”

Kimberly and Beck then go on to discuss female trans athletes, including one at a local school, and how they should definitely not be able to play sports…

“When he steps up to the plate, doesn’t he have two bats?”

Finally, a woman calls in to tell them “it’s incredibly disrespectful towards transgender people. Please don’t spread any misinformation especially when you’re joking about it.”

One of the hosts replies: “Thank you, SIR” as the others laugh.

Let’s face it, morning radio DJ’s are not generally hired based on academic or critical thinking credentials. One might give them some slack and just say “oh well, they make fun of everyone.” Well, no, I’ll bet they don’t slur and demean other minority groups, or they would have already been booted off the air and back to the deep-fryer. When ignorance is not just coming from one mouth to one ear, but to the ears of tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of ears…then we have a problem.

Concerns remain for transgender benefits – 13WHAM ABC Rochester NY – Top Stories.

Two Schools, Two Acts of Discrimination

Here are two short stories, one takes place at a high school, one at a university, and both involve trans-discrimination.

In the first report, senior Anais Celini at Martin Luther High School in Queens, New York, was told her boyfriend, transman Nathaniel Baez was not welcome at their school prom because “his transition was unconventional and not beneficial.” The second word throws me, and is reported as a quote by the Huffington Post. What do they mean by “beneficial?”

Instead of fighting the decision the couple have decided to not challenge the school and hold their own private prom elsewhere. Honestly, it’s difficult to find fault with the couple – while on one side I wish they would fight so they would pave the way for those who follow them, at the same time they are just kids, and kids have enough stress and hassle as it stands without throwing into everything a media sensation and spending a lot of time with lawyers.


In our next story we have the case of transman Jayce M., who is seeking permission from George Fox University, Oregon, to move into the male dorm after he completes transition. The university has told him that he isn’t welcome in the dorms with room mates, and should stay either off campus or in a single rooms.

The university’s position is somewhat baffling:

“George Fox strives to be a Christ-centered community, and our residential facilities are single sex because of our theological commitments. The student’s request to switch from female-only on campus housing to male-only on campus housing is one that many institutions would struggle with.”

They would rather have a transman living with women rather than with men – and they believe this is the “Christ-centered” way of doing things? Really?

Couple Plans Own Prom After School Bars Transgender Boyfriend From Attending.