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July 8, 2013: We’ve Come a Long Way

July 8, 2013

We watched “Albert Nobbs” on Netflix last night. Wow. Great acting and a powerful story. It’s about a biological woman in Dublin in the 1800s who lives as a man and has a job as a waiter in a hotel. Albert was orphaned and is basically in survival mode, saving his wages to open a tobacco shop. He meets another female-to-male transgender who is married to a woman and strikes up a friendship.

In those days, when there was no acceptance, or gender reassignment surgery, people who were wrong-bodied either had to disguise their gender or endure the body they had. Many still do that today, until they can afford the surgeries, therapy, electrology and anything else that comes with transitioning. But that is gradually changing, as some health insurance policies now cover gender reassignment surgery. No many, but it’s a start. In California, the insurance commissioner has directed insurance companies that do business here to cover GRS. He doesn’t have the power to mandate it, but having the top insurance regulator in the state come out in favor of it helps.

Oh, and both houses of the state legislature have now passed legislation allowing transgender students in public schools throughout the state to use whatever school facilities and participate in whatever sports are congruent with their gender identities. As of last week, the bill was awaiting the governor’s signature (although he hasn’t said whether he would sign it). Here’s the link to the story on CNN.com: http://www.cnn.com/2013/07/04/us/california-transgender-school-law.

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