The Contemplations, Rants & Reminiscences of DavidB327

Something Sensational To Read On The Train


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davidbr1
Originally posted by elancane at post
CHRISTIE ELAN-CANE
NON-GENDERED
Fighting for legal and social recognition outside the gendered societal structure




Future LGBT Leader

Congratulations to my legal adviser and friend Aritha Wickramasinghe who was recently awarded the No. 1 position in the Financial Times ‘Top 30 Future LGBT Leaders’ list http://www.lawsociety.org.uk/support-services/practice-management/pro-bono/case-studies/case-study--k-l-gates/.

K&L Gates LLP are assisting with my work to raise the profile of ‘X’ Passports and the wider issues surrounding NON-GENDERED IDENTITY within the political arena. Aritha and the team came to the rescue and delivered an excellent written submission on my behalf last year after Government announced it had launched a trans* inquiry without giving any prior notice , with little time given to respond and just as I was about to go away. It was mostly down to Aritha’s diligence that I was invited to present oral evidence before the Women and Equalities Select Committee in October 2015 http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/women-and-equalities-committee/news-parliament-2015/evidence-transgender-inquiry-third-15-16/

K&L Gates is one of two distinguished law firms currently acting for me on a pro bono basis. The other is Clifford Chance LLP who are working on the legal side.

I want to express my deep gratitude to Aritha and indeed to both teams for their valued support.


Blogging on Huffington Post UK

NON-GENDERED – Fighting for Legal Recognition
http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/christie-elancane/non-gendered_b_8870260.html

No Specific Detriment?
http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/christie-elancane/no-specific-detriment_b_8902698.html


The denial of existence is the worst act of discrimination by the gendered majority against the non-gendered
 

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davidbr1
Originally posted by elancane at post
CHRISTIE ELAN-CANE
NON-GENDERED
Fighting for legal and social recognition outside the gendered societal structure



NEW YEAR’S DAY MESSAGE TO THE UK GOVERNMENT

No Specific Detriment?

We recognise that a very small number of people consider themselves to be of neither gender. We are not aware that that results in any specific detriment, and it is not Government policy to identify such people for the purpose of issuing non-gender-specific official documents.” – Ministry of Justice (MoJ).

I was not surprised when I read the MoJ’s negative response to a recent call to make provision for human beings who exist outside the gendered societal structure because this outrage provoking riposte represents current policy and gets repeated whenever Government is approached on the thorny issue of what to do about addressing the situation of individuals whose core identities are neither male nor female. The UK Government can no longer get away with complete denial of the issue per se, so ‘official’ policy has shifted in recent years from denial that “such people” exist to denying there is damage and suffering caused to individuals due to a systematic failure to recognise our identities as legitimate.

The government even admits here, albeit in a roundabout way, that current policy is not to identify people of neither gender through issuing the appropriate documentation but further twists the argument by patronisingly indicating its failure to make provision is entirely for our own benefit due to fear we should be “identified”. Identified and treated as equal human beings as opposed to existing in the shadows and on the margins of society?

That the statement goes on to indicate that [Government] is not aware of “any specific detriment” is a reflection of more than ignorance. It betrays a callous indifference towards the welfare of people who have no visibility and no voice. The indication being that ”such people” do not just represent “a very small number” but that ”such people” are completely insignificant. Government cannot deny our existence but nonetheless denies to us the foundations of legitimacy that are essential for any chance of a normal life and a better future.

In the course of my campaign work I’ve received numerous responses expressing similar sentiment from minsters and senior civil servants from different government departments. It is a dismissive response and conveys a message that we are unimportant as individuals, that our situation is hopeless and that our welfare does not really matter. I wonder how many people affected by this issue seriously considered ending their lives as a consequence of the MoJ’s very public reiteration of official UK Government policy.

It is ironic the MoJ should issue this response after a trans* equality inquiry led by the Women and Equalities Select Committee had already started gathering evidence. During a recent oral panel session before the Committee, I was asked to name some of the good and bad things about being trans* in the UK. I struggled with the ‘good’ and recounted aspects about my life that are good despite rather than because of my status as a non-gendered trans* person. As for the ‘bad’, I could have brought a shopping list but there would not have been enough time. I summarized in my response to the Committee that I am hundreds of thousands of pounds worse off than I would otherwise have been at this point in my life as a consequence of my decision to disclose. Would that be detrimental enough to satisfy HM Government I wondered?

Detriment is succumbing to societal enforced gendered classification and being required to accept inappropriate gendered references ‘M’ or ‘F’ on personal identity documentation. Detriment forces us to become unwilling colluders in our own social invisibility in order to ‘survive’ within gendered society. Detriment is having one’s identity consistently misunderstood by others. Detriment is that our most fundamental needs are ignored, an absence of provision that is almost universal from a lack of suitable public bathroom facilities to the withholding of access to essential surgery to correct our bodies. Detriment is the societal obsession with gender as a commercial marketing tool that puts many goods and services out of reach to anyone who cannot indicate either ‘M’ or ‘F’ on an application form. Detriment is exclusion from sporting and other gender segregated activities. Detriment is being unable to marry without compromise due to the gender-specific drafting of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013. Detriment is an unrelenting, oppressive, grinding annihilation of one’s identity until one is effectively rendered a non-citizen within one’s own country.

The outcome of detriment heaped upon individuals results in denial of the fundamental right of legitimate identity because Government perceives non-gendered identity as inconvenient therefore current policy is that ”such people” should remain invisible.

The Women and Equalities Committee will report its initial findings in January 2016.

This item was published today on HuffPost UK http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/christie-elancane/no-specific-detriment_b_8902698.html?utm_hp_ref=transbritain

Copyright ©2016 Christie Elan-Cane
All rights reserved

The denial of existence is the worst act of discrimination by the gendered majority against the non-gendered

 

Happy New Year
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davidbr1
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptJrb-ymvIo

I Like Drum Solos
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I came across this Duke Ellington song recently, and just had to share it. This live version contains a drum solo that is absolutely amazing. I understand the the drummer inspired Keith Moon and Ginger Baker (amongst others), and I can certainly understand why.
Enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZmz6vpETGY

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Body Painting1
davidbr1
Originally posted by elancane at post
CHRISTIE ELAN-CANE
NON-GENDERED
Fighting for legal and social recognition outside the gendered societal structure



HuffPost UK

Pleased to be invited to blog on the Huffington Post’s UK site. My first blog can be found here http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/christie-elancane/non-gendered_b_8870260.html

Essentially a (very) brief history of the issue and how the campaign came into being and the current position – it’s taken 20+ years just to get this far but when I started out I never would have imagined seeing the issue on a political stage during my lifetime. I’m hoping the next 20+ years will be kinder.


Early Day Motion

EDM 660 in support of non gender-specific ‘X’ Passports has been signed by 43 MPs so far and with assurances of more to follow. EDM 660 was tabled by Norman Lamb MP on 5 November 2015 and is very much on target to achieve 100+ signatures before the end of this parliamentary session.

Everyone who is affected by this issue, who knows someone affected by the issue or cares about the issue on a principle that legitimate identity is a fundamental human right should contact their local representative MP and urge that they support and add their signature to the motion http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2015-16/660


UK Government Trans* Equality Inquiry

The Women and Equalities Committee will report its findings in January 2016 rather than before Xmas as previously indicated. I have received an undertaking from Committee Chair Maria Miller to that effect. I have no further information about the content of the report and it should also be noted that the Committee does not in itself have the power to change the law.

I was invited to take part in the third of a series of oral sessions and presented evidence to the Committee on 13 October 2015 http://www.parliament.uk/business/committees/committees-a-z/commons-select/women-and-equalities-committee/news-parliament-2015/evidence-transgender-inquiry-third-15-16/


The denial of existence is the worst act of discrimination by the gendered majority against the non-gendered

Chilling Out For A Change
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davidbr1
This has been a particularly traumatic year, and yet there have been some positive moments interspersed with the stressful periods. I will document the precise nature of the trauma at some point, but for now I need to put that to one side. This is the first Christmas / New Year break for several years, during which I have been able to benefit from rest and recuperation (ie rather than devote my annual leave to my ongoing fight against discrimination), and I am making the most of it.
I have been listening to a lot of opera, in particular Handel. Another Handel enthusiast is Julia Lezhneva, who I heard perform at the Barbican last year with il giardino armonico. They performed a selection of Handel arias and concertos, which focussed on Handel’s Italian work. I was so pleased to hear that this was released as analbum earlier this year. I really love baroque music. I find it to be uplifting, especially this aria from Rinaldo. It is a sublime piece of music, beautifully performed.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zNUH8-uLqPM

(no subject)
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davidbr1
This is a test

PIGS
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  1. I can not express in words alone how angry this makes me feel, so I will not attempt to do so.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/teams/liverpool/9538649/Hillsborough-report-41-of-the-96-dead-had-potential-to-survive.html


Never Mind The Parabollocks
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davidbr1

I am relieved that the summer of sport is coming to an end.  I am totally fed up with people asking me if I have been enjoying the Paralympics.  For the record NO I HAVE NOT!!!  It is annoying when able bodied people opine on our behalf, and conclude that we will find this to be inspiring.  That is totally illogical.  To use a comparison with football, would a youngster watching teams in the lowest division be inspired to want to play at the highest level?  What is ispiring is when people rise above their limitations, and do something extraordinary.  We all have limitations.

The ‘athletes’ taking part in these events, some of which are absurd and demeaning, may well be enthuriastic about the competition.  However for the vast majority of disabled people, this constant reminder of our limitations does nothing to encourage an understanding of diversity.  Instead it encourages separation, not inclusivity.

Some of the events (such as equestrian, archery) are not so objectionable.  Others, such as wheelchair rugby and the more bizarre events conjured up by some imbecile, just result in disabled people being perceived as figures of fun.  Some of them really are creepy.  I hope that in 4 years time there will be a cull of the weird and totally ridiculous events.

I get the impression that many people are in agreement with me on this one, but are afraid to say so because of the fear of being accused of discrimination.  Well I have no such fear.  In any case, it had to be said.


False Awakening
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davidbr1

I had a very vivid false awakening many years ago.  Long story short – I was on sick leave from my postgraduate studies, and spent many uncomfortable days / nights recovering.  I woke up (or so I thought) one morning, opened the curtains, and then I glanced into my mirror.  Looking back was a rather gaunt Jesus lookalike – clearly not me!  I then started to turn my head around to see if “I” was still lying on the bed.  Before I got that far I woke up with a start.  I had been reading quite a bit on the Psychology of Dreams, so it was not the shock it might otherwise have been.  In fact, I was glad I had the experience.

I had another false awakening again recently, only this time the falsehood was not virtual but very real.  This initially filled me with despair, but now I am ready to bounce back.  I am channelling my anger, with a determination to succeed that will not wane.  I keep thinking of the PiL song with the line ‘Anger is an energy’.

The fight goes on.  I will win.  Whatever it takes, I WILL win.


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