The World Health Organization Just Took a Major Step Toward Validating the Lives of Transgender People
Almost 30 years ago, the World Health Organization (WHO) removed homosexuality from the Mental Disorders section of their International Classification of Diseases (ICD) when the 10th revision, ICD-10, was published in 1992. However, a condition they labeled as “gender identity disorder” remained under the heading of a mental illness as well as several conditions related to anxiety or depression due to sexuality and gender identity.
But on June 18, 2018, that changed with the publication of the 11th edition of the ICD.
A study found that patients who had had surgery performed by a female surgeon were 12 percent less likely to die in the 30 days following recovery.
Researchers at the University of Toronto viewed the records of 104,630 patients who had surgery between 2007 and 2015, as well as the 3,314 surgeons who performed the surgeries, at a hospital in Ontario, Canada. The sample of patients were matched to those in similar groups, based on factors such as age, sex and income. Surgeons were also matched in age, experience, the number of surgeries regularly performed and their respective workplace, or hospital. The outcomes of patients who had undergone one of 25 surgical procedures by a female surgeon were viewed against those who had received the same procedure performed by a male.
A strict gender binary is a societal construct, not a biological one. Numerous societies recognize gender beyond a binary. Some recognize as many as seven. Now science is shedding more light on the concept that supports gender as a spectrum instead of two sides of a coin.
In the dominant society labeling as a "boy" or "girl" begins before we're even born. But with all of the factors that contribute to gender, such simplistic labels may some day become obsolete.
If you’ve any doubt that sexism is alive and well in the United States, look no further than recently fired Google employee James Damore who disseminated a 10-page long manifesto criticizing Google’s diversity policies in favor of men. Damore hung his sexist hat on evolutionary psychology, a controversial field that suggests psychological traits are selected in the same way as our biological traits via evolution, which then confers entitlements like better pay and promotions to those he deems superior, namely men.
His conclusion? That men and women “biologically differ in many ways,” and thus, men have a biologically-based “higher drive for status” which suggests that men are somehow more inherently entitled to make more money than women. “We need to stop assuming that gender gaps imply sexism,” Damore wrote, while apparently ignoring the evidence that sexism is, in fact, strongly associated with women receiving lower pay than men on average in almost every field imaginable.
Yesterday, Google fired a software engineer who wrote an internal memo titled "Google's Ideological Echo Chamber" which Sundar Pichai, the company's chief executive, said promoted “harmful gender stereotypes.” The document accuses Google of silencing conservative political opinions and argues that biological differences between men and women determine why there's a shortage of women in tech and leadership positions.
James Damore, the software engineer who wrote the note, confirmed his dismissal in an email to Bloomberg, saying that he had been fired for “perpetuating gender stereotypes.” He said he’s “currently exploring all possible legal remedies.” He added that before his termination, he had submitted a complaint to the National Labor Relations Board claiming that Google’s upper management was “misrepresenting and shaming me in order to silence my complaints.”
Since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, Iranian law has prohibited women from appearing in public with uncovered hair. This compulsory modesty is enforced by the country’s Gashte Ershad – often called the “morality police.” In addition to the uniformed police, the Iranian government recently added an additional 7,000 undercover members of the Gashte Ershad to enforce the law. If a woman is caught, punishment can be severe, including lashes and imprisonment. In 2014, 3.6 million Iranian women were warned, fined or arrested by the morality police for not wearing proper hijabs.
Target was the latest big-profile company to join the ranks of retailers like Toys “R” Us and Wal-Mart in removing gender-based labels from its aisles, citing “important questions” raised by guests about a “handful of signs” in their stores. The announcement came shortly after a disgruntled mom’s Twitter post went viral.