About This Cartoon
If you are as confused as I am over acronyms like LGBT and LGBTQA and phrases like trans-sexual and trans-gender, then watch this hilarious 16 minute video in which John Oliver explains everything you ever wanted to know about gender identity and more.
Actually, gender identity issues have been with us at least since the time of ancient Greece. Here is my favorite trans-gender story, straight out of Greek mythology:
Note: Stories about how Tiresius came to be blind and how he came to be a woman abound. I have drawn on multiple sources in the version I tell above, which I have embellished more than a little.
One day Zeus was out for a morning walk on Mount Olympus, when he spied Hera bathing naked in the lake. “ Hera baby,” he said, “your naked body really excites me, let's go for a tumble in the hay.”
“Oh, leave me alone,” complained Hera. “I got a headache. Go sleep with one of your nymphs.”
“Aw, Hera, those nymphs mean nothing to me. You know it's only you that I love. Come on, let's make mad passionate love, the way we used to, back when the Earth was new.”
“That's all you ever think about — Sex! Zeus, you are a pervert. Now go away and let me finish my bath.”
“But, Hera. You know how you enjoy sex. You get more pleasure out of sex than I do.”
“I do not”
“Yes, you do.”
“Yes, you do; and I'll bet you. Women enjoy sex a lot more than men.”
“They do not; and I'll take you up on that wager.”
So, the bet was on. And the loser would have to submit to the winner's every whim in bed for seven years. Then there was the problem of who would be the judge. They settled on Tiresius, because Tiresius was honest, incorruptible and the wisest man on Earth. And so, they asked Tiresius, “Who enjoys sex more: the man or the woman.”
Tiresius responded, “I cannot answer that question. I've been a man all my life. I've never been a woman.”
“Hey, no problem,” exclaimed Hera. Zap! She turned Tiresius into a woman. “Now go out and enjoy yourself. And seven years hence, report back to us.”
Seven years later, Tiresius answered, “Of ten parts, the woman enjoys nine and the man only one.”
Realizing that she had lost her wager with Zeus, Hera flew into a rage and blinded Tiresius.
And ever since that day, trans-gender people have been bullied and abused by both mankind and the gods, no matter how honest, incorruptible and wise they may be.
One thing you will not learn from John Oliver or most folks who opine publicly on gender issues, is the role played by endocrine disruptors and other toxic chemicals in creating “gender confusion” or the confounding of male and female. Endocrine disruptors are chemicals like the common herbicides atrazine and glyphosate which inhibit the normal actions of hormones such as estrogen and testosterone. These chemicals, off of which corporations like Monsanto and Dow have made billions of dollars, are pervasive in our bodies and our environment. It is likely that there is not a single person on Earth whose body does not contain some burden of endocrine disrupting chemicals.
There is precious little that I have been able to find on this subject, which appears to be taboo. After all, the hypothesis that many, perhaps most, people who have “gender issues” suffer from a condition caused by man-made chemicals which Monsanto has been peddling as “safe” for decades, doesn't seem to fit either of the two major “politically correct” paradigms:
1. Having a gender identity different from the one assigned to you at birth is simply a matter of making a poor choice. (religious right)
2. Having a gender identity different from the one assigned to you at birth is perfectly natural. (liberal left)
The best short discussion of endocrine disruptors and gender confounding that I have been able to find comes from Living on Earth: (“Hormone Disruptors Linked To Genital Changes and Sexual Preference,” January 7, 2011). Clearly, there ought to be active research in this area; but as Dr. Theo Colborn states, “If you were to ask for dollars for that you wouldn’t get the money. I mean, you would be laughed out of your chair, believe me. It’s that sensitive.”
Perhaps one of the reasons the subject is so sensitive is that Monsanto, Dow and other chemical manufacturers would stand to lose mega-bucks in class-action suits if their responsibility for creating gender confusion in the general population was ever fully known.