Voices from Russia

Saturday, 30 June 2018

“Alternative Sexual Identity”: Austria Recognises “Third Gender”

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Austria’s Constitutional Court handed down a verdict that allows people to register themselves in official documents as something other than male or female if they wish. The Austrian court, in response to a request from an intersexual activist known as Alex Jürgen, called upon the European Convention on Human Rights to introduce the option of “other” or “inter” on civil register forms that ask for a person’s gender. Jürgen, whose birth name remains secret, said:

For the first time in my life, I feel like I’m recognised as what I am, how I was born.

The court emphasised in its ruling that Article 8 of the European Human Rights Convention certifies the right to “an individual sexual identity” and defends “in particular, people with an alternative sexual identity”. The court decision won’t amend existing law since it doesn’t explicitly require documentation of male or female gender.

Last November, Germany became the first European country to call for official recognition of a “third sex”, a decision supported in May by the Netherlands. The third gender already received legal recognition in several countries, Australia, New Zealand, the USA, Canada, India, Pakistan, and Nepal. According to UN experts, from 0.05 to 1.7 percent of global births are intersex.

30 June 2018

Sputnik International

https://sputniknews.com/europe/201806301065909946-austria-court-third-gender/

Editor:

I find this more than a little disquieting. It appears to hinge upon personal choice, not objective medical criteria. It’s one thing if an intersex person or a transsexual under medical supervision asks for a change in gender on documentation, but it’s quite another if we open it to untrammelled personal whim. I know that this’ll open me up to attacks from both sides of the aisle. Those on the left will excoriate me for not being “sensitive” enough. Those on the right will vilify me for even offering a pathway to change one’s documents (they wouldn’t even accept medical vetting, I’ve found). I’d say to you to ignore the activists on both sides and keep it grounded in medical reality. That’s how it stands in most places today (including my home state of New York), and I think that it’s best kept that way. That is, there should be a limited and controlled way to amend one’s personal documents. Otherwise, it becomes anarchy and chaos. Keep it grounded and you won’t go wrong.

BMD

Monday, 28 May 2018

28 May 2018. No Comment Necessary Department… Women Are NOT Objects

Filed under: moral issues — 01varvara @ 00.00
Tags: , , , , , , ,

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Does that mean that we have to give in to every male demand and urge? I’d say not…

BMD

Monday, 15 January 2018

Alfeyev Opens Big Mouth on Gender… It ISN’T the Teaching of the Church… It’s Only His Ignorant Opinion

This is Alfeyev with his Uniate pals… he doesn’t even hide his treachery to the Church… this is why HH won’t give him a diocese… he fawns on the enemies of Christ’s Church

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Illarion Alfeyev is opening his big mouth again. This time it’s about gender. Read this. This is NOT the teaching of the Church. It’s Alfeyev’s ignorant unsupported opinion. As he lacks any medical or scientific background, anything that he says is pure GIGO… rubbish of the highest order. Alfeyev is, perhaps, the most unpopular hierarch in the MP. Even the Kapalin brothers have more cred and tread. Alfeyev is only a patriarchal vicar… he’s just a vicar bishop with a white hat… HH refuses to give him a diocese, and outbursts such as this one are the reason why. Alfeyev panders to papists in general, to Uniates in particular, and to Evangelical sectarian boobies. Much of what he says isn’t official policy nor is it vetted by the Centre. He remains in his position because of his ties to certain oligarchs, to the papists, and to Westerners in general (he’s pro-American to a fault). He has no real basis of support in the Church in Russia, except for the clique around Shevkunov. However, expect the American Hard Right konvertsy to have a field day with this. I repeat… it isn’t the TEACHING OF THE CHURCH… it’s only Alfeyev’s idiosyncratic opinion. There are those amongst us who are worse than any outsider… Alfeyev is one such. Look at the image above… he kisses the asses of Uniates (the ones pictured are Galician Uniates from the USA… the worst sort of CIA stooges that you can imagine)… that shows the depth of his loyalty to Christ’s Church. What a loser…

By the way, the policy in the Russian Federation is quite similar to that in many American jurisdictions. If one presents legitimate medical documentation to the OVIR, the state changes the gender designation on one’s passport with no hassles or problems. So if you hear Amerikantsy Hard Right sorts blather about how Russia isn’t like the West… I’d advise you to take such with great scepticism. The Russian state listens to medical and scientific experts, not ignoramus loudmouths with no credentials like Alfeyev. Alfeyev embarrasses the Church yet again…

BMD

Friday, 8 February 2013

Hair Politics: American Black Women Face Unique Dilemma

00 Black hair. 08.02.13

Natural doesn’t mean ugly!

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Esi Ozemebhoya remembered the jaw-dropping disbelief of classmates when they saw her for the first time after the “big chop”. Ozemebhoya, a 19-year-old student at Georgetown University said, “It was a big deal”, describing the reaction of classmates to her decision to cut off her chemically-straightened hair and allow her tightly-coiled curls to grow out naturally. “They were shocked. They stared at me and said: ‘But … WHY?!’” Ozemebhoya’s experience, experts say, spotlights a unique dilemma faced by millions of black women eager and able to meet career challenges in America’s resolutely-conservative workplace, yet, compelled to subvert their physical nature… at their own expense… to do so.

For black women in particular… in contrast to black men or people of either gender from other races… it’s a subliminal and, critics argue, unfair pressure to conform to a standard of “professional” appearance in corporate America by artificially altering a basic body feature. Lori Tharps, co-author of the 2002 book Hair Story: Untangling the Roots of Black Hair in America, which examined African-American hair issues over the past 500 years, stated, “The historical brainwashing we’ve received as a people is that black hair showed inferiority and ugliness”. In an interview this week with RIA-Novosti, Tharps explained that the goal of the book that she wrote with Ayana Byrd was to raise awareness about the issue among fellow women of colour and help them understand that decisions on hairstyles must be a choice… not a requirement, saying, “The opposite of straight hair is not ugly hair”.

Women achieve the straightened-hair look, glamorised by US First Lady Michelle Obama, television talk show star Oprah Winfrey, pop diva Rihanna, and numerous other high-profile personalities, in a variety of ways including chemical relaxers and hair extensions. Many black women, including 29-year-old Lauren Williams, said that for them the decision to suppress or alter their natural hair it is purely a matter of aesthetics, convenience, and personal choice. Williams, a Washington-based political communications professional, said, “There are certain styles I just don’t feel would be accepted. Historically, if African-Americans wanted to progress both personally and politically there had to be some assimilation that occurred during the process. I have to fit into the ideals of what a hiring manager thinks would make for the best candidate”. However, whilst Williams compared the cost of maintaining her hair extensions to investing in a quality business suit, she also confessed to a “secret love affair” with natural hair, a topic she’s addressed on her political style blog, Posh Politics.

Commentators in fields ranging from sociology to entertainment point out that straightened hair may be lower-maintenance than grooming and training natural curls, a booming, multi-billion dollar black beauty product industry may also influence the choice black women make about their hair. In 2011 alone, African-Americans spent 7.6 billion USD (230 billion Roubles. 5.7 billion Euros. 4.8 billion UK Pounds) on personal care products and services including hair, spa, and other beauty treatments, according to a report from Target Market News, a Chicago based firm specialising in black consumer market trends in the USA. Professional hair stylists in New York and Washington contacted by RIA-Novosti said chemical relaxers and hair extensions can range in price from 100 to 10,000 USD (3,020 to 302,000 Roubles. 75 to 7,500 Euros. 64 to 6,400 UK Pounds) per appointment, depending on the client’s location and the services delivered. The 2009 documentary Good Hair starring comedian Chris Rock captured the centrality of “the hair question” to the lives of African-Americans in general, and to black American women in particular. Actor Paul Mooney joked in the film, “If your hair’s relaxed, white people are relaxed. If your hair is nappy… they’re not happy!”

Historians, hair-stylists, and student activists all said that American black women face unique challenges on a variety of levels in making their natural hair “acceptable” enough to level the playing field with any other colleague in the workplace. Nevertheless, they also said that there’s progress on the issue. Christopher Chambers, professor with the Georgetown University Culture, Communications, and Technology programme, said, “I think the barriers are slowly coming down”. He went on to say that we’ll need more high-profile black women wearing their hair naturally… and serving as role models for younger generations… for the walls to disappear entirely. Patrick McKay, chairman of the Human Resource Management degree programme at Rutgers University in New Jersey, concurred. He said that differences in tolerance levels were starting to become more apparent in various industries and sectors of the US economy, observing, “What I’m finding is that it depends on the diversity climate of the company”.

Over the past decade, the so-called natural hair movement has gained momentum, with the help of social media and blogs serving as a resource for women curious about leaving the chemicals behind. For Georgetown sophomore Ozemebhoya, the issue is less about whether her peers approve or disapprove of her new look than it is about basic freedom and acceptance of her natural appearance, saying of her decision to cut her chemically-straightened hair, “It was liberating”. She called it the “Big Chop”… for the first time since she was five-years-old, she felt the texture of her natural hair.

8 February 2013

Sasha Horne

RIA-Novosti

http://en.rian.ru/analysis/20130208/179290482/Hair-Politics-American-Black-Women-Face-Unique-Dilemma.html

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