The Center for Disease Control’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report found that nearly 2% of all high schoolers identify as transgender; this report also confirms that transgender students need to be protected in and out of school.
In school, transgender students are more likely to be victims of bullying, whether in person or online. They are also four times more likely to feel unsafe at school compared to their cisgender peers. Trans students are often misgendered, unable to access the bathroom that matches their gender identity, and subject to rude comments and stares. Outside of school, transgender students disproportionately experience sexual violence and drug addiction. For these reasons and more, transgender students are three times more likely to attempt suicide.
This past October, the Trump administration announced a plan to rigidly redefine gender based on genitalia at the time of birth. Not only is the Trump administration actively hurting transgender Americans by legitimizing erasure, but they are furthering a scientifically incorrect perception of gender. Approximately one in 100 Americans has some sort of sexual development condition, meaning they are not explicitly male or female.
The medical community acknowledges that gender is not binary. They see gender as a spectrum with room for those who identify as something other than what’s on their birth certificate or as nothing at all.
“The idea that a person’s sex is determined by their anatomy at birth is not true, and we’ve known that it’s not true for decades,” says Dr. Joshua Safer, an endocrinologist at the Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery at Mount Sinai Health System in New York.
Trump’s attempt to redefine gender out of existence goes against science and legal precedent, all so they can undercut Title IX protections.
Media Resources: Advocates for Youth 1/28/19; The New York Times 10/21/18; Human Rights Watch 7/25/17; Feminist Newswire 10/22/18; Nature.com 10/30/18; Transequality.org