Queer Notes, January-February 2013

by Elise

The newly signed law that would have protected all California Queer youth from “ex-gay” therapies and therapies to change gender expression has been suspended. Federal Appeals Court judges ruled that there must be a full review of the legality of the Bill (SB 1172). The therapists who administer “ex-gay” therapies claim the law violates their freedom of religion.

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Kolkata, India—Intersex woman Pinki Pramanik, the former Asian Games gold medalist in women’s track and field, was arrested for rape, accused by her former lover, and imprisoned in a male ward because of test results showing that she has both X and Y chromosomes. Medical personnel on the investigating panel said Pramanik’s gender is not necessarily male based solely on those tests. The panel diagnosed Pramanik with disorders of sex development (DSD). The soon-to-be-published fifth edition of the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) defines DSD as the set of traits where chromosomes, gonads, and/or genitals are both female and male or atypical for either. This is highly controversial, in part because DSD is listed as a disorder. The Intersex community demands full human rights, normalization, that DSD be eliminated from the DSM, and control over their own bodies from birth.

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Kiev, Ukraine—On Human Rights Day, Dec. 10, GLBT rights supporters protested Ukraine’s Draft Law 8711, which bans any television or radio programs, movies, writings, and any other media that “promotes” homosexuality. Anyone violating that law could face fines or imprisonment of up to five years. Members of the homophobic Svoboda Party tried to stop the protest, physically assaulting some of the protesters. Nevertheless, the protest went on.

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