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Spectra and binaries

Transgender is an umbrella adjective describing people whose gender is other than the one they were declared to be at the time of their birth. Under the umbrella are trans men, trans women, bigender people, those of a third gender, those who don't identify with any gender, and many more.


[edit] Different types

To be absolutely precise, transgender is an adjective describing people who identify with a gender different from their assigned sex at birth (which often but does not always fall into the gender binary). Transsexual is an adjective describing people who have physically transitioned to living with a different gender & sex than was assumed at birth, or desire to do so. A crossdresser, on the other hand, is a person who dresses as the opposite sex despite not identifying as such. The reasons for doing so vary, as it can be of a performance (drag), fancy dress or a sexual fetish.

Transgender people can be of any sexual orientation, although it is common among non-binary transgender people to use terms like "androphile" and "gynephile" rather than "heterosexual" or "homosexual", because the latter terms require that one partner be of one gender identity and the other partner be of the opposite/identical gender identity, which may not be possible if one partner self-identifies outside the gender binary.

Intersexuality, like sexual orientation, is also a concept related to, but independent of, transgender. An intersex person, assigned female at birth, who remains within the female gender role and identifies as female is cisgender (but is still considered a valid member of LGBTI+ community, with the letter I being specifically added to both this acronym and the less letter soup MOGAI to denote that); an intersex person, assigned male at birth, who identifies with a third gender is transgender.

[edit] Religious criticism

For main article, see Transphobia

The American Religious right criticises transgender people regularly, often while remaining willfully ignorant about what being transgender is really like.[1] The basic idea is that God has personally assigned everyone's sex (and with it their gender), and deviating from that is against God's plan. Thankfully, far from all Christians follow this restrictive teaching, and many more liberal Christian groups accept and welcome transgender people as the gender they are.

Unhappiness suffered by people under religious pressure to conform to a gender they feel does not suit them is typically either ignored or seen as a result of fallen human nature.[2]

Pope Francis has criticised transgender people, claiming that being transgender "goes against God" and that increasing social acceptance of transgender people "negates traditional God-given values".[3] On the related topic of transgender people, Roman Catholic archbishop of San Francisco, Salvatore Cordileone, also criticised Caitlyn Jenner's sex change, motivating it with the tautological truth that "people are born either male or female".[2]

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