Friday, October 3, 2008

Misconceptions on chromosomes?

In the combox to my recent post on Ms Horin’s article on ‘transgender rights’ I was taken to task for asserting the fundamental significance of chromosomes in sex determination. But the other day I remembered from whom I had picked up this notion: not from some anti-G.B.L.T. source or from my own idle speculations, but from the G.L.B.T. folk and their fellow-travellers! In an even more flagrantly pro-pansexual than usual issue of the Sydney Uni Union Recorder at the start of 2003 (possibly the March issue), a helpful little glossary of key terms was provided. Therein, one read that ‘sex’ is a matter of chromosomal configuration, whereas ‘gender’ was, supposedly, some kind of subjective perception. (It’s fascinating what one learns from the student magazines. In an issue of Honi Soit from later in 2003 I discovered that 60% of practising homosexual men will suffer from genital warts. In other words, one would infer, on the balance of probability, that any given sodomite whom one meets has genital warts. Scary.)

But even if one were to concede that, in addition to male and female, there is a category of persons who fit unambiguously into neither the male nor female categories because of chromosomal or other problems, it seems that things would not be that simple. Read this portion of a comment from the Human Rights Commission’s blog:
And so Intersex becomes a catch-all catagory for Transexuals unable to undergo surgery and hormone treatment because of conflicting health consitions, crossdressers who do not identify as Male but do not wish to undergo medical procedures to be catagorised as Female or who identify as both Male and Female, Genderqueer people who do not identify as either Male or Female or identify as both as well as Indiginous peoples from this region with Third Sex identities and immigrants from other cultures with Third Sex traditions.
I, for my part, am now even more bewildered than ever.

Reginaldvs Cantvar

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