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For Transgender Rights, Putting the T in LGBT
by Steven Argue
Sunday Sep 15th, 2013 10:12 AM
[Photo: GetEQUAL organized protest on in Washington, D.C., 2010. Photo credit: by Alex Wong/Getty Images]
For Transgender Rights, Putting the T in LGBT

by Steven Argue

A communist friend asked:

"Am I wrong when I say that being transgender and being a feminist is hypocritical? I mean, Feminists say that both sexes are equal. When you change your gender. Isn't that you saying there are parts of the opposite gender that you think you can't reach with your own?"

There is far more to sexual identity than equality. While equality is often the essential political issue, seeing each other as the same is a mistake. This was a mistake of the Cultural Revolution in China, where women were largely expected to dress the same as men and not wear makeup. etc. How femininity or masculinity are defined is partly a cultural construct, and much of it has been sexist under capitalism, but there are also natural tendencies and differences. Many people fall into expected categories, but how a person defines their own sex should be up to them even to the point of having a sex change. Untreated people who desire such changes suffer higher rates of suicide, addiction, depression, and anxiety.

Since June of 2008, revolutionary Cuba has recognized this right and now gives free sex reassignment operations through their socialized health care system.

Cuba, is a poor country due to a long history of colonialism by Spain and the United States. Yet, due to their socialized health care system, their life expectancy is now 77.7 years. That's longer than the rich imperialist United States which is currently at 77.4 years.

Despite the gains of the Cuban Revolution, some complain against the example of Cuba. There are some legitimate complaints that can be made. Yet, the lack of workers democracy in Cuba is a Stalinist trait, not a communist one. Trotskyists, like myself, support the fight for workers democracy in Cuba while defending their communist economy as well as Cuba's right to national self-determination as opposed to U.S. imperialist control. When Cuba was under U.S. control, the capitalist Batista dictatorship slaughtered tens of thousands of people opposed to the regime. Under socialism, by any measurable indicator, the majority of the people of Cuba are far better off than they were under capitalism.

In the United States, Medicaid in forty states does not fund sex-reassignment surgery. For those who have corporate owned health insurance, the procedure is often denied as well. Obama's so-called "Affordable Care Act", which continues America's extremely expensive and dangerous system of corporate profit for healthcare, excludes any obligation for insurance companies to provide sex-reassignment surgery.

Officially state sanctioned discrimination against transgender people also remains in the United in other forms as well. For instance, despite the repeal of Bill Clinton's heterosexist "don't ask don't tell", transgender people are typically denied treatment and discharged from the military. Whatever one thinks of the role of the U.S. military in the world, discrimination should be opposed everywhere, including in the military.

The Revolutionary Tendency works to build a revolutionary party that is a tribune of the people, speaking out for all of the most oppressed in society including the entire LGBT community.

For Full Free Access to Socialized Medicine in the United States, Including Sex-Reassignment Surgery!

For Full Legal Protections of the Entire LGBT Community!

For an End to the U.S. Economic Black-aid of Cuba and Give Guantanamo Back to Cuba!

-Steven Argue of the Revolutionary Tendency

Also From this author, see:

Gains for Healthcare, Despite Obama

For Women’s Liberation through Socialist Revolution!

Cuba Capitalist? A Trotskyist Response to the ISO and LRP

[Photo: GetEQUAL organized protest on in Washington, D.C., 2010. Photo credit: by Alex Wong/Getty Images]