Today’s NY Times has a fascinating look into the lives of female-to-male transexuals, a growing phenomenon that is sowing anger and dissention among some lesbians, who see gender transitioning as a betrayal of feminism and lesbian activism. Many of the women who transition to male do not completely change their gender, leaving the so-called “bottom surgery” unperformed.
The article raises some interesting questions about how we define gender. For example, does a transman on testosterone, who may have a beard and a vagina, qualify to play women’s sports in college? How about the Olympics? It’s an interesting flipside to similar questions raised about Renee Richards back in the 70’s, who successfully sued her way in playing at the U.S. Women’s Open. It’s fascinating to watch this all unfold. For many of us, Buck Angel is only the beginning.