Rising, so far

I woke up this morning, dreading the day — I have so much work I need to get done, and I have doubts that I can get it all done. But I must! I fired up iTunes while I was getting ready, and the first random song is Bauhaus’s “Bela Lugosi is Dead”, which calmed me right down. Second song: Patti Smith, “Horses,” which fired me up and I’m ready get things done.

Then I opened up the Washington Post, and there on the front page is an honest, positive article about trans people, “Most trans adults say transitioning made them more satisfied with their lives”. Yeah, obviously. About time a national paper was brave enough to say it.

Transgender Americans experience stigma and systemic inequality in many aspects of their lives, including education, work and health-care access, a wide-ranging Washington Post-KFF poll finds.

Many have been harassed or verbally abused. They’ve been kicked out of their homes, denied health care and accosted in bathrooms. A quarter have been physically attacked, and about 1 in 5 have been fired or lost out on a promotion because of their gender identity. They are more than twice as likely as the population at large to have experienced serious mental health struggles such as depression.

Yet most trans adults say transitioning has made them more satisfied with their lives.

“Living doesn’t hurt anymore,” said TC Caldwell, a 37-year-old Black nonbinary person from Montgomery, Ala. “It feels good to just breathe and be myself.”

That’s what we should want, that people feel good about being themselves, and that we should be aware of the discrimination some people suffer. Let’s fix that. It’s especially welcome to see that kind of recognition after the embarrassing, awful Richard Dawkins/Piers Morgan interview (I’ll have more to say about that later, after I get an exam assembled and after I figure out how to recover from a disastrous turn in my genetics lab.)

Good morning! It doesn’t take a lot to get a little uplift to start the day.


  1. Matt G says

    The people who babble about “freedom” really seem to hate freedoms they don’t agree with.

  2. wzrd1 says

    Heh, first random tune this morning for me was, Ray Charles Busted.
    Laughably appropriate.

    First news headline, Russia bitching to the UK that the UK is shipping arms to Ukraine “with a nuclear component” and the threat to “respond accordingly”. The arms, depleted uranium armor piercing rounds.
    My thought as I guzzled my coffee, “OK, fine. We’ll ship thermonuclear warheads, as Russia has been incessantly using arms with atomic nuclei throughout the conflict”.
    I’m utterly mystified as to why the US Department of State refuses to hire me.

  3. moonslicer says

    Yeah, such a simple little thing, isn’t it? Come out of the closet, be yourself, and it’s amazing how rosy your world can look.

    Hence, the opposition to trans rights: it never ceases to dismay you, seeing the numbers of people out there who are totally opposed to your happiness and freedom. They’ve got all sorts of arguments as to why and how transgender freedom will be inimical to a smoothly run society. We’ll pull it all down, it seems.

    At which point I ask, “Excuse me, but where is this smoothly run society you’re talking about? Where has there ever been a smoothly run society? You say we’re going to mess things up. Seems to me things are already quite a mess, and you can’t blame us for that. It’s you folks who’ve always been in charge of things. It isn’t our fault if you can’t get your act together. It seems rather harsh to me for you to blame us for all the things you’ve been unable to do yourselves.”

  4. wzrd1 says

    First random song of my day, Ray Charles “Busted”. Ironically appropriate.
    Then, I opened BBC and viewed a story where Russia is threatening escalation with the UK because the UK shipped Ukraine weapons “with a nuclear component” – depleted uranium armor piercing rounds.
    The White House then proclaimed that the uranium is “not radioactive”, which is nonsense, as uranium is decidedly radioactive – although bananas have a higher specific radioactivity, due to the potassium-40 in them.
    OK, ship full fission-fusion-fission devices, as Russia has incessantly used weapons with atomic nuclei in them.

    All of which have allowed me to decide what I’ll have for dinner tonight. Refried beans, chili and Spanish rice.

  5. lotharloo says

    Had no idea about RD interview. Then I listened to the relevant part. It’s absolutely amazing how much ego these shitheads have. When it comes to “gender” suddenly RD says “I’m not interested” because SCIENCE but suddenly the dude is interested in transgender people in women’s sport. Right. His agenda is pretty transparent.

  6. birgerjohansson says

    Anything involving Piers Morgan is likely to be toxic.
    I cannot wait until Britain rejoins EU and all their little heads explode like the guy in “Scanners”.

  7. dbinmn says

    Everyone here remembers just how fast public opinion shifted on gay marriage in the mid 2000s. We went from “people are gonna marry their dogs” to ho-hum in what seemed to be less than a year.

    Desantis and his kitty-litter, “attack helicopter” amateur logicians had better get ready for a severe case of whiplash when the tide turns the way it did two decades ago.

  8. says

    …after I figure out how to recover from a disastrous turn in my genetics lab.

    Bloody ‘ell, I hope it’s not gain-of-function research on all three kinds of athletes’ foot fungus! ‘Cuz we all know how that ends. I hope your last words won’t be “tough actin’ Tinactin my ass!”

  9. Le Chifforobe says

    …after I figure out how to recover from a disastrous turn in my genetics lab.
    My guess is…somebody carried the fly stocks through the spider room, and now the flies all have the Shaker phenotype?

  10. robro says

    dbinmn @ #9 — “Everyone here remembers just how fast public opinion shifted on gay marriage in the mid 2000s”

    Indeed and the shift happened even among gay friends of mine. One couple I know insisted they weren’t interested in marriage but they were one of the first couples in line at San Francisco City Hall.

  11. says

    Nah, the genetics disaster is that the starting point of the current experiment failed — almost all the student’s fly cultures were overwhelmed with mold. I don’t know why. It’s the first time in 23 years that a simple genetics cross didn’t work. The problem is that it takes almost 6 weeks to do the series of crosses we need for this mapping experiment, and we can’t just start from the beginning again since there are only about 5 weeks left in the term. That means I have to improvise some shorter lab exercises.

  12. says

    Matt G: ‘The people who babble about “freedom”’ never seem to have any specific freedom in mind to say they’re trying to protect, aside from the ‘freedom’ to carry guns in places where they have no business doing so. Maybe it’s the freedom to have absolutely no manners or respect for anyone they don’t like (and don’t have to suck up to). Their ‘freedom’ seems to be endangered by any meaningful attempt to uphold or enforce anyone else’s legal rights, enumerated or not.

  13. JoeBuddha says

    I was working at a high-tech company. In one of the other offices, there was this kinda mousy, depressed guy who would always come to work early to avoid people. Then he took vacation. The company let us know he was trans, and was transitioning right then. They even brought in a trans lawyer to answer any questions (hey, it’s Western Washington, not some troglodyte southern hellhole). When she came back to work, it was night and day. She was vivacious, happy, and the girliest girl you’d ever hope to meet. She got into modelling, is a cosplayer girl, and belongs to Seattle Cheer, a non-affiliated cheerleading group.
    I always let folx tell their own stories, but this is still the starkest example of transitioning I’ve ever seen.

  14. says

    Yeah, I can see how Patti Smith could get you going in the morning.
    Now me, I start every day with whatever earworm I went to sleep with the previous night. They just fire up within seconds of waking. My brain, it seems, is permanently tuned in to W.O.R.M. radio. Now playing until further notice: Linda Ronstadt, “Long Long Time.”
    This can go on for weeks at a time. I once had Neil Diamond (I will not mention the song for fear of bringing it back) stuck in my head for at least three months. Started to drive me a little nuts, I’m afraid. I don’t know if that’s normal, or if it requires special training, like, say, four years of music school.
    I first became aware of transgender people back about 1976, when one Renée Richards, a “transsexual” as we called them then, was fighting to be allowed to play women’s professional tennis. Me and my friends thought it was pretty hilarious (hey, we were teenagers in the 70s) at the time. Then, decades went by without me thinking about it much.
    Fast forward about 40 years, and I went to work for a large employer here that didn’t blink at hiring transgender people. And I still didn’t think about it much; what’s to think about? I have no vested interest in anyone being male, female, both, or neither. And having no experience dealing with such mind/body mismatches, my inclination is to let the people who are experiencing it figure out how to deal with it.

    “Living doesn’t hurt anymore,”

    If it’s working for you, I’ll roll with it.

  15. says

    the first random song is Bauhaus’s “Bela Lugosi is Dead”

    I can’t imagine waking up to that. It’d put me right into my happy zone and I’d go back to sleep.
    I have a playlist of “wakeup music” headed by Pink Floyd’s Time. In fact I think I woke up to that most mornings for a decade or more.

  16. birgerjohansson says

    “53 Miles West of Venus” by the B-52’s is quite a vitamin injection.

  17. microraptor says

    Raging Bee @14: They want the freedom to poison themselves with horse dewormer while preventing other people from being allowed to inject estrogen into themselves.

  18. Ada Christine says

    @ moonslicer #2

    In reference to a certain English person whom I will not name, I have resolved to be a major problem for a “sane” world.

  19. chrislawson says

    Raging Bee–

    I’d invert your statement. To me, the problem with the libertarian mindset is that all they care about is specific freedoms like the right to have a gun, while dismissing more general rights like the freedom to live free of the ever-present threat of gun violence.

    It is, like all of libertarianism and modern conservatism, selfishness incorporated as a political philosophy. Libertarians see specific rights that they care about being infringed and don’t care how much those wishes impact other people’s rights to such things as good education for their children, clean drinking water, equitable internet access, protection from losing their life savings to rapacious and non-consensual bank speculation, etc., etc.

    (And the really stupid thing is, most of the rights they complain about are not actually being infringed or only barely being infringed anyway. If you choose to speculate your life savings on high-risk investments, have at it! I live in Australia, which is presented by the US gun lobby as some mad experiment in population control after gun control laws were introduced following the Port Arthur Massacre [including misrepresenting that rapes spiked after the gun laws were passed while ignoring true data that suicides by gun dropped by 57% and the firearm homicide rate dropped by 42% over the next few years], and guess what?, there are two gun shops within a half-hour drive of my house; you can still buy a gun legally, just not every type of gun, and not if you fail a police check, and the vast majority of Australians [85-90%, really!] are strongly in favour of our current gun laws or stronger. Funny how, in the name of people’s freedom, the gun lobby would override the wishes of almost all of the people.)

  20. chrislawson says

    Re: the above. Not trying to derail the conversation. So, getting back OT, the fact that RD would choose to talk to Piers Morgan shows that whatever his past achievements, he is now fully into his ‘nothing new worth saying but still wanting attention’ life phase.

  21. chrislawson says

    Marcus Ranum–

    Much as I love ‘Time’, isn’t it a bit depressing for a wake-up song?

    Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way.
    The time is gone, the song is over, thought I’d something more to say…

    [shift into melancholy segue to ‘Great Gig in the Sky’]