Sunday, August 30, 2009

Ending Professional Bigotry Against Transsexual People

In this video I present the scientific evidence showing that transsexuality is a natural variation and that transsexual people are simply different, not disordered. Consequently, the American Psychiatric Association should remove "gender identity disorder" from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. My thanks to Chicago's Gay Liberation Network . This video of the cable television broadcast is in FOUR PARTS.




References specifically referred to in this video are (in order of mention):
  • Zhou, J.N., Hofman, M.A., Gooren, L.J. and Swaab, D.F.. A Sex Difference in the Human Brain and its Relation to Transsexuality. NATURE, 378: 68-70 (1995)
  • Kruijver, Frank P. M., Zhou, J., Pool, Chris W., Hofman, Michel A., Gooren, Louis J. G and Swaab, Dick F. Male-To-Female Transsexuals Have Female Neuron Numbers In A Limbic Nucleus. J CLIN ENDOCRINOL METAB, 85: 2034-2041 (2000)
  • Garcia-Falgueras, Alicia and Swaab, Dick F. A Sex Difference In The Hypothalamic Uncinate Nucleus: Relationship To Gender Identity. BRAIN, (Nov 2, 2008)


Zoe Brain said...

Ronnie, that was bloody brilliant to use the Australian vernacular.

It was a shame that the callers all had their own politico-religious agendas. Three out of three does not bode well, but is probably an accurate reflection of those who feel strongly enough about the issue to call in.

If only we had more data... I'd love to see the neuroanatomy of the other gals who are engineers like me. Heck, I'd love to see my own neuroanatomy - too bad that with current technology, this involves dicing up the brain, and I have a rather more compelling use for that at the moment.

I'd really like to investigate the boundary cases, the transgendered people. And find out why having an approximately anatomically consistent set of genitalia was so important to me, be that in the hardware, the firmware, or the software. (My bet's on the first BTW).

I've been guilty of sloppily talking about "male brains" and "female brains", when really all we have is a set, a vector of characteristics, with the values following a bimodal distribution - one set stereotypically found mainly in men, another set found stereotypically mostly in women. But neither are "male" or "female" as such, just found more often in either of the two sexes.

Mickey Diamond says "Hi!" BTW, I had a good talk with him just before leaving - he's still recovering from that nasty infection in his leg, but is back at work.

In summary, thanks.

Now to look at sexual orientation... and that is an even more wriggly can of worms from a political angle. From my readings though, I think the case is at least as strong that that's a matter of neuroanatomy too, and I'm about ready to commit myself there. It's only cowardice, not wanting to fight too many battles simultaneously, that causes me to hesitate, rather than a rational evaluation of the evidence.

Please keep up the good work. We're really starting to get a good handle on this now.

Leah Peters said...

Bravo Ronnie! We need more people like you! I have read your last couple entries and I am very impressed. I also know Zoe Brain (who's brilliant) and if she is impressed you are a jewel. I am adding your blog to my favorites list.

Keep up the good work!!!