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'X' now a gender option in Australian passports

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So they're trying to ELIMINATE discrimination against transgendered people by giving them the option to single themselves out?

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Are they happy being labelled as "X"? Why not "T" for transgender?

I can understand this for people born with gender identity disorder, but does it also cover those who simply make a conscious choice to convert to the other sex?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@smithinjapan

I think the point is when you look like a girl but your passport says you are a man (think haruna ai), immigration gets a bit suspicious - maybe they think it's a fake passport, the person's a nutter etc..

If the passport says they are transgender, then the hope is that the immigration process should go much smoother. Perhaps that is how it will work when entering Australia, but I wonder how other countries will treat Australia's decision to use X on the passport instead of the accepted global norm.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Agree with smithinjapan.

Why even point them out, let the passport reflect their currently legally registered sex.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Papa.

If they are marked as X, do they use the little girls or boys room? I only see more problems ahead with that decision.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@smithinjapan: I think the key word here is option. You can't eliminate discrimination by simply ignoring the differences, and people who don't want the "x" don't need to get it.

@papasmurf: That's a good question. Another article on this says this also covers people who are "indeed genetically ambiguous" so I guess it's trying to cover a lot of situations.

This may be a stupid question, but if you make a conscious choice to convert to the other sex and can convince your doctor you are serious and were unhappy in your old gender, as far as diagnosis goes isn't it the same as gender identity disorder anyway?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Of course the only way to remove gender discrimination is to degenderize names and remove the gender box on documents all together.

But this is probably less about discrimination and more about identification.

I bet Shoshana Hebshi wishes there was a box she could check that could identify her has "not terrorist".

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I bet Shoshana Hebshi wishes there was a box she could check that could identify her has "not terrorist".

infringement of human rights at its best. Any innocent citizen can become a victim and be harassed and abused by government.. Where the land of the free has gone? About X gender I think it is another label branding a person as different and abnormal.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@papasmurf but I wonder how other countries will treat Australia's decision to use X on the passport instead of the accepted global norm.?? Hey amigo, not too sure what you think is an ACCEPTED GLOBAL NORM, because the last time I flew down to THAILAND, on the immigration papers we must fill out before landing in Thailand, I distinctly rember, sex Male, Female, OTHER, the THAIS have ACCEPTED that they have many OTHERS, they do not care if you are Bisexual, trisexual, transormer etc..no time for those petty things down in the land o smiles, Thailand, Australia is just doing this but it has been the accepted government NORM for the Thais for many years, ask anybody who has been to Thailand, and there are plenty of others from ALL over the WORLD not just Thais. Kap Kun Krap! Thanks mates!

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@ Elbuda Mexicano

Filling out immigration papers to enter Thailand is hardly the same as having the gender X stamped on your passport. Immigration papers are for domestic use, so countries are free to ask whatever questions they want on them. A passport is a document for international use, and obviously needs to conform to international standards. My question is, how many other countries offer "X" as an option on the passport application?

What happens when you visit another country and the immigration official didn't get the memo that in Australia they now have gender X as well as M and F? Wouldn't that lead to more discrimination?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

What happens when you visit another country and the immigration official didn't get the memo that in Australia they now have gender X as well as M and F?

I am wondering this as well.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Keep M & F - if you are equipped with a 'certain item', you're a male - if not, you're a female. Determining somebody's gender is science, not psychology.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Who frisks a "X" when they get picked out "randomly" by TSA in America??

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Who frisks a "X" when they get picked out "randomly" by TSA in America??

Another "X"?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I would have expected something more colorful from the Australians.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Transgender ... no such thing unless you've got both the AC and DC. Or as they say in Auz, AccaDacca, mate. Ugh.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

The world is getting more ridiculous day by day.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

BoratLikeBarrySep. 15, 2011 - 02:35PM JST

Keep M & F - if you are equipped with a 'certain item', you're a male - if not, you're a female. Determining somebody's gender is science, not psychology.

Borat, please look up "Intersex". Sometimes individuals are born who are something inbetween. Wikipedia would be a simple start to your education in this field (and a save place to start your research).

2 ( +5 / -3 )

jforce, Or neither.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@It"S ME Choosing whether to use the male or female bathroom is something that these people would have to deal with regardless of what their passport says, so this issue is irrelevant.

@papasmurfinjapan If social reform required all countries in the world to simultaneously adopt a new custom/law, we'd never get anything done.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

men are men, women are women. Men that think they are women are men with issues. Women that think they are men are women with issues.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

@Foxie Although I think this is a good thing for the purposes of avoiding unecessary and constant questioning and detention at immigration, I do agree that it is a bit silly to make up a whole new gender for yourself unless you are genetically intesex or something. It would be a lot easier if everyone accepted that there are many types of "males" and many types of "females" instead of feeling the need to create a brand new gender because they feel they don't fit into normal society.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

men are men, women are women. Men that think they are women are men with issues. Women that think they are men are women with issues.

Right. And black is black, white is white and grey is one or the other "with issues". Because we all know that grey doesn't actually exist.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

this is another case of PC going overboard. our need to coddle even the smallest of minorities borders on the inane. seriously, how many people does this really affect, less than .001% of the population? pu-lea-ze!

-1 ( +3 / -3 )

Right. And black is black, white is white and grey is one or the other "with issues". Because we all know that grey doesn't actually exist.

Theres lots of colors, not lots of genders. Thats why you dont see a rooster sitting on the eggs etc...cuz "transgender" is natural. Hence somebody would have issues to believe they are man trapped in a womans body or vice versa.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Why you need a new "gender" for these folk baffles me. All because a dude wants to wear a dress instead of pants. All it is is a homosexual that wants to wear a dress...so kids still a male!!

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

@genji

It's not about issues. It's about "genetically ambiguous" people. They're physically neither entirely male or female, as in if they stripped naked in front of you, you wouldn't be able to tell. As taj advises above, have a look at Wikipedia.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Serious question here. Is "gender" on a passport easily changed for someone? I.e. it's just the same as changing a name?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@bentheredonthat

this is another case of PC going overboard.

It absolutely isn't. PC goes overboard when it inteferes with people's lives for no valid reason (eg "Don't say "Happy Christmas" because you might offend an aetheist.") This affects nobody at all except trans-gender folk who might want to take advantage. This is PC in a very good way.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Maybe Australia is taking a head start for all those aliens to settle our planet soon.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

just write M on M,W,F and F for T,T,S,S...... or you could overlay both the M&F so it looks like a typo

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I still think Australia and the rest of the world should learn from our smiling amigos down in Bangkok, Thailand. Male? Female? Other? Sure! What ever! Just make sure you have enough $$$ for you vacation in our lovely country!

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

I can't help wondering how long it'll be before someone comes along claiming to be a bit "X" but somewhat "M", and asking for a new designation....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Seems to be quite a few people posting here who skipped advanced biology classes. Y

es, genji17, hermaphrodite chickens happen. This isn't about homosexuality. Please read the article.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@lucabrasi

you aren't following my line of reasoning. by pandering to every minority group, we create more PC mine fields in which to walk. this is a very big change for such a small cross section of the population. and I'm not sure it really solves the problem. if immigration sees an "x" when they are looking at a "woman," what are they to assume? is this really a woman or is this a man dressed as a woman, or is this a man who has had a sex change, etc.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

but I wonder how other countries will treat Australia's decision to use X on the passport instead of the accepted global norm.

World may also accept and introduce X(?) and X-day may go into the list of abandoned words(?)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If they were having a sex change operation to become a girl, wouldnt they want female instead?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yes, angloo, Post-surgery, gender would be clearly one or the other. This is for pre-surgery or non-surgery situations.

Everyone remember that girl athlete a year or so ago. Maybe 15. Sub-Saharan Africa. She was gender-tested and turned out to be not chromosomally female? I don't remember is she was XYY or something else had happened along the way that had made her an androgynous baby, but by all media follow-up reports, she'd been raised female and was female as far as she knew.

Poor kid!

Shit happens. No need to call anomalies aliens or fahgs and be cruel about it.

Sheesh!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It"S ME

Agree with smithinjapan.

Why even point them out, let the passport reflect their currently legally registered sex.

Agree with this too, forget about this is left wing PC rubbish to appease any minority group for any reason, get real.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Creating choices can never be a bad thing! However, if these people choose 'X', I believe it may give them more problems at international airports. No harm in giving it a try though. If it works, then it works. If it doesn't, then they can always choose to be a man or a woman.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Perhaps they should label it, along with public restrooms as:

Men

Women

Etcetera

0 ( +1 / -1 )

They could just make toilets uni-sex and be damned!

It must be pretty damned hard to live your life as a F when you were born a M, so this can only be a step for evolution...I've claimed to be a Jedi enough times on hotel registration forms in the religious area to understand that it's personal, and be damned with prying eyes.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

This is nonsensical liberal crap.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Girls will be boys, and boys will be girls. It's a mixed up, muddled up shook up world...

The Kinks
0 ( +1 / -1 )

@ soldave: No, you can't just change your gender on your passport. You have to abide what is on your birth certificate. If you put the wrong (ie, not what is on your birth certificate) sex in, your passport will be denied.

I have to agree with a few other posters here that I wonder if this is actually not going to create more discrimination rather than allow gender ambiguous people an option. I know someone personally who was unable to travel outside her country because she was by all normal standards, a woman, but her birth certificate still states that she is a man. For her to get a passport and have it say that she is male is completely unacceptable for her, so an X option might have been a way out for her at the time.

Currently, she is now finished her operation and by law is allowed to be called a woman. So perhaps, it's for people like her that this law was created. Hm, something to think about, unless your mind is already too small to fit in other views.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Oh, I just wanted to add that when I first read the title of this article, I thought that it would allow anyone to put an X, not just people who had their doctors said that it was okay. Perhaps this might be an option that allows for no discrimination. The only problem is that a passport is a legal document that allows authorities to know for certain who that person is. Should we really be messing around with this kind of information to make it less specific?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I thought the purpose of a passport or any kind of identification is to, you know, identify people. I can respect a transgender individuals desire to be viewed and judged as a member of gender that they identify most with but the point of having stuff like height, eye color, and sex as descriptors is so that an inspecting officer can reasonably determine whether or not you're the person on the card.

Your identification should indicate what sex you are at this point in time. If you should change that sex at a later date you can re-apply for an updated one.

They could just make toilets uni-sex and be damned!

Unisex bathrooms are not fun. Either they're set up like a women’s rest room and i have to wait for a stall to open or its set up like a men’s room and women crowd the open area behind the sinks because there are less stalls. The transgender can go in the restroom they most identify with and use a stall, nobody will be the wiser. Alternatively businesses could start having a third bathroom, like a single occupant kind, that could be a unisex and serve as a handicapped restroom.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

'X' now a gender option in Australian passports

Ha ha ha...Aussie always was - ha ha ha ha - a world leader in things like this hahahahahahah :-)

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

How does this system work in countries where passport controls do not have an option for the "X" to appear on the computer screens or printed documents. A M or F still needs to be inputted somehow.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ridiculous rubbish. A person is either a man or a woman. If they get their gender changed, fine, then they can go with that, but their is no "X" gender. Once again the Australian government is trying to prove that they are up with the times by making stupid laws. The country is rife with them. And yes, I am Australian.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Doesn't the Australian government have more important things to do and spend taxpayer money on?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Rule #1, #3, #5, #7

"No poofters!"

(M.Python, et al.)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

TheQuestion (and other posters) makes a well-reasoned argument as far as official identification is concerned.

I don't particuarly care about the Unisex bathroom thing though. Doesn't bother me.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Comedy Central - again! I can't believe the USA did not come up with idea first. What next?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"So they're trying to ELIMINATE discrimination against transgendered people by giving them the option to single themselves out?"

Singling oneself out and being discriminated against are two entirly different animals, Smith.

Just as it shouldn't really be an issue for someone to identify his/her/x-self as a connoisseur of bottle caps, it shouldn't matter one lick if a person chooses to not hide -- or even chooses to advertise -- his or her transgenderness.

It's what people choose to do with that knowledge that takes us into the realm of discrimination.

You're essentially saying that the best way to avoid discrimination is to hide; homosexuals should stay in the closet, blacks should avoid place where whites congregate, and women should just stop trying to vote, get jobs, or get an education. Because they're all all just bringing it on themselves by advertising their presence.

That's a huge step backwards, mate.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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