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An important clarification

Abigail Palko | Monday, November 18, 2013

First, thank you to Ms. Castaneda for covering the lecture hosted by St. Mary’s on Nov. 12, Transgender 101. Her article (“Lecture presents transgender issues,” Nov. 13) highlights many of the difficulties faced by transgender people. There is one point, though, that needs clarification.
Ms. Buell’s quotation at the end of the article is truncated and thus the context of her final statement is missing. At the talk, she was clear to say that “Being transgender is not an easy way to go through life,” but that accepting this facet of your identity (here I paraphrase her words) is a choice. The choice lies in how a person deals with this aspect of themselves, not in having a transgender identity itself. Given the amount of discrimination and suffering that transgender people can face, it’s important to understand that being transgender is no more a choice than being cisgender is.

Abigail Palko
Director of Undergraduate Studies
Gender Studies Program
Nov. 18