California considering adding 3rd gender option to official state documents

Hanne Gaby Odiele, a supermodel who recently came out as transgender

A new bill under consideration in California would allow people to select a third gender (“intersex”) on any official state documents, including birth certificates and driving licenses. According to the Intersex Society of North America, the term “intersex” is a “socially constructed category” to designate a biological condition in which a person is born with genitalia which falls outside of the usual female or male categories. Sara Kelly Keenan, who identifies as such says being “intersex” is more than a form of gender identity, but a “medical reality.” She has teamed up with other advocates in lobbying to pass the “Gender Recognition Act” of 2017. The bill has the support of various LGBTQ and transgender rights groups, which believe it will render intersex people more visible in society. “It’s even more of a reason for California to lead the way on these issues and to move forward in recognizing people from marginalized communities as full and complete members of society, which is unfortunately not happening in many other states and something that is at risk at the federal level,” Jo Michael, legislative manager for Equality California told Mercury News. Opposition against the bill from conservatives is on the rise as well, however. “If you change sex to be a description of someone’s feelings, then anyone can claim to be a male or female,” Greg Burt from the California Family Council, a Christian group, claimed. If passed, California would be the first state in the country to have such legislation. India, Pakistan, Australia, and Germany are some of the countries across the world that already recognize the third gender.

Read the full story at Heat Street.


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