Transgender acceptance starts with language

I am writing with deep concern about the fear and ignorance that appears to be driving lawmakers and school boards regarding people who are transgender. I’m prompted by the phrase in a Jan. 17 op-ed by Christer Watson. The article does an excellent job addressing the mental health of people who are transgender. The stress and hostility applied by society create a huge need for emotional support.

I have a concern, however, with identifying the bills being presented as bills for “transgender kids.” These are people first. Identifying a person by a descriptor first dehumanizes them. This feeds into the fear or ignorance people may have.

A bigger concern is identifying people who are transgender as “suffering from gender dysphoria.” Is this coming from the legislature or people in the community or both? Who has determined trans people are suffering from being trans?

I grant that “suffering” is an appropriate word for how many in the community are forced to live, but wonder if most of the suffering is because they’re not allowed to be themselves like the cisgender people who surround them?

The suffering that is most apparent (and the piece does well in addressing this problem) is the treatment, discrimination and ignorant ideas that many in society apply to people who are trans. The Indiana legislature has several bills being presented that serve no purpose other than to persecute people for how they were born.

People who are trans were born with this unique makeup. They aren’t trying to recruit others, trick others, cheat and ruin sports for others, attack people in restrooms, etc. They want to just live their lives as themselves. This means that their bodies may have developed male or female, but every other part of them identifies as female or male.

Some in our society have horrendous names to call them. These people have no clue what they’re talking about and should be ashamed. Our legislature has no business interfering in the medical needs for those in the trans community – no matter their age. Let them receive the support they need from the medical community, from insurance companies, from everybody.

Roxana Rockwell

Fort Wayne

Philharmonic board now issuing threats

The fact that the National Labor Relations Board filed charges on Jan. 9 against the Philharmonic management for refusal to bargain/bad faith bargaining should grab the attention of all Journal Gazette readers. It speaks volumes about how management has handled this dispute with the musicians.

But the real low point of management’s actions came Jan. 12 when they threatened to cancel the musicians’ employer-sponsored health insurance as of Feb. 1. That action is simply out and out immoral.

Sally Thomas

Fort Wayne

Hospital parking fine was over the top

A Jan. 13 letter told of a parking fine being levied at Lutheran Hospital for a minor infraction.

Wouldn’t a warning notice have been more appropriate than a $100 fine? I hope the hospital management exhibits better judgment in the future.

As an incentive to that end, I have chosen another hospital for two upcoming surgical procedures that would have contributed a large amount to Lutheran’s income.

I suggest that someone at Lutheran needs to have their head examined. I recommend Indiana University Health Systems for that service.

Larry Wheeler