Before I begin, I'd like to apologize if I end up offending anyone here with this discussion. That is not my intention, but this is going to come across as confrontational or belittling to some people (as I've already had that accusation once).
Transgender is essentially a fairly new medical concept here in reality. Being able to change someone's biology from male to female, or vice versa, has only been the crudest, most brutal, and cosmetic surgery until very, very recently. Even with modern technology, though, it's still far from being a complete gender changing technique - as yet, there are no ways to give someone who was born with male genitalia a fully functional set of female sexual organs, capable of creating eggs, ovulating, and holding the fertilized egg through the entire birth process. Likewise, it's impossible to take someone who was born physically female, and give them a fully functional set of male organs, with testes capable of generating sperm and driving the sperm through the penis. It does not exist yet.
Again, let me state that I'm not looking to offend anyone here. I do understand the issue much more fully than Joe Average. Hell, one of the people that I brought to E chose to identify as a Liege here, and I fully supported that.
But the issue I wish to discuss isn't with regard to reality as we know it. If we're writing a game set in a high-fantasy or high-science-fiction world, why would transgender (as we know it) necessarily exist? If there existed a spell or medical technique that could easily shift someone to Male or Female, why would there be a "transgender" trait at all?
I don't see how the idea where someone can fully choose what gender they are, whether it be magic, tech, or comic silliness (see Ranma 1/2) is somehow offensive to transgenders, nor do I see how transgenders MUST exist in all world concepts. I don't see why people who felt that they were the wrong gender and had an easy ability to switch would not do so. Hell, I can easily see some people who felt an affinity to both genders might well switch back and forth depending on their mood for the day.
I just don't see how the real-world, painful situation of being a Transgender grey-middle-ground is necessary in any world - including our own future - where the ability to fully change someone's physical gender is possible.
What do you think?