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Author Topic: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person  (Read 6192 times)

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Offline Leo

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #25 on: July 22, 2010, 01:22:32 PM »
I'm a person who lacks a certain amount of understanding regarding people who change their sex or people who are simply into their own gender without changing sex. I simply can not process the idea in my brain enough to completely accept them. I generally surrounded myself with people who are straight and stuck to their birth sex. I have had a few gay friends, however, whom I had been fond of as friends. I treated them like anyone else, but refrained from engaging in conversations regarding their choices.

I'm a firm believer in that one can not simply change one's feelings sometimes and that others should not try to force a change that is impossible for them. So, someone trying to make me feel completely ok about transgenders or non-straights would be doing something that equals me trying to convince a gay to be straight -it's disrespectful to one's choices.

However there is the issue of my feelings being foundation for a possible offensive approach from me. That's when respect to another's choices comes in : I show my respect to their choices simply by holding my damn mouth shut about some of the things I feel, maintaining a civil relationship with those people.

So, while one is not required to change themselves in accordance with what they may deem abnormal, they are required to mind their manners and be selective about their words and attitude when sensitive subjects are being discussed. At the end of the day, everyone else is as much human as myself and are entitled to a civil and friendly reception (unless they have done something not to deserve that as a person). That being said, while I'm certain it was not meant in an offensive way, saying "To be honest, I find the whole thought of a 'genderless' person to be a bit silly" is kinda disrespectful.

I mean, you don't have to understand it, but you have to respect individuality. It's like, I wouldn't be on hold if I wasn't careless about how I explain some things. ;)

Offline alxnjsh

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #26 on: July 22, 2010, 03:01:43 PM »
I'm a firm believer in that one can not simply change one's feelings sometimes and that others should not try to force a change that is impossible for them. So, someone trying to make me feel completely ok about transgenders or non-straights would be doing something that equals me trying to convince a gay to be straight -it's disrespectful to one's choices.

You are a human being and feel things based on a wide range of both logical and illogical happenstances - electrical impulses in the brain, memories, experiences. etc. They are able to be altered significantly and closing the door to the concept that they can alter is a shame.

I would like to point out however argument in no way "equals."

Not accepting person changes to accepting person
Gay changes to straight

These are completely different arguments. No one is suggesting that you become transgender, only accept that there are people different from you and be respectful. Regardless of your personal beliefs about religion, gender, sex, sexual orientation, age, gender identity, ethnicity, race, citizenship, or any other adjective...you have the power to be accepting of someone. It is about compassion and empathy.

Offline Leo

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #27 on: July 22, 2010, 06:03:29 PM »
What I tried to say is that some people expect me to feel differently, that's just not possible about some things. But as I said, I can choose how to act, and I choose to act in a civilized manner.

It's like this : Whether you believe in God or not does not matter, that is something that only concerns you and should not be made more than that by neither you nor others. But it does matter if you show respect and accept the beliefs or the lack of thereof in other people's hearts/minds.

Offline Lyll

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #28 on: July 23, 2010, 02:58:04 AM »
Hm, for me the most interesting point of the whole article is how the meaning of being human (I mean the definition of the idea) begins to get slowly separated of the quality "of having a secified gender" in the official use. Earlier we defined "to be a human being" by saying "man or woman", now, we begin to avoid this cathegorisation 1.) by forming new, neutral or bothgender (transsexual-kind) cathegories, 2,) by not mentioning the issue at all when describing a person.

In English it's more difficult, because the speaker has to use some pronouns what basically hint to the gender of the subject, in Hungarian (my first language) it's much easier because we don't make the difference between the genders in the grammar (we use only neutral terms). I think this is a basic difference in the "world vision" of the two cultures, the English keeps the similarity to the Latin and to the Anglo-saxon (Frank) roots by separating a part of the world (the human beings) in two by their genders, so what doesn't have any gender, can't be human at the same time (what shows in the culture too). "IT" has to be not-human, so an object, an animal or a plant. The Hungarian culture doesn't make this difference either this separation, the speaker thinks about beings (alive ones or objects) on the same way.

I find very interesting this difference between the two cultures, but I wouldn't like to become offtopic, so I don't follow more this rail. But I think it's more shocking the idea of "genderlessness" in a culture where the gender is the part of the basic definition of "human being" than in an other, where it's not.

It's a good question that genderlessness is in what kind of relation with sexual life. I mean, in a way one of my friends is genderless too, because she hasn't have any relationships containing sexuality in the last 18 years, all simply because once she decided to give up with it, and she tells not having any urge for starting it again. She said after two failed marriage she just got enough of the all relationships-theme, and stopped with it. This is not rare at all, I'm sure every of you also know this type of people, who live without sexuality and feel fine. (Or at least they say being fine. For me, this is rather strange, but I accept what they say.) Their case shows that to have a gender is much more than having sexual life or using wich kind of bathroom. The signs on the doors can change quite easily, I mean, people find out a new sign for genderless or transsexual people and everything is solved (on the door, of course (: ), but the way of thinking of the culture (what norms and rules the acts of people) can only change much slower, generation by generation. When the speed of the changes outside gets in conflict with the "moment of inertia" of culture (what is a kind of self-protecting systeme) inside, the people feel a kind of stress (frustration), what can raise up the repression / the negation / the rejection of changes, and often raises up strong emotions too while the discussion about the theme.

Offline Leo

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #29 on: July 24, 2010, 06:41:42 AM »
Actually, it's partially wrong to tie it to culture at this point in time. Culture is something that changes along with the times. It may have been culture that caused he/she/it or Il/Elle/On etc. but that culture is mostly long gone.

Basing this on your way of thinking, I can say my culture (language) accepts every individual as human beings rather than split them into genders and making it difficult or impossible to define a genderless person without using a word that implies a gender. So, again, based on your way of thinking, my culture is supposed to accept such cases of transgender/cross-dressing/genderless individuals, but it does not. It didn't since the dawn of the language we speak today and it has not so far, as it does not right now.

On the contrary, Anatolian culture shuns this and most of the society treats them like a plague. It has become accepted in certain areas and more people are popping up that accept these people, but they are still a small minority and the culture of the nation in the long run can not be effected enough to change it any time soon. However, nations speaking languages like French or English (languages that split humanity into genders, as you say) are much more accepting towards these people than mine right now.

So, as I said, it may have been culture that crafted languages in such a way... but it would be an isolated process, as in, not one that you can apply to every culture. Every culture has been changed in all these centuries too, so it is not correct to judge them based on language that has its foundations in a time the culture was much different and supposedly less civilizied.

Offline Black Orchid

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #30 on: July 24, 2010, 10:35:14 AM »
Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait~, not to pull on any transgender here, but it said that doctors couldn't specify if Briton's gender, that's slightly impossible, or in this case, improbable, they must only mean that he was androgynous, and there were no genitals to A-Okay a check. However, he still have the chromosomes of a male, and I do believe doctors have the power to see this. The only way that makes it unfair for only him to get a 'gender unspecified' card is that he was still born very male. The only gender that can pull off being unspecified is hermaphrodites, seeing as it's unsure which gender is more dominant, male or female. Though, we too, still have the technology to figure out where the sperm mutated (was it a Y sperm that started to mutate and X, was it an X that started to mutate a Y). Any who, we still have a gender for those without any sexual genitals, they are either male or female, but they are now classified as a eunuch.

It's hard to live as a 'no gender', you just can't do it, it's like saying 'I don't want to be a human any more, so now I choose to not be human :)'. I don't mean it as an offense, I have friends that are transgender, or even no gender, but it's the cruel hand of fate that life had dealt us, I'm not saying you can't see yourself as no gender, I'm just saying if the world were to legally classify someone, they have to include the gender (because has living human beings, everyone has one). But by all means, live your life as someone who doesn't have a gender, that's perfectly fine :).

Sorry, a lot of 'you's in the end paragraph; I'm not talking to any one specific, and this statement does not refer to anyone but Briton

Offline Oniya

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #31 on: July 24, 2010, 10:54:11 AM »
Actually, it's possible for someone to be a genetic chimera, containing two complete sets of DNA.  Two fairly well-known cases are that of Lydia Fairchild (I Am My Own Twin) and Karen Keegan (The Stranger Within).  It's theoretically possible that chimerism (where the two DNAs are relatively evenly distributed) and/or mosaicism (where the two DNAs form discrete regions that are affected) could occur with one XX set and one XY set of chromosomes.

In short, yes, you can do a karyotype to determine the chromosomes of the sample you take, but it is possible that you'll be no farther ahead than when you started.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #32 on: July 24, 2010, 12:29:50 PM »
Also, less rare than chimerism is a chromosomal malfunction wherein a female might have a Y chromosome and males might not have a Y chromosome (I can't remember if it's possible for a male to have two Xs, but I don't see why not since one of them gets silenced anyway).

Offline Black Orchid

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #33 on: July 24, 2010, 12:48:56 PM »
Hey, I listed hermaphrodites as an exception, and yeah, I've heard of that, a man with no why chromosome, I wonder how that works though, how could we be certain that it's a man, if there is no DNA to prove it? And if it has male genitalia, then it has to have some form of Y chromosome in them, right? I don't know, I'm not a doctor, and a poor self studier, I have no idea how these things work ;D.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #34 on: July 24, 2010, 12:50:51 PM »
Hey, I listed hermaphrodites as an exception, and yeah, I've heard of that, a man with no why chromosome, I wonder how that works though, how could we be certain that it's a man, if there is no DNA to prove it? And if it has male genitalia, then it has to have some form of Y chromosome in them, right? I don't know, I'm not a doctor, and a poor self studier, I have no idea how these things work ;D.

Well, we generally tell the person is male from their penis.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #35 on: July 24, 2010, 01:27:11 PM »
I study such things because of either a) boredom or b) encountering something that makes me go 'huh?' 

Yes, it is possible for men to have two (or multiple) X's and a Y (Kleinfelter's Syndrome).  Useless trivia:  If you ever see a male tortoiseshell cat, it has Kleinfelter's or some other atypical sex-chromosome arrangement.  It's also possible to have multiple Y chromosomes (no special name, previously and erroneously associated with excessive violence).  Everything I've read says that these individuals have a male appearance.  There is also a very rare condition where - thanks to recombination on the sperm-formation side of things - the 'make it a boy' part of the Y-chromosome is transferred to an X, resulting in an XX-male

Absence of a second sex chromosome (XO - aka Turner's Syndrome) usually results in a female appearance, but there are fertility and other issues.  I actually had a childhood friend diagnosed with Turner's after she was still amenorrheac halfway through high-school.

All of this is only applicable to mammals.  Reptiles and insects have different sex chromosomes entirely.

Offline Black Orchid

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #36 on: July 24, 2010, 01:43:24 PM »
I study such things because of either a) boredom or b) encountering something that makes me go 'huh?' 

Yes, it is possible for men to have two (or multiple) X's and a Y (Kleinfelter's Syndrome).  Useless trivia:  If you ever see a male tortoiseshell cat, it has Kleinfelter's or some other atypical sex-chromosome arrangement.  It's also possible to have multiple Y chromosomes (no special name, previously and erroneously associated with excessive violence).  Everything I've read says that these individuals have a male appearance.  There is also a very rare condition where - thanks to recombination on the sperm-formation side of things - the 'make it a boy' part of the Y-chromosome is transferred to an X, resulting in an XX-male

Absence of a second sex chromosome (XO - aka Turner's Syndrome) usually results in a female appearance, but there are fertility and other issues.  I actually had a childhood friend diagnosed with Turner's after she was still amenorrheac halfway through high-school.

All of this is only applicable to mammals.  Reptiles and insects have different sex chromosomes entirely.

Okay, I knew about the cat (I just recently found out, I knew only girls could be tortoiseshell, and was explaining it to my family, but then came upon the male tortoiseshell cats) Though the second, I did not know. I do look up stuff randomly when I'm bored too, so I come across a lot of weird phenomenons, but I've yet to hear of that one; how do they only have one chromosome? That's very interesting, I know the Y chromosome is shrinking (study shows that in the past, the Y chromosome was much larger, and that's the difference between X and Y, Y is smaller, and if it was bigger, it'll be and X), so does that mean after it became a zygote, the father's chromosome had shrunk and completely depleted?

Offline Oniya

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #37 on: July 24, 2010, 02:18:29 PM »
It's something called non-disjunction.  Basically, when the body makes eggs and sperm, the cells have to split down to half of their normal component of chromosomes in a process call meiosis.  The chromosomes line up in pairs along the midline of the cell, then pull away to opposite sides before division. 

For reasons that we don't quite know yet, sometimes a pair of chromosomes doesn't separate during meiosis.  This results in one cell with one copy and one cell with none.  Depending on which chromosome is affected, this could result in an nonviable embryo, or one of several chromosomal birth conditions.  (Down's Syndrome is caused by either the egg or the sperm having a non-disjoined copy  of Chromosome 21.)

Edit:  Also, the shrinking of the Y-chromosome is something that's been occurring over many centuries, if not longer.  It's not likely to vanish in our lifetime.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2010, 02:19:50 PM by Oniya »

Offline LIAR

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #38 on: July 24, 2010, 03:04:12 PM »
But as I said, I can choose how to act, and I choose to act in a civilized manner.

I wasn't going to PM as to not sidetrack again, but I can't message people who aren't members of the site.

If I'm not mistaken: Your argument is because I didn't say something nice, I shouldn't have said anything at all. I don't know how you classify that as a civil argument. If you wanted to engage in debate over my opinion, you could have asked something along the lines of "why do you feel that way?"

For the record: I accept that people have different lifestyles, and agree that they are free to make those decisions, but that doesn't mean I need to understand it to accept them as a human being.

Not everything I say is going to come out nice but that doesn't mean I have the intention of sounding rude, slanderous, hateful, etc. and I don't mind people pointing out to me that I could have said something in a different manner. So please have the decency to engage rather than put down in the future. I believe E is very good about encouraging constructive debate from posts that don't start very constructive at all.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #39 on: July 24, 2010, 03:17:05 PM »
It is not appropriate to use this thread for scrapping.

Offline Leo

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #40 on: July 24, 2010, 03:20:13 PM »
I wasn't going to PM as to not sidetrack again, but I can't message people who aren't members of the site.

If I'm not mistaken: Your argument is because I didn't say something nice, I shouldn't have said anything at all. I don't know how you classify that as a civil argument. If you wanted to engage in debate over my opinion, you could have asked something along the lines of "why do you feel that way?"

For the record: I accept that people have different lifestyles, and agree that they are free to make those decisions, but that doesn't mean I need to understand it to accept them as a human being.

Not everything I say is going to come out nice but that doesn't mean I have the intention of sounding rude, slanderous, hateful, etc. and I don't mind people pointing out to me that I could have said something in a different manner. So please have the decency to engage rather than put down in the future. I believe E is very good about encouraging constructive debate from posts that don't start very constructive at all.


You know what?

I'm sorry. I apologize. I should not have posted in this thread in the first place, my bad.

Offline Will

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #41 on: July 24, 2010, 03:59:48 PM »
I wasn't going to PM as to not sidetrack again, but I can't message people who aren't members of the site.

If I'm not mistaken: Your argument is because I didn't say something nice, I shouldn't have said anything at all. I don't know how you classify that as a civil argument. If you wanted to engage in debate over my opinion, you could have asked something along the lines of "why do you feel that way?"

For the record: I accept that people have different lifestyles, and agree that they are free to make those decisions, but that doesn't mean I need to understand it to accept them as a human being.

Not everything I say is going to come out nice but that doesn't mean I have the intention of sounding rude, slanderous, hateful, etc. and I don't mind people pointing out to me that I could have said something in a different manner. So please have the decency to engage rather than put down in the future. I believe E is very good about encouraging constructive debate from posts that don't start very constructive at all.


too pink; didn't read

Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait~, not to pull on any transgender here, but it said that doctors couldn't specify if Briton's gender, that's slightly impossible, or in this case, improbable, they must only mean that he was androgynous, and there were no genitals to A-Okay a check.

I'm inclined to give professionally trained doctors the benefit of the doubt.  If they say they can't delineate the individual's gender, then I am in no position to dispute that claim. :P

Offline alxnjsh

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #42 on: July 24, 2010, 05:31:27 PM »
Also, less rare than chimerism is a chromosomal malfunction wherein a female might have a Y chromosome and males might not have a Y chromosome (I can't remember if it's possible for a male to have two Xs, but I don't see why not since one of them gets silenced anyway).

A male with 2 X chromosomes (XXY) has a condition called Klinefelter Syndrome.

Offline Trieste

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #43 on: July 24, 2010, 05:35:56 PM »
I wasn't talking about Klinefelter; I meant XX with no Y.

Offline Oniya

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Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #44 on: July 24, 2010, 05:56:04 PM »
I wasn't talking about Klinefelter; I meant XX with no Y.

There is also a very rare condition where - thanks to recombination on the sperm-formation side of things - the 'make it a boy' part of the Y-chromosome is transferred to an X, resulting in an XX-male

It's possible - very rare, but possible.  As for a female having a Y, I wasn't able to locate any recognized case of this happening.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2010, 05:57:07 PM by Oniya »

Offline Josh the Aspie

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #45 on: July 25, 2010, 01:14:12 PM »
Seriously, I don't know what to call him/her...O-o...saying "It" sounds condescending or de-humanizing...but..is there any other way to refer to a genderless person? (Well, I don't mean in a De-humanizing way or anything like that, I mean by calling them "It" rather than by a gender moniker..o-o.)

In the English language, "he" is both the masculine and gender neutral pronoun.  So if you don't know the gender of a person, that is the pronoun to use.

If someone said "We have a guest coming" it would be proper to ask "When will he be coming?"

Offline Astragalus

Re: Briton is recognised as world's first officially genderless person
« Reply #46 on: August 09, 2010, 02:35:19 PM »
In the English language, "he" is both the masculine and gender neutral pronoun.  So if you don't know the gender of a person, that is the pronoun to use.

If someone said "We have a guest coming" it would be proper to ask "When will he be coming?"

*consults the dictionary*

Hey, you're right. Learn something new every day.

Anyway, I'm pretty sure that the person in question doesn't have any of the genetic disorders being discussed. Although, looking at the article I have to wonder: the whole point of getting a sex-change operation is to pass for a man or a woman. If a doctor looks at you afterward and doesn't know what you are, the first guy must have really screwed up.