This edition of Secrets From The Goody Drawer is going to be a little bit newsy (apologies to our resident sex news hound Jon!), as there are so many things that have happened over the last few weeks that I’ve wanted to talk about but haven’t had a chance to. I narrowed it down to the top three most interesting things (at least IMO) I stumbled upon over the last little while, so it’s also going to be short and sweet. here goes…
With the mainstream press focusing a great deal of attention on the furor over the establishment of Gay Straight Alliances in Ontario schools over the last few weeks, I doubt very few people in the province, who aren’t directly affected by the changes, have noticed that some good and very big things have and are happening to move the rights of trans men and women forward in the province of Ontario. Things that make me proud to say I live here. Why you ask? Well…
On April 11 the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal finally struck down a rule that requires trans individuals to have undergone “transsexual surgery” in order to change the sex category on their birth certificates. Although this decision didn’t change the laws of our land, it did make it clear that current Ontario laws surrounding this issue are unenforceable. A fact that bolstered support for Bill 33, aka Toby’s Act (so named after Toby Dancer), that if passed would amend the Ontario Human Rights Code to include gender identity and gender expression. So much so, that just a few short weeks ago, on May 10, when Toby’s Law made its fourth pass through the Ontario legislature (having failed to survive two readings in the legislature in 2007, 2009, and 2010) it received support from all three of the province’s major political parties. The result? It is now simply a matter of when – not if – Toby’s Act will finally become Toby’s Law, thereby granting trans people living in Ontario to enjoy all the rights and freedoms the rest of us do. HOORAY!!
The other day, while I was listening to one of my fave radio programs I heard this commercial (which incidentally was banned from being aired on TV)…
It was the intro to a rather interesting(?) discussion on the science of…GAYDAR. According to the study’s author, Joshua A. Tabak, his research has important social implications. He and his colleagues discovered that people can correctly determine another person’s sexual orientation – with as little as a 50 millisecond (that’s a third of the time it takes for you to blink your eye) glance at only their face (minus any “give-away” clues such as facial hair, make-up or piercings) – 60% of the time. What’s more, even when the images were turned upside down participants were still able to correctly determine the sexual orientation of an individual at rates greater than chance. For Tabak, these findings lead him to believe that even when individuals don’t speak to and/or outwardly act upon their negative feelings about homosexuality they may be discriminating against queer folk in very insidious ways with more regularity than many of us would ever dream of. And if that’s true, however interesting, asinine, discriminatory and/or whatever you may think researching the in and outs of gaydar might be, maybe just maybe we should all be paying attention to this?
Finally, here’s an interesting question for you all to ponder:
Should deliberately puncturing condoms be charged as sexual assault?
One Nova Scotia judge definitely things so and decided to sentence one Jaret Hutchinson to 18 months in jail, for puncturing a condom before having sex with his then girlfriend – without her knowledge – in a bid to save their relationship by getting her pregnant.
Now for those of you – particularly the ladies – thinking, “Serves him right. All is fair in love and bat shit crazy” as you shake your head at the computer screen consider this…
If Hutchinson’s conviction, which he is currently appealing, is upheld some legal experts say there will be significant and wide ranging implications; including the possibility that a woman could be found guilty of assault if she lies to a partner about using birth control – or he just claims she did, because let’s face it such conversations generally aren’t in earshot of a whole lot of witnesses, right?
All of a sudden Hutchinson’s conviction doesn’t seem so fair now, does it?