UK passports to go “sex free”?

The UK Guv don’t want to be left out of the passport game, following on from the Oz Guv’s confusion between sex and jendah, the UK are contemplating similar changes, although reporting remains fuzzy as to what the proposals will be.

From The Telegraph (19 Sep 2011):

‘Sex-free’ passports for transgenders

The Home Office is considering changing British passports to allow transgender people to opt out of identifying themselves as male or female.

The proposed moves follows pressure from the Liberal Democrats who claim it is necessary to avoid problems encountered by people who are undergoing sex change operations.

Currently everybody with a passport must identify themselves as male or female on the document.

But the Home Office has begun a consultation on changing the system to allow a category for the small minority of people who are unable to tick either box.

Supporters claim it will avoid problems at passport control for people whose appearance does not match the sex stated on their passport.

But some Home Office officials have expressed concern that it could create more difficulties for the already stretched UK Border Agency.

Last night a Home Office spokesman said: “We are exploring with international partners and relevant stakeholders the security implications of gender not being displayed on the passport.”

Lib Dem Home Office Minister Lynne Featherstone said: “The UK Government is totally committed to creating a society that is fair to everyone. We are committed to tackling prejudice and discrimination against transgender people at home and around the world.

“We need concerted government action to tear down barriers and help to build a fairer society for transgender people.”

The current system allows a transgender person, undergoing a sex change, to alter the sex on their passport once the procedure is complete.

But people who are classed as intersex – a condition they have at birth, where they have both male and female reproductive organs – are forced to make a choice.

Under the proposals the passport would have a single box marked ‘sex’, which could be marked with an X.

The plans follow the introduction of new passport rules in Australia last week which allow residents to nominate their official gender as male, female or indeterminate, without having to undergo surgery as proof of a sex change.

Seems to me that all this could be solved by four categories, F (female), M (male), I (intersex) and T (trying to be something else twanzjendah).

And more is afoot in the UK Passport Office, with the removal of the terms “mother” and “father” from application forms, to be replaced by “parent 1” and “parent 2”. I wonder if fights will break out as to who is #1 and who is going to be #2?

From The Telegraph (03 Oct 2011):

Mothers and fathers removed from passport application forms

Passport application forms will no longer require people to provide details of their mother and father to avoid offending those with same-sex parents.

Following pressure from gay rights campaigners, the Home Office is modifying the application process to make it more politically correct.

Instead of an applicant naming their mother and father, they will be asked for details of “parent 1” and “parent 2”.

The change has been made following claims the original form was “discriminatory” and failed to include same-sex couples looking after a child.

However, the move has provoked criticism that it undermines traditional family values.

Norman Wells, director of the Family Education Trust, told the Daily Mail: “Fathers and mothers are not interchangeable but have quite distinct roles to play in the care and nurture of their children.

“To speak of ‘parent 1’ and ‘parent 2’ denigrates the place of both fathers and mothers.

“Much as the equality and diversity social engineers might wish it were otherwise, it still takes a father and a mother to produce a child.”

Last month it emerged that details of a passport holder’s sex could be erased from their passport to spare transgender people from embarrassment.

The change was made as a result of lobbying by the gay rights group Stonewall, it is claimed.

The Home Office ‘Diversity Strategy’ states: “IPS [the Identity and Passport Service] is working with Stonewall in response to an issue about having to name a “mother” and “father” on the passport application form.”

Mr Wells added: “Like the Labour administration before it, the Coalition seems to be in Stonewall’s grip.

“It is high time ministers started to represent the interests of the country as a whole and not capitulate to every demand made by a vocal and unrepresentative minority.”

12 thoughts on “UK passports to go “sex free”?

  1. Sargasso Sea

    …every demand made by a vocal and unrepresentative minority.

    As if lesbian (and gay) parents are so damn rare. And what? No similar outcry against trans? Color me shocked!1!!

    Being a lesbian parent I am constantly scratching out “Mother” and “Father” on every form pertaining to The Kid. I replace them with “Parent” and “Parent”. And when talking with people both of us say “The Kid’s other parent”, not mom. The Kid does not have “two moms” she has “two parents”.

    Also, I am constantly crossing out “Gender” when they mean “Sex” and adding a *scowly-face*. Dammit. 😐

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  2. DaveSquirrel Post author

    I just thought the #1 and #2 was very weird. They could have just left it as “parent” (without numbers!)

    Also I predict that implementation of this will probably waste a lot of money. Government departments like the passport office tend to declare any new form as the only valid one, thereby making previous versions obsolete and having to be thrown out. I am sure that the government printing office is very happy though.

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  3. Nicky

    I think the twanz in the UK are trying to do the same thing that was done in Oz. They are pissed that intersex people in Oz get to have indeterminate gender on their passport and twanz people don’t. So they are now trying to push the same thing in UK, and try to get an indeterminate gender for twanz but end up giving it to intersex people. Which twanz people fail to see.

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  4. Sargasso Sea

    Yes! The #1 and #2 is decidedly weird.

    I am always tempted to write in Thing 1 and Thing 2 just because it would shake up the *office* even more than my usual *form revisions* do. 😛

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  5. DaveSquirrel Post author

    So they are now trying to push the same thing in UK, and try to get an indeterminate gender for twanz but end up giving it to intersex people. Which twanz people fail to see.

    That is because sex and jendah are not the same, even though there is a looney contingent (twanz) that thinks they are.

    Anyway, if there is no ‘sex’ listed on their passport, they can’t barge into the ladies room waving around a passport as proof! (trying to think of an upside here – really hope that it bites them in the ass)

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  6. Nicky

    It never amaze me how many twanz try to push their jendah and use the intersex people as their excuse and alibi. Even with this passport thing, some twanz think it’s helping them when they fail to see it isn’t

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  7. rebel13

    I don’t understand — why not just take the “sex(gender)” thing off official papers entirely? The only reason it’s relevant at all is because people rely on identifying people by socially enforced gendered cues: short/long hair, clothing, etc. So maybe if “sex” (which is usually wrongly labeled as “gender”) just stopped being an officially relevant category, it might be easier for ALL of us to stop trying to force ourselves and each other to fit our outward appearance and behavior into those two tiny boxes.

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  8. DaveSquirrel Post author

    It is a concept that I used to propose (to myself!) many years ago. However, with the newish threat of twanz invading FAB-only spaces, if the category was dropped, we could not (try) to enforce FAB-only employees/volunteers for frontline DV/rape services. Also, our (few) claims for sexual discrimination would be no longer. For the present, I think it has to stay, unfortunately.

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  9. twanzmooselike

    Related:
    http://www.womensviewsonnews.org/2011/10/transgender-australians-win-landmark-court-case/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+WomensViewsOnNews+%28Women%27s+Views+on+News%29&utm_content=Yahoo%21+Mail

    “The court ruled that characteristics that identify a person as male or female are “confined to external physical characteristics that are socially recognisable”

    The court ruled. jezus fucking christ. Ignorance unabated, sanctified and legislated.

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  10. DaveSquirrel Post author

    I am wearing a pair of bloke’s work trousers right now. I guess I had better declare myself a dude.
    Because “external physical characteristics that are socially recognisable” can only be hair, clothes, make-up, and not related to any sort of biological reality of body.

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