Interesting ramifications indeed. WA state is embroiled in a battle around a trans man's legal status; when he can legally be called a man. The attorney wants the definition to be about reproduction capacity. Isn't that nice? This after all of the work the medical/theraputic community has put into understanding and making definitions that acknowledge gender is about identity, not 'bits'. Not that that community has't got a helluva long way to go yet. ;-)http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/09/03/2675154.htm
I thought it was interesting the attorney was resisting going with the ruling that being a man was not legally connected to the ability to bear children (described as having or not having a hysterectomy, though of course it's more complicated than that); becuase of the challenges he foresaw in the legal system.
He has a point. The occasional trans man who bears a child will likely make for an occasionally complex legal sitations. Yet there are a lot of complex legal issues, and one or two have revolved around offspring (we're not terribly good at the whole best-for-the-child thing). I don't think one additional thorn is gonna bring down legal civilization.
I don't believe an entire class of people should have their legal gender dependent upon a possible legal inconvenience. 'Let's make sure x can't happen by taking away all those people's identity.' I appreciated the phrasing though... clearly the attorney general wasn't thinking about the lives of actual people, but of just the legal system (doing his job, I'm sure). Which is supposed to be for the lives of actual people. As originally conceived. These things take on a life of their own.
Of course, speculating gently, without some finesse, legal women without a uterus could be defined as legally male... I'm sure that would be a winner. And then there are those inconvenient intersex people...
As wit all medical and legal stuff, it's also interesting to consider how few trans people there are. At that level, it also seems crazy to put effort into making laws which restrict so few people. Isn't that a basic definition of discrimination; to hold against the minority?
Here's hoping the State Administrative Tribunal's ruling stands.