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Intersex Awareness Day 2017

Intersex Awareness Day 2017
A graphic created by Anthony Ramirez for Intersex Awareness Day 2017.

Everything you need to know about what it means to be intersex on Intersex Awareness Day

(HOUSTON) — For many in the LGBTQ community, there’s a tendency to forget that the spectrum doesn’t stop at the Q. In fact, the acronym often includes a + at the end, to maintain inclusivity of all the people who aren’t abbreviated in the acronym. However it is seldom remembered that LGBTQ+ is actually LGBTQIA: lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, intersex, and asexual.

Many of these terms have been imbedded into our memory by now. Lesbian, gay, and bisexual are the most simple to understand for people outside the community, with trans seeming new to straight, cis-gender people (it’s not new, by the way). Asexuality could be perceived as simple explain to anyone who has no grasp on the subject. But when the word ‘intersex’ is thrown around, most people (including many in the LGBTQIA community) don’t have a clear understanding of what being intersex means.

Today, October 26th is National Intersex Awareness Day. The date marks fourteen years since the Intersex Society of North America (which ceased operations last year in 2016) first commemorated of the event back in 2003. The significance of October 26th, however, comes from that very date back in 1996 when the first public demonstration of intersex awareness was made in Boston by the ISNA. Despite the dissolving of the ISNA, October 26th (as well as National Intersex Day of Solidarity on November 8th) are currently maintained and promoted by the the Intersex Day Project, headed by Morgan Carpenter and Laura Inter since 2015.

Still, the question remains for many people within and outside of the community: what exactly is it to be intersex? Many people (wrongly) associate being intersex with being trans. This is not the case. In fact, it’s completely different altogether. So, to help spread awareness and clear up these misconceptions about being intersex on Intersex Awareness Day, I’ve compiled a list of facts about being intersex that will hopefully serve to create a better understanding of the subject.

  1. What exactly does intersex mean?

The trouble with that question is that being intersex has several aspects. In fact, the term is an umbrella for many variations of similar body types. According to IntersexDay.org, “Intersex people are born with sex characteristics that don’t meet medical and social norms for female or male bodies.” This can many any number of things, with innumerable variations of genitals and reproductive organs that don’t correlate to binary standards.

  1. Is being intersex the same as being a hermaphrodite?

No. For years, hermaphrodite was used synonymously with intersex. This lasted until the mid-20th century, but modern medicine has since begun to segregate the two from one another. By definition, a hermaphrodite is a living organism with both male and female reproductive organs. However due the complexity and presentation of intersex genitalia, including the varieties in which the reproductive organs present, the two have become medically disassociated with one another.

  1. How common is intersexuality?

According to the website for for the Intersex Society of North America, calculating these numbers can be tricky and often controversial. To let them better explain, we have provided a link to their FAQ page where the topic can be summed up in more detail, which can be found here

  1. What happens when intersex is identified at birth?

When identified at birth, many parents make the decision to take medical action to assign their child one binary gender. However, due to the the medical complexities behind intersexuality, a child who is assigned a binary gender at birth may not grow up to identify with the gender they were assigned. Intersex pertains not only to the presentation of the person’s genitalia, but also to the hormones the body produces and the functions of the body—which often are neither male nor female, but instead sometimes somewhere in between. One intersex person—who identifies as female—said in an interview with Cosmo that while she identifies with female and presents with fully-functional female reproductive organs, her body does not produce natural estrogen. This is just one of many ways that intersex can present itself in the human body.

  1. How do intersex people identify in terms of sexual orientation?

Just like with all other people, gender and sexuality are mutually exclusive of one another and are fluid. Intersex people are just people! They’re sexually active and enjoy dating just like all other people. Just like all the other important members of the LGBTQIA spectrum, it’s important to recognize that no matter with which gender or orientation intersex people identify, they were born who they are.

It’s time for people on and off the LGBTQIA spectrum to start being more cognizant of intersex people and to be more inclusive of them. A great starting point is with Intersex Awareness Day, and Intersex Day of Solidarity on November 8th. Ignorance on the matter only leads to exclusivity, and just like all other people—straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer, trans, cis, and asexual—intersex people should be recognized and celebrated.

After all, they’re only human. They just want to be treated as such and seen by the rest of the world.

So, today, celebrate an intersex person in your life. If you don’t know anyone who is intersex, celebrate the entire intersex community. Show your support and lift them up. Explain to someone who doesn’t know what it means to be intersex. Spread awareness so that intersex people don’t continue to be swept under the rug.

For more information on intersex awareness, visit IntersexDayProject.org or ISNA.org.

Houston Face Awards

Individual Diagnosed With Meningitis After Bunnies On The Bayou

Individual Diagnosed With Meningitis After Bunnies On The Bayou

An Individual Who Attended Easter Weekend’s Bunnies On The Bayou In Houston Has Been Diagnosed With Meningococcal Meningitis According To Health Officials!

(Houston) – An individual who attended Bunnies on the Bayou  on Easter Sunday has been diagnosed with Meningococcal Meningitis, the City of Houston’s Health Department announced late Saturday. Health officials and Bunnies on the Bayou are in the process of notifying attendees.

‘There may be unrecognized cases who were in close contact with this person,’ a e-mail released to the LGBT community from Bunnies on the Bayou explains. ‘This is an example of public health in action in order to prevent further cases.’

“The City of Houston Health Department contacted us about one person who was confirmed and treated,” Josh Beasley, board member for Bunnies on the Bayou explained to About News. BOTB is an non-profit, and one of Houston’s oldest and most prestigious organizations that raises money to help many different LGBTQ charities.

“To our knowledge, this is the first time in 40 years something like this has happened,” Beasley says.

Meningococcal meningitis is a rare but serious infection that can be fatal or cause great harm without prompt treatment. As many as one out of five people who contract the infection have serious complications.

Each year, approximately 1,000 people in the U.S. get meningococcal meningitis, which includes meningitis and septicemia (blood infection).  According to the Centers for Disease Control, about 15% of those who survive are left with disabilities that include deafnessbrain damage, and neurological problems.

“The epidemiologist said there was a lower risk of transmission in this case, but asked if we would email information out just in case,” Beasley said.

The symptoms include sudden onset fever, headache and stiff neck. Nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, and confusion are also symptoms. Symptoms may appear quickly or over several days, typically within 3-7 days after exposure. The virus is not spread by causal contact nor is it airborne.

Officials ask if you have experienced any of the above symptoms please contact your health care provider immediately. For any questions or concerns you may also contact the Houston Health Department at 832-393-5080.

 

 

Houston Face Awards

RuPaul’s Michelle Visage Will Co-Host Halloween Contest In Montrose

RuPaul's Michelle Visage Halloween Montrose

RuPaul’s Drag Race Judge Michelle Visage Heads To South Beach, Jr’s Bar & Grill To Co-Host Halloween’s Biggest Block Party In Houston And Judge Costume Contest In South Beach

(Houston) — How could Houston’s LGBTQ+ annual Halloween block party get better? By adding a big-bosomed personality known as Michelle Visage is how! South Beach and Jr’s Bar & Grill in Montrose will welcome Michelle to co-host the annual Halloween shindig on Saturday, October 28. (Prior to Halloween.)Starting at 9:00 PM inside South Beach.

South Beach, an LGBTQ+ nightclub in Montrose has become notorious for booking the ‘best of the best’ from RuPaul’s Drag Race. The club welcomes at least one RuPaul contestant a week.

597b74912100008860fc9281-676x1024 RuPaul's Michelle Visage Will Co-Host Halloween Contest In Montrose

You probably know Michelle Visage best as the beautiful, big-bosomed sidekick to Ru Paul on RuPaul’s Drag Race. Her personality fills the screen more than the competing queens and her cascading breasts combined. Her sense of humor is bone dry and a little bit filthy, all things required in the Houston scene.

South Beach the nightclub, along with Jr’s Bar & Grill join the City of Houston, with a street closure in Montrose in the 800 Pacific Street occurring promptly at 9 PM. Drag Superstar Kofi will host the popular outdoor events that will include a Halloween costume contest.

Michelle joined RuPaul’s Drag Race for the third season and has won the hearts of the viewers and queens with her straight to the point critiques, her passion and her love for the LGBTQ+ community.

For more information visit South Beach or Jr’s Bar & Grill on their social media pages.

Houston Face Awards

Miss Gay Texas Violet S’Arbleu

Violet S'Arbleu stole the talent portion of last weekend's Miss Gay Texas America pageant with "A Lil' Ole Bitty Pissant Country Place" from The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas. (Photo by Clay Gore, Houston Press)

(HOUSTON) People might associate Texas with yellow roses or bluebonnets, but this year an unmistakably different flower is taking over the state. Houston-based drag entertainer Violet S’Arbleu, née Jacob Chaput, will shower the Lone Star State with a purple reign as the newly crowned Miss Gay Texas America.

“The Miss Gay Texas America legacy is 43 years of stellar, inspirational entertainers,” he says, “and honestly I’m just so humbled and thrilled to have the honor to join those ranks and represent the system this year.”

To contuine reading this article click here.

Houston Face Awards