Jenna Talackova and Rights for the Transgendered
My post earlier this week on the removal of Jenna Talackova from competition in the Miss Universe Canada pageant has become the most read article on my own blog since I began blogging a year and a half ago. The story, at first just a whisper here and there, has blossomed into quite a sensation. However, in many cases, writers have missed the larger issue of the lack of protection for transexuals in our current human rights legislation.
It is one of the unfortunate things about our society that we need to have specific legislation to protect individuals from discrimination. I like to think the best of people, and I believe that the majority don’t give a damn about anyone else’s colour, religion, gender, sexual orientation or anything else that identifies some one as being different in some way. Unfortunately, there is a large enough percentage of the population that does care. It is for defence against these that we need legislation for protection. It is also unfortunate that this legislation cannot just say that discrimination in general is wrong and illegal. The legislation works on the principle of exclusion. If a reason against discrimination is not specifically defined, it does not exist.
While the story about Miss Talackova is in almost every mainstream media source, the existence of NDP Member Randall Garrison’s Bill C-279 has been almost entirely ignored by everyone other than bloggers.