Feel the Trans*-momentum: Canadian Parliament Passes Transgender Rights Bill

Canadian MP Bill Siksay1 recently made his third attempt to add protection for trans* people to the Canadian Charter of Rights Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code4, and yesterday it passed the House of Commons on third reading2.

For most bills, this would then lead to a fairly pro forma stamp of approval from our dozey Upper House3.

In this case, though, it is entirely likely that our horridly Tory-stuffed basket of stuffed shirts will actually drag their privileged asses out of their smoky private clubs long enough to vote it down, because Maude forbid we allow trans* folk the same protections given to other marginalized groups in this country.

So yay to the Honourable Mr. Siksay, and to his colleagues who voted for the measure, but boo to the career-long hypocrite we currently suffer as PM, the Harpertron 5000 (Tory motto: Working The Uncanny Valley for Twenty Years!), and his use of a stuffed ballot box to deny basic human rights to trans* people.

For those with more optimism than I have, Shaker MarissaAO has posted a link to the Senators' list, which tells which Senators are nominally for which province, if you're inclined to write to them.

1 Member of Parliament, and official critic on GLBTT issues for the New Democratic Party (or NDP), Canada's semi-mainstream progressivist party (there are other progressivist entities on the scene, but none which have formed a government anywhere in the country, as the NDP has often done).

2 And may I say a rousing RESPECT! to the trans* warriors and allies who led the tough fight to get this through the House, to the Tory members who voted their conscience against their party and government, and a big bucket of slimy jeers to the "liberal" members of the "Liberal" party who voted against it, or abstained like puny moral cowards.

3 Unelected, appointed for life by a Prime Minister, this House was the target of Conservative ire back in the 80s and 90s (during a succession of Liberal governments, the Libs being our centre-left party). The neo-con movement got itself initially elected on a basis of "let's make government smaller", and promised they'd never do things like take up the extensive benefits package given to MPs, and that they'd change the Senate to an "Equal, Elected and Effective" part of the government.

Oddly enough, once they actually took power, they immediately began taking up all the perqs and privileges accorded to MPs, and the whole "elected Senate" thing didn't happen when they realized that if they simply selected young-enough right-wingers, they could control the Senate for decades.

4 As Shaker Marianne Pelton points out in comments, I had the scope of the bill slightly incorrect in my initial posting. Thanks for the correction! :)

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