Vocabulary You Should Know (and understand)
Graphic and following text from BASIC RIGHTS OREGON:
You may have heard the word cisgender before, but you may not know what it means. Cisgender is a term used to describe people who, for the most part, identify as the gender they were assigned at birth. For example, if a doctor said “it’s a boy!” when you were born, and you identify as a man, then you could be described as cisgender. In other words, ‘cisgender’ is used to describe people who are not transgender.
So why do we say ‘cisgender’ instead of ‘non-transgender’? Because, referring to cisgender people as ‘non trans’ implies that cisgender people are the default and that being trans is abnormal. Many people have said ‘transgender people’ and ‘normal people’, but when we say ‘cisgender’ and ‘transgender’ neither is implied as more normal than the other.
Using the word ‘cisgender’ is also an educational tool. To simply define people as ‘non-trans’ implies that only transgender people have a gender identity. But that’s not true. Like sexual orientation, race, class, and many other identities, all of us have a gender identity.
Language is important; it defines human relationships. That is why it’s important use language of equality and inclusion.
LGBTQ* Privileges (or lacking privileges) You Should Be Aware Of
(following text from: Its Pronounced Metrosexual )
Following is a list of cisgender identity privileges. If you’re not familiar with the term, “cisgender” means having a biological sex that matches your gender identity and expression, resulting in other people accurately perceiving your gender. If you are cisgender, listed below are benefits that result from your alignment of identity and perceived identity. If you identify as cisgender, there’s a good chance you’ve never thought about these things. Try and be more cognizant and you’ll start to realize how much work we have to do in order to make things better for the transgender folks who don’t have access to these privileges. If you’re unsure of what it means to be “transgender” you can read about it in our gender identity guide.