It turns out that there are at least two legal lesbian marriages
in America. Not civil unions in Vermont, mind, but fully-fledged bona
fide marriage. And they’re in Texas!
This fact emerges from an article
in the New York Times today about a man in Kansas who’s trying
to stop his late father’s bride from inheriting half his wealth, on
the grounds that she isn’t a woman. (She’s a male-to-female transsexual.)
Fast-forward to the fifth paragraph:
Since marriage is seen as a fundamental right, several
legal experts said that if transsexuals like Mrs. Gardiner were barred
from marrying men, they would probably be allowed to marry women.
Indeed, after a Texas court invalidated a similar marriage in 1999,
at least two male-to-female transsexuals have married women in that
Having spent a bit of time among transsexuals in New York, I can
definitely say that lesbianism is really quite common among male-to-female
transsexuals. I wouldn’t want to start speculating why, but I have
a feeling that it reflects a much greater than usual openness towards
gender fluidity in that community.
Obviously, the fact that there are two legal gay marriages in Texas
is no great victory for gay rights: most biological women are extremely
unlikely to find love with a male-to-female transsexual, and it’s
unfair that they’re the only ones allowed to marry other women.
But all the same, it’s worth stopping to savor the irony of a judicial
decision directed against transsexual marriage being the instrument
by which gay marriage in the US finally became a reality.