Tom asks, “I don’t really understand where all these Transgender people are coming from. This seems really new and overwhelming.”

Hello Tom, visibility of Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming people has increased over the past four years due to a new surge in cultural curiosity and the increased visibility within social media.  However, Transgender people have been around for a very long time.  It was not until the beginning of colonization’s of radical belief systems that they had to go into hiding or as some call it “stealth”.  As an example, the Hijra was a very sacred people for thousands of years in India but were criminalized and economically stripped of their privilege by the Criminal Tribes Act of 1924.

File Feb 10, 7 49 15 AMThere is a long history of Transgender people before colonization took place.  Around 2015 it was discovered that a female Amazon warrior was buried 2,500 years ago in Altai Mountains was a male. Around the 1st Century BC the Hindu culture had Samba the God of Transgender people.  Although never called Transgender, Samba is documented as wearing women’s clothing in public.  Dionysus is the patron Greek God of Transgender people.  Dating back about 6000 years the aboriginal Rainbow Serpent was their symbol connected to the Transgender and Intersex people.  Transman Albert J. Cashier born Jennie Irene Hodgers was an Irish-born immigrant who served in the Union Army during the American Civil War.

Presently, social media has made it much easier to present continuous information whereas in the past it was mostly by personal contact and storytelling.  This gives us the perception that that Transgender people are a new movement with Laverne Cox and Caitlyn Jenner, when it is actually nothing new but something more visible.

We will be examining many different topics related to Transgender Awareness each month. Email your questions to and keep up with GED Magazine in print and online at

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