An Editorial by Ron Calhoun

Why do you have to be identified? It seems a certain amount of selfishness is at the core of the gender identity debate. Are you cisgender? What does that even mean?

It simply means that you identify as your birth gender. Cisgender matters. Source: Tracing Terminology, Perspectives on History Cisgender, “cisman,” “ciswoman,” “cisperson,” cis-gendered, “cissexual” or “cis,” a shorter version similar to saying “trans,” should have the same rights as all who feel the need to have a gender identity within civil rights. But are we simply talking about civil rights for all?

“It diminishes the purpose of civil rights and distracts from the efforts for equality in minorities,” says Martina, a resident of Cleveland. Civil rights include protection from unlawful discrimination. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964¬†prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation, and pregnancy), and national origin.

Whether it’s through the bad acts occurring in recent days or the calls for gender rights, gender discrimination is being addressed so constantly that, to many, it has felt like a “hijacking” of Black civil rights. Others have said that gender identity and sexual orientation choices are an entitlement. But Reggie, who identifies as a gay man, says “this is not what the lifestyle is about. I don’t relate to what has become a movement.” Mike says, “Black people have taken on the burden of the gender identity culture ahead of our own civil rights.”

How do you feel about sexual orientation and gender identity in relation to civil rights? Let us know by responding in an email to or by leaving a comment below.

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