Skip to comments.Transgender Case Focuses on How Sex Is Determined
Posted on 07/24/2003 2:48:58 AM PDT by kattracks
(CNSNews.com) - A conservative legal watchdog group has decided to appeal a decision in which a Florida judge granted custody of two children to a female-to-male transsexual, ruling the individual is a man under Florida law.
Liberty Council, a civil liberties legal defense organization, said the court erroneously concluded that sex is determined "psychologically" when it ruled in favor of Michael Kantaras, born Margo Kantaras, after a bitter custody battle with his wife, Linda.
By allowing someone to subjectively define their sex, the court sets a precedent for similar rulings on race; for example a Caucasian who thinks he or she is African American, or vice versa, said Mathew Staver, president and general counsel of Liberty Council.
"This case could really undermine all objectivity within the legal system, and we believe that it has great importance to not only the legal system, but also to marriage and to many other classifications that we recognized as protected statuses, such as national origin or race and many others," said Staver, who is representing Linda Kantaras.
In a legally unprecedented ruling in February, Judge Gerard O'Brien said Michael Kantaras could adopt his wife's teenage son and be listed as the father of a child the wife conceived during the marriage with sperm donated by Michael's brother.
Staver is arguing that Michael Kantaras was not legally a man when the couple married in 1989. The marriage was invalid since Florida bans same-sex marriages under its Defense of Marriage Act, Staver said.
As a female, Michael Kantaras had a sex change operation, which included a mastectomy and hysterectomy, and underwent hormone treatment at a clinic in Texas in 1986. His Ohio birth certificate reflects his 1959 birth as a female named Margo, but an Ohio court ordered the document be changed to show his new gender and new name.
In an 809-page ruling and divorce decree, O'Brien ruled that under Florida law, there was no statutory requirement that marriage license applicants had to prove their sex.
The law "provides that marriage shall take place between one man and one woman. It does not provide when such status of being a man or woman shall be determined," O'Brien ruled.
O'Brien's decision was hailed by homosexual advocacy groups as groundbreaking. The ruling could provide a legal definition of gender in the state and give non-biological parents a legal foundation to seek visitation or custody, they said.
Linda knew of Michael's sex change operation when the couple married in 1989. During the marriage, Linda became a Christian and realized the relationship was improper, Staver said. The marriage dissolved in 1998 when Michael Kantaras became involved with another woman.
Staver said more than marriage was at stake in the case.
"The trial judge erroneously ruled that gender is determined primarily by your mind as opposed to biologically, and consequently, if you think you are a female or you think you are a male - even though your biological sex is opposite - the court essentially has ruled that that's what you become.
"Therefore, two females - one thinking that she is a male - could marry and not be in violation of a law that says marriage is between one man and one woman," Staver said.
Liberty Counsel is in the process of putting together the brief, which will be due September 1. Sometime later this year or early next year, the case will be argued at the Second District Court of Appeals in Lakeland, Fla.
E-mail a news tip to Lawrence Morahan.
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I am finally starting to realize, that's the whole point (I'm talking the entire left, not the transgenders). They want everything nice and amorphous, with no standard that everyone can depend on, everything subject to change on a moment's notice. We won't be able to depend on the law, only on lawyers and politicians-- and only then, if they're in the mood to serve our interests and not someone else's.
What on earth makes you think their well-being was a factor at all?
The judge needs 800 pages to justify this? That's not a ruling, that's an attempt to spin reality from fantasy.
Sort of like a sex-change operation, actually...
I saw part of this case. And Michael definitely was not the better parent. Michael left the "wife" and chidlren for another woman. And just because Michael underwent body modifications does not make "him" a male.
What about those peope who have plastic surgery to look younger, who have a "young mind in an old body"? Surely the next step is for them to claim a new birth date.
This just in:
Judge rules laws of nature unconstitutional.
Or how about the converse - an old mind in a young body. Could be grounds for qualifying for early retirement benefits at 30 something!
Oops, gotta go... My University of Michigan Law School application is due. I think I'm going to be Zimbabwean today.
And then there are people such as the computer repairman Stalking Cat (Cat for short) and the sideshow celebrity the Lizzardman. The mind of a lizzard in a human body?
Could be a way around both euthenasia laws and catching a murder rap. "Had to have the cat put down - he kept wandering into the neighbor's yard". The possibilities are endless.
|How Sex Is Determined
Your honor, I would like to call my next witness, Mr. Paul Hogan. Although he is an Australian actor, Mr. Hogan is a world-recognized authority on the subject of sex determination. With your honor's permission, I would like Mr. Hogan to, umm, er, examine the Plaintiff.
That's what's meant by the phrase "rule of lawyers".
Don't the feminists say objectivity is just another aspect of patriarchal thinking and means of male domination?
His Ohio birth certificate reflects his 1959 birth as a female named Margo, but an Ohio court ordered the document be changed to show his new gender and new name.
Get your public records now, while they're still records.
Yes, it was probably very difficult to find just the right words to make his social experimentation sound reasonable. That's why he went on for 800 pages about it.It was apparent that Michael was the most stable/nurturing parent, psychologically
Yes, especially after the natural mother became a Christian and realized that, no matter how you slice it, she was living in a lesbian relationship with a freak.
Can't possibly have the children raised around that kind of bigotry, can we? It's just not healthy.