The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are currently reviewing and updating their policy regarding surgical needs and coverage of transgender patients. The 30-day public comment period started yesterday. Please consider submitting your comments via the form at the review webpage.
The scientific literature is still relatively sparse (for the simple reason that the trans* population is relatively sparse), but for those who are interested and not already aware of these, here are some links to studies on the outcomes and effects of sexual reassignment surgery:
Transsexuals’ life satisfaction after gender transformation operations
The outcome of sex reassignment surgery in Belgrade: 32 patients of both sexes
Factors Associated with Satisfaction or Regret Following Male-to-Female Sex Reassignment Surgery
And on the note of physiology and transsexuality, there have also been many studies indicating physiological connections between binary-identified trans* people and the gender or sex with which they identify, for example:
Male-to-Female Transsexuals Have Female Neuron Numbers in a Limbic Nucleus
A sex difference in the human brain and its relation to transsexuality
Phantom Penises in Transexuals
Gore Vidal was a rape apologist and a transphobe. In response to Polanski’s 2009 arrest due to his leaving the US in 1978 before being sentence for raping a 13-year-old girl, Vidal said:
I really don’t give a fuck. Look, am I going to sit and weep every time a young hooker feels as though she’s been taken advantage of?
People claim that the 1968 novel, Myra Breckenridge, should be understood as groundbreaking for its day and whatnot, but all I can see is another novel about a trans* character that: (a) treats transsexuality as a kind of multiple-personality-disorder instead of what it actually is, and (b) prominently features a rape of a woman by a trans woman (including, of course, the common transphobic fear of letting students be taught by trans* people, as Myra is a professor and her victim a student.)
So, no, I’m not going to lionize and mourn Gore Vidal. No matter how “essential” his work has been to American culture or any of that rot.