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Khan and Burnham among those saying process for trans people to self-ID should be easier

The mayors of London, Greater Manchester and other English cities have written to the government urging ministers to speed up the implementation of “desperately needed” changes to the gender recognition legislation.

Sadiq Khan, London’s mayor, wrote to the equalities minister, Penny Mordaunt, along with Andy Burnham, the mayor of Greater Manchester, and Steve Rotheram and Dan Jarvis, the mayors of the Liverpool and Sheffield city regions.

Related: Transgender man who gave birth loses high court privacy ruling

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Guardian journalist loses right to anonymity in legal action seeking to be registered as father

The first transgender man to give birth and seek to be called the child’s father has lost a high court case to protect his privacy despite warning that he and his child could be victimised and bullied as a result.

Fred McConnell, 32, a Guardian multimedia journalist who transitioned from female to male before giving birth in 2018, can now be named as the first person to give birth who wants to be registered as the child’s father.

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The actor’s comments on casting are unhelpful to marginalised people. Art cannot be ‘immune to political correctness’

“As an actor, I should be allowed to play any person, or any tree, or any animal because that is my job and the requirements of my job,” the actress Scarlett Johansson told As If magazine in an interview obtained by the Daily Mail that has since gone viral (she later said her comments had been taken out of context and used as “clickbait”).

Not exactly surprising, coming from a woman who has played a cyborg (Ghost in the Shell), an alien (Under the Skin) and the disembodied voice of an artificially intelligent virtual assistant (Her), but it’s offensive nevertheless to hear a cisgender white woman assert her unassailable right to play whomever (or whatever) she pleases. Or as Vanity Fair’s film critic K Austin Collins put it in a tweet: “you cant just go around likening ‘playing a tree’ to ‘playing an asian woman’ lmao come on”.

Related: Scarlett Johansson wants more tree roles – here are some she could consider

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Once upon a time Australia led the world in shattering LGBT taboos – with the world’s first televised gay character in 1972, followed by a trans character and gay kiss

During last month’s 50th anniversary celebration of the Stonewall riots, many historians looked at how the modern gay rights movement influenced pop culture.

We learned about music, books and cinema which reflected societal progress – but nothing brought LGBT representation into lounge rooms better than television did. And no country was quicker to do it than Australia, through 1970s series that presented the world’s first gay character, trans character and gay kiss. Why then, does Australia never get credit for these world first milestones?

Related: Neighbours' first same-sex wedding reflects Australia's glorious new realityGary Nunn

Related: Neighbours is Australia’s grandest, trashiest soapie export. So why did it fail in the US?

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In a new interview, the actor addresses the controversies over her casting in the movies Ghost in the Shell and Rub and Tug. Her comments could see her branch out in an unexpected direction

Scarlett Johansson is once again feeling the heat over claims of insensitive casting. After playing a whitewashed character once known as Motoko Kusanagi in Ghost in the Shell (2017), the actor withdrew from playing a transgender man, Dante “Tex” Gill, in the forthcoming Rub and Tug, after a social media outcry that a cisgender woman had taken the part.

Both storms had blown over until Johansson gave an interview to As If magazine in which, it is claimed, she said: “You know, as an actor I should be allowed to play any person, or any tree, or any animal because that is my job and the requirements of my job.”

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The gender-fluid star talks about performing as a stripper, giving queer people strength and dressing up as Bono

Invariably, queer pop stars worship David Bowie, and Dorian Electra is no different. “My dad got me into Bowie from a really young age,” they say. “I looked up to androgynous rock stars.” What’s less common is worshipping Bono. “He was one of my heroes as a kid. I know, funny: everyone hates him. But I really loved him, and used to dress up as him. That was one of my first experiences in what I guess you could call drag, but I would call dressing up. I performed the song Vertigo, just for my family – I drew on a little beard with my stepmom’s eyeliner.”

And so, with a home performance of a U2 song, Electra set off on the way to becoming the most lively and witty new pop star of 2019. Assigned female at birth but now defining as gender-fluid, they are about to release their debut album: a brilliant collection of ultra-synthetic, cartoonishly masculine pop, delivered wearing a perfect pencil moustache.

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Struck by the lack of pictures of trans and non-binary people doing normal things, artist-activist Zackary Drucker created a database of free-access images

Best known as a co-producer of the TV series Transparent, Zackary Drucker is an artist-activist who has devoted her career to making the world less grey and lonely for people who, like her, define themselves as transgender or non-binary. Her photographic and video artwork has been shown at the Whitney Biennial in New York, the Venice Biennale and nominated for an Emmy. But in one of her most recent projects, she has resorted to direct action, creating an open-access database of pictures available to any media outlet, anywhere in the world, wishing to represent people who don’t fit into traditional gender moulds.

The Gender Spectrum Collection was initiated by editors of the news website Vice, who found there were no quality stock pictures available from photo agencies to illustrate media stories about those who fell outside binary norms.

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Women claim staff did not ‘like the T-shirts we are wearing’ but NT says the action was ‘a result of a series of disturbances’

The National Theatre has become embroiled in a bitter war of words after a group of lesbians was refused service in its Green Room bar in the run-up to London’s Pride celebrations.

The women and their supporters claim their treatment at the hands of staff, who called the police, was a response to their campaigning stance in the gender-identity dispute. Other witnesses in the bar have described their behaviour as disruptive.

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As London prepares to host one of Britain’s biggest Pride marches, we spoke to six people about the importance of taking to the streets

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I was prepared for the worst when I watched the veteran tennis star’s BBC documentary, but her conclusion was uplifting

When I first heard about the documentary on trans athletes presented by Martina Navratilova on BBC One, I was worried that it would further stoke fears about trans women in sport, and advocate against their participation. Navratilova had previously made scathing comments about trans women in sport, calling their participation “insane” and “cheating”, and later suggested that men could start taking female hormones in order to win medals and make money. Those opinions were obviously born of ignorance – for example, trans people have to wait up to two years for an appointment at a gender clinic – not to mention the fact they trivialise the struggles trans people go through. So I was prepared for the worst.

But while I found many of the opinions explored in the documentary problematic, the conclusion Navratilova came to in the end was an unexpected one. I found problems along the way – not least her refusal to countenance using “cisgender” to help distinguish between trans and non-trans athletes, which only confused matters, creating a dichotomy between “women and girls” and “trans women”. Cisgender is a descriptive term to indicate people whose gender identity corresponds with the gender and sex they were assigned at birth (the opposite of trans) and it is useful in discussions of this kind. It doesn’t mean that the differences between trans women and cis women are being erased – rather that both are women in different ways.

Related: On trans issues, Iceland has just put Britain to shameOwl Fisher

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