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Coal comfort

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Identity and economic choice

Kai Ryssdal and Liz Sanchez May 8, 2019
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A transmasculine person takes money out of their wallet.
Zackary Drucker/Broadly/The Gender Spectrum Collection

Nearly everyone can agree that one of the worst parts about flying is going through TSA security screening. The system is designed to be thorough, meant to identify who you are and what you’re carrying. For those who identify as transgender or genderqueer, this is where things get complicated.

In a New York Times op-ed piece, Alex Marzano-Lesnevich, a professor at Bowdoin College, wrote about their TSA experience and how the system operates in a less-than-favorable way for those who don’t identify as binary male or female. This is one instance of what people like Marzano-Lesnevich experience when navigating through the economy.

“I changed gyms because the gym I belonged to didn’t have a place for me to shower,” Marzano-Lesnevich told Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal. “And I chose my doctor’s office because they asked me about pronouns on the phone, because they didn’t assume something about my gender.”

Click the audio player above to hear the conversation.

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