Transgender woman: someone who identifies as a woman, but was born with characteristics of a different gender.
In Richmond, Virginia, Georgia Carter applied for a job at the local KFC. She was hired, but then management saw her (government-issued) ID, which read "male." When questioned, she said, "I'm transgender." She was then fired; she says the management cited the difficulty of not knowing "which bathroom [she could] use."
But the story has a happy ending (for social liberals)! This morning (March 1, 2016), KFC tweeted that the manager had been "terminated" and that "Ms. Carter was offered a job at any Richmond KFC," and a representative later confirmed that the treatment of Carter clashed with their policy of anti-discrimination, which covers gender identity and sexual orientation.
To what extent is having such a huge, international franchise take such a public, pro-transgender rights action a big step forward for transgender rights? The Huffington Post article cites The National Center for Transgender Equality with this statistic: "more than one in four transgender people have lost a job due to bias, and more than three-fourths have experienced some form of workplace discrimination."
It's worth noting that, in 2014 (and now, too, according to this article by equalityvirginia.org), changing one's official female/male gender identity in Virginia required filing with the court, getting the signed order, getting a doctor's signature, changing information with Social Security, getting a new ID from the DMV, and, finally, changing all your official information with anyone of importance, like schools, banks, etc. The entire process can cost up to over 200 dollars, which is no small amount, especially for someone like Georgia Carter, who is applying for a job at KFC.
So, is transgender discrimination even worse for low-income people? Should Carter still have switched her government-issued ID? What measures could expedite this process? Also, consider the costs and benefits. Even beyond the $200, there's the time needed to make an appointment with the DMV or wait in line, the possible monetary and time cost of seeing one's doctor if one does not have insurance or even being unable to find a sufficiently sympathetic doctor, filing fees...the list goes on.
Finally–should the push for transgender rights be coming from mostly quarters like the government or interest groups/activists, or is it good for big companies to get involved, too? Consider KFC's possible motivations for addressing the problem (and the manner in which they did it).