Circuit Court Rules That ‘Nonbinary” is a Legal Gender

Jamie Shupe

Portland’s Jamie Shupe was awarded “nonbinary” as their legal gender by a Oregon circuit judge today.

We contacted Jamie, who graciously shared their experience with us.

@Plantrans: I see from your profile that you prefer the pronoun ‘they’ or your first name. I also see that you identify with femininity.
What does this mean to you personally?

“When I first transitioned I did so to female because I had no other choice,” Jamie said. “We have to tread delicately on this so as not to offend or harm others in the community when we go into the femininity subject. I’m completely in the feminine spectrum but I have never liked being classified as female and being classified as male was intolerable. I feel totally freed from gender and it’s constraints by being classified as neither. I’m free to express in any manner now.”

Jamie Shupe

Photo Daily Dot

Jamie Shupe changed their gender marker to female while living on the east coast. They didn’t identify as either male or female but the female gender felt more genuine and safer for them.

No longer a prisoner of the female binary.

If a third sex option would have been available when I changed my name in Penn.” Jamie said.”I would have taken it.”
“I purposely chose Jamie with no middle name because it embodied all parts of me.”

The Times reports that Jamie had a terrible time with the Army when they tried to change their gender marker to female. The army told Jamie they had to have SRS first and even tried to take away Jamie’s partners benefits

Jamie explains “I beat the Army on that when I changed to female. I filed a pentagon IG complaint demanding policy letters. They choked and backed down.” But getting their marker changed to nonbinary by the Army won’t be an easy task Jamie acknowledges.

Next step is the DMV, but Jamie doesn’t see it as an issue as the have been very receptive in the past.

Of course the obligatory ‘bathroom question’. Which one to use as a gender non-binary person?

“I am most comfortable in single occupancy gender neutral bathrooms. I don’t like being in the bathroom with cis women, especially since I don’t and have never passed at all. And the men’s room,” Jamie said “is out of the question. I literally take my spouse with me into multi-occupancy female bathrooms.
“I’m a big advocate for gender-neutral, single, private spaces for bathrooms and locker rooms.They protect trans people and give the bigots the privacy they demand.”

“I really didn’t think I would win this easily in court,” Jamie said. “I thought I would have to appeal and win down in SF at the 9th circuit.”

Jamie Shupe

“I took those recently, ” Jamie said. “They represent me looking out at the world and all the hate that has been unleashed on us. The clouds symbolize the hate.”

Is there something you would like to say to our nonbinary readers?

“I hope I have opened the door for all those like me that seek the right to be classified as who they truly are and wish to escape the confines of the male/female binary system.

Kelli Busey
Editor in Chief at

Kelli Busey an outspoken gonzo style journalist has been writing since 2007. In 2008, she brought the Dallas Advocate on-line and has articles published by the Reconciling Ministries Network, The Transsexual Menace, The Daily Kos, Frock Magazine the TransAdvocate, the Dallas Voice and The Advocate. Kelli, an avid runner is editor in chief at Planet Transgender which she founded in 2007.

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