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Gender is something we each deal with every day, subconsciously or, especially for trans people, consciously. We’re obsessed with where people stand on that spectrum, in sports, the public eye, or even what bathroom we get to use.

Even from a cis perspective, this can be frustrating. Although I am female and cisgender, my mix of “gender” interests has always been exceedingly confusing to people. Glitter and heavy metal? Punk and cheerleading? Dinosaurs, science fiction, and fairy princesses? Where does it all fit?

Then, like so many others, I found the queer community. Suddenly, it was OK to play with gender, to love things on all sides of the spectrum. And, for trans folks, this is often a much bigger deal. While the gender spectrum largely affects my interests, bodily political autonomy, and professional life, trans folks can’t go a second without having the gender spectrum disrupt their lives.

Of course, contrary to what some wrongly believe, this doesn’t mean we have to all be nonbinary. Loving your maleness in a non-toxic way, or embracing your female energy, can be empowering for everyone, and those who love their binary marker, male or female, cis or trans, should also be celebrated.

So, this issue is to celebrate all things gender and anti-gender, from John Waters at a lesbian party to a house of black, trans drag performers, to folks reflecting on their own gender experience. It’s to hold up the positives of gender and try and fix them, or set fire to, the bad. We hope you’ll join us.

-Addison Herron-Wheeler