Native Americans Treated Trans People Better Than We Do Now

When you hear the angry rhetoric from politicians about preserving gendered bathrooms and abolishing transgender rights, you might think, "If things are still this tough for transgender people today, I can't imagine how bad they were in the past." While that's not always wrong, it's not always right, either.

Hundreds of years ago, some Native American tribes actually held a deep respect for people who identified themselves as outside the gender binary -- or as they were called, "two-spirits." It was believed that such people were especially important, as they could participate in all aspects of Native life, rather than those reserved for one gender. In fact, some tribes saw it as crucial to recognize the balance between one's masculine and feminine sides.

Sadly, both sides got screwed by Manifest Destiny in the end.via WikipediaSadly, both sides got screwed by Manifest Destiny in the end.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Two-spirits were often free to express themselves in ways that many transgender people today still cannot. A transgender Zuni princess named We'wha even served as Native American cultural ambassador to Washington back in the late 1800s. Perhaps someday, modern America will become as socially enlightened as Native tribes of three centuries ago. But, uh ... baby steps, America.

For more on the subject of Two Spirits, pick up a copy of Two-Spirit People: Native American Gender Identity, Sexuality, and Spirituality.

Continue Reading Below

Advertisement

Support Cracked's journalism with a visit to our Contribution Page. Please and thank you.

For more, check out Here's How They Made The 'Roars' In The Lion King and The Real Santa Claus' Corpse Is Scattered All Across Europe.

Follow us on Facebook, and we'll follow you everywhere.

To turn on reply notifications, click here

218 Comments

Load Comments

More Articles

5 'Ugh' Trump Stories The News Totally Forgot About

We're so inundated with Trump news that we shrug off scandals that would tank any other president.

316

4 Crapsack Things That Are Still Legal In The USA

The year is 2020.

215

6 Obnoxious Tourist Scams From Around The Globe

Every tourist destination has scammers looking to separate the unwary from their money.

161

The Craziest Movie Easter Egg That Nobody Noticed

We thing this might just be the craziest, most elaborate Easter egg in movie history.

30

6 Soulless Companies That Own, Like, Everything

Here are some companies we're just sorta letting take over the world.

180

5 Towns Ruined By The Movies Filmed There

We're not sure if you've noticed this, but movie fans can get a little ... obsessive.

191