This phenomenal ad just appeared from Banco Provincia in Argentina:
It is pretty astonishing, not just for the emotional impact, but for the powerful and ineluctable ways in which gender, sexuality, and capital become affixed within the rhetoric of the commercial. There's the notion that Banco Provincia, in addition to simply acknowledging its transgender clients and employees, is actually exposing a kind of investment within the transgender community. "Tenés una vida, tenés un banco. You have a life, you have a bank." Life and bank are barely divided by a comma, which is like an articulated border. And the Argentinian "tenes," from "vos," is very specific, denoting a grammatical and national community: Argentinian transgendered people. (I didn't notice this at first, but my boyfriend pointed it out.)
Even if this is capitalistic mimesis in order to wring dollars from all sorts of overlapping liberal and queer communities, one has to admit, it's elegant. What Latin American queer histories, ontologies, and horizons of slanted subjecthood does this message of inclusion actually emerge from? What struggles does it resurrect and mediatize for Argentina in particular as a country?
There has to be a way to link this, even problematically, with the legal debate over funding transgender surgery in Alberta. And why shouldn't Latin American media influence provincial Canadian law, given the audiovisual currents that link both continents together already?
Ultimately, the battle over GRS in Alberta has the possibility--the strong possibility--of becoming a legal challenge at the level of the Supreme Court of Canada. And that could mean the national funding of transgender surgeries across the country. Even if Alberta activates its notwithstanding clause, declaring the nationwide ordinance to be ultra vires to existing provincial legislation, it can only stall the bill for a maximum of five years. Which means that, in 10 years or less, Canada could offer funding for transgender surgery, including pre- and post-operative social programming and counseling services, as a federal health benefit. This would be a first step in redefining the parameters of sexual and gendered citizenship within Canada, alongside the work already being done by trans and gender-variant activists around the world.