The dam might be breaking when it comes to the press reporting on the fact of Jordan Cofer, brother of the Dayton shooter.

Last week I noted that Splinter News broke the story that the Dayton shooter’s sibling in fact was a trans man who reportedly was out only to friends, and not to family. Days after that story, only New York Post and BuzzFeed News had adjusted their coverage.

Since then, Huffington Post has joined that very, very short list, and just yesterday Teen Vogue commemorated Cofer in a story which advanced one thing that had been nagging at me.

“Jordan hated being misgendered,” Margaret tells Teen Vogue. “[His old name] made him feel dysphoric. It made him feel bad [about] himself. I don’t think he’d prefer to be called ‘Jordan’ on the news; I know he would.”

I’d been wondering about this on Twitter. What are the ethical issues on reporting on a trans person’s identity when they weren’t publicly out? Teen Vogue perhaps settles this now, by quoting a friend on Cofer’s own feelings on the matter.

Maybe that’s the thing that will spark a change in the way other outlets report on the Dayton shooting. To date, all major newspapers and (as near as I’ve been able to tell) the news networks continue to misname and misgender him. Now that we know how difficult that was for him, maybe the rest of the press will catch up to the facts.

Author: Bix

The unsupported use case of a mediocre, autistic midlife in St. Johns, Oregon —now with added global pandemic.