Amanda Simpson: First transgender presidential appointment

Via Air America:

Amanda Simpson, a Raytheon employee, former test pilot, and one-time Congressional candidate, made history today when she became the first-ever Presidential appointee who is transgender. Simpson, who underwent her transition while employed at Raytheon, will serve as a Senior Technical Adviser at the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security.

More at HuffPo

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6 Comments

  1. makomk
    Posted January 4, 2010 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    Hmmmm. The first transgender presidential appointment is someone from high up in the military-industrial complex. Well, I suppose at least there can’t really be any question as to whether she’s qualified for the job…
    (Also, it probably goes without saying that you might not want to read the comments on the HuffPost article.)

  2. Lily A
    Posted January 4, 2010 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    I’m similarly disappointed that this historic appointee was a Raytheon employee. Raytheon is one of the worst examples of a company which subsists nearly entirely from defense contracts. It profits from wars, then goes around and invests that profit in lobbying for more wars, so that it can continue to profit.

  3. davenj
    Posted January 4, 2010 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

    It’s also a company that added gender identity protection to employment in 2005, which spurred other major defense contractors to follow suit.
    Raytheon’s also the first corporation to sponsor the Southern Comfort Conference.
    As for the fact that it profits from wars, it would be one company or another. And so long as we desire to have missiles they will get built. At least they’re on the vanguard of protecting gender identity.
    The problem isn’t building weapons, it’s how they’re used. And ultimately that responsibility falls to us, not Raytheon. We’re the ones who are paying for the purchases, and we decide where to shoot the missiles. Also, a large chunk of Raytheon’s product base is defensive weaponry, stuff like the RIM and Sea Sparrow product line.
    Amanda Simpson’s an incredibly qualified and intelligent woman who spent years in service of the defense of the US, and who helped influence Raytheon in such a manner as to promote gender identity equality in major defense contractors. I’m not at all disappointed by this appointment.

  4. attentat
    Posted January 6, 2010 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

    The problem isn’t building weapons, it’s how they’re used. And ultimately that responsibility falls to us, not Raytheon.

    Wrong. The problem with the way the military-industrial complex is set up is that the building of those missiles then results in their use. Somewhere, anywhere. Partly so that more have to be built, partly so that those that are built can be field-tested and partly so that the trillions spent on them can be justified. Raytheon defending the US? Bullshit. The kid that tried to blow up that plane in Detroit did so because Raytheon-made cruise missiles were fired at Yemen. Raytheon employees don’t protect the US, they endanger it.
    Is Simpson qualified? Yes. But that’s because she worked for a company that is intimately connected to all sides of the “defense” industry and can bring her connections to the new post, taking ever more power away from the rest of us and putting even more in the hands of those who have vested interest in war and death.

  5. davenj
    Posted January 7, 2010 at 1:45 am | Permalink

    They build the missiles to order. We pay for the order. It is our military that pays Raytheon for their weapons.
    And there are many cruise missiles that go un-fired. The decision is ours, not Raytheon’s. They’re a company. They do not control the actions of the US military, they just give us what we want.
    Again, the US endangered itself when it fired Raytheon-made missiles at Yemen. The blame’s not on Raytheon. If I run a guy over with a Camry the blame is on me, not Toyota.

  6. attentat
    Posted January 7, 2010 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

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