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China: Around The Nation

Cross-dressing Chinese tourist gets women’s day discount after dispute

Visitor to mountain park identified as a woman but ID card showed otherwise

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 09 March, 2017, 12:34pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 09 March, 2017, 12:36pm

A cross-dressing Chinese man was given a discount meant only for women after a heated argument with ticket staff at the entrance of a tourist attraction in central China.

The man, who sported long straight hair and was dressed in a bright pink top, black skirt and black stockings, was visiting the Langshan Mountain National Geological Park in Hunan province on Wednesday, news portal ThePaper.cn reported.

To celebrate International Women’s Day, which fell on that day, the park was offering tickets at half price to women.

But counter staff at first declined to grant the discount to the transgender visitor, the report said.

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“I am a woman,” the visitor was heard repeatedly saying in a video. “I have a small waist and long legs, do I not look pretty? Why can’t I have the discount?”

As the argument grew heated and the queue behind the visitor lengthened, other impatient tourists began pressuring the staff members to just grant the discount to the man.

“It’s just one ticket, just give the discount,” others were heard saying in the background.

A manager eventually handled the situation at the counter, allowing the visitor to get a discounted ticketing and ending the dispute.

The park’s management firm later told ThePaper that they asked the man for his identification documents and the papers indicated that his gender was male.

The firm said granting the discount under such circumstances was against their rules, but they did so this time as the dispute was holding up the queue, the report said.

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Online, Chinese internet users debated over whether the discount should have been granted.

“It’s okay [to give him the discount] after surgery, but he is really not a woman if he hasn’t gone through the surgery,” one internet user wrote.

Another one said: “I think the first priority is for people to acknowledge her as a woman, the discount is only a minor concern.”

Transgender people express their gender or identity in a different manner from what is typically associated with their birth gender.

In China, a transgender person has first to undergo a sex reassignment operation and get proof from the hospital where the surgery was done, before they can apply to change their gender on their identity documents.

Chinese transgender man wins landmark wrongful dismissal case

Previous media reports have highlighted the difficulties some transgender people face in Chinese society.

In January, a transgender Chinese man won a landmark wrongful dismissal case, after he took his new employer to court for illegally firing him a week into his job in southwestern Guizhou province.

The man claimed he was dismissed because he had worn men’s clothes to work. The court ruled that the dismissal was illegal, but stopped short of concluding whether the dismissal was related to the man’s gender identity.