That time Charlton Comics published a trans sci-fi story in 1953

Back in September, a rare print edition of Space Adventures #7—originally published by the new-defunct Charlton Comics in 1953—sold for $1,800.

The comic book speculator market isn't normally the kind of cash cow that the 90s thought it was going to be. Unless you've got one of those very rare early superhero origin comics—or you happen to sell something random like Avengers #257 at the exact right time for a convenient movie tie-in—you're typically lucky to make even a dollar on an old comic.

Space Adventures #7 has nothing to do with superheroes, or non-superhero movie adaptations. But it's still coveted, probably because it contains a pre-Comics Code story called "Transformation" that was illustrated by Dick Giordano, who went on to become the Executive Editor at DC Comics, and written by a curiously uncredited author.

What's more interesting about the comic, however, is that it deals unexpectedly with transgender issues.

Here's a basic synopsis of the 8-page story from Comic Book Plus:

Anticipating nuclear war that would leave Earth barren of life, Lars Kranston convinces his colleagues to go to Mars. His paramour Betty Stone insists that she go as well. The ship crashes on Mars. Everyone but Lars and Betty are killed, but Lars thinks she died too. Betty wakes up suffering total amnesia. Lars decides to use the supplies that survived the wreck. He manages a complete sex change. The tumultuous situation on Earth dies down. The predicted war never occurs. Betty remembers the journey.

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Trump Administration moves to stop transgender members of the military from honorably serving their country

In its latest bigoted move against anything that doesn't share DNA with a loaf of Wonder Bread, the Trump Administration unveiled a new policy on Friday that will all but eliminate the ability of transgendered patriots to serve in the military.

It's the continuation of shit that he's hoped would stick to Washington's bureaucratic walls in the past: in August of last year, Trump sent Defense Secretary Jim Mattis a memo that ordered him to change a policy put in place by the Obama administration. The policy allowed transgendered soldiers to proudly lay their lives on the line for their country and receive the quality medical care they deserve in thanks for their service.

The force behind Trump's stab at transgender service members comes from a policy laid out by the Pentagon and the Justice Department in February: it states that military personnel need to be available for deployment for up to a year at a time. If you can't hack that, you can't stay in the ranks. That could temporarily interrupt the military career of individuals who plan on having a child or come down with a severe illness that requires extensive medical treatment outside of a war zone. But it absolutely screws anyone seeking gender reassignment surgery, which can span multiple, complex visits under the knife. It actually sounds reasonable, when you think of it in terms of medical care and deployability. But that's because it's supposed to: the most hateful bile often comes from the mouths of seemingly rational men.  Read the rest