• Historic election wins for transgender candidates.

Historic election wins for transgender candidates.

  • November 8th, 2017

Yesterday proved to be a historic day for the transgender community as five openly transgender candidates won elections in Virginia, Minnesota, California, New Hampshire, and Pennsylvania, winning seats on school boards, on city councils, and in a state house. Voter turnout was strong and the nation sent a clear and loud message that they are not satisfied with the status quo and that things need to change. Democrats were the big winners when the votes were counted, and the LGBT community was the biggest winner of all, showing that the Trump Administration’s agenda of hate and discrimination is not working and is not endorsed by a growing number of Americans.

Democrat Danica Roem became the first openly transgender candidate to […]

  • The legacy of Hugh Hefner and Playboy

The legacy of Hugh Hefner and Playboy

  • October 26th, 2017

We all recognize Hugh Hefner with his trademark silk smoking jacket and pipe, always accompanied by beautiful Playboy bunnies draped over each arm. He became the persona of Playboy, both the magazine and the lifestyle, living at his infamous Playboy Mansion with outrageous parties and socializing with the rich and famous. But there was more to Hefner than the superficial trappings of success. Playboy was founded at a time when the prevailing attitude of American society was that a woman’s place was in the kitchen, barefoot and pregnant. Hefner changed that with his magazine which empowered woman and gave a voice to sexuality, and was at the forefront of the sexual revolution. Playboy helped break down sexual barriers and […]

  • Mass-shootings and the dehumanizing of America

Mass-shootings and the dehumanizing of America

  • October 3rd, 2017

It’s difficult to comprehend the horror of Sunday night’s tragic mass shooting in Las Vegas where 59 people were killed and 527 were injured. But what makes this tragedy even more heartbreaking is the way America has reacted to it, because it clearly shows that we as a nation have lost our humanity. We have lost the ability to see things and react from the standpoint of just being human.

It’s sad and discouraging that so much of how people reacted to this tragedy was framed within political views, or racial, or religious. The Democrats blame the lack of stricter gun control, while the Republicans go with their usual response about the Second Amendment right to bear arms. There are […]

  • Family

Family

  • September 15th, 2017

There are various definitions of the word family; most often it refers to a group consisting of parents and children living together in a household related to one another by blood or marriage. There are other definitions as well, such as a group of people united in criminal activity, like the Mafia, or a taxonomic rank in the classification of organisms between genus and order. But there is another definition of family that can be just as meaningful as the other definitions: a group of objects united by a significant shared characteristic.

For many in the transgender community the simple fact that we’re trans brings us together and into a new family because of the shared experiences and the bonds […]

  • It’s Time To Abolish The Trans Panic Legal Defense

It’s Time To Abolish The Trans Panic Legal Defense

  • September 1st, 2017

Last week Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed into law a bill banning the “gay panic” and “trans panic” defense in murder cases, making Illinois the second state to do so, after California become the first state to officially ban the defense in 2014. The law prevents people in those states from claiming that the murder victim was gay or bisexual and made a sexual advance that caused them to react violently, or that the victim’s gender identity caused them to react violently. This is a defense tactic which specifically targets members of the LGBT community and is based on stereotypes and ignorance and fear. Defendants in murder cases have sometimes been able to argue their way to a lesser […]

  • Ya Gotta Have Style!

Ya Gotta Have Style!

  • August 24th, 2017

Being transgender is no easy task; there is a lot to learn and it’s a steep learning curve. When we transition we are literally reinventing ourselves from the ground up; we have to learn things on the go that cis-people have had their entire lives to learn and understand. Not only do we have to learn how to be comfortable with ourselves and figure out our place in life, we also have to deal with practical issues such as how to present as our authentic gender. Our appearance is one of the things we focus on, especially early in our transition, because the reality is that how we look plays a large role in how we are accepted; in […]

  • Are “you guys” being overly sensitive?

Are “you guys” being overly sensitive?

We in the transgender community have a lot of things to be concerned about in these troubling times. Our state and federal governments continue to attempt passage of legislation which takes away our rights and makes it legal to discriminate against us. Bathroom bills continue to be proposed in state after state. Federal protections for transgender youth have been done away with, leaving them more vulnerable and at even greater risk of bullying. Transgender murders and suicides continue at a horrendous rate. Trans people still have high rates of unemployment and poverty. We have a president who is systematically taking away our rights, such as declaring he will reinstate the ban on trans people serving openly in the military, […]

  • So you want to be a model for Grooby?

So you want to be a model for Grooby?

  • August 11th, 2017

One of the things I get asked about frequently is how to become a model for Grooby. You can read about the process of how to apply by reading Steven Grooby’s blog post here and filling out the online application form here.

There is still a big misconception among trans women who want to mode is that they have to be tall and thin with big boobs, which is not the case at all. Grooby makes an effort to shoot models of all shapes and sizes and looks. Modeling is more than just about looks, it’s about personality, confidence,  desire and what you bring to the table. But before you apply make sure this is something you really want to do […]

  • Trump trans ban: A slap in the face to trans community

Trump trans ban: A slap in the face to trans community

I woke this morning to the news that Trump will reinstate the ban against transgender Americans being allowed to serve openly in the military. The ban had been lifted under President Obama but the plan to allow trans people to serve openly was still under review, and it was an ominous sign when Defense Secretary James Mattis announced last month that he was delaying enactment of the plan.

Trump made the following statement in three tweets this morning: “After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military. Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory […]

  • Attack my integrity? A shill for Grooby? Think again.

Attack my integrity? A shill for Grooby? Think again.

  • July 19th, 2017

I had intended to write about Caitlyn Jenner’s possible run for the Senate in California, but after recent events on social media I felt the need to clarify a few things about this column and what I write.

Last week I wrote a column about Trans Identity and the issues we face in our own community because some choose to judge and try to exclude certain people who they feel are not really trans or “not trans enough” which has led to a lot of bickering and divisiveness within our community. After logging onto Facebook yesterday and reading yet another diatribe against cross-dresser, I made the following post:

“Some trans women need to take a long, hard look at themselves because […]

  • Q&A Quickies with the beautiful Casey Kisses!

Q&A Quickies with the beautiful Casey Kisses!

This week’s edition of Q&A Quickies features the beautiful Casey Kisses! Casey is the 2017 Transgender Erotica Awards winner for Stroker of the Year, sponsored by Shemale Strokers, and she is always a fan favorite! When Casey isn’t busy shooting scenes she can be found on Chaturbate where she is always in demand!

And stay tuned for a full-length interview of Casey coming soon! And based on some of her answers to these questions it’s going to be a fun interview!

Bacon cheeseburger or tofu burger?

CK:  Bacon cheeseburger, with extra bacon

Favorite sex partner: male, female, or trans?

CK:  Male

What songs are on your playlist right now?

CK:  Deceptacon, Short Skirt Long Jacket, Are You Gunna be my Girl

Favorite scene you’ve shot?

CK:  My first […]

  • Trans Identity: Who’s Who, And What Does It Matter

Trans Identity: Who’s Who, And What Does It Matter

  • July 6th, 2017

NOTE: These are my own views and I certainly don’t expect everyone to agree with them, or imply that my views are the only ones which are correct. Everyone has their own opinions and who is to say one person’s opinion is better or more correct than anyone else’s. This is a topic which I’ve been thinking about for a while and has come up in several interviews and been a very hot topic on social media, so this is my attempt to make sense of a confusing and troubling issue.

One of the biggest issues we in the trans community face is being labeled: a “guy in a dress,” a “freak,” a “pervert.” We have fought long and hard […]

  • The Power of Pride: Portland Pride 2017

The Power of Pride: Portland Pride 2017

Portland is one of the most welcoming and accepting cities in the Pacific Northwest, if not the country. Portlanders are known for their friendliness and not being judgmental. And we’re not afraid to speak up and make our voices heard when we don’t agree with something, as shown by the many anti-Trump rallies in the past months. Unfortunately, Portland is not immune from hate and violence, as shown by the recent murders of two men who came to the defense of two girls who were the target of racial slurs aboard a MAX train. But as a trans woman Portland is one of the places I feel most safe, and where I don’t have to fear being trans or […]

  • New feature on Through The Benz: Q&A Quickies!

New feature on Through The Benz: Q&A Quickies!

  • June 16th, 2017

In my on-going effort to keep improving my Through The Benz column I’m excited to announce the addition of a new feature: Q&A Quickies! It’s sort of like an interview but in a more compact format; with short questions requiring brief answers. I enjoy doing the interviews and will continue to do those, but I’ve felt lately that I’ve been in a rut with the interviews and they have not been up to par with earlier interviews. So, I’m working on new questions and areas to focus on in the interviews, and in refining my writing to be more concise because I’ve noticed I tend to be a bit too wordy at times. And who wants to listen to […]

  • Pride 2017: Celebrating Diversity And Who We Are

Pride 2017: Celebrating Diversity And Who We Are

  • June 3rd, 2017

With today being the start of Pride Month I thought I’d share my thoughts about what LGBTQ Pride means to me.

I am proud to be trans and proud of my community. To me being trans, or anyone in the LGBTQ spectrum, means we are strong. We have to be strong out of necessity if we are going to survive, especially in the current political climate. Our community has come together like never before to stand strong and fight for our rights and make our voices heard. As horrible as the current political situation is, it has mobilized our community and shown us and everyone else who we are and our strength and that we will not sit idly by […]

  • Kayleigh Coxx: Brains and beauty and so much more!

Kayleigh Coxx: Brains and beauty and so much more!

  • May 18th, 2017

Kayleigh Coxx is someone who caught my attention the first time I saw her on Twitter not only because of her stunning beauty but also because she is intelligent and articulate and not shy about expressing her opinions, which makes her Twitting feed very interesting. But most of all she seems real and genuine and is someone I can relate to. So, this is an interview I was really excited to do because I felt Kayleigh would have some interesting insights to share, and also because I have to admit to having a bit of a crush on her; those eyes of hers and that smile are beyond sexy! And it’s not very often that I get the chance […]

  • Beginnings and endings

Beginnings and endings

  • May 10th, 2017

This has been a busy week in which I experienced the happiness of a new beginning but also the pain of a loss and the finality of death. The cycle of life continues and death is an inescapable part of that cycle, but with death comes a stark reminder of how fragile life is and a renewed appreciation of the time we do have and making the most of it.

On Monday May 1st I moved out of the apartment where I’d been renting a room since January and which had become an extremely stressful and uncomfortable situation. I’m now renting a room in south-west Portland which is in a beautiful house with roommates who are respectful and considerate. I […]

  • The future looks bright for Becca Benz!

The future looks bright for Becca Benz!

  • April 28th, 2017

After spending almost a week with my mom I’m feeling recharged and ready to get moving. The past few months have been difficult but things will soon be changing for the better. I’ll be moving on May 1st, which will be a huge step in the right direction to get out of my current living situation which has been extremely stressful and frustrating and into the new place which will provide some much-needed calmness. And I will have my own little deck outside my room, which I’m really excited about! With summer approaching I can’t wait to sit out on my deck and enjoy the warm weather!

My mom and I have always been very close; she raised my sister […]

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