Martine Rothblatt rocks the cover of “New York Magazine”

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This week’s New York magazine’s cover story focuses on the extraordinary life of multimillionaire, Martine Rothblatt and her wife, Bina. Rothblatt, who is currently the CEO of United Therapeutics, and founder of Sirius Radio, transitioned from male to female back in the mid-1990s. According to Lisa Miller of New York Magazine:

Martine prefers not to limit herself to available words: She’s suggested using “Pn.,” for “person,” in place of “Mr.” and “Ms.,” and “spice” to mean husband or wife. But “trans” is a prefix she likes a lot, for it contains her self-image as an explorer who crosses barriers into strange new lands. (When she feels a connection to a new acquaintance, she says that she “transcends.”) And these days Martine sees herself less as transgender and more as what is known as transhumanist, a particular kind of futurist who believes that technology can liberate humans from the limits of their biology—including infertility, cancer, and disease, but also, incredibly, death.

Martine and her wife Bina have been together for over three decades, and Bina doesn’t seem preoccupied with labels herself.

“Bina Aspen, the woman who married Martine 33 years ago, when Martine was a man, and remains her devoted wife, calls herself not straight or gay but “Martine-sexual”—as in the only person she wants to have sex with is Martine.”
martine

When Martine and Bina’s youngest child developed pulmonary arterial hypertension at the age of eight, Martine turned her focus towards life-saving medical advancements. She became the CEO of a pharmaceutical company and pushed for approval of the drugs that would greatly improve the life of her daughter and others who suffer from the disease.

Martine’s current passion is the futurist and transhumanist movement. She’s even written a book on the subject, Virtually Human: The Promise-and the Peril-of Digital Immortality.

“Soon, software will have consciousness, she told me, comparing the intelligence of Google cars to that of insects. Within a few years, AI will surpass dogs and cats. And eventually, she says, they will able to say, “Martine, I’m aware of myself. I know I’m software. I’m sure you know you’re flesh and bone. I know there are things that I can’t do that you can do, but I still really value experiencing reality. I still really value reading, watching, traveling, and playing games. I still really love talking. I really love putting myself into a sleep cycle and waking up and feeling like I’m reborn each day.”’

Part of Martine’s vision is that one day humans will live beside “mindclones,” which are essentially digital replicas of our currently living selves. Martine even commissioned a robot replica of Bina.

“Sitting on a computer table in the converted garage that serves as Terasem headquarters, and molded in ‘frubber’ to resemble skin, is a head-and-shoulders bust of Bina, loaded with 20 hours of interviews with Bina, familiar with Bina’s favorite songs and movies, programmed to mimic Bina’s verbal tics, so that in the event that Bina expires, as humans always do, Martine and their children and friends will always have Bina48.”

What comes across abundantly in this profile is the love and devotion that Martine and Bina have for one another, and for their mutual futurist passions. The New York Magazine piece is a fascinating profile of a truly remarkable life, and if Martine has anything to say about it, one that is only beginning.

To read the New York piece in its entirety, click here.

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