Author’s Note: my editor refused to remove his (its) comments. Apologies.
Stand and applaud, a great injustice has been corrected by the newly reelected Nancy Pelosi. (The noise of hands clapping is considered harmful and triggering – change to ‘jazz hands’.)
The Democrat House Speaker of an unspecified gender, along with the Rules Committee Chairman (make a note to change that masculine title) James P. McGovern, have finally conquered the gender war that has been raging inside Congress by abolishing any mention of gender via their new code of conduct.
The House, which has been under Democrat control for sixty-four of the last eighty-eight years, says that these language reforms are designed to attain the Social Justice Holy Grail (referencing the Christian religion is considered bigotry – find a different motif) of diversity and inclusivity (spellcheck says this is not a word).
From now on, previously derogatory language such as ‘Mother and Father’ will be changed to ‘Parent’, ‘Aunt and Uncle’ will be ‘Parent’s Sibling’, and ‘Niece and Nephew’ becomes ‘Sibling’s Child’. For the full list, just replace normal words with the most ridiculous thing you can think of.
Official titles will also be changing.
‘Office of the Whistleblower Ombudsman’ will now be referred to as the ‘Office of the Whistleblower Ombuds’, ‘Seamen’ to ‘Seafarers’, and ‘Chairman’ to ‘Chair’ (see, I told you). While any reference to ‘her’ or ‘his’ will revert to their nonsensical plural form ‘their’.
After the Democrats stole the US election (fact-check?), stripping gender out of Congress was the next logical step in ‘crushing’ the coronavirus and ‘combating’ our climate crisis – according to a statement Pelosi gave earlier:
Democrats have crafted a package of unprecedented, bold reforms, which will make the House more accountable, transparent and effective in our work to meet the needs of the American people. The future-focused proposals reflect our priorities as a Caucus and as a Country – including crushing the coronavirus, addressing economic disparity, combating the climate crisis, advancing inclusion, and promoting integrity in government.
She (‘it’ – gender neutral, remember?) is correct on at least one point… Removing the concept of gender from the American landscape certainly helps to close any economic disparity between the sexes. Now that we are no longer attributing gender to individuals, the statistical data related to gender simply vanishes. Wage gap? Gone. Domestic violence? Solved. Men (person with a penis – or uh – person who identifies as a man but is now being referred to as gender neutral) are no longer over-represented as victims or perpetrators of violent crime. Surely there must be a Nobel Peace Prize in this for Pelosi?
Of course, in order to properly implement dogma, you have to construct a meddling bureaucracy. Pelosi has established the ‘Office of Diversity and Inclusion’ to ‘honour all gender identities by changing pronouns and familial relationships in the House rules to be gender neutral.’(What? I thought we were going for unisex – be consistent.)
Speculation is rife that guidelines surrounding coerced speech were brought in to satisfy an expanded staff of LGBTQ lawmakers (that’s a sexual orientation, not gender). We must remember that gender neutral language laws are coming into place alongside other demands to respect the chosen pronouns of individuals. In some cases, referring to someone as the wrong gender could land you in prison for hate speech.
What happens if someone identifies as a man but Congress legislates that they be referred to as unisex? Is that a hate crime? Do men and women find the erasure of their gender offensive? Would barcodes have been more inclusive?
If you’re thinking to yourself that deleting gender from language doesn’t go far enough, don’t worry because these measures extend to the employment practices of House offices which will now be required to, ‘recruit, hire, train, develop, advance, promote, and retain a diverse workforce.’ Hiring and firing people based upon their gender (we went through this, there’s no such thing as gender anymore) and race is far more sensible than worrying about skill and experience. Things have to look right in the most superficial sense possible.
Nancy Pelosi has made it clear that the House’s decision to strip the highly offensive and frankly bigoted language brings them in line with the wider American view.
I guess this means that women’s activist movements are next on the chopping block for the Democrats. After all, we have to be gender neutral about these things. A whole movement named after one particular gender clearly isn’t inclusive or diverse.
Alexandra Marshall is an independent writer. If you would like to support her work, shout her a coffee over at Ko-Fi.
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