I recently read two completely separate articles that make an intriguing contrast.
On one hand, “‘Preferred’ pronouns gain traction at US colleges:”
On high school and college campuses and in certain political and social media circles, the growing visibility of a small, but semantically committed cadre of young people who, like Crownover, self-identify as “genderqueer” — neither male nor female but an androgynous hybrid or rejection of both — is challenging anew the limits of Western comprehension and the English language.
Though still in search of mainstream acceptance, students and staff members who describe themselves in terms such as agender, bigender, third gender or gender-fluid are requesting — and sometimes finding — linguistic recognition.
Inviting students to state their preferred gender pronouns, known as PGPs for short, and encouraging classmates to use unfamiliar ones such as “ze,”’sie,” ”e,” ”ou” and “ve” has become an accepted back-to-school practice for professors, dorm advisers, club sponsors, workshop leaders and health care providers at several schools.
Note the tell-tale theme words: “self-identify,” “describe themselves in terms,” “preferred gender pronouns.” I wonder why, when there’s a conflict between biological reality and psycho-emotional consciousness, we actually privilege the latter and disdain the former as some sort of obsolete relic.
I asked this of someone last summer and was immediately called a “transophobe.” Apparently that settled things.