I just watched a terrific video from Blaire White on being misgendered. I think it’s spot on and makes a lot of good points about the current use of they/them, xe/xir, etc., for those that may declare to be non-binary or gender fluid, or whatever else it is out there. I wrote a while ago that maybe instead of taking the chance of misgendering, therefore insulting someone, I should just use the pronoun it. Yes, that seems proper for every occasion and I won’t take the chance of hurting someone’s feelings. Yeah, like I care.
In the video, Blaire shows clips of a guy (oops!) that says when he meets someone for the first time, “Hi, I’m [name]. My preferred pronouns are they/them…” and then continues to introduce himself (oops again!). That’s just silly and goes to Blaire’s point of the video of where were heading in society. Think about it. I think I’d like to be referred to as a white, heterosexual male. So, when you see me, you’ll automatically think of that ad if you introduce me to someone else, you should say, “This is Jim, a white heterosexual male”.
What’s also disturbing, a bit in the video, is that the same person, in another clip, says that those that use he/him as pronouns for “him” (there), are making a judgement and people should never do that. No it’s not a judgement, it’s an observation, If you see me walking through a grocery store, it’s natural for anyone to observe that I am a man. I look like a man, dress like a man (that actually isn’t important) and the few seconds of observing e in some aisle would give you no reason to believe anything else. How would you know if I am non-binary or something else when your eyes, transferring that information to your brain, tells you something different? Short answer: it wouldn’t.
People, however, are given to making judgements about others they don’t know, simply from appearance. Maybe I should say, jumping to conclusions about another. Years ago, I decided I was going to go vehicle shopping. I wanted a new car. I had decided on the dealerships I wanted to visit that day, and proceeded to the nearest, first. I saw the one I wanted at this Nissan dealership. So, I was looking at it, checking out the sticker on the window for the price and the options it came with, thinking any second now, a salesperson would be out and I could begin discussing/negotiating. Sire enough, a salesman did come out, and walked right by me, although I had been there for at least ten minutes, if not a bit longer, and immediately aimed for this young couple, who had just arrived.
Why did he head for them? Clean cut, nicely dressed…that’s all I could determine. Me? Longish hair, a short beard and in sweatpants and a T-shirt. My first thought was that he had profiled me as being someone that was just looking and not a prospect for a sale, based on how I appeared. No one else came out in the next two or three minutes, so I of course left.
People do make judgements, I just don’t think they do that with someone’s gender. What you see is what you get. A person in the grocery store, or on a dealership lot, with a beard, anyone would believe is a he/him. I agree with Blaire in that it shouldn’t be the responsibility of the stranger to identify you by your preferred pronouns, but yours to actually become whomever it is you’re attempting to become. When you introduce yourself and the first thing out of your mouth after your name, is to tell that stranger, how you prefer to be addressed? See ya!
Maybe, in the incident I described above, should have stopped that salesman as he passed by and said something. Today, I would definitely do that but back then, I wan’t very confrontational and besides, there were other dealerships that probably did want my business (the very next one, in fact, a Jeep dealership). Were my feelings hurt? No, I was perturbed, but that’s about as far as it went. The same can be said with misgendering someone. Although the salesman bypassed me, I believe, based on a faulty conclusion , I don’t believe anyone misgenders another person based on anything other that what they observe at the time. Its not a judgement. it’s a lack of knowledge and it’s not up to that person to assume anything other than that which is easily observable.
3 thoughts on “Judgements versus Observations”
Face it, Jim, the salesman went for the people he deemed most likely to buy, and that wasn’t the scraggly guy, checking out the price tags.
I must admit that I make judgments about people all the time. Not just a woman, but an obese woman. Not just a man, but a good-looking man. Not just a family, but a family that can’t control its youngsters. Not just a guy or a gal, but an obviously gay man or a lesbian. And…either male or female of the two could be sexy. What? Human beings aren’t supposed to make judgement calls on people they see in passing?
I am so infuriatingly sick and tired of hearing about this crap. As far as I am concerned, if people actually hate who they are, then hate who you are and hate who I am and we can leave each other alone. This is some dysfunctional horse manure.
Not finished with my rant, but must feed hungry cis-gendered white man, with whom I live in a male-female traditional relationship. But…we actually wear the very same clothes, the same size, and could very possibly be taken for two men, one without a goatee and mustache, but we aren’t and if you really can’t figure out what we are, then enough attention is not being paid. Maybe it is the boobs…
LikeLiked by 2 people
Lets say a billionaire walks into a crowded restaurant.
3 of those people among the crowd are transgender. One is a man that identifies himself as a woman. The second is woman that identifies herself as a man. The third is a man, but identifies himself as a non-binary.
The Billionaire makes everyone an offer of either A or B:
A) He tells everyone he is going to give a million dollars to all of the women in the room and nothing to the men. Given that all of the women in the room can unequivocally prove they have XX chromosomes.
B) He tells everyone he is going to give a million dollars to all of the men in the room and nothing to the women. Given that all of the men in the room can unequivocally prove they have XY chromosomes.
What is the likely-hood that each transgender would miraculously identify to their true, biological birth gender if it meant getting paid?
Seems extremely likely that if anyone one gets butt-hurt, it’s because they happen to be the unlucky gender that received nothing.
Every person on this planet is free to be who they want as long as it causes no harm to others(especially children) or it breaks no laws. But I refuse to pretend or participate in the fantasy that a man can become a woman, and a woman can become a man. Because they can’t. Chromosomes determine gender. Not feelings. No such thing as “transgender”. And anyone who insists they are the opposite sex, when they are not, is mentally ill and should seek treatment. The same way a person would be delusional if he/she claimed to be a chicken. Unless they could lay some eggs right in front of my eyes, I’m not buying it.
Thousands of years from now, when archaeologists find the human bones of any transgender or non binary, and perform DNA testing, I’ll bet dollars to pesos the results will either be XX or XY.
LikeLiked by 1 person
“Harrumph, Harrumph. Give the Governor a harrumph!”
What ever happened to good manners? I don’t need to know all there is to know about a person to converse politely on a casual level. And, nobody needs to know my sexual preference, identity thingie, or my ethnicity, birthdate, movie preference…well, okay, my movie preference is pretty important in my conversations.
But…I don’t care and neither should the other person, and unless we suddenly get really, really intimate, let’s just keep it a casual conversation. Okay? If you can’t handle that, then leave me alone.
Speaking of children… No matter who is teaching your kids or what they are hearing about at school, a good parent is making sure that the sticking message a kid gets comes from and is exhibited by and reinforced by the parent. We have to accept that some parents will be rearing kids different from us, but that is America. What we must refuse to accept is that the state will be rearing all kids in the same manner of the current power-that-is influencing society. Refuse to accept it and over-ride it with our own messages and example-setting role as parents.
“Yes, kiddo, some people are freaks and should be avoided, and you will not be participating in the freak show goings on at school or field trips to the library, etc.” Oh cripe, I forgot, this sort of parenting takes time and involvement…so once again, there will be a segment of the population depending upon the state for child-rearing until first job, or maybe beyond. Too bad for them.
I may still be ranting, but it is so hard to tell anymore. 🙂
LikeLiked by 1 person