Thursday, February 2, 2012

Male, Female, Neither Or Both

Hoo-boy. I have a full head of steam today. Let me tell you what. Good Lord. People have gone off the rails when it comes to trying to build their utopia where everything is just perfect for everything and every environment is perfectly welcoming and comfortable. And do you know which topic just makes those self-righteous morons feel really good about themselves? Gender issues and gender roles. (Mmm...gender rolls.) God, they just love those. But I think that Roosevelt Elementary School in San Leandro, California has gone a little too far. No, I take that back. They've gone completely over the edge.

Apparently, there was a letter that was send home with kids at some point. Here is a link to said letter which is entitled "Strategies for Re-Thinking and Discussing Gender Issues". Remember, this was sent home by the school. This is how the school thinks that gender issues should be dealt with. The school, presumably where children are, thinks these steps are a good idea. Keep that in mind because you're going to think that a radical crazy person in need of medication came up with these guidelines. Let's begin...

The first thing on the list is this: Be proactive in your conversations, bring up topics of gender and gender identity; don’t wait for your child to bring it up or for an experience or incident to talk about." Now, I don't know what sort of an "experience" or "incident" they're referring to here. They make it sound absolutely terrible. (And by the way, the word "don't" was bolded in their letter. They are apparently very serious about your not waiting. Boldly serious.) But what I think sounds even more terrible is the idea of just out of blue bringing up gender identity to your, say, six-year old. I think that when I was six, if my parents had started a conversation with me like "You know, you're a girl on the outside, but that doesn't mean that you're a girl on the inside. It's perfectly OK if you want to be a boy." I think I would have been really confused. (I also think I would have thought my parents were lunatics because, at six, girls ARE girls and boys ARE boys and that's just how it is.)

Here's another one: "When someone says something gender-biased (e.g. He is all boy! Look at all the energy he has!), take the opportunity to mention counter examples (e.g. One of the girls he plays with has even more energy than he does!). Seriously, what is the point of all of this? Is someone really afraid that people are going to think that ONLY boys are high energy? For God's sake. If someone ever said something like that to me, I think I'd have to politely ask them to never speak to me again. What are you people so afraid of? Who cares?! The thing is that no one comes away from a conversation which includes "He's all boy! Look at all his energy!" and thinks that only boy can have a lot of energy! NO ONE! No one thinks that, so stop with idiotic guidelines that are clearly only for scared, utopia building softheads.

Moving right along..."Question and explore your own biases. For example, how do you feel about boys wearing long hair? Girls who “dress like boys?” Girls playing football or boys wearing earrings or fingernail polish? What messages are you giving your child(ren) about how they and others express themselves?" Wait a minute. I said WAIT! Are they actually playing the long hair card in the year 2012?! And guys with earrings?! Are they really trying to get us to believe that people are simply befuddled by these developments? Are they saying that children are confused as to whether a guy with long hair is a boy or a girl? I don't think that they are! I really don't. Whose grandfather came up with this one?!

Next up: "Watch TV shows and ads and discuss with your child(ren): 1) How gender roles are portrayed; and 2) what messages are being sent. Is the mom always making cookies or dinner with the daughter and serving the boys? Are only boys playing with the Tonka trucks or Hot Wheels?" See, I just don't understand the premise of this. Are the children in question only watching Leave it to Beaver? Serving the boys?! Are you dry shaving me?!

This one might be my favorite: Mix up gender language when reading stories to your kids – especially with typically male dominated characters. For example, if the story is about a “boy” animal, mix it up and make the lion a girl. Consider adopting this strategy for the people in a story, too." These people do not read a lot of children's books. I know that because there are a lot of pictures in children's books. And male lions look very different from female lions. (Perhaps the lion community could benefit from these little guidelines because I certainly don't see how these are going to help people.) So now you're going to confuse your kid to where he can't identify a male lion. He'll see a lion with a big bushy mane and he'll say "That can be either a boy lion OR a girl lion." And someone will have to tell him, "No. You're an idiot. That's a boy." Do we really want future generations not being able to easily identify large cats in the wild?! Because that's what's going to happen!

But here's my most favorite. Seriously, I laughed out loud at this one: "Consider asking the adults around you what, if any, pronoun they would like you to use. Ask politely; it is not rude, but rather respectful. Try asking that of everyone you know as a way to bring the topic up in conversation. Start with people you would feel comfortable having the conversation with. You might explain that you are working to create a more gender inclusive environment for all people. This is particularly supportive for people who are questioning their gender or in the early stages of transition."

::: blink ::: ::: blink :::

Ummm...what now? Ask adults...what...pronoun (pronoun, right?) I should use? Sooooo...like, "Hey, Bob. Nice to meet you. Listen, Bob....in the future, when I talk to other people about you, would you like me to refer to you as a he or a she or neither or both?" HOW is that "respectful"? It might not be "rude", but do you know what it is? Effing weird, that is correct! And I can only imagine that Bob would answer such an inquiry with, "It doesn't matter. We'll never speak again after a question like that." That's how I would be answering a question like that. And "Start with people you would feel comfortable having the conversation with."?! I don't think I'd EVER be comfortable asking someone what pronoun I should use when I meet them. Sure, I could explain that I am "working to create a more gender inclusive environment for all people", but that would likely lead to them responding that they are working to create a more lunatic excluded environment for all people. Wow.

These people who came up with these "guidelines" seem to be actively looking for something to be wrong when there really isn't a problem. It's like they want to have a world with all of these problems so that they can feel so danged good about themselves for "fixing" them. I got news for these yo-yos. These problems don't exist! They certainly don't exist on a massive, global scale as they would like you to believe. And I swear, I can't be held responsible for my actions if I meet someone and they ask me if I want to be referred to as he, she, it, all of the above or none of the above. We are so doomed.

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1 comment:

Juliana said...

So freakin' ridiculous! I wanna scream!