A friend of mine recently shared this article on social media.
In response, here are the things you’re actually saying to me when you ask me to use your preferred pronouns instead of those that correspond to your birth sex.
- You’re asking me to be dishonest for you. If you want to misrepresent yourself (or simply hate your body) that’s your prerogative, but I resent you asking me to lie to, for and about you. Living honestly is important for ME too. A tolerant world would allow us both to express our truth.
- MY sense of safety is not important to YOU. By redefining women not as people who produce ova, but as people who do/should wear sexualized and inconvenient clothing, or are vain, or prefer and are meant for submissive sex, you’re contributing to a world in which we aren’t safe. When our womanhood is thought of as behavioral, we are blamed for our own victimization and it is seen as justified. These definitions are especially offensive when they arise from people who aren’t women.
- You would prefer it if I stopped being honest with you. I might choose to call you by your preferred pronouns because you and your friends have bullied me, but I’ll be lying to you because I believe (and am allowed to believe as a fully competent, confident, thinking human) that my definition of woman is at least as valid as yours.
- As a corollary to the above, you expect me to bend my opinions to suit yours (not coincidentally as someone who is socialized male might expect).
- As another corollary to the above, you don’t mind bullying me.
- You’d prefer for me to humor you than you care about you. You’d like me to contribute to your delusion that you pass, which I see as harmful, as I’ve personally watched you be continually let down by the very real evidence that you don’t. You’d like me to join an ideology that punishes you for being a gender-nonconforming male and excuses your gender expression only if you renounce (and possibly mutilate) your physical sex.
- Women don’t matter. We can be erased or colonized. Our experience of our oppression can be disbelieved and ignored. The only thing that matters is men’s opinions on what women are and should be. And men shall define how we are allowed to react to matters that concern us.