Sunday, November 11, 2018

What determines gender?

A while back, I wrote a post explaining how I didn't understand transgenderism. I think I have a better handle on it now, but I think there's an inconsistency in how people define gender.

A lot of us still think gender is determined by your biological sex (unless you're talking about words or pipe fittings). But there are two mutually exclusive definitions of gender being used by the transgendered community as well as people who are sympathetic to their redefinition. Here are the two definitions that I keep coming across:

1. Gender is determined by your behavior. If you look and behave in ways that are typically associated with the looks and behavior of people who have one sex organ or the other, then that's your gender.

2. Gender is determined by your self-identification. If you see yourself as being a man, then your gender is male, and if you see yourself as being a woman, then your gender is female.

This morning I saw a guy write this post on a discussion forum, and he vacillated between these two different definitions without even realizing he was doing it. But these are mutually exclusive definitions.

Imagine a person who sees themselves as a man but nevertheless behaves in ways typically associated with people who have vaginas. Is that person's gender male or female? Well, you get contradictory answers depending on whether you think gender is determined by your behavior or your self-identification.

How are the rest of us supposed to get behind the redefinition of "gender" if we can't even get a clear explanation of what it means by the people who are redefining it?


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