News Analysis Jan 2, 2021 5:22 PM EST

Congress proposes rules to eliminate the words mother, father, daughter, son and others relating to family relationships

It is unclear as to how there will be any proposed legislation by sex segregation if the language denoting sex differences is not allowed to exist in Congress.

Congress proposes rules to eliminate the words mother, father, daughter, son and others relating to family relationships
Libby Emmons Brooklyn, NY
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Congress has proposed rules to eliminate the language denoting mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, uncles, aunts, and other familial relationships. In an effort to rewrite reality, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Rules Committee Chairman James P. McGovern (D-Mass) have issued proposed rules that aim to do away with gendered language.

It is unclear as to how there will be any proposed legislation by sex segregation if the language denoting sex differences is not allowed to exist in Congress.

In Section 2, Changes to the Standing Rules for the 117th Congress, a subsection on Gender-Inclusive Language states "...strike 'father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, first cousin, nephew, niece, husband, wife, fa- ther-in-law, mother-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in- law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, stepfather, step- mother, stepson, stepdaughter, stepbrother, step-sister, half brother, half sister, grandson, or grand-daughter' and insert 'parent, child, sibling, parent's sibling, first cousin, sibling's child, spouse, parent-in-law, child-in-law, sibling-in-law, stepparent, step-child, step-sibling, half-sibling, or grandchild'."

It goes on to say that in given clauses, "strike 'father, mother, son, daughter, brother, sister, husband, wife, father-in-law, or mother-in-law' and insert 'parent, child, sibling, spouse, or parent-in-law'. In clause 4 of rule XXVII, strike 'himself or herself' and insert 'themself'."

The reasoning for this is explained in the summation of the intent of the rules changes, by saying that this "honors all gender identities." The document penned by the 116th Congressional rules committee states that "Changes pronouns and familial relationships in the House rules to be gender neutral or removes references to gender, as appropriate, to ensure we are inclusive of all Members, Delegates, Resident Commissioners and their families - including those who are nonbinary."

This, however, is only inclusive to those whose gender identity is not based upon their biological sex. Mothers, for example, are not included in the new language. If a woman identifies as a mother, she is out of luck at being recognized by congress. Instead, she will have to make due with "parent," though it does not bear the complexity of either her relationship or the specificity of her identity. In their attempt to accommodate others, Congress will remove the accommodation for those who were previously identified in the way they preferred.

Such, however, is the driving force among so many American institutions. The ACLU, for example, seeks to enlist the new administration in this project of identity erasure and reality reconstruction.

Of the newly proposed rules, Pelosi said "These future-focused proposals reflect our priorities as a Caucus and as a Country—including crushing the coronavirus, addressing economic disparity, combating the climate crisis, advancing inclusion, and promoting integrity in government."

Pelosi does not appear to see a reason to abide by these rules outside of Congress, as she's stated her maternal affiliations in her Twitter bio.

While Congress wants to erase biological sex-based identities in language, the ACLU wants additionally to erase it from identification, and they want President-elect Joe Biden to do this unilaterally, through an executive order.

The ACLU plans to encourage the incoming Biden administration to erase the biological sex-based identities of mothers, fathers, daughters and sons. They said that "There's one important action the Biden-Harris administration can take right away to show transgender and non-binary people that they respect and support us: Give us identification that reflects who we are."

"This executive order would remove burdensome medical documentation requirements so that everyone has access to the appropriate gender marker—and add an "X" option already used throughout the world so that non-binary, intersex, and other folks can have an accurate designation."

"Access to accurate IDs is personally meaningful but also practical, ensuring we can travel, apply for jobs, and enter public establishments with less risk of harassment or harm."

The New England Journal of Medicine also recently called for the denial of reality in favor of feelings, saying that "Sex designations on birth certificates offer no clinical utility; they serve only legal—not medical—goals. Certainly, knowing a patient's sex is useful in many contests, when it is appropriately interpreted."

"The goal of the New England Journal of Medicine is to do away with the classification of male and female altogether so that government, society, and individuals all believe that sex is thoroughly non-binary and that they can choose it for themselves when they want to. This may have the feels of compassion, but it is a distinct cutting off of human beings from both their past and future."

The ACLU and Congress believe that the feelings that some people have about their gender nonconformity is more important than facts, accuracy, or the feelings of people who are non gender nonconforming.

While their attempt to rewrite language and familial relationships is couched in the language of inclusivity, it excludes reality and those who are comfortable existing within it.

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