Announce your pronouns with these gender-positive patches and merit badges


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2017/11/03/announce-your-pronouns-with-th.html


#2

See, if they had these things on that non-binary-gender planet then Riker wouldn’t have ended up looking like such a doofus. (Or alternatively he could have just asked.)


#3

Self applied labels are still labels


#4

You know those curmudgeons who pop into just about every thread to express their disappointment at how this is no longer a directory of wonderful things?

They’re wrong.


#5

My pronoun at work is usually, “asshole”…make of that what you will.


#6

So if you are a female person of colour, it (literally) pays to identify as female and not as person of colour? That strikes me as a little odd. But besides that I’m in favour of pricing tiers like this, even though I probably don’t qualify for discounts in any scenario. I may have qualified for some once, but I’m not even a broke student any more.


#7

I think it’s more that the news is so damn dark lately that we’re all craving a few more unicorn chasers and cute doggo tales (tails?) to help it go down more smoothly.

Or more wonderful things like this.


#8

Checkbox options / price of a badge
None or Man: $5
Person of Colou, Man selected or not: $4.50
Woman: $3.95
Woman, Person of Colour: $3.70
Non-binary: $3.50
Non-binary, Person of Colour: $3.25
Man, Woman: $4.47
Man, Woman, Person of Colour: $4.22

If non-binary is selected, also selecting man or woman leaves the price at the non-binary rate.


#9

Yeah, the pricing is provocative but ultimately pretty bad, in my opinion. It’s putting a literal price tag on different forms of oppression, which trivializes, tokenizes, and ultimately ranks them.

“Oh, you’re just Latino? Well that’ll get you $0.50 cents off. I mean, do you know how much worse it is to be non-binary? Three times. The answer is three times as bad. Oh you’re disabled? Well we don’t have a checkbox for that.”

It flies in the face of everything we’ve learned about intersectionality. In my opinion a market exchange like this is fundamentally unable to be non-oppressive, and a ham-fisted effort to band-aid that kinda just feels tacky. To truly account for oppression someone faces, you need to actually interact with them and learn about their individual situation. You have to evaluate what they can afford, how it compares to what you can provide, and then decide on a fair price. But by that point you’re basically doing “to each according to their needs, from each according to their ability”, a.k.a. socialism a.k.a. non-oppressive exchange.


#10

I love everything about this.


#11

How does “They” work? It’s a plural pronoun. Are symbiot’s a thing now? I thought the single non-binary pronoun I heard is “rhe”. Is that not a thing?


#12

Not necessarily.

“Whomever left their back pack in the classroom, they can pick up at at the office.”


#13

It’s not very remarkable in the way it works. Someone says or writes it. Then someone else hears or sees it and understands what is meant.

“They” as a singular pronoun was common at various times, dating back hundreds of years. Sometimes it falls out of fashion, sometimes it comes back into fashion.


#14

Oh, nice! It factors in all you check, cool!

I can see what you are saying here, and I get your point. In this case I don’t see the harm, this is just some fun kicking against the status quo, which I enjoy and think is useful. But I get that this may be different when stuff like this gets applied on a larger scale.

Do you see any useful middle ground between pay what you want (possibly a lot less the what you should pay or can afford) and pay what we demand (possibly a lot higher then the buyer can afford)?


#15

Thank you! I grew up in an era where labeling someone was insulting. Now people put themselves in a box for you. I simply don’t get it. One of the best recent examples of that “don’t label me” attitude was the character of Dean Pelton on Community played by Jim Rash. When they tried to label him gay his response was "I’m not openly anything and gay doesn’t begin to cover it!" That character was a proud freak who defied classification.


#16

The most significant word in the term “self applied labels” is not “labels”. It is “self”.

You don’t like labels? That’s cool, you do you. There are others who find identity and significance and pride and strength and purpose in labels, so long as they are permitted to choose those labels for themselves. We should let them do that.


#18

Do you seriously not use pronouns or expect others to refer to you using pronouns?

Unless you abstain from language entirely you’re going to use some kind of “labels” to identify people, places and things. It might as well be the label that the person in question best identifies with.


#19

Kids around here use “they” as the non-gender default. I cringe each time, because I was conditioned to believe they is plural.

I wish ze/zir had caught on. I see they do have that on a patch, but I haven’t heard/seen anyone use it since the (dialup)BBS days. And early LiveJournal.


#20

Well isn’t that just passive aggressive? Nothing like initiating a conversation ('cause why else would you need to know someone’s pronouns?) with aggravated and antagonistic language.


#21

Categories are tools. So they can be a “power vacuum” where others set a default for everybody that just happens to suit them. Your own categories or concepts are only as limiting or liberating as your thinking is - which might be a considerable upgrade to what you find in the wild.

When labels are placed upon me by others, it is they who are deciding to what extent I may be identified with them. When I use some, then I can decide to what extent I identify with them - including “not at all”.

Any label can be useful - the crucial distinction is to not be the label.