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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Australia recognizes non-specified gender


The Buzz: Australia may have made gender history this week, as the New South Wales government lays claim to being the first in the world to recognise an individual’s sex as officially “not specified”.

Elaboration: “Not all human societies see the genders as mutually exclusive. Transgender people are seen in India as "half half," in the Philippines as "lady-boys," and in indigenous American cultures as "two-spirited." People seen by our society as having a gender opposite to the one sex they were born with are seen by other societies as simply having two genders. Bi-gendered. In this light, the permanent removal of the characteristics of one sex to allow the expression of the other seems a total waste."

You probably don't spend much time thinking about gender, and you probably find it very clear. Male. Female. And the expected plumbing therein.

Well, let me tell you now, yours is likely a narrow world view. Gender can be about as complicated as anything else, and those peeps born into that generally unrecognized world often have the most difficult row to hoe.

Australia has taken a major, and unexpected, step forward. Let's hope it sticks.

Now, get out there and learn those new gender-neutral pronouns!

Location:Perimeter Park Dr,Morrisville,United States

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