Monday, July 13, 2015

Gender Reveal Parties of the Future: A Parable

Once upon a time, in a very advanced and evolved land, they threw parties. They were unique. They were parties of great celebration and anticipation. For these parties were no mere marking of time or remembering an event, these parties were a revelation. They were called: gender reveal parties.

These parties had been happening for centuries. Previous generations in the land - strange, primitive ancestors - would throw these parties while the fetus was still in the womb. Some - a few of the wackiest - would even call the fetuses babies, as if they were really human until they were out of their mother's body. They had these parties, gathering everyone around, and then the parents would tell everyone the gender of the fetus. This would be followed by a symbolic gesture like releasing blue balloons for boys or pink balloons for girls - I warned you they were strange creatures. 

They were savage people. Parents were preposterously oppressive and barbaric for determining the gender of their children instead of waiting to let the child choose for themselves. They acted as if gender was something biological instead of something you have to feel out on your own. They eventually evolved. Thankfully.

In the new and evolved land, these parties were great celebrations where grown people gathered around with friends and family to reveal their gender. The age of discovery varied for each person. Some knew early on as children, others later in life, and some went back and forth frequently before truly settling down. It was such a liberating thing. 

This does not mean that everyone evolved. Some were stuck in the Stone Age with their insistence that gender was biological and determined by God. They made their arguments. They said things like, "If gender is not set, but is fluid, why do you act as if gender based names are set? Why does a man named "Mark" feel the need to change his name to a girl name like "Christy?" Why not just be a girl named "Mark?" Gender based names appear more set than gender itself." 

Or they said things like, "If people can be born as the wrong gender (i.e. they have XY male chromosomes but are convinced they are a woman), then how is gender a social construct? You cannot be born the wrong gender (implying that gender is set) and simultaneously say it is a social construct." They really were clever, these barbarians and their cute arguments, but the people learned how to shut them up. They called the Dissenters unloving and hateful. This usually caused them to wilt like flowers. 

In this gloriously evolved land, you could no longer disagree with other people's beliefs or you were labeled intolerant; literally, you were labelled so everyone knew you were a Dissenter. Yes, it was a small problem that the word "tolerant" inherently means to put up with people who hold different positions than you, but consistent beliefs were not nearly as important as feelings in this land. The tactic of the moral majority of shutting the mouth of the Dissenters was perfected. People were convinced it was unloving to challenge people's ideas and make them feel uncomfortable. Love and disagreement were no longer compatible. 

It was truly an incredible country. The apex of human evolution. A land where Love Wins (as they would say) and truth was written by the feelings of the day - but could change tomorrow if necessary. If only previous generations would have let go of all their primitive ideas quicker, they would have become great sooner.

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