"Whenever I go into a restaurant, I order both a chicken and an egg to see which comes first"

Sunday, October 24, 2021

What Sex Are You?–The Fun Parlor Game Of Adult Gender Reveal In An Age Of Diversity

Back in the early days of diversity training, employees were asked to self-identify their race and/or cultural origins, and stand under the appropriate banner, a selection easy enough for whites and Asians; a bit more complicated for Latinos and blacks who were of mixed race.

Image result for satirical images diversity

Many mixed race people, like former President Barack Obama, by natural origin half white and half black, identified with the more politically significant minority. The white half was taken for granted in majority white America, its culture accepted, never questioned, and automatically understood.  Everyone knew what it meant to be white – manner of speech, general behavior, approach to family, church, community, and nation. 

Passing for white – or in this case identifying with one’s white half - meant being stirred into a bland racial pudding; but identifying as black in an age of identity where race, gender, and ethnicity is the sine qua non marker of social relevance, not simply an arbitrary birth calculus, but signifying a cultural uniqueness that whites can only imagine.  

Blacks are more in tune with themselves, their history, and their cultural abilities goes the meme.  They are more expressive, artistically and athletically talented, and – based on the African origins of humanity – more human . It was not difficult for half-white employees  to choose black.

It was more difficult for Latinos, many of whom, despite their racial profile, did not want to be considered black.  Their Hispanic culture trumped and outweighed anything from Africa.  Theirs was a complex, storied, and often adventurous tale of cultural mix; and simply identifying by color alone was far too simplistic and demeaning. 

Because Islam was the common denominator for large portions of Africa and the Middle East, Sudanese chose to consider themselves neither black nor white, but Muslim – a far more telling category than race. 

Asians, because of the long-discredited theory of human racial groups (Oriental-Caucasian-Negroid) had no racial corner of the conference room to go to; and because East Asians considered themselves distinct from South Asians, they resented the one-size-fits-all groupings imposed by office administrators.  As a result many Chinese, a few Japanese, and many high-caste Hindus stepped into the white lane.

Finally many conservative whites refused to join any group, criticizing office diversity policies and the demeaning, dehumanizing, and distracting efforts to categorize by arbitrary, political criteria.

The senior executives, surprised by the confusion of their employees and concerned by the divisive political charge their diversity training had put into what had been a very cohesive productive group, decided to expand the categories. Black, white, Asian, and Latino categories were subdivided – not enough complained those whose heritage was far more complex than these sterile, predictable categories suggested, but a move in the right direction.

A Turkish American woman, for example, while by no means tempted to place herself in any category but white, had enough of a historical perspective to understand that since her country had been overrun by just about every ethnic group known to man, she was certainly a composite of Tatar, Mongol, Arab, Greek, White Russian, and Bulgarian. Where should she go?

Image result for images mongol warriors

Soon there were more sub-divisions and sub-categories than the room could hold; and whatever the purpose of diversity training was supposed to be, it was lost in the side-show event of pick-and-choose, and it was discontinued. 

Unfortunately, it was replaced with punitive measures which abrogated individual rights in the name of ‘civility’, respect, and inclusivity.  Speech was monitored, recorded, parsed, and analyzed for correctness, and anyone found guilty of even the most innocent, minor reference to anything to do with race, gender, or ethnicity and who broke the arbitrary, authoritarian rules set down by the administration, would be censured or fired.

The lessons of this racial and ethnic sorting were never learned, however, and diversity training according to the newly-established gender spectrum began in earnest. 

The gender spectrum, according to progressive advocates, replaced heterosexuality as the human norm.  One’s biological nature and physical attributes means nothing.  Sex and sexuality are psycho-social, determined by history, environment, and society, and therefore subject to choice.  One can legitimately and rationally disregard one’s birth sex and choose another.

These new rules of order were derived from Deconstructionism, a philosophy which asserts that there is no such thing as individual worth, genius, talent, or uniqueness.  Everyone is absolutely, inseparably linked to the random forces and events which preceded them, and the only way to look at an individual and his acts is through the lens of race, gender, and ethnicity – a historicism which is value neutral  and correctly focuses on signifying events, not natural causes.

The gender spectrum began as simply – or simplistically, as critics claimed – as the race-ethnicity rainbow had; and like it quickly turned rococo.  Before long there were nearly 100 sexual identifiers from which to choose.  

Some of the most popular alternatives were agender, androgyne, demigender, gender queer, gender fluid, man, transgender man, non-transgender man, questioning or unsure, woman, transgender woman, non-transgender woman.   Not only that, but given the ‘fluidity’ of sexuality, one was never locked into one category.  The same environmental influences that produced one sexual expression produced them all, so flexible, serial choice was not simply an option, but a pre-requisite.

Image result for images gender spectrum

Gender reveal parties have become very popular for young, expectant parents.  Friends and relatives are invited for festivities which include guessing the sex of the yet-to-be-born baby.  Given the popularity of DNA testing – most parents know the sex of their baby by the third month – the affairs can end with celebration.  The party rooms are decorated in pink and blue, trucks and dolls are placed everywhere, girls and boys names are colorfully placed on the walls, and gender suggestive music piped in. 

Few of these parents, needless to say, had even heard of the gender spectrum.  For them God created two sexes, end of story.  For those few who were so informed, the gender spectrum was nothing but an immoral distortion, a sign of social corruption and a slide into moral and sexual relativism.

America being what it is, always creative, always up for a new twist or a reason to get together in fun, adult gender reveal parties for adults have become de rigeur in progressive communities.  These parties are a mix of charades, ‘What’s My Line?’, mime, and fantasy.  Each partygoer is asked to act out their gender, and the rest asked to guess what it is.  There are no rules, and contestants can mislead at will.  The straightest mono-sexed male, for example, can swish and sashay like the biggest queen in the Castro, and the savvy crowd is expected to be able to see through such baloney and get right to the sexual core. 

The greater the show, the more applause; and the more arcane the sexual category, the greater the challenge.  Best In Show was always awarded at the end of the evening to the best performer regardless of final gender identity.  The parties quickly became the rage in gay, transgender, and straight progressive homes. Invitations became required the more competitive the events became; but the fun and hilarity were not dampened by the increased vetting.  A good time was always had by all.

Savvy observers know Baroque when they see it, and know that the idea of a fluid gender spectrum will soon morph into obscurity; but in the meantime, what fun!

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