Writing for the National Review in 2014, Kevin Williamson had the gall to claim that the transgender star Laverne Cox was “not a woman.” Not only so, but Williamson continued to refer to Cox as “he” throughout his article.
Then, referring to Katie Couric’s interview with Cox in which she infamously “asked him about whether he had undergone surgical alteration,” Williamson wrote, “and God help her if she had misdeployed a pronoun, which is now considered practically a hate crime.” Again, that was in 2014. Today, in some states, it is a crime to “misdeploy” a pronoun, which would mean referring to Laverne Cox as he rather than she.
In fact, it can cost you dearly. Earlier this year, I reported how, in New York City and Washington State, “Being Found Guilty of ‘Transphobia’ Could Cost You $250,000.” Punishable offenses include forbidding a man who identifies as a woman from using the ladies’ locker room at the gym or referring to that same man as “he” at work rather than calling him “she.”
But it gets worse. As recently reported by law professor Eugene Volokh, “You can be fined for not calling people ‘ze’ or ‘hir,’ if that’s the pronoun they demand that you use.”
Yes, he explains, “people can basically force us — on pain of massive legal liability — to say what they want us to say, whether or not we want to endorse the political message associated with that term, and whether or not we think it’s a lie.”
And, he points out, “We have to use the person’s ‘preferred … pronoun and title,’ whatever those preferences might be” — and those preferences could include wanting to be called “glugga” just as well as wanting to be called “ze.”
If you say no one would ever come up with a term like “glugga” (or whatever), Volokh points to “this list, which already includes ‘zie,’ ‘sie’ (not the German version), ‘ey,’ ‘ve,’ ‘tey,’ ‘e,’ ‘(f)ae,’ ‘per’ and ‘xe.’ Why wouldn’t some creative folks decide they want to add still more?”
And what about young people who don’t want to be forced into a specific gender category and say instead, “Call me Tractor”? And why did Facebook have to add “Fill in the blank” after 50 gender options were not considered enough by transgender activists?
My colleague in Australia, Bill Muehlenberg, just posted a chilling article listing the latest examples of “Trans-madness.” One of the most disturbing examples is a bill put forth in Canada “that would prohibit discrimination on the basis of ‘gender identity’ or ‘gender expression’ and make anti-transgender ‘hate propaganda’ punishable by up to two years in prison,” the whole problem being that articles like this (or like Williamson’s or Volokh’s) could readily be classified as “hate propaganda.” […]