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19 minutes ago, Bonam said:

But did the professor deny the existence of non-binary gender expression? No, he didn't. He merely pointed out that he doesn't think he should be forced to use special pronouns. And for making this relatively esoteric point, he was pretty much seen as the devil by his colleagues. 

He doesn't deny but he does:

CO: You have said that you don't believe that there is enough evidence that non-binary gender identities even exist? 

JP: No. I didn't say that actually. If I'm going to be accused of saying things I have to be accused of exactly what I said. There's not enough evidence to make the case that gender identity and biological sexuality are independently varying constructs. In fact, all the evidence suggests that they're not independently varying constructs. 

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30 minutes ago, BC_chick said:

As you can see by Tim G and Argus' post, there would still be pushback for even that.

If it was simply a question of adding one new pronoun then I could compromise with that. But that is not what is happening. We are being told told that we have to use whatever nonsense words someone dreams up to "reflect their identity". Personalized pronouns is an exercise in narcissism which I want no part of.

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4 minutes ago, BC_chick said:

CO: You have said that you don't believe that there is enough evidence that non-binary gender identities even exist? 

What is the difference between believing in non-binary gender identities and believing in intelligent design?

Edited by TimG
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20 minutes ago, TimG said:

What is the difference between believing in non-binary gender identities and believing in intelligent design?

One subject is all about linguistics, and the other is about idiots ignoring science. I don't 'believe' in the definite article, I accept it as a linguistic construct.

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Just now, ?Impact said:

One subject is all about linguistics, and the other is about idiots ignoring science. I don't 'believe' in the definite article, I accept it as a linguistic construct.

The evidence supporting intelligent design is as compelling as the evidence supporting non-binary gender identities. The only difference is the adherents to the latter narrative are academics surrounded by like minded peers which gives their pseudo-science the illusion of respectability while they collectively agree to ignore evidence that contradicts their narrative and hurl insults at people who ask questions that they don't like.

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1 hour ago, Argus said:

My instant and also permanent reaction to anyone asking me to refer to them as Xe is to think they're a fruitloop, and to completely ignore them and their opinions thereafter.

Yeah, me too.

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38 minutes ago, BC_chick said:

He doesn't deny but he does:

CO: You have said that you don't believe that there is enough evidence that non-binary gender identities even exist? 

JP: No. I didn't say that actually. If I'm going to be accused of saying things I have to be accused of exactly what I said. There's not enough evidence to make the case that gender identity and biological sexuality are independently varying constructs. In fact, all the evidence suggests that they're not independently varying constructs. 

And which part of his reply do you find unreasonable? Which part do you find worthy of outright condemnation rather than reasoned response? 

Edited by Bonam
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42 minutes ago, Bonam said:

And which part of his reply do you find unreasonable? Which part do you find worthy of outright condemnation rather than reasoned response? 

That part that conflicts with the Ontario Human Rights Code.

Here is an excerpt from U to T's response to him:

 

 The law of Ontario, specifically the Ontario Human Rights Code, protects against discrimination based on gender expression and gender identity. Depending on the context, if personal pronouns are being used, the refusal by a teacher or colleague to use the personal pronoun that is an expression of the person’s gender identity can constitute discrimination. In many situations it is not necessary to use personal pronouns at all, but where it is, the personal pronoun that is chosen as the person’s gender identity-related and gender expression-related identifier should be used.

http://thevarsity.ca/2016/10/24/u-of-t-letter-asks-jordan-peterson-to-respect-pronouns-stop-making-statements/

Edited by BC_chick
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2 hours ago, BC_chick said:

Here is an excerpt from U to T's response to him:

 

 The law of Ontario, specifically the Ontario Human Rights Code, protects against discrimination based on gender expression and gender identity. Depending on the context, if personal pronouns are being used, the refusal by a teacher or colleague to use the personal pronoun that is an expression of the person’s gender identity can constitute discrimination. In many situations it is not necessary to use personal pronouns at all, but where it is, the personal pronoun that is chosen as the person’s gender identity-related and gender expression-related identifier should be used.

http://thevarsity.ca/2016/10/24/u-of-t-letter-asks-jordan-peterson-to-respect-pronouns-stop-making-statements/

Just because it is in a code, doesn't make it right or reasonable. Laws and codes can be just or moral, or they can be unjust and immoral. These particular codes are written by the very same people that brook no argument about their dogmatic ideology. And any code that stands in direct opposition to the principle of free speech is inherently flawed. To say that not using a pronoun "constitutes discrimination" means that the speaker can be disciplined, dismissed, or prosecuted for their statement. If that is truly the position of the University of Toronto, that is truly sad, because it was once one of Canada's foremost universities, now fallen to such disgrace. 

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You should read the entire  letter in that link, it's very well stated. It talks about freedom of speech and how he university stands strongly behind it. It goes on to discuss the fact that even freedom of speech has limitations.  I hope you take the time to read it.

And I honestly do see your concern, but I know you're a reasonable person so think of it like this:  I would say that most people, no matter their views on the issue, would feel that people who have transitioned should have the respect to be called what they wish. 

Do you agree that there is an element of discrimination if a colleague or professor continues to use a different pronoun for a fully transitioned transgender person?

If you can agree that it's discriminatory (essentially it is belittling and no different than calling someone a racial slur within a professional environment), you can understand why it's inappropriate for US as a society to decide when a person has earned their pronoun. 

If you reject the notion all together that it's discriminatory to continue calling a MTF person a he, then you are the reason why we need such legislation in the first place.

It's not proper conduct in a professional or academic environment given that it's essentially a slur.  In private, sure, but not in the workplace.

There is a difference between actionable and criminal (i.e. Hate speech).  This issue falls in the former category.

 

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7 hours ago, BC_chick said:

Religion and sexual orientation are also protected. Identifiable isn't always visible. 

There is no requirement to address people by religious or orientation related  titles either.  If I just mention Kevin and Billy instead of Christian Kevin and Gay Billy, no one is trying to make me say the latter.

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48 minutes ago, BC_chick said:

You should read the entire  letter in that link, it's very well stated. It talks about freedom of speech and how he university stands strongly behind it. It goes on to discuss the fact that even freedom of speech has limitations.  I hope you take the time to read it.

And I honestly do see your concern, but I know you're a reasonable person so think of it like this:  I would say that most people, no matter their views on the issue, would feel that people who have transitioned should have the respect to be called what they wish. 

Do you agree that there is an element of discrimination if a colleague or professor continues to use a different pronoun for a fully transitioned transgender person?

If you can agree that it's discriminatory (essentially it is belittling and no different than calling someone a racial slur within a professional environment), you can understand why it's inappropriate for US as a society to decide when a person has earned their pronoun. 

If you reject the notion all together that it's discriminatory to continue calling a MTF person a he, then you are the reason why we need such legislation in the first place.

It's not proper conduct in a professional or academic environment given that it's essentially a slur.  In private, sure, but not in the workplace.

There is a difference between actionable and criminal (i.e. Hate speech).  This issue falls in the former category.

 

At your recommendation I went ahead and read the letter. It effectively says: "we're strongly committed to freedom of speech, but some people got offended so you better stop or else". I do not agree that it is well stated or reasonable. 

In regards to what people "should" be called... if using a pronoun, most reasonable will select he or she based on the outward physical appearance of the person. A person that has transitioned from one gender to the other will presumably look like a member of their new gender, and so most people would naturally call them by the pronoun associated with their new gender. If someone calls you by the wrong pronoun, the most likely reason is an honest mistake (I am often called by the wrong pronoun when people call me or send me letters because my first name is from a different culture and appears to some to sound more like a female name). A mistake, and one not worth commenting on, like if someone mispronounces your name. If a person chooses to take offense to the mistaken use of a pronoun, all other things being equal, I would be more likely to assume that the offended person is trying to pick a fight and make an issue out of nothing than I would be to assume that the speaker has a malicious or discriminatory intent.

If you identify as female but someone calls you "he", it may be reasonable to point out to them that you are female and expect them to start using "she", But if they fail to do so, it should not really be a traumatic experience for you, worst case if you're truly offended maybe you'll decide the person is not someone you want to associate with. Fine, move on, just like you would with anyone else you don't get along with. But expecting disciplinary action against that person, or expecting that laws should be in place that mandate how they should refer to you? No, that is not reasonable. 

Further, given that most reasonable people will pick either "he" or "she" as the pronoun they use, it is even more unreasonable to be offended if someone fails to call you "xe" or some other made up pronoun that is not part of 99% of people's lexicon. And, given that the use of language is intuitive and habitual, if they fail to call you "xe" even after you've asked them to, it is likely not a sign of malicious intent but someone simply using language as they've been accustomed to their whole life. Or it may be a conscious decision (as in the case of the professor here) to not indulge in frankly some pretty absurd social notions. 

Stepping back to the bigger picture for a moment, I fully support the rights of adult individuals to identify as whoever and whatever they please and to have relationships with whoever they please. Transgender people absolutely should have all the rights that are afforded to non transgender people. However, another person's rights end where restrictions on what I'm allowed to say begin. There is no justification for institutionalized rules dictating what is and is not acceptable speech simply to prevent giving offense. The only time there should be any consideration of restricting speech is if the speech is likely to cause real and immediate danger of physical (not emotional) harm to others, in my opinion. 

Stepping back even further, I would point out that imposition of rules regarding proper speech in the context of pronouns is simply one more ways in which the general right to free expression is being eroded all around Western countries. Consider the other thread where an individual faced sanctions for how they named their wifi network, for example. Consider that at the same time as acceptable speech is being restricted from both the right and left, governments of all stripes are pushing as hard as they can to increase electronic surveillance. You mention that offensive speech (like the use of incorrect pronouns) should be allowed in private... but as the noose tightens, how much communication remains truly private? The reality is that anything you post on social media, anything you send by email, anything you send in a text or say on the phone, anything you say on the street where others are nearby, etc, can potentially become public at any moment. 

I stand for the right to privacy and for the right to free speech and will not lightly abide the erosion of either. Least of all for concerns about very slight emotional offense that a few individuals may experience. 

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2 hours ago, Bonam said:

Further, given that most reasonable people will pick either "he" or "she" as the pronoun they use, it is even more unreasonable to be offended if someone fails to call you "xe" or some other made up pronoun that is not part of 99% of people's lexicon. And, given that the use of language is intuitive and habitual, if they fail to call you "xe" even after you've asked them to, it is likely not a sign of malicious intent but someone simply using language as they've been accustomed to their whole life. Or it may be a conscious decision (as in the case of the professor here) to not indulge in frankly some pretty absurd social notions. 

Stepping back to the bigger picture for a moment, I fully support the rights of adult individuals to identify as whoever and whatever they please and to have relationships with whoever they please. Transgender people absolutely should have all the rights that are afforded to non transgender people. However, another person's rights end where restrictions on what I'm allowed to say begin. There is no justification for institutionalized rules dictating what is and is not acceptable speech simply to prevent giving offense.

That very succinctly sums up the disconnect on this topic.

People who believe themselves to be something other than the physical objective truth are free to indulge in that. They can play dress up, change their name, get surgery, change their lifestyle, etc, in any manner that they choose. That is where they have rights. No one should be allowed to make them stop. At the same time, anyone who doesn't want to play that game has the absolute right to choose to opt out. 


This whole "you can be anything you want" thing is just the modern version of the Emperor's New Clothes. You're being told that you're not allowed to mention what is actually in front of you, but must instead pretend that you see the same thing that everyone else is pretending that they see.

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Some aspects of this discussion still need to be explored, at least for me, to get clarity:

Misuse of Pronouns by Accident

I saw this mentioned as a potential offense but I find it hard to believe that an occasional, accidental or one-time use of the wrong pronoun would be seen as a transgression.  Has anyone seen evidence of the opposite ?

Public vs Private Use

The context of use in the UofT story is academia and the workplace, which is different than public use.  Is there talk of making it a crime to insult people in public?  The pending law the professor is talking about C-16 which we haven't seen yet, as he says.  Does it matter though ?  ie. If his employer tells him to NOT use a pronoun in the workplace, I would imagine he has to comply regardless of the law - as a condition of employment.

Use of Words vs Non-Use

One post read about this stated that the law may force you to SAY a word, versus prevent you from saying a word.  That would be a different type of restriction from what we have seen in the past - ie. government FORCING you to use language.  What are your thoughts ?

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6 hours ago, Bryan said:

It would be inappropriate only if the professor was not XY. 

So you're doing gene tests on people before determining what pronoun to use for them? Do you ask for a blood, hair, or skin sample? What kind of lab equipment are you using? Inquiring minds want to know.

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I think Michael Hardner expressed the differences perfectly.  I couldn't have said it better myself, especially the first two points.

There is a big difference between accidentally referring to someone by the incorrect pronoun and deliberately refusing to do so.  The posters defending professor Peterson seem to deliberately conflate the two instances when it's a false equivalent.

Equally important, free speech is not without limits where you can refer to your students and colleagues whatever you wish.  If I ask a colleague to go by Ms. and someone continues to call me Mrs. because 'feminism has run amok creating new titles' it would not be acceptable in the work place.  

It's not about me being oversensitive, it's about some jerk imposing his regressive views on me by refusing to acknowledge that I do not wish to be recognized by my marital status.

ETA - at home he can call me whatever he wants, but in the workplace, he has an obligation to address me as I wish and keep his personal views to himself. 

Edited by BC_chick
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5 minutes ago, BC_chick said:

y important, free speech is not without limits where you can refer to your students and colleagues whatever you wish.  If I ask a colleague to go by Ms. and someone continues to call me Mrs. because 'feminism has run amok creating new titles' it would not be acceptable in the work place.  

So if I insist that hereafter you must refer to me as Illustrious Argus, you'll go along with that, right?

Illustrious is the pronoun I have chosen as my self-identified gender descriptor. 

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8 minutes ago, BC_chick said:

It's not about me being oversensitive, it's about some jerk imposing his regressive views on me by refusing to acknowledge that I do not wish to be recognized by my marital status.

No real parallel to the silliness with 50+ genders.

One additional gender could be understandable (such as the creation of the Ms. title).

50+ genders is absurdity that has nothing to with respect or rights and everything to do with a vocal minority seeking ego gratification at the expense of others.

You need to learn the difference.

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