A friend’s wife recently gave birth. He reports that the New York birth certificate asks for the sex of the mother, and the sex of the father.

I was taken aback. How could the State of New York be so behind the times? Don’t the bureaucrats in Albany know what the T in LGBT stands for? How could they presume the crazy essentialism that presumed a person is either male or female?

As everyone knows, well, at least everyone who isn’t motivated by irrational prejudices or in the thrall of religious fanaticism, the form should ask for the sex or sexes of the mother, and the sex or sexes of the father.

No, wait, there’s an incipient prejudice at work in that formulation, one that presumes monogamy, which as we know is a socially constructed idea that probably reflects the power interests of men, or perhaps women, or maybe just priests . . . . Anyway, you know what I mean. Consult your local cultural theorists for details.

Therefore, the form should ask for the sex or sexes of the mother or mothers, and the sex or sexes of the father or fathers.

Get with the program New York! Be the progressive state you claim to be!

Articles by R. R. Reno

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