Sorry, but they’re called ‘mothers’ — not ‘birthing people’
Evangelical Lutheran Church elects first transgender bishop
Reversing Trump, US restores transgender health protections
Caitlyn Jenner can teach the left a lesson about protecting girls’ sports
Groundbreaking ‘Pose’ stars ‘will be wielding that power’ as show ends
Three years ago my wife came to me with a stack of papers and some textbooks. “Can you believe this?” she asked. “They are calling women ‘birthing people.’” She explained that in the curriculum for her certification as a birth doula it was now de rigueur to refer to mothers with this ridiculous-sounding neologism. “It’ll never catch on,” I told her. She disagreed.
My wife was right. When Rep. Cori Bush made headlines last week with a speech and a follow-up tweet about “birthing people,” the Missouri Democrat was not speaking in a vacuum. The pro-abortion group NARAL was there to explain that Bush was simply being “inclusive.” Nor is she the first member of Congress to refer publicly to “birthing people.” The ludicrous phrase is becoming ubiquitous, not just in activist circles but in the medical profession.
On the Web site of Harvard Medical School, you can read about how advancing something called “maternal justice” is “essential for all birthing people.” The National Institutes of Health, the New York State Department of Health, the apparently real California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls, the Hawaii Department of Human Services and even the city of Milwaukee all present helpful information about this hitherto-unknown category of human beings. Countless state legislators across the country have introduced bills or resolutions that include the preposterous terminology.
They should all be on their toes. You never know when yesterday’s woke terminology will be considered insufficiently inclusive. The Health Resources and Services Administration corrects this oversight by referring to “pregnant and birthing people,” in case anyone were to make the mistake of assuming that men, in addition to being unable to give birth, cannot get pregnant. (Don’t even get me started on “chestfeeding,” which also appears in seemingly respectable medical books.)
The rise of “birthing people” and “chestfeeding” follows a well-established pattern: Universities carry the terminology from once-fringe activist groups to the professional classes during what passes for their education. Graduates bring it with them to hospitals, law firms, big business and, of course, politics. A new consensus about apparently settled questions such as the definition of motherhood is established before ordinary Americans are even aware that new terms exist, much less that the liberal establishment wants to mandate their use.
“Birthing people” should be a line in the sand for all decent and rational Americans. It is not a question of so-called “political correctness,” which is often a simple matter of politeness. The phrase is not only an insult to mothers everywhere; it is an attack on reason itself. Everyone knows that women who give birth to children are mothers. Those who suggest otherwise are either living in a fantasy world or the kind of people who get their jollies by forcing others to say that 2+2 = 5, which is the ambition of every totalitarian.
Words mean things. We already have a name for people who give birth to children. That name is mothers. If your definition of justice requires you to invent jargon to describe things for which there are already words in every language ever observed in human history, you need to find a new one.
In a few weeks, my wife will give birth to our fourth child. We pray that everything goes well and that she and baby Sylvia are happy and healthy. It is impossible to say what our little girl’s life will look like in 20 years, but one thing that is absolutely certain is that she will be loved by her father, her siblings and the person who gave birth to her: her mother.
That word is not a slur.
Matthew Walther is editor of The Lamp magazine.
Share this article:
Source: Read Full Article