It sure was a pretty something


I saw a news item a couple of weeks ago that said, “MTV gets rid of gender-specific categories for awards.”

The ABC News story quoted an MTV honcho explaining, “This audience actually doesn’t see male-female dividing lines, so we said, ‘Let’s take that down.’”

The story noted that “MTV appears to be following the lead of the Grammy Awards, which did away with gender-specific categories for singers, collaborations and groups back in 2011.”

A few years ago, I noticed that the Screen Actors Guild had dropped the term “actress” from its official presentations. Instead they referred to “Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor” and “Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor.” Be assured, the “male” and “female” descriptions will be next to go.

I’m not sure what’s wrong with the word “actress,” but I have to admit it still jars me when I am watching an actress on a talk show or some other interview refer to herself or a female colleague as an “actor,” as in, “She’s one of the great actors of our time.”

You certainly have to be a great actress to play an actor, my old-fashioned brain thinks to itself.

Of course, this all plays into the latest Newspeak craze of eliminating references to different genders altogether. In an age when we’re not supposed to differentiate between restrooms because doing so is discriminatory, it follows that we should not think of anyone as male or female, but instead merely as unidentifiable sentient life forms containing only the vaguest sexual denomination.

It is unfortunate that so many in our world confuse equality with identicalness. I am the first to advocate that men and women should be treated equally in regard to education, the workplace, government and so on.

But men and women being equal does not equate to men and women being identical. That’s where we’re headed, though, which is one quick way to resolve any perceived disparities in pay or promotions between men and women – if no one is defined as a man or a woman, there can be no disparities.

“Male and female created He them,” we’re told in Genesis, but God obviously had outdated thinking. Today, you are what you identify as being – a man, a woman, take your pick. I’m thinking about identifying as a 7-foot center for the Boston Celtics, and if I don’t get drafted I might sue the NBA. We live in an age where it’s not that preposterous.

In all honesty, most people don’t care what other people do. Identify as whoever you want to be, and best of luck. Political correctness is a fine thing to the degree that it means simply observing the rules of basic politeness and etiquette. We should be polite to each other.

But when the most outrageous behavior demands to be recognized and even codified into law, and when political correctness becomes so ingrained as to prevent us from calling ridiculous that which is ridiculous, it has gone too far.

It is going to be very difficult for the next generation to express its appreciation for the opposite sex in the years to come, since officially there will be no recognition of an opposite sex.

We will witness the elimination of gender-specific personal pronouns and instead engage in conversations like this: “I saw the most appealing person yesterday at the mall. It was really good-looking. I think it smiled at me.”

Asking follow-up questions will be nearly impossible. No one will be permitted to inquire, “Was it tall? Short? Fat? Skinny? Young? Old? Black? White?” Those are all discriminatory descriptions that no one will dare utter, even in private.

Most scandalous of all will be someone with the gall to ask this outmoded question: “Was it a man or a woman?” Such an inquiry will likely be greeted with a report to the authorities and, at the very least, a requirement to attend sensitivity training.

If you think this is an exaggeration, you have not been paying attention to current events. Miley Cyrus, the renowned activist and philosopher, recently came out as “pansexual.” Just when we all think we’re up to date, we now have “pansexual.”

What is pansexual? Pansexual is defined as someone who is “not limited in sexual choice with regard to biological sex, gender, or gender identity.” Miley Cyrus is pansexual. Come to think of it, me too! Although I might change my mind tomorrow.

Consider this – we live in an age where Miley Cyrus is treated by some as a serious person.

For those who are in favor of the current trends, God bless you. I try to respect everyone. But I respectfully resist the notion that we simply are who we say we are, and I’d recommend another reading of Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Emperor’s New Clothes,” encouraging us all to be as the little child at the end of the tale. Google it.

In the meantime, as we live through the de-gendering of America, enjoy your manhood or womanhood while you can. Acknowledging gender differences in any form will soon be committing the transgression of “gender-ism,” subject to societal ostracization.

So just for old times’ sake, allow me to make this observation while I still can: There sure are a lot of pretty actresses in Hollywood, females every one.

Reach Gary Abernathy at 937-393-3456 or by email at [email protected].

By Gary Abernathy

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