Facebook’s 50 “Gender Options” for Users

Barb Wire

It really doesn’t get any more ridiculous than this!  Looks like Facebook has finally outdone itself.  Hey, they’ve even outdone Baskin Robbins’ 31 flavors.  As of Thursday this week, Facebook’s 159 million monthly users in the U.S. have about 50 “exciting” gender “options” to choose from…Oh, BOY…oops, that’s NOT one of the options!  It’s the social network’s “50 Shades of Grey for Dummies.”  Not only is it possible to customize our car or kitchen, now FB fans have the ability to “customize” their gender. (This explains my sudden urge to hit the nonexistent “dislike” button.)

There’s Androgynous, Bi-gender, Intersex, Gender Fluid (Ew, that sounds messy!), Agender, Trans Female, Trans Male, Trans Person, Gender Variant, Gender Questioning, Cisgender, Pangender, Transsexual, Other, or NEITHER.  Excuse me!  How can someone be a “neither,” doesn’t everybody have to be a something?  Never mind…there I go being all passé and antiquated again. Sadly, though, hermaphrodite didn’t “make the cut,” but “Two-Spirit,” whatever in the world or other-world that means, did get included.  Is Two-Spirit anything like Bi-Polar?  The anatomical angst is so thick in the air that we can almost cut it with a knife.  J.D. Salinger couldn’t have done any better if he tried.

It’s called being “gender-expansive,” don’t you know?  Come on, people, it’s time to get with the program already!  Never mind the fact that most of us will need to get out the very latest edition of the dictionary just to figure out what most of these terms mean, but maybe that’s supposed to be part of the process and joy of self-discovery.  (Trust me, I wouldn’t know, but it sounds more like “gender DIS-orientation” to me.)

People can also select their preferred pronoun choices too!  They can opt for “he/him” or “she/her,” or the neutral “they/their” choice.  Uh, what?  “They/Their?”  Since when did individuals start referring to themselves in the PLURAL form?  Apparently the pronoun “it” was out of the question.

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“Facebook users from across the country have been asking for the ability to reflect their gender accurately, and today Facebook showed they have been listening,” said Allison Palmer, former GLAAD vice president.

And Masen Davis, executive director of the San Francisco-based Transgender Law Center, “We applaud Facebook for making it possible for people to be their authentic selves online.”

Oh, now I get it, Facebook has decided to aim for the highest ideals of “accuracy” and “authenticity.”  I guess that means FB has been wrong for the last ten years, but they are finally leaving the Dark Ages behind them.  It’s all starting to make sense to me now…that’s sarcasm for those of you who are unfortunately too flummoxed to figure out your gender.  There are, however, at least some anatomical clues that should serve to clear up the confusion.  I suggest that a full-length mirror might be helpful in figuring such things out.

What HRC President Chad Griffen heralds as a “milestone” for Facebook seems more like a cultural “millstone” hanging around our neck, plunging our society downward into the depths of depravity.  But that’s nothing new, the HRC and I have never seen eye-to-eye on such things.  What they call “diversity” really means “perversity.”  And what they call “liberty” is actually “licentiousness.”  After all, they’ve had a lot of practice lately in the redefining business.  So, why should gender be any different for them?

If the gender benders are looking for an “inclusive” descriptive qualifier, then I have a suggestion that fits them all to a “T”… they’re really “Something Else!”

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

Jeff Allen is both a senior editor and columnist for BarbWire. He also serves as senior pastor in a mainline Christian church in Indiana. He is an ordained elder in the Church of the Nazarene. Jeff is involved in several community ministries.

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