Monday, June 3, 2013

Dr. Money

I read about this case as a psychology major in college. [Warning: graphic content.] It was presented to us as proof that gender is a social construct. We were not told all the facts, though. It turns out that the experiment went terribly wrong, which should surprise no one. From Dale O'Leary:
The redefinition of gender began in the 1950s. In the past, the word ‘sex’ in the English language referred to the totality of what it means to be a man or a woman, while ‘gender’ was a grammatical term. Some words have gender – masculine, feminine, or neuter. English is an extremely un-gendered language. Only third person singular pronouns and a few nouns are gender specific. Compare this to Italian or Hebrew, where all nouns, adjectives, articles, and verbs in the second and third person singular and plural are either masculine or feminine.

Today in the United States, the government and commercial forms which used to ask for our sex now ask for our gender. On seeing this, many people have assumed that ‘gender’ is just a synonym for ‘sex,’ and that ‘gender’ was a more polite way of speaking, since ‘sex’ has a secondary meaning, namely as a shortened form for sexual intercourse. They didn’t see a problem.

But those pushing the use of the word ‘gender’ did not do so out of an over-scrupulous sense of propriety; for them ‘gender’ and ‘sex’ are not synonyms. ‘Sex’ refers only to biology, and ‘gender’ to the sex a person identifies with, which can be the same, or different from their biological sex.

The redefinition of ‘gender’ was engineered by John Money, who was on the staff of the prestigious Johns Hopkins in Baltimore, Maryland. Money was not an objective scientist, but an ‘agent provocateur of the sexual revolution’ who delighted in shocking people by his use of vulgarity and obscene photographs. He offered support to the movement to normalize sexual relationships between adult men and boys. He despised religion. (John Colapinto, As Nature Made Him) He promoted the idea that sexual identity could be broken down into its constituent parts – DNA, hormones, internal and external sexual organs, secondary sexual characteristics, and gender identity – the sex with which a person identifies. (Read entire article.)

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