Hey, all you paleontological bigots — get 2019 woke and stop being a dinosaur. To…dinosaurs.
At Chicago’s Field Museum sits a whole bunch of dead, old stuff — mummies, taxidermied lions…and a giant Tyrannosaurus.
The 40-foot T-Rex is about to enter the realm of politics, taking position as a lesson for young tykes and an example for those of us who wanna challenge the dictates of our birth: “SUE” the dinosaur skeleton is about to become an icon of non-binary sex.
From Arc Digital:
[Field Museum’s] administrators have decided to distort scientific understanding in pursuit of a political goal. In recent years, through her social media persona, SUE has asserted her gender identity. It all started on Twitter in March 2017. Reacting to a comment, SUE tweeted that her sex was unknown and that, like human gender non-binary people, she uses “they/them” pronouns.
Arc writer Richard T. Pillardy asserts that animals don’t have gender aspirations:
While it is true that her sex is indeterminate, this move conflates the exclusively human concept of gender and the incontrovertible reality of binary sex.
The move goes against the whole idea of “gender” as opposed to sex — and SUE’s possibly a dummy, or at least not confused:
In addition to misinforming visitors, the museum’s patronizing move in deeming SUE non-binary disrespects and misunderstands the very non-binary individuals it purports to help. The legitimacy of their identity need not rest on inaccurate interpretations of science, and it’s degrading to imagine that it should. The very concept of gender identity as distinct from sex was created to assert that human male, female, and other identity expressions were facts which were mental and social, not genital. With apologies to SUE and her reptilian cousins, they simply don’t have enough going on in their minds to express gender non-binary identity. Not to mention, we do not know anything about the mind of an animal whose brain rotted away maybe a million years before the Chicxulub asteroid event wiped out the rest of the T. rex species anyway.
Given that no one knows SUE’s actual sex, Richard makes a great point about pronouns to respect the dinosaur’s delicate sensibilities:
So, given the lack of conclusive evidence either way, it is most parsimonious to hold off on formally assigning SUE’s sex. There’s a perfect pronoun for that already: it.
Perhaps once the museum gets some real social justice cojones, they’ll commit to a sex — and then woke it up, Jack: “Ladies and gentleman, we’re proud to announce SUE, the first Trannosaurus.”
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