UT’s Non-neutral Policy on Gender Neutrality (September 9, 2015)
University of Tennessee President Joe DiPietro wants to convince Tennesseans that the suggestion on the University’s website that faculty and students stop assuming a man is a “he” and a “woman” is a “she” is no big deal because it’s not an “official” policy. People can use gender-neutral pronouns if they want to.
That has the appearance of neutrality, but it is not neutral. It is not neutral because it does not say that men should be called by masculine pronouns and women should be called by feminine pronouns. It is the non-neutral view that says, “Whatever works for you is fine, there is no real standard.” That is a standard and therefore, by definition, not neutral.
Not knowing there is no such thing as ethical neutrality is not a good sign for an institution of supposed “higher” learning.”
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