“He created them male and female and blessed them. And he named them “Mankind” when they were created. (Genesis 5:2 NIV)
Poor God. He, or maybe I should say, “It,” was so behind the times. If the deity had only gone to Princeton University and had its consciousness raised…
Princeton, that once great school whose purpose at its founding in 1746 was to train ministers and whose motto remains Dei Sub Numine Viget (Under God’s Power She Flourishes), has, like other schools of “higher” learning, jumped into the deep end of the pool of political correctness.
Just in time for the fall semester, Princeton has issued “Guidelines for Using Gender Inclusive Language.” The guidelines, approved by the university’s Office of Human Resources and Office of Communications and endorsed by the Orwellian-like Institutional Equity Planning Group as a preferred University practice, show you where this is headed.
“Gender-inclusive language is writing and speaking about people in a manner that does not use gender-based words,” says the guidelines. “Gender binary is the traditional view on human gender, which does not take into consideration individuals who identify as otherwise, including and not limited to transgender, genderqueer, gender nonconforming, and/or intersex.”
Gone are references to men and women, male and female. It’s what’s in your head, not your genitalia, that defines you and me.
Though Princeton insists this is not policy, merely guidelines, and no words are banned, it encourages the use of a vocabulary that is more gender neutral. So, instead of man and wife use spouses or partners. Instead of man made, use artificial, handmade, manufactured, synthetic. Gone is the verb to man, as in to work something, instead use to operate or to staff. Throw out workmanlike and replace it with skillful.
No more actresses, only actors. Coed? Out. Replaced by student. Forefathers? Gone. Ancestors is the preferred word. Forget freshman. It’s now first-year student or frosh.
If students play Scrabble on campus, this could be a problem. A search of WordFind.com turns up scores of words with man in them. They include manifest. How will history students be able to study Manifest Destiny, a philosophy central to the creation and sustaining of America? What about the manna from Heaven eaten by the ancient Israelites? OK, that’s easy. It can be called bread. Will they no longer serve a Manwich in the Princeton cafeteria?