Cornell has been on a roll lately, topping all elite universities in number of Ashley Madison accounts affiliated with university email addresses and clocking in as the 4th most liberal college–highest among the Ivy League–according to faculty political donations.
But, just when we thought we had it all, Harvard swooped in and took all the glory.
New to this year, students enrolling in Harvard’s Arts and Sciences undergraduate college can now indicate their preferred pronouns when registering. According to the Harvard Crimson, students can select options such as “ze, hir, hirs” and “they, them, theirs” in addition to being able to type in their own preferred pronouns.
Faculty of Arts and Sciences Registrar Michael P. Burke said the new options “make students feel more comfortable with their gender identity.”
The move might also cut down on instances of “microaggressions” at Harvard, since identifying students by their incorrect gender pronoun qualifies as a such, according to Genny Beemyn, the director of The Stonewall Center, a resource center for LGBTQ and allied communities at the University of Massachusetts Amherst as quoted in the Boston Globe.
The notion that one can choose his/her/its/their/hir/hirs preferred pronouns seems to be the latest SJW crusade catching on at universities across the country. The University of Tennessee’s similar policy made headlines about a week ago.
I have to ask: if I feel like I’m actually two people, can I use first-person plural when we refer to ourselves? What if we prefer that whenever you refer to us, you have to say “them”? And can we impose upon you what we want you to call hir? Because we actually want you to replace “hir” with “you.” And if you wish to be referred to in first-person plural, we can certainly call us that.
Alternatively, what if we prefer no pronouns? Removing pronouns from the English language would make it a lot easier to learn, giving everyone more time to devise ways to eliminate microaggressions.
Lots of food for thought. In the mean time, you can call me Al.