Am I Male?

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

In advance of an upcoming elective surgery, I have been on the phone with personnel from a local Tucson hospital to provide my medical history, insurance coverage, and other required information. The hospital does a great job and its employees are personable, professional, and thorough.

A charming woman asked me on one of the calls what my gender identity is.

Before answering the question, I said, “I know you’re required to ask the question, but I bet you get a lot of grief over it.”

She responded with a sigh, “For sure.”

The question is silly on more than one level, but particularly so in light of the fact that the surgical procedure in question can only be done on men who are biologically male, have all of their natural appendages, and want to keep all of them.

Anyway, I answered the question by saying, “I am a male.” Then I added, “But let me get a second opinion from my wife, who is standing here.”

“Honey, am I a male?”

She answered, “You’re not only a male but also an Italian stallion.”

Okay, that’s not what she said, but I’m not going to lose more of my male pride by repeating what she actually said.

After chuckling, the hospital employee said, “I’m required to ask a related question: What are your preferred pronouns?”

All kinds of smartass answers came to mind, but not wanting to exceed the patience of the employee, I replied, “he, him, his.”

Reflecting on the conversation, I am struck by how the idea of tolerance—of living and let live—has morphed into a national fetish for fairness and a mass pathological fear of possibly being seen as insensitive, intolerant, and unenlightened.

Small but vocal groups, claiming to be victims of horrendous injustices, have people and institutions jumping through hoops, engaging in inane communications, and wasting time and money in keeping records of the inanities so as not to be sued or canceled.

And it’s happening with regard to many more issues than just gender identity.

In going along with the silliness and being powerless to do anything about it, I feel like a gelding instead of a stallion.


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