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Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 6,896
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??

I think I need to go find a rerun of the Adams Family and see what Cousin It is up to.  May get rid of my headache watching them/they/he or she.

"Live frugally, but love extravagantly."
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Registered: ‎02-05-2018

Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??


@OKPrincess wrote:

Wouldn’t the singular non gender form of she or he be “it”? 

 

Where is it going on vacation? Is that what is meant?


People are not objects and "it" is for objects. When you use that term, you dehumanize the person. Dehumanizing people makes it easier for people to discriminate against them because they don't see the people as human.

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Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??

Well, you can always use "thee" "thou" and "ye".  Look it up.  It works. 

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Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??

[ Edited ]

I think the term they, when speaking  about a trans, could be useful. There is a young person ,we suspect in transitioning, and I am not sure what to call them. I am afraid either saying he or she, might make people think we are making fun of them , and the term " It "sounds like you don't even consider them ,to be a person

 

Mr Cherry brought this up to me ,after we had seen them checking out our groceries. I wouldn't deliberately make fun of anyone, and we both didn't know what was the correct way to  use a pronoun in this case ,is.

 

 

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Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??


@sxmgirl wrote:

I would not ignore this.  No matter that we live in a changing world, proper grammar is expected from adults and no amount of ridiculous college rules set by professors who have never had a real job is going to change that.  I have been an adjunct professor (business) and I always brought in the real world to my students.  I worry that common sense is going by the wayside.

 

If I am paying for my child's education, then I have an expectation of certain things to show for my money.  One of those things is that proper grammar is used.  Other than ridiculous social media norms, do businesses really hire people who cannot communicate effectively anymore?  


Proper grammar isn't permanent and changes with time. The singular "they" has been in use for hundreds of years: 
https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/singular-nonbinary-they

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Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??

[ Edited ]

@JohnnyEager wrote:

I think that it's primarily non-binaries who insist on being called "they" .

 

True transgenders mainly indentify with the pronoun of their new gender.

 

Otherwise you're a cis-gender.

 

I know, I know.......


 

I agree, @JohnnyEager. Some people use it in solidarity, which gets confusing. I'm supportive but too lazy to change my own pronouns to show my support.

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Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??

[ Edited ]

I am still scratching my head as to why we call women actresses:  Actors

 

The word actress is still in Webster's Dictionary ... why not use it?

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Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??

Absolute craziness! Vendors and the hosts on QVC refer to clothing items and handbags as "her", but we're supposed to ignore the correct pronoun for male and female.   I will continue to use him, her, he, she. 

This will probably cause this thread to be shut down;  I'm saying it anyway.  The percentage of the population that is transgender is miniscule, yet that percentage seems to be being portrayed as if it were huge.  Everyone, with some exceptions, deserves to be treated kindly.  So, the transgender individuals absolutely should be treated with kindness.  However, as a society we should understand they are a very, very small minority.  Our language doesn't need to be changed.  

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Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??


@Vivian Florimond wrote:

The English language has a problem. We have the plural, «they», but we do not have a singular equivalent. We have either he or she but what if we don’t know the gender of the person referenced? The French have the word “on” which can mean he, she, they, we...just about anyone. We have the word “one” as in “One doesn’t do that.” but it sounds stilted and awkward.

 

When I’m in France, I use that word «on» all the time. It eliminates the passive voice, which the French don’t like using and the pronoun can refer to anyone. We often use the word «they» to refer to one person, even though it’s incorrect. We just don’t have a good alternative. There’s a similar issue with the pronoun «you.» It’s the same in the singular and in the plural. That’s why we have regional expressions like «yous» and «you all» to make the distinction between a single «you» and a plural «you.» With all the words in the English language, you’d think someone ccould have created a few more pronouns,


Yes! I absolutely agree, @Vivian Florimond!  I work in a company with offices all over the globe. When I see names of people from other countries, I frequently have no idea what the person's gender is. That makes email correspondence difficult when I get a request from a manager about an employee and have to refer to the person by name multiple times because I don't know which pronoun to use. "Please have X log into X's account and to verify permissions. If X encounters further issues, have X contact me." It's awful and we need a solution.

 

I'm not in love with the singular "they/them" solution, but it seems to be the only one we have. I've seen small groups try to invent a new gender-free pronoun and that's even worse. If you think there's disagreement about they/them, try getting everyone to agree to use some new made-up word and see how that goes.

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Re: Using 'they' or 'them'??

beckyb1012 wrote:

I think I need to go find a rerun of the Adams Family and see what Cousin It is up to.  May get rid of my headache watching them/they/he or she.