Who Is Doing More for Gender Neutrality —Sweden or the U.S.?
Majid Ali, M.D.
If Sweden is your answer to the above question, you are in good company. Below are a number of quotes from an article on the subject published in Times magazine of November 4, 2013 which full support your answer. If the U.S. is your answer, you have at least me on your side. I will explain why I think the U.S. has done—and continues to do—more for gender neutrality than Sweden. Here is a clue: Swedes are concerned about gender neutrality in social and economic sense, while I see the problem more in biologic terms. Let is first consider the evidence for the Sweden choice. Below are excerpts from the Times’ article:
“Spend a few days in Sweden, and you’ll encounter many efforts to erode gender distinctions. And that includes hearing people referred to by a newly popular, gender-neutral pronoun.”
“When, in the early 1970s, the Swedish government began actively promoting women’s rights, even feminists could hardly have imagined the successes to come: near parity in political representation, a near leveling of the playing field in the workplace and fathers who share, if not equally then at least significantly, in the raising of their children. But if Sweden has gone further than almost any other country in the world to eradicate gender discrimination, it has not been content to rest on its laurels. In education, in the media, in sports and sex and shopping and even in its choice of pronouns, the Scandinavian nation is grappling in new ways with the boundaries that have traditionally defined the genders. Sweden has now reached a critical turning point, moving beyond mainstream feminist goals like equal pay and equal opportunity toward a society where gender doesn’t matter.”
“That sense — that even with all its advances, things in Sweden are still not good enough — helps explain why the country’s government and other institutions have expanded their goals to include the erosion of gender itself: that is, the roles and assumptions associated with each sex. “I don’t think we’ll get to the point where there are no boundaries whatsoever,” says journalist P.M. Nilsson, who was commissioned by the government to write a report on men’s issues. “But in terms of expanding the options of what it means to be a man or a woman, yes, we’re definitely moving toward a more gender-neutral society.”
What the U.S. Has and Is Doing for Gender Neutrality
For several years I have written extensively about the phenomenon of what I have designate as “gender cbecoming boylike, boys become girl-like, women becoming men-like and men becoming women-like. Below, I reproduce some text from a companion article entitled “The Age of Gender Devolution—Boylike Girls. Girl-like Boys, Men-like Women, and Women-like Men.”
“My truest teachers, my patients, have taught me an important lesson: Changing blood testosterone levels are one of the two single best markers for long-term deterioration in health. Simply stated, falling rising testosterone levels without supplementation with the hormone or its precursors in men indicate long-term deterioration in general health in men. On the other hand, rising testosterone levels without hormone-modifying therapies indicate long-term deterioration in health in women. Rising insulin levels—insulin toxicity of varying degrees—indicate indicate long-term deterioration in general health in women and men.”