Now this is my own fault, and I knew better at the time.
I put this question on my HEL final --
Q: Tell me about some of the efforts to eliminate sexism in language. Are these efforts a good idea?
Ai, my word, the answers I am getting!
This cannot be a controversial question anywhere except in Arkansas. Please tell me it is not. Please. I beg you.
No, of course I know better. I read Townhall and CWA, after all.
But these are my students. I've been teaching them for three years, some of them. And they still can spout things like, "Well, men and women are different, after all, so why shouldn't our language reflect that difference? I don't believe language ought to pretend we're just alike."
And: "Maybe sexist language is a problem but personally I hate political correctness and anyway we have bigger problems to worry about in this world. Anyway, no one's going to make me write that way, no matter what. I'll write what I want."
And: "I don't see what the big deal is. When I see mailman I don't think anything of it or when I see things like 'Mankind have made great advances in science,' that doesn't bother me one way or the other. Men do some things, women do other things. Who cares?"
Yes, indeed. Who does care?
Not my students. That's for sure.
9 hours ago