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Why are we calling mothers ‘birthing persons’?| COMMENTARY

Birthing people or mothers? What should we call people who deliver babies?
Birthing people or mothers? What should we call people who deliver babies? (Dreamstime/TNS)

If moms are “birthing persons” then what are dads on Father’s Day?

Americans were bombarded with ads for gifts for that special day for fathers. Should I say “sperm contributors” in preparation for our complete capitulation to the woke?

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The “sperm contributor” in your life might have wanted that leather chair, or aftershave he’ll never use, a box of fine Maduro cigars, a fly-fishing shirt, or perhaps Orwell’s “1984” and a bottle of Glenmorangie 18 to wash it down.

And on the special day of the gifts, he might have wanted to grill something for the children and the “birthing person” who brought them into the world.

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That’s what mothers are called now, by the federal government, some scientists and by the left: “birthing persons.”

Orwell was right, the first thing they do is ratchet down the language to squeeze the life out of your mind.

President Joe Biden’s federal budget proposal in a section on infant mortality rates officially calls mothers birthing people. As does the Harvard Medical School, the National Institutes of Health and other agencies. Democrats use “birthing persons” but sometimes hedge their bets and also use “mothers.” The stress must hurt really bad.

So, rather than call people stupid fools for not applauding this trend, I decided on a radical plan: asking people what they thought of it.

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Most women who are mothers don’t like the “birthing person” bit. But I didn’t have the heart to tell them they’ll be sent to a reeducation camp if they persist.

“I’m not a birthing person” said Linda Blanco, “those were the medical personnel on hand when my female body gave birth to my children. I became a mother prior to the birthing process when I carried the children in my womb. If ‘birthing person’ replaces mother, what term replaces father? ‘Sperm contributor?’ "

Excellent take Linda Blanco. The contention that females must have wombs to give birth is a bit of science fraught with peril.

“The use of the phrase ‘birthing person’ as opposed to ‘mother’ is yet another example of the science-denying idiocy that is on full display among many on the progressive left,” says Janet Helwig Fortney. “This idiocy must be denounced for exactly what it is.”

But where else in Chicago would you read it being denounced, except here?

“In my opinion this is no big deal,” says Melinda Abney Kaiser. “A woman who gives birth may be carrying the baby for another person/couple, may be biologically unrelated to the baby, planning to place the baby up for adoption. Some people who give birth are biologically female but live as a male and do not consider themselves a ‘mother.’ I am the person who gave birth to my children, a simple fact, and choose to be called their mother, but it’s not my business if someone chooses another path or uses different language.”

Who says I’m not ecumenical? And I agree that people may call themselves what they wish. But “birthing person” is the language now of the federal government and government-funded science. So, it isn’t just another person’s decision about what to call themselves. It’s controlling language, officially imposed. And that’s serious. Why not throw out the mother with the bathwater?

“How embarrassing to be a liberal, knowing this is BS yet keeping your mouth shut in compliance,” writes Robert Zaleski. “Cringeworthy.”

Yes, but if you really want cringeworthy, watch CNN returning lefty legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin to its lineup after he was put on leave eight months ago for exposing himself during a Zoom meeting with editorial staff at The New Yorker. But he’s of the left and so is embraced upon his return. That’s modern journalism for you.

Let’s leave the discussion of journalism, which is “fraught,” and get back to “birthing people.”

“I am now and will always be a mother,” says L. Feddor Cappozzo. “My greatest pride is in telling my children we once shared a heartbeat. And now I have the pleasure of having the name of grandmother. I don’t ever wish to be referred to as birthing person. It’s insane and insulting. I can’t speak for any woman but myself. The things one goes through in pregnancy, the morning sickness, swollen ankles, food cravings, sleepless nights as you can’t get comfortable, then the raging hormones.”

“Birthing people? As a mother I am beyond insulted and so should every other mother. The womb of a woman is the most sacred place in the world,” writes Christine Trzos. “What has happened to the adults in the room? Is there no common sense left in our society?”

There are a few. But in Chicago, we hide in cells of three lest we be discovered.

“I am a mother, not a birthing person,” says Jan Peron. “The latter disparages the essence of motherhood and women.”

Exactly. And isn’t that the point?

Will there come a day when fed-up Americans push back against all this stuff? Yes.

They will push back hard.

It begins.

John Kass is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune. His e-mail address is jskass@chicagotribune.com, and his Twitter handle is @john_kass.

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