X Marks the Spot


What the heck is that? I see the word a lot lately.

I finally figured out why media people have started using it. A Latino is a male Hispanic. A Latina is a female Hispanic. The words look like they apply only to Hispanics from Latin America, not from Spain. Dunno. Maybe.

So “Latinx” is an English word that means Hispanic. It’s used when you either don’t want to specify the person’s sex or you believe in the reigning orthodoxy that sex doesn’t matter (Fallon Fox undoubtedly agrees). It’s very chic.

Hispanics often have more common sense than norteamericanos, so I’ll be surprised if they abandon gendered pronouns in Spanish such as “él” (he) and “ella” (she). They do have some gender-neutral words: you can say “alguien” to mean “someone” if you don’t want to specify the person’s sex, and use “alguno” or “alguna” if you do. However, nouns are gendered: a doctor is still un médico if male and una médica if female. A policeman is un policia and a policewoman is una mujer policia (a woman policeman).

Check out my new book Why Sane People Believe Crazy Things: How Belief Can Help or Hurt Social Peace. Kirkus Reviews called it an “impressively nuanced analysis.”

About N.S. Palmer

N.S. Palmer is an American mathematician.
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4 Responses to X Marks the Spot

  1. J P says:

    My first thought was that it might involve the Latin language and St. Pius X. I guess I was wrong.

    I keep thinking that I am no longer surprised at the lengths people will go to erase gender. So I’ve been wrong a lot this morning.


    • N.S. Palmer says:

      I think that gender ideology is tragically mistaken. Attempts by government, media, and schools to re-engineer human nature are likely to cause as much damage and human suffering as the USSR’s attempts to create “the New Soviet Man.” Newspeak is just part of that effort.


  2. Uri says:

    Slovene has (grammatically speaking) 3 genders. Male, Female, Neutral. We have 3 verb groups (one for each gender) and each group has 4-6 forms. On the other hand, Finnish and Japanese have no gender. I was fascinated by this when I started to learn them.

    When writing in English in IT field, I noticed 15 years ago a tendency to change a reference to a user from him to her. Logically it makes sense to either choose randomly, flip a coin or 50/50, but to just switch to her, just because it used to be he and that’s not politically correct any longer, doesn’t make much sense to me.

    Recently I discovered a word SHERO as female HERO. What happened to HEROINE? I did some googling and discovered that the word “hero” has actually become gender neutral. “Heroine still appears from time to time in reference to female real-life heros, but it is increasingly rare.” That’s news to me, but English is my 2nd language.

    I’m all for progress, but there has to be some common sense present, not just for the sake of change and disruption of the old ways.


    • N.S. Palmer says:

      Change can occur for good reasons or bad reasons. Maybe 75 years ago, it made sense for writers to use “he” and “man” as gender-neutral words. However, as women increasingly entered the workplace, it made sense to replace “he” with “he or she” and “man” with “people.” I have no problem with that, though I absolutely refuse to desecrate the English language by using “they” as a gender-neutral replacement for “he” or “she.”

      Bad reasons for change include the belief that old ways are wrong just because they’re old, and that society must be destroyed just because it’s there. That’s mindless nihilism and doesn’t benefit anyone.

      Liked by 1 person

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