On Genderless Language In The U.S. Congress

Kurt Mahlburg

In preparation for the upcoming 117th Congress, House Democrats from the Rules Committee have drafted a rules package that would eliminate all references to gender in the official rules of the nation’s Lower House.

The 45-page document will be introduced and voted on when the new Congress assembles later this week.

Under the proposal announced by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, “seamen” becomes “seafarers”, “Chairman” is replaced with “Chair”, and “Ombudsman” is abbreviated to “Ombuds”.

More substantially, all familial terms are to be altered — from father and mother to “parent”; son and daughter to “child”; and brother and sister to “sibling”.

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