UK NHS: No more referring to ‘mothers’; term is not ‘inclusive’

UK NHS: No more referring to ‘mothers’; term is not ‘inclusive’
National health care will save us all. (London Olympics 2012)

This development has been inevitable for some time, and I actually previewed it some six and a half years ago.

Britain’s National Health Service has come out with new guidance for communicating with patients.  The guidance tells doctors to stop calling pregnant women “expectant mothers,” and to refer to them instead as “pregnant people.”

The reason?  The NHS guidebook explains:

The Daily Mail revealed an official 14-page manual given to doctors and medical students entitled “A Guide To Effective Communication: Inclusive Language In The Workplace.”

“A large majority of people that have been pregnant or have given birth identify as women,” the guidebook says. “However, there are some intersex men and trans men who may get pregnant.”

“We can include intersex men and trans men who may get pregnant by saying ‘pregnant people’ instead of ‘expectant mothers,'” the guidebook adds.

Washington Free Beacon‘s Elizabeth Harrington observes (with, as far as we know, a straight face) that “no biological men have ever given birth.”

She goes on to report what Britain is dealing with right now:

The Daily Mail reported the change in policy came after an announcement that a trans man is four months pregnant. Hayden Cross, a biological woman who became pregnant “thanks to a sperm donor found on Facebook,” is waiting to have sex-change surgery until after the baby is born.

(Which, as it happens, we noted a few weeks ago.)

Claiming that the universal term “mother” is not “inclusive,” and should not be used in common speech with or about pregnant women, is inexpressibly deranged.

And what matters here is that rejecting the use of such a bedrock term — without which the unvarying experience of all mammal life cannot even be accurately described — is being made a government-backed policy.

This is a door opened to completely negating the natural family itself as “non-inclusive,” and therefore suspect; even, by extension — according to progressive-left reasoning — a form of “hateful” rejection of the unincluded.

The natural family is formed by a father and mother producing their own children.  It’s the only family that doesn’t require the supervisory intervention of the state to form and procreate, because it requires no declarations of law to override what is obvious to the observer.  Every other method of designating family membership is regulated a priori by the state, whether it’s adoption, artificial insemination, surrogate childbearing, or cross-gender role assignments.

I wrote about this in August 2010, predicting that the logic used to oppose California’s Proposition 8 (which defended traditional marriage) would ultimately come back to haunt the Prop 8 opponents who also endorsed “anchor baby” immigration.  You can’t repudiate the sex-role family relationships of the natural family, and yet also invoke them to insist on the rights of “mothers” to leverage “anchor babies” to get into the country.  If “mother” is not a unique, special role whose claims precede and compel law, then “mother” has no compelling relationship to an anchor baby.  You can’t have it both ways.

The upshot is logically that the state has the final say.  The state can separate anyone it wants to, at any time, because no one’s relationship has a moral standing that precedes the state’s authority.

This is part of what I wrote at the time:

Only the traditional male-female family can produce its own children and rear them without recourse to state policies, or to the state guarantees that have been instituted to act as surrogates for the self-sustaining “nuclear family.”

Because this is human nature’s core grouping, and history has proven it to be the most economically powerful and flexible one, it has been natural for the state to recognize it over the centuries.  The state didn’t set it up; the state recognizes its prior claims.  One of its principal features, for the state’s purposes, is that it is the situation for children in which they are not assumed to need rescue or preemptive surveillance by the state.  The state’s presumption today is still in favor of the nuclear traditional family rearing its natural children.

In 2017, the state’s presumption is still, precariously, in favor of the nuclear family and its natural children.  But the NHS action in Britain shows us where that’s headed.  It is literally insane to tell doctors not to use the word “mother” — but here we are.  Society is not taking us in this direction.  Government policy is.

Draw your own conclusions about why this is happening.  But in a pragmatic sense, the why is not as important as the what.  Knowing the “what,” we have every reason and every right to stop this in its tracks, should it try to erupt on our shores.  No purpose of “inclusion” justifies the entire human race in losing its mind, and submitting its most basic relationships to the armed supervision of bureaucratic ideologues.

J.E. Dyer

J.E. Dyer

J.E. Dyer is a retired Naval Intelligence officer who lives in Southern California, blogging as The Optimistic Conservative for domestic tranquility and world peace. Her articles have appeared at Hot Air, Commentary’s Contentions, Patheos, The Daily Caller, The Jewish Press, and The Weekly Standard.

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