Physics conference urges attendees to wear 'pronoun stickers'

Anthony Gockowski
Contributing Editor/Investigative Reporter

  • The American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) encouraged attendees of its winter summit to wear “pronoun stickers” in order to “reduce instances of misgendering.”
  • The American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) encouraged attendees of its winter summit to wear “pronoun stickers” in order to “reduce instances of misgendering.”

    Organizers of the seasonal gathering were apparently so concerned about the prospect of “misgendering” that they even cautioned participants entering the meeting to “get [their] pronoun sticker!”

    “Gender can be fluid, and many of the people you will encounter...fall at various places across the spectrum.”   

    [RELATED: UMich to profs: don’t say ‘ladies and gentlemen,’ ‘mom and dad’]

    “As part of ongoing efforts to improve inclusiveness at AAPT National Meetings, we are providing stickers with pronouns that can be attached to name badges,” a sign welcoming attendees at this winter’s meeting stated, going on to suggest that such a practice will “make it easy” for “people to communicate their pronoun sets to others, especially for people who use uncommon pronouns or who have recently changed which pronouns they use.”

    Additionally, the “pronoun stickers” apparently help attendees to “know which pronouns to use for someone [they] just met, especially if [they’re] unsure” about another’s pronouns while prompting “conversations among AAPT members about gender, and [raising] awareness that gender is complicated.”

    The sign goes on to explain that in addition to the standard “she/her/hers and he/him/his” pronouns, other “pronoun sets include they/them/theirs and ze/zir/zirs,” each of which “includes subjective, objective, and possessive cases.”

    “Gender can be fluid, and many of the people you will encounter at WM17 [Winter Meeting 17] will fall at various places across the spectrum,” the sign goes on to assert, explaining that its intent is to “reduce instances of misgendering” by asking those at the meeting to “use the pronouns indicated on attendees’ name badges.”

    [RELATED: Vermont college hands out pronoun pins to incoming freshmen]

    What’s more, the sign invited participants of AAPT’s winter meeting to avail themselves of “several resources, including workshops on “creating inclusive environments” and “keeping underrepresented groups in physics” plus a “meet-up for members and supporters of the LGBTQ community.”

    Expressing its unequivocal support for the sign, the AAPT later re-tweeted a picture of the sign posted by a conference attendee praising the pronoun sticker concept as “a simple way to be inclusive.”

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @AGockowski





    Anthony Gockowski

    Anthony Gockowski

    Contributing Editor/Investigative Reporter

    Anthony Gockowski is the Contributing Editor and an Investigative Reporter for Campus Reform. He previously worked for The Daily Caller, Intercollegiate Review, The Catholic Spirit, and The College Fix.

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