Gender vs. Sex

There is an ongoing debate on the use of the word gender versus sex. There are many conflicting opinions but currently, it is not correct to use one over the other. In the future, there will be more debate on the use of these words. Elizabeth Challinor challenges the practice of using gender when she believes sex should be used. Challinor brings in her perspective from living in Portugal contrasting with the United States, which is important because there are clear cultural differences. “Sex refers to the biological body” while gender in turn deals with cultural views assigned. It is easy to see how it can be difficult to use the “appropriate” word in varying situations.

This article highlights the ongoing issue of stereotypes particularly in the United States. Calling someone female or male comes with the expectations and values that culture has formed and assigned to them. When a baby is born in the US, parents will buy their children “male” colors such as blue or green for their room and clothing and the same applies for females. A change in the past that addresses this debate are gender-neutral or unisex bathrooms. In colleges such as Wheaton, they are commonplace but there is still much disagreement on whether to install them in more places. If we are working towards equality, there should be no problem. Our cultural ideals and habits are the reason why many are hesitant. Chanillor discusses equity, “addressing difference to achieve equality,” which is what should be done; we can not reach the main goal of equality between men and women without noticing mistakes and making an effort to change them.