Says it’s because state recognizes non-binary as gender

California State Senator and Senate Judiciary Committee chair Hannah-Beth Jackson (D) announced this week that “gender neutral” pronouns will be used during committee hearings.

Why?

Jackson said that new committee rules recognize California’s designation of “non-binary” as a gender. The words “he and she” will now become “what my grammar teacher would have had a heart attack over,” the senator said. The committee will use the word “they” instead, because it is gender-neutral, Jackson said.

“Basically, that’s the primary reforms and revisions to the committee rules,” she said.

Jackson also said that as the chair, she will now be known as “they,” to keep in line with “the spirit of gender neutrality for the rules of this committee.”

“So, the world is a different place. My grammar teacher’s long gone and we won’t be hearing from her,” Jackson said.

She then corrected her use of the word “her.”

“From them…from they,” Jackson said, illustrating the foolish confusion created by the new rule.

California in 2017 became the first state to create a “non-binary” designation for legal documents and drivers licenses. Governor Jerry Brown signed SB179, the Gender Recognition Act, which allows Californians to select an “option x” or “non-binary” option on drivers licenses, birth certificates, marriage licenses, and other state documents.

Democratic state senator Scott Wiener introduced the bill, and touted it as a way to allow California residents to “be who they are.”

What are other states doing?

In January, New York City joined Oregon, California, Washington and New Jersey in allowing individuals to choose a non-binary gender option on their birth certificate, NBC News reported.

California, Maine, Oregon and Washington, D.C., all allow residents to declare a non-binary gender marker on their driver’s license. The organization IGRP keeps a running list of other states considering similar measures.

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