In another move to disconnect from reality, in the 2022 Federal budget proposal, the word “mother” has been replaced by the term “birthing people”. 

USA Today featured a headline: “They gave birth and love their children. And they want to remind you ‘not all pregnant people are women.’”

While this is obviously a move to be “inclusive” to women who feel like men, who give birth, an immense group is obviously excluded. They go by the term women. They are the mothers who define themselves in part by their bearing and nurturing role who are suddenly erased from the document.

Will it become offensive to say the word “mother” because it isn’t inclusive enough? It is almost hard to believe this discussion is taken seriously.

One writer noted, “Critics of gender-inclusive terminology argue that it reduces women to their mechanical reproductive abilities, insults their special nurturing and child-rearing gifts, and diminishes the unique joys and challenges of the female experience.”

Oklahoma Senator James Lankford had this conversation in the Senate with Xavier Becerra, United States Secretary of Health and Human Services:

Lankford: I also noticed you changed a term in your budget work. You shifted from using the term “mother” to “birthing people,” rather than mother. Can you help me get a good definition of “birthing people”?

Becerra: I’ll check on the language there, but I think if we’re talking about those who give birth, I think we’re talking about…I don’t know how else to explain it to you other than…

Lankford: I was a little taken aback when I just read it and saw that the term mother was gone in spots and it was replaced with “birthing people”…is this a direction you are going…regulatory changes that are happening or what the purpose of that is.

Becerra: I think it’s probably—and again I’d have to go back and take a look at the language that was used in the budget—but I think again it simply reflects the work that’s being done.

Lankford: The language is important always…would you at least admit that calling a mom a “birthing person” could be offensive…that they don’t want to get a ‘Happy birthing person card’ in May. Can you at least admit that term itself could be offensive to some moms? 

Becerra: Senator, I’ll go back and take a look a look at terminology that was used and I could get back to you, but again if we’re trying to be precise in the language that’s used.  

From National Review: “A similar movement has emerged among some progressive circles, and in certain hospitals in England, to refer to ‘breast-feeding’ as ‘chest-feeding.’ In January, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi proposed a series of House rule revisions that include ditching the use of gendered terms and pronouns for more inclusive ones, namely ‘he’ and ‘she’ for ‘they.’