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Old 31st May 2022, 10:06 PM   #1
Robin
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What does "identifies as" mean

Some people thought it worthwhile to find out what "identifies as means.

Here is how I see it.

A identifies as X = A says he is X
B identifies as X = A says she is X
C identifies as X = C says she is X
Repeat for all pronouns.

In other words a pronoun independent way of saying "Says he/she etc is.

"Mary identifies as a woman". = "Mary says she is a woman"

"John marked the "Male" option on the form"

So John identified as a Male.

Hamish marked Australian as citizenship on the form."

Hamish identified as Australian citizen"

Det Supt Plod says 'I am a policeman'. Det Supt Plod identifies as a policeman.

Det Supt Plod then says "Only fooling, I am a singing telegram deliverer"

Det Supt identifies as a singing telegram deliverer.

So far so good. Now what does it mean for Mary to say she is a woman?

It means that Mary says that she is whatever Mary happens intend to be understood by 'woman' when she uses the word in that particular sentence.

That seems to get the mechanics out of the way.
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Old 31st May 2022, 10:24 PM   #2
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i don't "identify" as a man.

I am treated as one, and I'm fine with that.
No extra effort of identification, internal and external necessary.

I'm privileged that way.
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Old 31st May 2022, 10:32 PM   #3
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Umm, a person either is an Australian citizen, or they are not. They are either a policeman, or they are not.

These are both facts that are independent of whether they "identify" as such or not.
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Old 31st May 2022, 10:43 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Puppycow View Post
Umm, a person either is an Australian citizen, or they are not. They are either a policeman, or they are not.

These are both facts that are independent of whether they "identify" as such or not.
Well yes, but so what? How does that alter the definition I gave? Why is this a problem?
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Old 31st May 2022, 10:45 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
i don't "identify" as a man.

I am treated as one, and I'm fine with that.
No extra effort of identification, internal and external necessary.

I'm privileged that way.
Have you ever filled in a form with something like "Gender M/F"?

Also, why are you privileged that way? Are you a man?
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Old 31st May 2022, 10:49 PM   #6
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So:

"Carly, a trans woman, identifies as a woman".

is just saying:

"Carly, a trans woman, says she is a woman".
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Old 31st May 2022, 11:07 PM   #7
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I am not saying that this definitely is the definition.

I just said that this is how I see it. Others can suggest what they think is meant by it.
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Old 31st May 2022, 11:41 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Robin View Post
So:

"Carly, a trans woman, identifies as a woman".

is just saying:

"Carly, a trans woman, says she is a woman".
Yes, this is literally what it is saying.
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Old 31st May 2022, 11:56 PM   #9
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I think that there are some issues with the language here, and I'm going to think carefully about my words before pressing Submit Reply.

You can say "Carly identifies as a woman". This is very much like saying "Carly is a woman", but in another sense it is another way of saying "Carly is a trans woman". For some people, this may be important to state, to confirm their identity as a trans person. For others, maybe not so much. They are just a woman, and maybe they don't want to walk into those weeds.

Since trans people are subject to anti-discrimination provisions in many jurisdictions, it is sometimes good to recognise their trans status. In other situations, it's just not necessary, or could be outright dangerous. So the language we use is, importantly, context dependent.

Also (and running the risk of being moved to the Thread From Which I Run Screaming), using language like "Carly identifies as female" is what led to absurd statements like "I identify as an attack helicopter", which is another problem with the language. To prevent statements like this from being used in malice, sometimes it's better just to say that a trans woman is a woman.
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Old 1st June 2022, 01:12 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by arthwollipot View Post
I think that there are some issues with the language here, and I'm going to think carefully about my words before pressing Submit Reply.

You can say "Carly identifies as a woman". This is very much like saying "Carly is a woman", but in another sense it is another way of saying "Carly is a trans woman". For some people, this may be important to state, to confirm their identity as a trans person. For others, maybe not so much. They are just a woman, and maybe they don't want to walk into those weeds.

Since trans people are subject to anti-discrimination provisions in many jurisdictions, it is sometimes good to recognise their trans status. In other situations, it's just not necessary, or could be outright dangerous. So the language we use is, importantly, context dependent.

Also (and running the risk of being moved to the Thread From Which I Run Screaming), using language like "Carly identifies as female" is what led to absurd statements like "I identify as an attack helicopter", which is another problem with the language. To prevent statements like this from being used in malice, sometimes it's better just to say that a trans woman is a woman.
That is the problem, language is never quite perfect

But people are talking as though the "identifying" is supposed to be some sort of mystical process that continuously generates their womanhood.

That doesn't sound like any transwoman that I ever talked to.

Often they will say something like "Back then I identified as a man, but I was really a woman" where "identifying as" and "being" are different, by then it is always possible that they were simply using "identify as" in a different sense, to mean "present myself as".

So possibly we overthink this word and fail to take into account the inherent imperfections of language.
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Old 1st June 2022, 01:13 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Robin View Post
Have you ever filled in a form with something like "Gender M/F"?

Also, why are you privileged that way? Are you a man?
My wife thinks so.
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Old 1st June 2022, 01:14 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by The Great Zaganza View Post
My wife thinks so.
Sure, but do you think so?
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Old 1st June 2022, 04:03 AM   #13
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What is an Australian citizen?

What is a woman?

Have fun with the second question.
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Old 1st June 2022, 04:34 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Puppycow View Post
Umm, a person either is an Australian citizen, or they are not. They are either a policeman, or they are not.

These are both facts that are independent of whether they "identify" as such or not.
A person is either a Billy or they are not what they say doesn't enter into it.
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Old 1st June 2022, 05:51 AM   #15
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Snarky but sort of honest answer?

"The largest manifestation of how the Left wants to turn every personal variable into their horoscope."
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Old 1st June 2022, 06:38 AM   #16
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Context matters. Can we see the original context of the question? I bet that in context, the question was something more like "what are the implications and consequences of identifying as a woman?"*

Because that's what we've really been discussing this whole time. Not simplistic dictionary definitions.

Is self-id authoritative? Should it be? In what contexts? What obligations and liabilities does it create for others, if any? What accommodations should be made in public policy for self-id, if any? If you self-id as a woman, does that mean you are a woman? In what contexts? Is it a gender identification? If so what exactly does it mean? Is it a sex identification? No? Are you sure? Is it even really about how you identify yourself, or is it about how you want others to identify you?

You've answered the easiest, most banal version of the question. The version of the question nobody is asking. The version everyone already knows the answer to.

To which everyone already knows the answer.

Now that you're warmed up, do the hard stuff.

---
*For example.
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Old 1st June 2022, 06:43 AM   #17
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THere is also the idea that all those papists/mormons/... who wrongly identify as christian.
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Old 1st June 2022, 06:56 AM   #18
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Donald Trump identifies himself as a rational pleasant human being.

I disagree but the implied question is about his view not mine.
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Old 1st June 2022, 06:59 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Context matters. Can we see the original context of the question? I bet that in context, the question was something more like "what are the implications and consequences of identifying as a woman?"*

Because that's what we've really been discussing this whole time. Not simplistic dictionary definitions.

Is self-id authoritative? Should it be? In what contexts? What obligations and liabilities does it create for others, if any? What accommodations should be made in public policy for self-id, if any? If you self-id as a woman, does that mean you are a woman? In what contexts? Is it a gender identification? If so what exactly does it mean? Is it a sex identification? No? Are you sure? Is it even really about how you identify yourself, or is it about how you want others to identify you?

You've answered the easiest, most banal version of the question. The version of the question nobody is asking. The version everyone already knows the answer to.

To which everyone already knows the answer.

Now that you're warmed up, do the hard stuff.

---
*For example.

Essentially, the original context was that I said I donít know what it means to identify as something, when that something is a simple fact and not something we choose to be. I am right-handed; I donít identify as right handed. I might say ďI identify as a skeptic,Ē but that seems like a clunky way of phrasing it.

There are other threads where the real context is clear: itís all about gender. The phrase, ďI identify as,Ē isnít really used outside of that context.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:00 AM   #20
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I asked this question in the other thread and got no meaningful answer.

If a person says "I identify as" and there is no conceivable way in which they are wrong, the statement has no meaning.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:05 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
I asked this question in the other thread and got no meaningful answer.

If a person says "I identify as" and there is no conceivable way in which they are wrong, the statement has no meaning.
Can someone be wrong about what they want to be called, if not then stating it has no meaning.

Lots of things are important parts of ones identity, and lots of them get fought over look at all the heat around "fake" gamer girls and so forth. Does identifying as a geek though saying "I am a geek" sufficient and meaningful or does there need to be some arbitrary test to determine if someone is or is not a geek?

Yes this is about gender, but it is also about anything that makes up someone's identity be it religion, various social labels and so forth.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:05 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Essentially, the original context was that I said I don’t know what it means to identify as something, when that something is a simple fact and not something we choose to be. I am right-handed; I don’t identify as right handed. I might say “I identify as a skeptic,” but that seems like a clunky way of phrasing it.

There are other threads where the real context is clear: it’s all about gender. The phrase, “I identify as,” isn’t really used outside of that context.
Robin, I apologize. It turns out someone really was asking the easiest, most banal version of the question.

Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
I asked this question in the other thread and got no meaningful answer.

If a person says "I identify as" and there is no conceivable way in which they are wrong, the statement has no meaning.
Which brings us back to the hard stuff: What are the implications and consequences of (gender) self-id, if any?

Robin is doing a fantastic job of oversimplifying complex and difficult questions. But his effort doesn't actually result in anything interesting or useful in the context of what's being debated.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:07 AM   #23
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I posted this in another thread but I think it's more relevant here.



I'm about as interested in what you identify as as I am in your star sign.

Until you start using your personal internal feelings to appropriate the rights of a group you do not objectively belong to, that is.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:09 AM   #24
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If someone tells me they are Jewish (in the religious sense), I can't tell them they are wrong.

If someone tells me they are Jewish (in the religious sense) but that person eats pork, worships Jesus, etc... okay maybe you can't just go "You're wrong" in so many exact words but nobody would think it insane or a hate crime if you just went "Okay there's some information loss between me and you here, either you're using 'Jewish' in some way completely contradictory way or I'm misunderstanding or there's something causing us to not match wavelengths here."

WORDS MEAN THINGS. If you write, catch, pitch, shoot, and jerk it with your Right hand what does "I identify as Left Handed" mean?

You can't dissociate identity from objective real world factors to this degree.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:09 AM   #25
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Exactly. Implications and consequences.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:10 AM   #26
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What is the difference between

"I am a X" and "I identify as X"?

Things we can put in for X
Man
Christian
Skeptic
Geek
Girl
Democrat
Socialist
American
Heterosexual
Bisexual
Jewish
Atheist
...
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:13 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
WORDS MEAN THINGS. If you write, catch, pitch, shoot, and jerk it with your Right hand what does "I identify as Left Handed" mean?
Could you try to keep it to things that people actually identify as.

And I get it this thread is really objecting to the very idea that trans people exist.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:22 AM   #28
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There is literally only one context in which "identify" is used in the context being discussed.

Don't pretend otherwise to pull some "Oh lordy me are we talking about trans people again?" routine.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:24 AM   #29
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
Could you try to keep it to things that people actually identify as.

And I get it this thread is really objecting to the very idea that trans people exist.
This isn't about trans. This thread spilled over from OP's "On Being Agender" thread, which was forced off the "LGBO" thread by an aggressive mod box. Check them out to see where the OP is coming from.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:26 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
What is the difference between

"I am a X" and "I identify as X"?

Things we can put in for X
Man
Christian
Skeptic
Geek
Girl
Democrat
Socialist
American
Heterosexual
Bisexual
Jewish
Atheist
...
There is no difference. An atheist is someone who lacks belief in the existence of gods. What is a woman?
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:30 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by Olmstead View Post
There is no difference. An atheist is someone who lacks belief in the existence of gods.
Then nothing has meaning and writing "I am an atheist" is meaningless according to Joe.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:34 AM   #32
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
Then nothing has meaning and writing "I am an atheist" is meaningless according to Joe.
Of course it has meaning. If someone who believes in a god tells me that they are an atheist, I'm going to cry foul. They better have a Spinozaesque explanation at the ready, and even then I'm going to tell them that they are splitting hairs.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:34 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Robin, I apologize. It turns out someone really was asking the easiest, most banal version of the question.


Which brings us back to the hard stuff: What are the implications and consequences of (gender) self-id, if any?

Robin is doing a fantastic job of oversimplifying complex and difficult questions. But his effort doesn't actually result in anything interesting or useful in the context of what's being debated.

Those hard questions have been addressed, without a clear answer, over and over in the gender threads. This is a thread, apparently, to answer the easiest and most banal form of the question. It was created because Robin didnít find it relevant to his agender thread. But I totally disagree. Outside the context of gender issues, the question has no real meaning.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:36 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by xjx388 View Post
Those hard questions have been addressed, without a clear answer, over and over in the gender threads. This is a thread, apparently, to answer the easiest and most banal form of the question. It was created because Robin didnít find it relevant to his agender thread. But I totally disagree. Outside the context of gender issues, the question has no real meaning.
It has lots of meaning, for example lots of people deny the existence of Bisexuals and saying that someone identifies as bisexual should clearly be given over to testing as well.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:38 AM   #35
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What does it mean? A contemporary way or if you would prefer it a trendy way of saying "I am X".
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:51 AM   #36
Olmstead
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
It has lots of meaning, for example lots of people deny the existence of Bisexuals and saying that someone identifies as bisexual should clearly be given over to testing as well.
Being bisexual is actually falsifiable. And I don't mean in the testing type of sense, but basic logic. As is being an atheist, Christian, plumber, teacher, child, heterosexual, etc.

There are occassions where different people will have different definitions with regards to certain concepts, i.e.: "Are you a plumber if you do your own plumbing or does it have to be your profession?" However, people can easily adjust their definition, even if they disagree on the importance of certain features. For example, two people can agree on what an "x-plumber" is, where x denotes the appropriate features, so that they both start with the same definition.

And then there's "man" and "woman". Oh boy. No falsifiable definition, no "x-woman" that people can agree on once you get past simple biology. I think it might be unique (and not in a good sense).

Last edited by Olmstead; 1st June 2022 at 07:52 AM.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:54 AM   #37
ponderingturtle
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Originally Posted by Olmstead View Post
Being bisexual is actually falsifiable.
Not in an objective fashion. It is based on how the person feels like being trans.
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Old 1st June 2022, 07:54 AM   #38
sir drinks-a-lot
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
I posted this in another thread but I think it's more relevant here.



I'm about as interested in what you identify as as I am in your star sign.

Until you start using your personal internal feelings to appropriate the rights of a group you do not objectively belong to, that is.
I like this one better (NSFW):

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Old 1st June 2022, 07:55 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
What does it mean? A contemporary way or if you would prefer it a trendy way of saying "I am X".
But as you can clearly see this whole thread is really just a forum for people to argue that trans people don't exist.
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Old 1st June 2022, 08:00 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by JoeMorgue View Post
If someone tells me they are Jewish (in the religious sense), I can't tell them they are wrong.

If someone tells me they are Jewish (in the religious sense) but that person eats pork, worships Jesus, etc... okay maybe you can't just go "You're wrong" in so many exact words but nobody would think it insane or a hate crime if you just went "Okay there's some information loss between me and you here, either you're using 'Jewish' in some way completely contradictory way or I'm misunderstanding or there's something causing us to not match wavelengths here."

WORDS MEAN THINGS. If you write, catch, pitch, shoot, and jerk it with your Right hand what does "I identify as Left Handed" mean?

You can't dissociate identity from objective real world factors to this degree.
Messianic Judaism is a thing. They identify as Jewish.
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