Elizabeth Warren’s Gender Jackpot Math Problem

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren recently announced that if elected she will, “Build a Cabinet and senior leadership team that reflects the full diversity of America, including having at least 50 percent of Cabinet positions filled by women and nonbinary people.”

I have some questions.

Why would women have to share their 50 percent with “nonbinary people” while men—by which she apparently means the male variety—would get 50 percent outright?

The 2016 Democratic platform asserts, “We are committed to ensuring full equality for women… After 240 years, we will finally enshrine the rights of women in the Constitution by passing the Equal Rights Amendment.” Is Warren proposing that the Democratic party abandon its agenda for women’s “equality”?

The Cabinet has 23 members: the vice president, 15 principal officers, and seven other members. How then would 50 percent of 23 be male?  Would she find a nonbinary person who is 50 percent male and 50 percent female, or one who is 30 percent male and 70 percent female and one vice versa, to even the score? (Never mind qualifications).

How would Warren equitably divvy up the 50 percent of seats for “women and nonbinary people”? Any division of the remaining 50 percent for “women and nonbinary persons” seems arbitrary, not to mention unfair, especially when the distribution of nonbinary gender identities across the U.S. population is unknown and fluid.

How would Warren maintain her quotas while going with the flow when “gender fluid” individuals shift day to day, or morning to afternoon, from one gender to another?  For example, to maintain “diversity,” would she possibly have to require that one nonbinary Cabinet member (or even a binary Cabinet member) shift from identifying as male to female (or the reverse) on a given day if another nonbinary person felt more female than male (or the reverse) that day, since the Senate confirmation process for new Cabinet members is too slow to handle the speed of some individuals’ gender fluidity. Alternatively, she could seek to amend the Appointments Clause in Article II, Section 2, Clause 2 of the Constitution if she were to decide that having “a Cabinet and senior leadership team that reflects the full diversity of America” matters more than the separation of powers.

With Warren’s enthusiasm for “nonbinary people” how would she define “full” as in “the full diversity of America?” Reflecting “the full diversity of America” will require defining the categories of “diversity” and being able to measure outcome parity for this “diversity.” Does Warren assume that via election the American people, social justice warriors and academics included, would invest in her the full authority to define the categories of diversity? And what about gender fluidity? How can a category be fluid and fluidity be categorized?

Would Warren propose that there be federal holidays to represent the “full diversity of America?” I’m confused about how this would work. There would not be enough days in the calendar year for federal holidays to be fully “inclusive,” to affirm and celebrate all diversities. And since each individual in the Warren progressivist thought world is his/her/its/their/xer, etc. own island of reality, to be fair, everyone would have to be free to create or choose their own holidays according to how each person viewed “diversity” (excluding, of course, religious people and religious diversity as part of America).

Would nonbinary federal employees be eligible to receive both maternity and paternity leave?

What if an American citizen were to “identify as president?” It is unclear—not to mention legally dubious—whether a President Warren be willing to hand over power or be able to resolve a situation in which multiple Americans “identify as President.” (This paragraph is, of course, patently absurd, but it points out the problem when reality is defined by self-referentiality.)

The category of “nonbinary people” is inherently unquantifiable. “Gender expression” is limited only by the will to power of individual self-identification combined with linguistic ability to come up with new labels. Imagine if Warren had in her Cabinet four “pansexual,” three “neutrois,” two “two spirit,” but only one “agender” persons—how would that be fair? (Though at least it would give a Warren presidency a way to replace the Twelve Days of Christmas carol with a politically correct Twelve Days of Gender holiday season song—though, since 12 is an artificially oppressive limit, the length of the Warren holiday season song would have to be fluid.)

In Springtime for Snowflakes: ‘Social Justice’ and Its Postmodern Parentage, Michael Rechtenwald calls this the “gender jackpot.” His insightful book provides an overview of how critical theory and such in academia brought us today’s transgenderism. (And Rechtenwald manages to do this in plain English, that great enemy of critical theory.)

Ripping the lid off the quantifiable, reality-based male/female binary requires abandoning nature itself. The “gender jackpot” provided theorists of intersectionality an endless pot of oppressions to fight for in their insurgency against reality.

The “gender jackpot” enables progressives continually to create new categories that need protections and social engineering to bring society into conformity to assure “social justice” for these new ever-changing, ever-expanding categories. Progressives of recent decades have sought outcome parity for defined groups, such as males and females. This quest required use of state power to coerce society because nature itself is not uniform. But now, with the “gender jackpot,” the progressives’ need to use state power to coerce escalates endlessly.

A Warren presidency would mean the end of e pluribus unum and a transition to e pluribus infinitum.

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About Jennifer S. Bryson

Jennifer S. Bryson, Ph.D. is a Policy and Communication Fellow at the Claremont Institute. She lives in Washington, D.C. Visit her website: www.jenniferbryson.net.

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