[lg policy] UC San Diego Bans 'Latino' in Favor of PC-Friendly 'Latinx

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Tue Dec 4 12:03:22 EST 2018


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2:43
UC San Diego has announced that they will ban the word “Latino” in favor of
the word “Latinx,” which is “gender inclusive.”

A new report
<https://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-latino-latinx-ucsd-20181202-story.html>
from the *Los Angeles Times* explains details a new language policy at UC
San Diego that involves a ban on the word “Latino,” which some argue is not
inclusive enough.

The change is being promoted by students, social justice activists and the
LGBTQ community, which are trying to get people to look beyond conventional
notions of gender, sex and appearance.

As broadly used, Latino refers to people of Latin American origin or
descent.

Latinx includes men and women of Latin American descent, people who are not
exclusively male or female, people who don’t think of themselves as a man
or a woman, and people who don’t act or dress in ways that are common to
people of their gender.

“This is about making the university more inclusive,” UC San Diego’s vice
chancellor of equity, diversity and inclusion Becky Pettit said in a
comment. “We’re meeting students where they are.”
The new policy, which will also apply to the word Chicano, which will now
be Chicanx, has been generally well received by members of the UC San Diego
community. Dayo F. Gore, an ethnic studies professor at the university,
said that terms change over time. Gore argued that this is an appropriate
and necessary change.

“Terms and practices change over time,” Gore said. “It doesn’t mean it is a
zero-sum game. The important thing is how do we think about the changes. It
gives us a chance to be open and speak.”

Gore isn’t totally off base. There is nothing wrong with inclusive
language. However, terms and practices change over time based on their use
by the public. The social justice crowd believes that they can use
bureaucratic power to will new terms and practices into existence.

The amount of Americans that go out of their way to use gender-inclusive
terms like “Latinx” is incredibly small. To many, “Latino” is already a
gender-neutral term that can be used to describe a man, woman, or
transgender person of Latin American descent.

Earlier this week, two British universities banned
<https://www.breitbart.com/> the word “woman” with the word “womxn,” which
is allegedly more inclusive to transgender individuals.

“I’ve never met a trans woman who was offended by the word woman being
used, so I’m not sure why this keeps happening,” Jess Phillips, a Labour
MP, wrote on Twitter. “As if internet dissent now replaces public policy. I
get what they are trying to do but why is it only women not men where this
applies.

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 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com
http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~haroldfs/

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