The Point

Gender-Neutral Birth Certificates?


John Stonestreet

Maria Baer

Last month, the American Medical Association announced it will advocate removing sex designation from public birth certificates. Marking gender on the official document, says the AMA, could lead to discrimination for those who identify as transgender later in life. 

“There is no clear standard for defining sex designation,” AMA authors wrote, stating that “gender is a social construct.” 

Strangely enough, the AMA still recommends that hospitals accurately record a baby’s sex on the U.S. Standard Certificate of Live Birth, a document used for government data-keeping. 

This brings up important questions. If there is no clear standard for defining sex designation, what standard will be used for government documents? If gender is a mere social construct, why would the government need a record of it? Why would an association of medical professionals weigh in on something so obviously not scientific? How can anyone trust an association that asks the state to tell lies? And if these lies aren’t fit for official government purposes, why should we accept them in any other part of life?


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