As of July 1st, 2017, the Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles, in a fit of political correctness, will become the first state to recognize a non-binary gender selection on the state’s driver’s license. Licensees can choose to select M (male), F (female) or X (neither of the above) as their gender. Of course a quick physical by any qualified practitioner (turn your head and cough, please) will definitively prove that X is either M or F, but Oregon is on the forefront of politically correct self-identification. Do not get me wrong, I am fairly libertarian when it comes to personal free agency, as long as someone with the wrong plumbing is not watching me in the public toilet. Call me Victorian there. I have a right to a Gents Only toilet, just as ladies have a right to a Ladies Only toilet.
What is really at issue here, with Oregon allowing X on the driver’s license, is the allowance of licensees to falsify demographic information. A significant part of the driver’s license is a physical description of the licensee. The photo show racial features and hair color. The date of birth shows age. It lists home address, height, weight, and gender. It is not meant as a part of the psychology of self-identification. It does not list political parties, sexual preferences, relationship status or religious beliefs. At least it didn’t, until now… here in left coast Oregon.
My state has now opened another Pandora’s Box, allowing self-identification, instead of real identification on the ODL. I am only as old as I feel, right? What if I feel eternally twenty-nine years old? Can I get a new DOB every year? I am pretty short, but what if I feel like I am six feet tall? Do I get to put that on my license? What if I feel like I am Canadian or British? Maybe I feel like I live in the governor’s mansion. What if I self-identify as black? Can I have a black man stand in for me for my license photo? What use is all that fake information when you are dead in a ditch after an auto accident and the police are trying to identify your corpse? I can just hear the medical examiner now, “We have another Jane Doe, here!” all because the victim’s real gender does not match that of non-binary on the driver’s license and the governor does not recognize them. Good luck getting a passport, by the way.
At the end of the day, I do not allow my ODL to determine who I am. It is just a license to drive and a piece of identification that is only useful when it is accurate. I do not need that little plastic card to affirm who I am spiritually and who I aspire to be. I am not offended that the photo is bad and it robs me a 1/2 inch in height. It is simply a license to drive and basic, physical identification. That is all.
Today, with the growth of social media, we have more ways to express ourselves than at any time in history. Any person can go on Facebook and cry out, “I am who I am!” and find like-minded people to share in their lives and struggles. What you have in your underpants is really not a big deal. It is what it is, a physical characteristic. It is part of you, and, asides hermaphrodites, there are only two options. M or F.