Sex and Gender on the AZ Driver's License

Via the AZ Republic

Two Democratic lawmakers are trying to give transgender and non-binary Arizonans the chance to more accurately represent themselves on state-issued documents — in life and in death.

House Bill 2492 would offer driver's-license applicants a third gender option, "non-binary," to indicate they don't identify as male or female.

House Bill 2582 would require death certificates to reflect gender identity, one's emotional and psychological sense of gender, including when it appears to conflict with a person's anatomy.

This is what happens when you forget what the purpose of something actually is.  The individual descriptive information on a driver's license is for identification purposes -- it is not a Facebook profile page to communicate our sense of self or current emotional state.  One's personal, inner "emotional and psychological sense of gender" is useless on an identification document because a third party can't sense that in any way.

If the argument is that gender is not a useful identification tool, then remove it entirely from the damn license or death certificate and let's move on.  Or replace it with something that is useful and discernible by a third party (how about "has external genitalia y/n" lol).

Postscript:  Well, I just looked at my AZ licence and it does not use the word "gender" anywhere.  It says "sex".  Now, people I know who self-identify as "woke" have explained to me that "sex" is a function of biological plumbing whereas gender is more a function of state of mind and social programming and such.  Well, the license says "sex" so why are we talking about gender at all?


  1. cc:

    The primary purpose of the license is so the cops can verify who you say you are. Male/female eliminates half the population from consideration right there. If your license and appearance don't match, the cops have reason to think you are NOT who you say you are and maybe stole the car. If they arrest you, cops need to know which holding cell to put you in. It matters a great deal. Second, it is used for identification for banks, for buying stuff, etc. They need to be able to verify who you are to avoid fraud. Further down the list, a hospital may use your identification to decide on emergency treatment. Men and women have different risks (or probabilities) of everything from gunshot wounds to drug overdose to autoimmune disease--none of which are changed by changing your appearance. For a woman they often test for pregnancy before doing X-rays but not for a man (duh). In none of these cases is it used to ID how you feel about yourself. Nobody cares about that.

  2. Bloke in North Dorset:

    Clearly your politicians have way too much time on their hands. Perhaps you should campaign to reduce the number of days that they sit.

  3. Mercury:

    When they drive the final stake through the heart of Western Civilization we'll all be arguing about whether or not the stake itself was made by a minority owned enterprise using responsibly sourced, organic materials.

    How do you say "Femme Queen" and "Gender Blender" in Mexican?

  4. mlhouse:

    Do you ask the dead person what their gender preference is?

  5. SamWah:

    And maybe you stole the license.

  6. SamWah:

    Remove every chair in the building! No sitting! Except for on the floor.

  7. Billford:

    I don't think it is quite that simple. If somebody truly views themselves as a woman, but has the anatomy of a man, but dresses/presents as a woman, then "non-binary" might be the best description. The actual genitals probably ought be listed in the death certificate, but if you're checking i.d. while the person is living, then the gender one is presenting as might well be better than the sex at birth description. I think reasonable minds can differ. By way of analogy: If a government asks for "religion: _____ ," do we want people to be able to put what they themselves believe, or should we just code all positive responses as "make believe pretending."

  8. Billford:

    Agreed, but if you have a trans person who commits a crime, and you get one witness who describes her as a woman, and another who says "I think they was a he, the long hair and dress notwithstanding," then maybe "nonbinary" would be the best description.

  9. Agammamon:

    We need to tell these people that though there may be a bajillion 'genders', there's really only three sexes - male, female, and intersex.

    And DL's don't need to list gender - they need to list sex.

    And, really, I'm not sure they need to even do that.

    A Dl should be simply for proof of licensing for driving - not a general purpose government ID (which shouldn't exist in the first place). All we need is *juuust* enough info to assure an officer that the driver detained is licensed and that's it. If it makes it harder to run warrants on a detained driver - well so be it. Its a trade-off and I'm generally on the side of 'more freedom' rather than 'make cop's jobs easier'.

  10. Agammamon:

    The primary purpose of a DL is not that at all. The information it contains makes that much easier so that's become a proxy for identity but that's not the purpose of a driver's license.

    My social security card doesn't come with a picture or a description of me or my sex, simple possession of the number - not even the card - is all that's needed to invoke whatever an SSN can get you.

  11. Agammamon:

    The problem there is that 'the gender you are presenting' is not so easy to tell.

    Is a butch woman presenting as a man or does she simply really like flannel? We're long past the days when women kept their hair long, wore dresses, etc as a matter of course.

  12. John Moore:

    Gender is a linguistics term, which has been hijacked by activists who want to convince us that we can decide to be whatever sex we are, and make it sound more palatable by changing "sex" to "gender."

    BTW, cops don't play PC games when looking for a suspect. Race, sex, etc are used, directly - which only makes sense. Of course, I don't know what they do in San Francisco.

  13. sean2829:

    Just do a DNA test. Don’t ask for gender or sex, the question should be “Y chromosome?” With a yes or no check box. After all, DNA is used to ID people all the time.

  14. Ike:

    We are marching with gusto toward the state of nihilism. Where words once meant something, they become meaningless.

    Note that even quite a few transgenders themselves have all sorts of issues with the "non-binary" dialogue. A man born as a man but now identifies as a woman is still following the constructs of the same freaking binary we have all understood to be true from before the beginning of human civilization.

    Come on, people.

  15. Ike:

    The DNA test is obviously transphobic, duh.

  16. Joe Blizzard:

    Pronouns have gender. People have sex.

  17. cc:

    So if you get pulled over and the picture on your license is someone else, the cops are ok with that?
    You don't use your social security card to verify that you can drive or are who you say you are or to cash checks--at least not in my part of the country.

  18. Peabody:

    We have an APB to be on the look out for a human being that is young at heart, has an emotional sense of being a male, and for the purposes of college applications checked every single race/ethnicity. Be aware they may be armed with platform shoes to make themselves the height they feel they actually are.

  19. The_Big_W:

    That is true. The only thing non-binary gets us are people identifying as fairies and dragons, and whatever the hell else they delusionally think they are.

  20. The_Big_W:

    They promised us when Social Security was passed that the number wouldn't be used for identification. They lied.

    But that does explain why a Social Security card is so bad at being a form of ID.

  21. The_Big_W:

    Police: "APB, dude looks like a lady...."

  22. Sam P:

    There are various people who appear externally to be women but have XY chromosomes: complete androgen insensitivity syndrome (CAIS), Swyer syndrome, simple birth defects, among other sexual development problems. These have caused some controversies at the Olympics and other athletic competitions over the years.

    The purpose(s) of putting sex on a drivers license needs to be kept in mind when deciding what should be done here. Your suggestion might make identifying toothless fingerprintless remains slightly more reliable.

  23. Agammamon:

    If the picture is someone else then its not your license, is it?