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Mr/S

I noticed something on a form recently for the first time. I don’t mean that I’ve never seen this before – I mean that I saw it with new eyes.

The form had a place for you to circle your title. Mr./Mrs./Miss

There are several things going on here. Notice that the male title is first.

Second – notice that there are two different titles for women, indicating whether you are married or not. There is a perfectly acceptable variant, “Ms.” that does not indicate marital status. Notice that men don’t have a different title if they are single or married.

And then I noticed it even more deeply. This is beyond hierarchy and status.

What do we even need these titles for? Why does it matter if someone is male or female?

Look at some of the names that are gender neutral. Robin, Terry, Dana, Tracy.

Do we treat people differently because of their gender, or status? If so, why?

Then I considered all the different names that I come across every day. Nashville is full of people from all around the world, and I don’t know all of their naming practices. I have no way of knowing if a name belongs to a female or a male. Does it matter?

Not really.

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