Over the past two years or so, the term “birthing person” has taken hold on the left, taking the place of “mother” for those who want to be “inclusive” in their terminology.

“Mother,” they claim, is exclusionary of those who give birth but don’t identify as women. Therefore, we’re told our long-established terminology has to change to accommodate this new ideology.

But doing this reduces women to our reproductive organs and their processes. It is dehumanizing and anti-woman to call women “people with uteruses” and “people who menstruate.” Likewise, it is insulting to imply that a person’s gender identity or sexuality is the most important thing about them.

This is a fascinating — and absurd — shift in strategy coming from those who are constantly warning that conservatives are trying to transform our society into “The Handmaid’s Tale.”

A week ago, I had a front-row seat to this dehumanization at the hands of two prominent liberals. I tweeted about the online disparagement of Meghan McCain by her father’s former campaign staffer Steve Schmidt. In response, Schmidt quoted my tweet, attributing my words and thoughts not to me, but to my husband, Seth. 

Interestingly, not one of Schmidt’s followers noted in the comments that wives and husbands, while devoted to one another, have separate brains, and that husbands are not the masters of their wife’s opinions or Twitter accounts. 

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The real wallop, though, came at the hands of former ESPN and MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann, who in a tweet implied that I had “ruined” the lives of my five children by homeschooling them. In a priceless bit of irony, the comment was made on Mother’s Day.

To Schmidt, I’m nothing but a wife, a vessel for my husband’s thoughts. And to Olbermann, I’m nothing but a birthing person, a vessel for my children. The worst insult Olbermann could come up with wasn’t related to my views, but was instead a pot shot at my mothering. That’s all I am to him, not an accomplished columnist or editor of a children’s book series, but “just” a mother. 

This is the logical end of the radical left’s attack on anything identifiably feminine. And it’s not only conservative women they demean.

This is how former White House press secretary Jen Psaki introduced her successor, Karine Jean-Pierre:

What would you prefer when someone introduces you at a new job? Would you want your gender or identity to be the first attribute that is used to describe you professionally, or would you prefer to be introduced with your experience and qualifications at the forefront? 

Imagine this scene happening at any other job: “Please welcome John to the team. As you can see he is Black, and he is also gay.”

This kind of introduction would be grounds for a lawsuit and rightly viewed as extremely inappropriate in the modern workplace, and yet, for one of the world’s most public-facing jobs, it’s the welcome that Jean-Pierre received. It’s deeply unfair to Jean-Pierre — indeed, to all Black and LGBTQ people — to introduce her with anything but her accomplishments at the fore. 

Reducing women to the sum of our parts, our uteruses and identities, hurts women the most. When progressives repeatedly refer to us as our reproductive organs, it’s no wonder they have begun to internalize that messaging and only treat us as such, instead of as full-fledged human beings worthy of respect. 

Bethany Mandel is a contributing writer for Deseret News. She is a homeschooling mother of five and a widely published writer on politics, culture and Judaism. She is an editor for the children’s book series “Heroes of Liberty.”