“Biological Sex” Is Like Cookies

As I sometimes do, I made the mistake of wading into an online argument about gender, someone tried to use the stale argument that saying you believe 2 + 2 = 5 does not make it true, and that made me want a new analogy. Biology is not governed by simple mathematical rules like addition of integers is, but it does involve a lot of chemistry, so if I may, allow me to bring in another application of chemistry: baking.

Imagine your whole life, you have only had standard supermarket sugar cookies and chocolate chip cookies. Someone could put chocolate chips in a sugar cookie recipe, but you would probably argue that does not make it a chocolate chip cookie. You might say a “real” chocolate chip cookie, has a different flavor and texture—but does that make it wrong to put chocolate chips in a sugar cookie recipe? At the end of the day, that difference is a different balance of brown and white sugar, maybe a little more egg and vanilla. Change the ingredients further, and you end up with chocolate chip scones—or pancakes! If you let yourself dive into it, you can realize what we think of as the ideal sugar cookie and chocolate chip cookie are just the arrangements we are most accustomed to of ingredients that can be tweaked in all manner of major or minor ways. And while there is certainly nothing wrong with preferring a NestlĂ© Toll House traditional one, is it really your place to be telling other people how to make their cookies?

Someone once suggested I try adding a packet of vanilla pudding mix to chocolate chip cookie batter, and even though that packet was assigned pudding at birth, it made a pretty good batch of cookies đŸ€·

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