Let's Mx. things up a bit

The Oxford English Dictionary is updated four times a year, this September being it's third quarter of the 2015 year for new material to be added to it's ranks. Hundreds of entries are reviewed each quarter, but only a selected few make it to the big leagues. Those that are deemed worthy can include revised versions of existing words (replacing the previous versions), or new words and phrases altogether.

Words such as hoverboard and telly addict are but two of the many entries that have entered their way into the OED this quarterly update, but the newest member of the OED family has many people rejoicing in more than just the United States.

Mx. (pronounced miks or muks) is a new English title that has been recently added to the OED. It is conventionally used in the United Kingdom as it is accepted in many of their businesses as well as their government and is now gaining it's popularity in the United States.

Mx. is to be used alongside Mr, Ms, Mrs etc. and is an appellation that does not imply gender. Much like the singular pronouns sets they/them/their or xe/xem/xyr, Mx. is a salutation that can be in reference to people who identify as gender neutral or somewhere on the gender non-binary spectrum. This new title is a progressive step for many people in the world, myself included.

No one wants to put "not specified" or "prefer not to say" when checking the boxes of gender or pronouns. It is almost dehumanizing. Personally when filling out job applications, surveys, or other important forms, checking the not specified option or one similar too usually puts your standings of getting the call back, finishing the survey, or qualifying for whatever you are filling out seems to be slim to none.

Of course, as I briefly mentioned earlier, there are pronouns that exist in this world outside of either Mr or Ms/Mrs. Having only two options is very restricting and suggests that the world of gender is a binary system of the ultimatum of either this or that, nothing else and nothing in between. With trans* folk, intersex folk, and people who just don't identify with any particular gender, this makes living in this day and age more than a little bit tricky. Drivers licenses, medical forms, places of business, schools, employers, and even social situations are put into strain when there are two boxes, but neither can be checked.

This newest addition gives me high hopes for the future, giving people the answer they deserve instead of being an afterthought. Pronouns, titles, honorifics etc. are evolving to accommodate the ever-changing society we live in and everybody should be able to express themselves for who they actually are and identify as. The hope is, sooner rather than later, this option of using Mx. will become available and respected in the United States as well as any other pronouns/titles that may be made aware of in that time.

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