A police department now requires officers to complete a “preferred pronoun” program, which teaches that there is an “infinite number” of genders. Additionally, officers are prohibited from participating in the “Street Survival” program, which offers life-saving training to combat the unprecedented number of police officers being killed.
With the rising anti-law enforcement movement, police officers are experiencing discrimination and physical retaliation more than ever before. However, instead of seeking to repair relations with local communities, one department has opted to focus on training officers in the art of gender pronouns.
According to The Minnesota Sun, the Minneapolis Police Department now requires officers to attend a lecture on the “infinite number” of genders and their related pronouns. The program’s initiative is to train law enforcement officers to use the “preferred pronouns” of their colleagues and civilians they encounter.
During the seminar, participants were referred to a grammar slide, which outlined several pronouns in their subjective, objective, possessive, and reflexive forms. However, the image also specifies that there is an infinite number of pronouns, which are constantly evolving and changing based on ever-emerging genders and subjects’ feelings.
“Please note that these are not the only pronouns,” the slide reads. “There are an infinite number of pronouns as new ones emerge in our language. Always ask someone for their pronouns.”
According to the slide, some of the accepted singular pronouns include “they” and “ze,” with examples such as “The backpack is theirs” and “I listened to hir.” However, an example confusingly suggests that “They are speaking” is an appropriate use of the pronouns, despite the particular use being in plural form.
Although the department is highlighting the importance of asking for individuals’ preferred pronouns, the program wasn’t the only change the force has recently implemented. Additionally, the Minneapolis Police Department is now prohibiting its officers from participating in a training session that helps them stay alive in dangerous situations.
“Officers are getting shot and assaulted at unprecedented rates, and this is what they’re spending their time on?” a source familiar with the situation told The Minnesota Sun.
The department has barred officers from the “Street Survival Seminar,” which consists of 2 days of training taught by a public safety training company Calibre Press. Before it was banned, the program sought to teach officers how to engage possible suspects and navigate survival situations.
The program was banned after it was revealed that St. Anthony Police Officer Jeronimo Yanez, who shot and killed Philando Castile, had completed the course. The program was subsequently accused of fostering paranoia and aggression among officers.
“Virtually every cop in the nation has gone through this training,” the source said in response. “They’re not letting the guys get the training they need to do actual police work.”
Participation in the gender pronouns course is mandatory for Minneapolis police officers and participants may not opt-out. The department has reiterated the importance of officers using desired pronouns when speaking to colleagues and civilians, which requires asking them for their preferred reference at the beginning of each encounter.
It has not been reported whether the officers will face discipline for misgendering an individual either accidentally or deliberately. It is also unclear if the department has even thought that far ahead in its endeavors.
While the rate of suicide and homicide of police officers continues to rise, the Minneapolis Police Department appears to consider enforcing speech to be of the utmost importance. Of course, it’s only a matter of time before this policy is challenged by the First Amendment.