News Canada

Canadian parent Kori Doti appears on Good Morning Britain to defend having 'gender-neutral' child

POSTMEDIA NETWORK

Canadian Kori Doty appears on Good Morning Britain.

Canadian Kori Doty appears on Good Morning Britain.

A Canadian parent’s attempt to explain the decision to raise a “genderless” child descended into absurdity when Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan asked Canadian Kori Doty if their kid could conceivably “identify as a monkey” when its old enough to decide who or what they are.

Doty, a B.C. parent who was born female but identifies as “non-binary trans” and prefers the pronoun they, refused to provide the sex of their child, Searyl, to the government when Searyl was born last November.

In an interview with GMB on Monday morning, Doty had an awkward exchange with Morgan while being asked to explain the decision.

“I think your baby, at the moment, should be assigned a gender until it’s old enough to work out if its parent ... you know, can help it have that debate when they get older,” Morgan says.

To which Doty responds: “All kids will figure out (part of) who they are.”

Doty later continues: “Operating in that way is operating from the expectation that not being trans is the default and being trans is weird – that it’s the exception to the norm. I don’t actually believe it’s the exception to the norm. I believe it’s what we understand as common, but I don’t actually believe that people who are trans should have to figure out those parts of themselves.

“I think all kids should have room to say, ‘I like pink, I like trucks, I want to be called this, I want to be called that, I want to play certain games.’"

Morgan then asked if kids should have the option to identify as a monkey.

“We’ll probably have some important conversations about beasties and science and things that are appropriate for a four-year-old,” Doty responds sarcastically.

“They’re a human being. We’re talking about gender, not species,” they add. “I’m raising them as a human being.”

Doty said it was a victory when Searyl’s provincial health card arrived in the mail in April displaying a “U” instead of an “M” or “F” to designate the child’s sex.

It’s because of those restrictive stereotypes that Doty didn’t want to prescribe a gender to Searyl. Instead, Searyl can determine their own gender identity when the time comes and not be limited by societal expectations of how boys and girls should be, Doty said.

“I’m not imposing a non-binary gender identity on my kid, I’m just holding the space for them to figure out who they are without the application of a rigid assumption,” Doty said.

In Ontario, gender was removed from health cards in June 2016 while driver’s licences have “X” as an option.

-With files from the Canadian Press