Outraged citizens and lawmakers wondered why the State Department celebrated “International Pronouns Day” on Wednesday amid a series of global crises they argued better deserved its attention.
“Today on International Pronouns Day, we share why many people list pronouns on their email and social media profiles,” the department tweeted.
The State Department explainer, which encouraged an understanding of “Pronoun Proficiency,” provided a list of some of the updated identifications being used by individuals.
“Third-person personal pronouns are used to describe a person or people, in American English grammar, as the subject, as the object or in the possessive,” the State Department wrote. “These pronouns include the gender-neutral they/them/theirs — words that traditionally refer to a plural number but that today are used by some individuals who identify as gender nonbinary or who prefer not to share gender information. Other pronouns include the feminine she/her/hers and the masculine he/him/his. Some people are pioneering gender-neutral pronouns such as ze/zir/zirs.”
The agency tweeted out the celebratory progressive message amid reports China caught U.S. intelligence off guard by launching a hypersonic missile, and while Americans were still stranded in Afghanistan, among other pressing foreign policy crises.
Several lawmakers took aim at the department too.
“What are you doing about China’s expanded nuclear capabilities?” Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., asked. And Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., did a virtual shake of his head after seeing the State Department’s priorities.
Former Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell sounded off on the “politicization” of his “beloved” State Department. He singled out Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman for “neutering our diplomats.”
“This is humiliating and it erodes America’s standing in the world,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ press secretary Christina Pushaw agreed.
Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spotlighted another, lesser reported crisis as another priority for the State Department: The abductions of members of the Ohio-based missionary group, Christian Aid Ministries in Haiti. Seventeen members, including 12 adults and five children, disappeared Saturday while on a trip to an orphanage, according to reports.
The Biden administration was lambasted by both sides of the political aisle for its botched handling of the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan in August. Despite Biden’s pledge he would leave no Americans behind, reportedly hundreds were stranded in the now Taliban-controlled country after the final U.S. flight left Afghanistan on Aug. 30. The White House then failed to meet a congressional deadline last month to provide the number of abandoned Americans.
As for China’s reported progression on hypersonic weaponry, U.S. officials told The Financial Times they had “no idea” how the communist regime was able to put it off. Chinese nuclear weapons expert Taylor Fravel said it would be “destabilizing” if China fully developed and deployed such a weapon. Following the surprise missile, Pentagon press secretary John Kirby declared China was the “number one pacing challenge.”