Hi Adam, I appreciate your interest in my article.
To clarify: We’re not redefining sex and gender on a whim, to satisfy the egos of a few individuals. We’re redefining sex & gender because science has redefined sex and gender. As a society, we keep learning and evolving — and adjustments need to be made to our understanding as a result.
With this in mind, it is important to understand that the reason why we use the proper (not preferred) pronouns for individuals is not that “that’s what they prefer” but that using an incorrect pronoun is factually inaccurate. You’re not a woman, and using she/her to describe you would be inaccurate. It is not just “what you prefer,” it goes deeper than that. Likewise, I am not a dude. And referring to me as he/him is factually inaccurate.
I strongly encourage you to read this.
Also: you write “For example, do I as a biological male, socially presenting as a male, have the right to claim I identify as female in order to get maternity leave at work? This is a real concern.” There is nothing about this that is a legitimate concern. Expecting parents are allowed to take a leave from work, according to the policies of their company and the laws of their country. This is unrelated from sex or gender entirely. If a person is a gestating parent, it doesn’t matter if they’re a woman or a man (such as in the case of a trans man). They’re entitled to maternity leave. Furthermore, the non-gestating parent is ALSO entitled some time off — regardless of sex or gender.
It is interesting to me that you say that the concepts of male and female are bedrocks of society. I truly believe they are not. We’ve evolved into a society that allows for stay-at-home fathers, and allows women to hold political office, become surgeons and airline pilots. Sex and gender define very little of our potential standing or influence in society — and this is rightly so, as it allows all human beings to fulfill their potential.
There used to be a time when such narrative would be used against school desegregation, or against the end of apartheid — that it would disrupt “the natural order of things.” The patriarchy-inspired premises you speak of are outdated and only hold people back from living to their full potential. Women are no longer expected to be barefoot, pregnant and in the kitchen. Men are no longer expected to bear the brunt of the financial burden of the household.