Tucker Carlson couldn’t help but laugh in the face of a guest who appeared on his show Sunday to defend the parenting trend of raising babies without a gender. “I’m trying to laugh so I don’t cry,” he explained.
The “Tucker Carlson Tonight” segment featured a discussion about “theybies,” which have lately been the focus of media attention. NBC ran a story last week about a married couple that is raising twins without genders, including by using non-gendered pronouns like “they,” “them,” and “their.”
Carlson summed up the idea at the top of the segment, saying, Having a baby used to be a straight forward proposition: You could have a boy or you could have a girl. But now there’s a third option. It’s called steep civilizational decline”
“A handful of parents across America are deliberately keeping their children’s sex hidden and instead raising so-called theybies,” he continued. “The idea is that only the children themselves should be able to decide whether they are boys or girls, without any of that pesky biological reality getting in the way.”
Carlson then brought on liberal journalist Cathy Arue to discuss, the Pluralist reports.
“If you’re going to raise a theybie, how would you be able to change your child’s diaper? Because the second you change the diaper, of course, you’d no longer be able to pretend that there was a question about whether this was a boy or a girl, you would know.” Carlson said.
Arue responded that parents do not have to feign ignorance about the sex of their baby. Rather, she said, the theybie approach is about “allowing the baby to decide what gender that baby wants to be when that baby can decide, which is around 4-years-old. So from zero to 4, the baby will not be labeled.”
Carlson was not buying it. He pointed out that babies are hardly better prepared to make such decision at age 4 either.
“What other profound life decisions do we think people ought to be making at the age of 4?” he said. “Are there any others, you know whether to get a tattoo, whether to get married, enlisting in the military, voting, drinking vodka, smoking Marlboro reds? Is there anything else that we think four year olds are ready to decide?”
Arue countered by claiming that choosing a gender “isn’t actually a profound life decision.”
“Biologically, the experts say that boys and girls, all genders, are alike, that boy’s brain, the male brain might be a little larger, the female’s language might be a little bit more advanced,” she said.
Carlson joked that saying boys have bigger brains is “toxic masculinity,” and had no place on his show. Then, he mocked the notion that sex-related differences in brain size, genitalia, and bone structure are “just minor things.”
“So why would you not tell your kids about that?” he said. “You know, at some point they’re going to ‘drop trow’ and look down and say, ‘Wait, we look different,” and you’re gonna be like, ‘No you don’t, you’re exactly the same.’ That’s lying, isn’t it?”
After some more back and forth, Arue invoked an argument parents have made in the press.
“Why should people be so obsessed if your baby is going to be a boy or a girl?” she said. “It’s actually a little human. We are bringing a little human into the world, Who cares about the genitalia?”
Carlson responded with what he said was thousands of years of human wisdom.
“May I just suggest why, and this isn’t just my opinion, but the opinion of every person who’s ever lived going back, lets just say 10,000 years for the sake of neatness: [It’s] because men and women are completely different in keys ways, can we not say that anymore?
Why: While there is a general medical consensus that people who identify with transgender should be accommodated, some see transgender rights as just the latest liberal cause celebre.
Even among liberals, there is some debate over how to understand transgender identity, especially among children.