Here’s something I’ve always found amusing: when authors use the word “she” instead of “he” in referring to the anonymous everyman. Wait, I didn’t mean “amusing.” I meant mind-bogglingly irritating. I’d provide an actual example, but I’m too lazy, so I’ll make one up:
“If someone messes around with a BB gun, she might put her eye out.”
How unnatural does that sound? Alternative versions of this sentence:
“If someone messes around with a BB gun, he might put his eye out.”
“If someone messes around with a BB gun, he or she might put his or her eye out.”
“If someone messes around with a BB gun, they might put their eye out.”
The last one is wrong, and the first one sounds bitchin.’ The middle one is unnecessarily wordy and just sucks. Of course, this example is slanted because it’s referring to gun use. If I had talked about using an Easy-Bake oven, “she” would’ve been the obvious choice.
But for situations describing, for instance, physicians, “he” should definitely be preferred. Medical schools may be approaching a 50/50 split between male and female, but physicians have historically been male and there are still more practicing male doctors than female.
I’ve only had two textbooks in which I’ve noticed the “she” use. One was a philosophy book (thank you Douglas J. Soccio) and the other was a medical ethics book. Oddly enough, both of these pseudo-fields would seem the most susceptible to the influence of politically-correct pandering, but their feminist leanings do nothing to further their respective agendas. One sex is undoubtedly going to have to be chosen over the other (unless one proposes that the unbiased “it” be used), and I see no reason that a shift be made to that sex being the feminine one.
Further complicating the situation are trans-gender creatures and XXY males. How should one write his PC sentence if the entity involved is overtly male but has underlying feminine influences? It would seem callous and uncaring to lump these entities into one sex, which would probably end up being the one they eschew.
All someone can do is try his best to appease everyone involved, and the greatest satisfaction for the greatest number of people will always be achieved when males are given their rightful spot of dominance.
(Note: searching for “she” on my site yields 90 results, while searching for “he” yields over 580. This is grossly erroneous due to the letters being contained in longer words, but I’d like to think that I’m keeping everything in check.)
(Also note: I subliminally pushed my own agenda in this post, and I’m also proud of that.)