On specific labels and the color blue
There is a trend of sorts I’m seeing, that of people arguing about the existance of certain gender labels because these labels would be “too specific”. That this creating more and more specific labels would be making things too confused or complicated or what have you.
Now, I’d like you to think of the color blue. But not just any blue, but azure in particular. Would someone say azure is too specific a word, because I could have simply said blue instead? Of course I might have just said blue, but that may have made you think of any kind of blue. Another person maybe would have just asked you to think of blue, but I wanted specifically azure now. Just like I could have asked for turquoise, or teal, or cerulean. Of course these in the end are all blue, but since there are many types of blue we felt the need to make words that refer to specific shades so that others may know exactly what we are talking about without getting into long descriptions.
Suppose now, for example, someone says they are genderfluid. You’ll understand that their gender is fluid, but not what genders they go between. They might go between male and female, or between agender, nonbinary and demigirl, or between nonbinary and female, you don’t know. And maybe they’ll be alright with you just knowing they are genderfluid and leave it at that. But someone else’s gender might never encompass masculine genders, and it may be important to them, and so they might use genderfae instead of genderfluid, so that there will be no doubt on the fact that they never feel male or masculine.
And, furthermore, these specific labels aren’t just used for tthe sake of using less words to communicate a concept, they are useful to the people who use them. If you want to paint your house’s fence azure, you’ll look for azure paint, but if the label only says blue instead of what shade of blue it is you’ll have a much harder time finding the paint you want. If that genderfae person wants to meet other people who share the same gender, or is looking for resources specifically for someone who doesn’t experience masculinity, they’ll do this much faster by looking up genderfae instead of the more vague genderfluid.
This isn’t to say broad labels aren’t useful, of course. Certain people won’t feel the need to specify their gender past genderfluid, or any other umbrella term for that matter. Others people do find comfort in more specific labels.
“But,” you say, “how am I supposed to know all these labels? There’s so many of them!” Well then, did you know the word glaucous? It is apparently a type of pale grey-blue. I had no idea this word existed until about ten minutes ago. If someone had told me about something glaucous yesterday I would have had to ask what it meant, and they would have explained it to me so that in the future I could have understood it. And in the same way, no one forces you to learn every single gender label in existance, and if you ever meet someone using a label you don’t know, all you have to do is ask, and I’m sure they will be happy to explain it to you, so that in the future you will know what their gender is.
And frankly, after having looked up all possible names for blue, I assure you gender labels aren’t overly specific at all.