Here I'll use the word "functionality" to refer to the range of capabilites of an object. For example a table has, within its functionality, the capability to be eaten off of. I claim here that impossible objects have absolutely no functionality - for example: santa claus, "an integer less than 1 and bigger than 2", the tooth fairy, etc, are all impossible objects and without any functionality. (Note that the lie claiming the functionality of these objects is an entity in itself, and may have functionality - e.g. inspiring kids to be good, in order to win a gift from santa. The lie retains functionality, but the entities lied about are functionless.)
I'll use the term "gender identity" here to refer to a purely-individually-determined set of characteristics. I'll use this term distinctly from "gender" (which has a more biological definition), and "gender roles" (which are a societally constructed set of attributes correlating to biological gender).
I've been considering this argument:
- There is only one method of gauging the functionality of an individual's gender identity: by asking the individual in question (this seems to be universally agreed upon by proponents of gender identity)
- Communication with an individual, concerning any entity, cannot ever prove the functionality of said entity. For example a person may communicate that "karma has the functionality of balancing moral actions". This is not proof that karma has functionality. A person could communicate a true claim, that "a table has the functionality of being eaten off of", but this does not prove that the functionality exists. An empirical test, on the other hand, could prove such things.
- The only method of gauging the functionality of an individual's gender identity cannot prove that such functionality exists.
- It is impossible to prove that any individual's gender identity has functionality.
This does not prove gender identities functionless - but it leads me to ask, what if they are?
As a society we extend certain considerations based on gender identity. In the case that gender identities are shown to be functionless, would it be ethical to continue to extend these considerations?
Are the considerations we extend based on gender identity ethically contingent on the functionality of gender identity?