Here is a good post on the evils of gender-neutral language. Markos, an English prof. at Houston Baptist University, has a lot of good things to say. One of his goals is to stiffen the spines of his readers, particularly his Christian readers, who have bought the line that gender-neutral language is required of them as Christians in order to show their sensitivity.
A few excerpts:
In the Preface to the Contemporary English Version, the editors (in an attempt to justify their censoring of all “sexist” language from their translation) make the following claim:In everyday speech, “gender generic” or “inclusive” language is used, because it sounds most natural to people today. This means that where the biblical languages require [an important concession that!] masculine nouns or pronouns when both men and women are intended, this intention must be reflected in translation, though the English form may be very different from that of the original. The Greek text of “Matthew 16:24 is literally, “If anyone wants to follow me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” The Contemporary English Version shifts to a form which is still accurate and at the same time more effective in English: “If any of you want to be my followers, you must forget about yourself. You must take up your cross and follow me.”The assumption that underlies this paragraph is not only radically untrue; it is insincere, manipulative, and patronizing. The literal translation of Matthew 16:24 quoted above is neither unnatural nor ineffective. Even after two decades of gender-neutral brainwashing in our schools and universities, any teen (or even child) would recognize immediately the naturalness of the original verse and would understand that its invitation is made to all people, not just males. The editors of the CEV would have us believe that their gender-neutral translation of the verse is more natural and effective and that it more truly reflects the way “real people” speak. But they are putting the cart before the horse. The true goal of the gender-neutral agenda is not to reflect existing patterns of speech, writing, and thought, but to so radically alter those patterns that people will, in time, really come to think of the literal translation as unnatural.
Many who advocate gender-neutral translations of the Bible (and of the hymns, creeds, and prayer books) do so, so they claim, to avoid offending the more “sensitive” people in the pews. I can’t say I’ve met any of these hypothetical sensitive people, but, if they do exist, they are certainly vastly outnumbered by the people who are genuinely (if silently) disturbed by the co-opting of their scriptures and traditions. (Indeed, I would argue that the majority of those “sensitive” people are precisely the ones who are engaged in neutering the Bible and the prayer books!) And besides, even if there are a significant number of such “sensitive” people, how far are we to go in accommodating their sensitivity? Shall we cease to speak about sin and the need for confession? Such talk certainly offends more people than the types of pronouns used in the service. And how far, one may legitimately ask, is the revamping of traditional language to go?