Sex and Gender Conflated

I recently spent some time at another blog (someone had linked to one of my posts and invited me to the discussion), and I discovered that several of the discussants conflated gender and sex.  I was shocked.  (And in fact, that possibility so didn’t occur to me that I continued the surreal discussion for some time before I realized they’d made that mistake: the moderator objected to my suggestion that we do away with gender, claiming that that was what made us, or at least him, human; another commenter said something like the species couldn’t continue without it).

They seemed to be intelligent people (the moderator was intelligent enough to use the word “incumbent” and to demand evidence for a claim).  So why—how—given the 70s—how is it that the distinction between sex and gender has not become common knowledge?

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