The US State Department was widely mocked on social media Wednesday after tweeting about “International Pronouns Day” and sharing a link to an article that detailed why many people on social media share their pronouns to help others avoid “accidentally assuming an incorrect gender based on a name or an appearance.”
“Today on International Pronouns Day, we share why many people list pronouns on their email and social media profiles. Read more here on @ShareAmerica,” the department’s official Twitter account posted, linking to a July blog post by Share America.
Critics took to social media to mock the post, with many accusing the department of prioritizing “International Pronouns Day” over foreign policy.
“If I’m Xi Jinping, I take one look at that tweet and then invade Taiwan… At this rate we should probably just go ahead and learn how to write our pronouns in Mandarin. Oh yea, btw, what were the pronouns of all the Americans you abandoned to the Taliban?” Donald Trump Jr. tweeted, referring to the chaotic US troop withdrawal from Afghanistan, where US forces were unable to evacuate all Americans and Afghan allies from the country before the withdrawal deadline.
“This is what they were likely focused on while leaving Americans behind to fend for themselves against terrorists in Afghanistan. Screw They/Them,” he added in a separate tweet.
Others shared Trump Jr.’s sentiment, with Rep. Mary Miller (R-Ill.) accusing the department of leaving Americans behind due to misplaced priorities.
“They left Americans stranded in Afghanistan because they are focused on this,” she wrote, sharing the State Department’s tweet.
“There are still many American citizens, legal permanent resides, and at-risk Afghan allies that remain stranded in Afghanistan!” Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.) tweeted.
Rep. Ken Buck (R-Colo.) slammed the department for having time to “tweet about gender pronouns” while it has not completed the removal of US allies stuck in Afghanistan.
“The State Department still hasn’t helped extract our remaining allies in Afghanistan who could not escape…But they have time to tweet about gender pronouns.”
The official Twitter account for House Judiciary Committee Republicans lambasted the tweet given the State Department’s lack of effort to protect the US Embassy in Kabul, saying, “And some people wonder how the Embassy in Afghanistan fell so quickly.”
Other Republican lawmakers criticized the agency for tweeting about the movement while other foreign policy issues persist.
“China successfully tested a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile, Afghanistan is now a terror super-state, Central American countries are sending a FLOOD of migrants to our border, and THIS is what the State Department prioritizes!? What is WRONG with these people???” Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) tweeted.
“This is what the people in charge of our nations foreign policy are working on today,” Sen. Macro Rubio (R-Fla.) simply wrote.
Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) questioned what the department is prioritizing toward China, saying, “What are you doing about China’s expanded nuclear capabilities?”
Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-NY) echoed that sentiment, writing, “China is testing hypersonic missiles. We’re celebrating International Pronouns Day.”
International Pronouns Day was first celebrated in 2018 and has since been recognized on the third Wednesday of every October. The day helps to create awareness around “respecting, sharing, and educating about personal pronouns commonplace,” according to the website pronounsday.org.
The campaign is run by an independent, grassroots organization, meaning the movement’s celebrations are “dependent on what folks decide to do at the local level in their own organizations and communities.”
Many social media platforms such as Instagram have allowed users to display their pronouns — such as she/her, he/him, they/them — in their bio to encourage “inclusion.”