July 1, 2009

"Pop," the Swedish 2-year-old whose sex its parents keep a secret.

"The child — called Pop in Swedish papers to protect his or her identity — is now two-and-a-half-years-old, and only a handful of close relatives (those who have changed the child’s diaper) know the sex. Pop’s parents, who are both 24, say they made this decision in the hope of freeing their child from the artificial construct of gender. 'We want Pop to grow up more freely and avoid being forced into a specific gender mould from the outset,' Pop’s mother told the Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet last spring. 'It’s cruel to bring a child into the world with a blue or pink stamp on their forehead.'"

Oh, but is it cruel to act out your ideological opinions on the tender life of a child?

Let's play some music:

58 comments:

The Drill SGT said...

Dumb and Dumber

Lindsay said...

Let's pretend this isn't stupid...

Can you keep from using pro-nouns and a secret that long with every day interaction with the secret? If they've kept up, what 2 years and 9 months of this...bravo on that part.

Back to Reality: This is why hippie's shouldn't have kids.

Jim said...

As soon as this child interacts with other children, he/she is going to find out that gender is not a "social construct," but a "biological reality."

There's a world of difference between saying "If my son wants to play with dolls, I'll let him. And if my daughter wants to play 'army man,' I'll let her" and saying "my child has no gender."

The first are laudable statements: let children be children. If they want to play a certain game, the parents shouldn't say that because of their gender they shouldn't be allowed to play them. They're children, for God's sake.

The second is just lunacy, and constitute a disconnection from reality that begs for psychological intervention.

Joseph said...

Hmm... What about parents who impose their ideological opinions about the importance of defined gender roles? These parents seem to be pushing it a bit far and promoting themselves and that promotion is unseemly. But the idea of letting a child's gender identity develop in a more organic way seems pretty healthy.

holdfast said...

Cost of therapy to sort this poor kid out later, after a short lifetime of teasing and confusion? Incalculable!

traditionalguy said...

How can these people who think God's creation of man as man and woman is an immoral cruelty be taken seriously. That is the ultimate in rebellion: to refuse your creator's creation of men and women genders out a of stubborn insistance on "higher Morality". But God also created morality...they are too late.

Aaron said...

I am surprised that people this stupid could figure out how to even make a baby.

Donna B. said...

What a dumb idea. For this to work both the parents would have to deny their gender also because the kid would have asked by now whether "it's" a boy or a girl.

Marcia said...

"Can you keep from using pro-nouns and a secret that long with every day interaction with the secret? If they've kept up, what 2 years and 9 months of this...bravo on that part."

In English, it would be tough to avoid gender-identification through pronouns. In French, it would be much easier.

I don't know about Swedish. Anyone?

Jim said...

Donna B -

Which beggars the question: if gender is a "social construct," then what do they call the sperm donor and the person who carried and delivered the baby if not "Dad" and "Mom"? "Parent A" and "Parent B"? And isn't being designed Parent "A" an artificial construct? What makes "A" superior to "B" that one person should go before another in an alphabetic nomenclature? Are they then both "Parent A"? And what makes the English (or Swedish) alphabet superior to using a symbol-based language instead? Wouldn't that be more "equal"? Who decides what symbol represents each? What if they both want to be represented by the same symbol?

And so on ad infinitum....

The staggering stupidity of people in pursuit of political correctness never ceases to amaze me.

Maguro said...

Does anyone doubt that Pop is actually a boy?

Jim said...

Marcia -

"In English, it would be tough to avoid gender-identification through pronouns. In French, it would be much easier."

The child will never be able to learn Spanish where nouns are seemingly arbitrarily (in many cases, although there are some general rules) assigned genders. The poor child's head would explode after the first class session.

Jim said...

Maguro -

Excellent point. It seems that political correctness is invariably aimed at neutering males by denying them their masculinity.

I'm afraid I couldn't bet against your assumption.

Tibore said...

Wow... a parent letting a kid be all that the kid can be. As long as it doesn't bring up the sociopolitical misperception of what gender truly comprises. [/snark]

The question is, if Pop is a girl and wants to play at girl things - tea parties, dolls, etc. - will Pop be allowed to do so? Or would poor Pop be discouraged because such play forces the child into "a specific gender mould"?

Look, even I freely admit there are some gender restrictions in society that make no sense. Strategypage has an illustrative story on the use of women in combat-type situations (not combat itself - the role is intelligence gathering from other Iraqi women - but the article makes the point that this law "only serves to keep women out of the combat arms (infantry, armor, artillery), but not out of combat itself"). It shows a case where women make a very real contribution, but are still technically not allowed into the combat arm where their contributions can be best utilized. Because of stories like this, even I - the farthest thing from a liberal - would agree that some gender restrictions are silly.

But to go as far as these parents are? Just how screwed up is this kid-slash-social-experiment going to end up? Just because there are issues with the way some societies treat gender issues doesn't mean the whole damn concept is a waste. That's throwing the non-gendered baby out with the practical bathwater. That kid is now going to have to deal with a world where gender differences don't just exist, but are taken for granted and not looked upon as good or bad but simply as existing, and that kid will end up with a skewed sense of the meaning and importance of gender differences because of it.

Oh well... they're the parents. They can do whatever they want, I guess...

Tibore said...

Just to sum up my rant: How does denying a characteristic of a child forward that child's development? Gender isn't a handicap to overcome, after all.

Jim said...

Tibore -

As with so many crazy Leftist ideas, this one will have a terrible unintended consequence as well.

This child will be told that there is no such thing as gender: an illusion that explode the second the kid is exposed to anyone outside their home. Then how does the child ever trust his parents again if they are willing to deny who he is? How does that child then begin to understand his place in society and form relationships?

This is child abuse: plain and simple.

Joseph said...

if gender is a "social construct," then what do they call the sperm donor and the person who carried and delivered the baby if not "Dad" and "Mom"?

The idea that gender is socially constructed does not deny the existence of biological sex or suggest that men and women are equivalent in every way. It just means that biology does not predestine girls wearing dresses and growing their hair long and shaving their legs and cheerleading rather than playing sports. Society has created those expectations and society can and does change them.

And social constructionism doesn't promote the elimination of social constructs either--its impossible to have a world without any. Its one way of analyzing the world. But some social constructs are more useful than others. Strictly dividing the world into one set of expectations for all girls and another set for all boys turns out to be an inefficient reflection of biology. Lots of girls enjoy and excel at sports and math and science so we shouldn't let socially constructed ideas about gender roles discourage girls from pursuing those things.

Conservatives love to mock social constructionism as some loony fantasy but its basic premise is pretty simple and uncontroversial.

Jim said...

Joseph -

"Conservatives love to mock social constructionism as some loony fantasy but its basic premise is pretty simple and uncontroversial."

Read my very first post on the subject. I said that encouraging "cross-gender" play was laudable, so you need to re-examine your assumptions about what "conservatives" love to do.

What you're talking about it is a world away from what we're talking about, and what you're talking about is social norming. Taking it to the extreme of saying that "gender is a social construct" is, quite frankly, a ridiculous statement that denies fundamental human biology and reality.

You can talk about the downside of social norming with regard to gender without making the reality-denying leap.

rhhardin said...

Jean Shepherd wound up assigned to the wrong health class in high school.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Do the parents have gender? Do they shave their heads and dress androgiounsly? How about the other relatives who visit? Does everyone who comes in contact with this child hide their gender?

I just don't see how they can possibly keep up with this charade. At some point the child will notice that there are males/females mom/dad grandmother/grandfather. It will notice that those categories seem to be the norm and accepted and begin wondering about itself. Very confusing.

Marcia said...

"The child will never be able to learn Spanish where nouns are seemingly arbitrarily (in many cases, although there are some general rules) assigned genders. The poor child's head would explode after the first class session."

Jim -- French is the same. Both Romance languages. Swedish obviously isn't a Romance language, but I don't know what its pronoun structure is.

dbp said...

Those parents got me to look-up this Swedish word:

rövhål

Someday, Pop will want to use it a lot when describing his or her parents.

Jim said...

dbp -

LOL

You made me go look it up for myself, and you're absolutely right.

muddimo said...

"biology does not predestine girls wearing dresses and growing their hair long and shaving their legs"

Obviously, you have no kids. I have a daughter who excels at sports but she cannot come within viewing distance of a Claire's without begging to go in to look at the hair bands, earrings, purses, etc. Girls love pretty things and to be pretty. It's a true interest and just as valid as being interested in monster trucks and combat. Having had a son first, our house was full of boy things that were available for play but quickly filled with Barbies and other girl toys. She loves her soccer ball and softball glove too but there is a definite predeliction for girl stuff. It's biology not a foisted social construct.

Patrick said...

Goodness gracious me.

Hopefully s/he/it turns out to be a particularly stunning bisexual Swede, that could make this an experiment worth repeating.

More seriously, goodness gracious me. Shouldn't a paternnon-sexually-constructed-authoritianish-alistic society like Sweden have authorities to take babies away from parents like this?

(PS: Ann, I want strike tags!!)

JAL said...

Lots of girls enjoy and excel at sports and math and science so we shouldn't let socially constructed ideas about gender roles discourage girls from pursuing those things

And are you in a time warp?

Or Saudi Arabia?

Chris said...

This sounds an awful lot like a science experiment.

muddimo said...

In a related vein, many men, especially young men, assume that women are interested in fashion, make up, dressing "sexy", etc. solely to attract or to obtain approval from men. I have learned over the years that this is by no means the case. They like it because it makes them feel good about themselves and is a means of self expression. In general, a woman doesn't dress nicely and carefully select and apply makeup to impress men any more than she would carefully paint a picture or tastefully decorate a room to impress men. Enjoying the activity, the results, and sharing with her friends who have similar interests, is generally the greater motivator. It would be wrong to assume that a woman who wears high heels is doing so meet some opressive masculine definition of beauty. She more likely thinks she looks better, i.e. the way SHE likes to look, and therefore feels better about her presentation to the world (male/female/neutral) and more confident.

Skyler said...

The world has become so prosperous that people can now be idiots and still be able to exist.

I welcome the prosperity and see the idiocy as a symptom of that prosperity, but I refuse to pretend that it isn't idiocy.

NKVD said...

Ann, nice link to an obscure Who song, but perhaps a better choice would have been "Are You a Boy, Or Are You a Girl" by the Barbarians.

holdfast said...

TIBORE:

"It shows a case where women make a very real contribution, but are still technically not allowed into the combat arm where their contributions can be best utilized."

Clearly these female soldiers are making a valuable contribution, and Bravo Zulu to the chain of command for facilitating it. That said, I have never seen a female make a "valuable contribution" by running up a hill with a PRC-25 and the GPMG, which is why non-Olympic class females are simply not suited to being infantry.

muddimo said...

The point being, don't assume that because it's a "feminine" trait/activity/inclination that it has no value in and of itself--that it is being foisted on girls by a paternalistic society. Open your mind to the possibility that girls like girly things and that's OK.

Darcy said...

Yes, it's cruel and selfish. Oh, but don't the parents feel good about their experiment? Yay! That's what matters.

Cabbage said...

Even if gender is a social construct, isn't there a good reason for employing it? It's been there since the dawn of time -- probably because it helped people survive and prosper.

Synova said...

People would put babies in identical little dresses, boys and girls. It seems fine (even excellent) to me if we do that. Lord knows mine wore the same hand-me-down onesies no matter the color. I'm all for androgynous clothing forever.

I've got a book of names including ancient British and Norse. Interestingly, to me, not all those older cultures, at least according to this book, have different name lists for male or female.

I'm not at all bringing this up to suggest that there was ever anywhere in the world where people didn't start out as girls and boys. I'm only saying that the *particular* things that we use to signal male or female are entirely arbitrary.

Bart Hall (Kansas, USA) said...

If gender is a "social construct," as proffered by both feminism and Queer Theory, then homosexuality cannot be presented as biological determinism, rather than a choice. Similarly, any logical basis for "transgender" also evaporates.

Grammatical gender in Swedish is entirely different. To a great extent there are only two: "common" and "neuter." Common gender is a fusion of earlier masculine and feminine, which have almost entirely disappeared with the exception of pronouns for male and female persons and animals ... han and hon. The nature of those vowels is such that it would not be difficult to produce a sound not clearly one or the other.

Common or neuter gender is most easily seen in the indefinite article 'en' for common and 'ett' for neuter -- attached as a suffix for the definite article, BTW -- or in the plural forms, the former generally ending in R and the latter with N (or no change if ending with a consonant).

The possessive works a lot like English, but it's also possible to fudge the pronunciation -- hans or hennes could be pronounced haens and that would work reasonably well in commonly spoken Swedish.

So ... there's no grammatical reason they couldn't pull it off, and the linguistic tendency in all the Norse-derived languages has been towards the common gender for many generations.

Why they'd inflict such nonsense on a child, however, is another story entirely.

Deirdre Mundy said...

I wonder if some of the hysteria about forcing gender on kids, yadda yadda... is just because people are having fewer kids?

If you have a house with several kids, some boys and some girls, the lines between 'boy toys' and 'girl toys' get blurred anyway... you end up with big bins of 'Kid toys.'

Fred4Pres said...

Now you know why Norweigians and Danes shake their heads and facepalm when you mention Sweden.

NKVD said...

Han ar ett rövhål. Both of 'em.

Jim said...

Bart -

If gender is a "social construct," as proffered by both feminism and Queer Theory, then homosexuality cannot be presented as biological determinism, rather than a choice. Similarly, any logical basis for "transgender" also evaporates.

An extremely thought-provoking observation which I had not previously considered.

In addition to "transgendered" losing its meaning, so too then do "gay," "lesbian," "bisexual," "homosexual," and "heterosexual" become meaningless.

We would then necessarily have to adopt terms like "phallophiliac," "gynophiliac," and "omniphiliac" to describe our sexuality and it is impossible to describe the difference between "homosexuality" and "heterosexuality" as even such terms as "a male gynophiliac" to could no longer be used since "male" and "female" are both simply "social constructs" as well.

It necessarily means that all sexuality is a matter of choice rather than biologically determined. The matter of gay marriage can then no longer be considered a "civil right" as the laws surrounding marriage would be no different than other laws which reward or punish us for our particular lifestyle choices (drinking, smoking, etc.). It would be a societal choice to only acknowledge the union of a "gynophiliac" with a "phallophiliac" rather than unions of any other type, and arguments for gay marriage then have no greater moral urgency than changing the drinking age or allowing smoking in restaurants.

It would be interesting to hear how someone who actually believes in "gender is a social construct" resolves these obvious logical fallacies.

William said...

Every human being is an experiment, and some experiments are more successful than others. Hemingway's mother dressed him in girl's clothes and long hair until he was 4 or 5. Perhaps that's why his prose is so miltantly masculine. Over compensation. Hassidic Jews don't cut the hair of their male children until they are fairly far along. You tend to treat toddler boys with long hair in a relatively gentle way.....I don't know if this will be a successful experiment. Probably not, but lots of children are raised with multiple step parents and early exposure to endless varieties of pathology. This isn't the strangest childhood on record. Look at Michael Jackson. Maybe the kid will learn something worthwhile from the experience.

Jim said...

william -

"Maybe the kid will learn something worthwhile from the experience."

The only thing this child is going to learn is how to find "Therapist" in the Yellow Pages.

Methadras said...

This is what the moronic leftist ideology has given us. Gender confusion and the question of gender identities without consideration to the mental and emotional developments within a child. So now the parents want a gender neutral child and in doing so have damaged a life irreparably. And what will they do when that child basically gives the parents a middle finger and chooses a gender it most internally identifies with? Are they going to try and fix it back to neutrality? These people are fucking stupid and the fact that they have ridden this wave of stupidity on the back of leftism is even more telling of how evil this ideology truly is.

Joseph said...

Jim, your observations seem to be either completely ignorant of social constructionism or deliberately misleading.

ricpic said...

Pop's headed for the psycho ward. There isn't a day goes by I don't thank God my parents were square.

luz said...

I guess these people never heard of Brenda/David Reimer:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Reimer

jr565 said...

Jim wrote:
It would be interesting to hear how someone who actually believes in "gender is a social construct" resolves these obvious logical fallacies.

Good points, all JIm. How much do you want to bet though that these parents are also proponents of gay marriage and any other liberal tropes you'd care to mention. In other words, don't expect logical consistency from fools such as these

jr565 said...

William wrote:
Maybe the kid will learn something worthwhile from the experience.

That his parents are idiots? That liberals are insane people?

DADvocate said...

artificial construct of gender

Can you get any more stoopid? (or is it stoopider?) It's not like gender and gender roles don't occur in nature.

I wonder what will happen when the kid begins to act like his/her gender. What if he's a boy and wants to play sports? Or a girl who wants to wear a dress? OMG!!!

If kid doesn't grow up to be totally f**cked up, it'll be a miracle.

DADvocate said...

Joseph - I hadn't read your comments before my first comment.

Let me repeat for you. Gender and gender roles are not an artificial construct. They occur throughout nature. There are many measurable differences between the sexes, the ability to throw being the greatest.

The parents are interfering with the child's natural development. How ironic that so many people are so divorced from nature that they don't have a clue what it is or that they are a part of it. There is nothing "more organic" about what they're doing. Just the opposite, actually.

Jim said...

Joseph -

"your observations seem to be either completely ignorant of social constructionism or deliberately misleading."

Face it. You've been spoonfed a bunch of intellectual pablum, and you swallowed it thinking it tasted like lemon meringue pie.

If you read my previous post, you'd understand that what you're talking about with social norming is perfectly acceptable social science. We can have a discussion about what effect that has on children and whether or not our current social norms are harmful, helpful or neither.

But...

"Gender is a social construct."

is a complete sentence. It is a complete thought. It denies biology. It denies reality. Gender is not a social construct.

You can dress a boy in a dress, panties and a push-up bra and he will still have a penis and be a boy. Likewise you can put a jock strap and a wifebeater on a girl, and she will still have breasts and a vagina.

Men are, on average, bigger, stronger and faster. They are more driven and aggressive because they have higher testosterone levels. Nothing in "social constructionism" recognizes that men and women are fundamentally different creatures. No matter how many times you repeat "gender is a social construct" it doesn't change these essential facts.

To claim that gender is a social construct, you must first deny that it is anything else. You must deny that the existence of gender as anything other than a purely abstract concept. When you do that, it has logical consequences.

That you've never considered them or dismiss them because it makes the entire theory fall down on its face is not my fault. Just because someone told you it's true, that doesn't make it true. Just because it's the latest fad in "political correctness" doesn't make it true.

It's like trying to tell a black person that their skin is the same color as a white person because "ethnicity/race is a social construct." It's even worse because male blacks and male whites share a whole lot more biologically than males and females.

If you think my statements are "ignorant," then I would suggest to you that you need to go back to Biology 101 because you've got some homework to do.

former law student said...

When our niece was three she craved dresses with a white hot passion. Rather than wear jeans or slacks she refused to take her one dress off.

On vacation, we walked across the border to Mexico and got her a nice, embroidered, girly girl dress She was ecstatic. Meanwhile, every woman in her life wore nothing but slacks. None of us could figure out where this skirt passion came from.

There is a lesbian couple in our neighborhood that for years I thought was straight, until one of their neighbors tipped me off.

The "guy" wetcombs his hair in a way I hadn't seen since the mid-sixties. He wears old buttondowns, jeans, tube socks, and work boots at all times. I find it impossible to use the feminine pronoun for him; Mike Ditka looks like a pansy by comparison.

A gender identity different from one's sex would be hard to sustain -- if we all were nudists.

Jeff with one 'f' said...

"Pop" is in for a rude awakening when s/he goes to school with the Muslim kids...

kentuckyliz said...

So are these wacko parents going to talk to their 10 year old son Pop about how he's about to start menstruating and developing breasts?

Or are they going to talk to their 10 year old daughter Pop about how he's about to start having wet dreams and it's a natural process and a part of becoming a man?

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. I bet the kid develops a virulently strong gender identity of some sort, whether it matches his/her biological sex or is opposite of it. Tranny prostitute in the making. Call him Lola.

L O L A!
LoLo Lo Lo Lo Laaaaa
everybody sing along!

reader_iam said...

An odd curiosity: Was Pop breastfed or around breastfeeding moms? While I realize how and why a "yes" answer to this isn't necessarily (and isn't necessarily to be seen as) strictly relevant to {[artifical] [societal]} constructs of gender, a "yes" answer to at least the latter question in the first sentence of this comment would indicate some exposure to a biological construct with some relevance to bringing up a young child devoid of at least some bio-gender/sex observations (if not assumptions.)

***

Helluva a sentence,that second one, wouldn't you agree?

Anyway, about that query re: breastfeeding exposure... .

Zoe Brain said...

Title of Presentation: Brain Gender Identity

Abstract:
Gender Identity is that innate sense of who you are in this world with reference to your sexuality and behavior, not necessarily corresponding to your genitalia and reproductive organs. Transgenders are atypical and “think” as the opposite gender. Certain areas of the brain have been shown to be sexually dimorphic. They are different in structure and numbers of neurons in males versus females. Protein Receptors for the sex hormones in different areas of the brain (limbic and anterior hypothalamic) must be present in sufficient numbers to receive those powerful hormones. There are androgen receptors (AR), Estrogen Receptors (ER), and Progesterone receptors (PRs). ARs or ERs are predominant at different times in different parts of the human brain. Hormone receptor genes have been identified in humans, which are responsible for sexually dimorphic brain differentiation in the hypothalamus. The groundwork in brain gender identity is gene-directed and takes place by forming male and female hormone receptors in the brain before the gonads and hormones can influence them. Multiple genes acting in concert determine our sexual identity. The human brain continues to make neurons and synaptic neuronal connections throughout life. This contributes to Gender Role Behaviors making individuals in the continuum of gender identity. Gender behaviors must be differentiated from gender identity (Hines). Gender Identity cannot be predicted from anatomy (Reiner). Brain gender identity is determined very early in fetal development, but gender expression, expressed as behaviors requires hormonal, environmental, social and cultural interactions, which evolve with time. One cannot deny the profound effects of Testosterone, Estradiol and other steroids on genital differentiation in-utero or their effects on behavior from birth or the physical and mental cross gender changes caused by exogenous hormones, but gender identity is determined before and persists in spite of these effects.

That was part of a presentation by Prof Sidney Ecker MD to the recent APA annual meeting.

Another part of the seminar was by Prof Milton Diamond, and I'll quote one of his papers:
A theory of gender development is presented that incorporates early biological factors that organize predispositions in temperament and attitudes. With activation of these factors a person interacts in society and comes to identify as male or female. The predispositions establish preferences and aversions the growing child compares with those of others. All individuals compare themselves with others deciding who they are like (same) and with whom are they different. These experiences and interpretations can then be said to determine how one comes to identify as male or female, man or woman. In retrospect, one can say the person has a gendered brain since it is the brain that structures the individual’s basic personality; first with inherent tendencies then with interactions coming from experience.

Pop's brain is already predisposed to be either male or female. 2999 times out of 3000, that will match other characteristics such as genitalia.

Gender Identity as such may not be realised until Pop interacts with other children, but interaction with adults may already have started the process along.

Frodo Potter said...

Jim said “The staggering stupidity of people in pursuit of political correctness never ceases to amaze me.” Well put. I think you have pretty much summed up his parents and their ilk—their behavior is characterized by willful disregard for common sense.

William, there is a reason that Hemingway’s mother dressed him like a girl until he was five or six. In Victorian times *every* boy above a certain social class was dressed like that. There is a fairly well-known picture where Theodore Roosevelt’s two youngest sons were dressed as girls. Since they went on to win three Purple Hearts, two Silver Stars, and a Distinguished Service Cross between them, I’d say they were even more macho than Hemingway. Why did the Victorians do that? I have no idea. But trust me, the Roosevelt boys knew they were boys and the Roosevelt girls knew they were girls.

Jeff with one f said " ‘Pop’ is in for a rude awakening when s/he goes to school with the Muslim kids...” Sad, but true. And thanks to the stupidity of the Swede’s political correctness, there will be *plenty* of Muslim kids to harass and bully “Pop.”

Jane said...

I have two daughters and a son, all under 9.

I've never talked a whole lot to them about what makes a girl feminine or a boy masculine. My son likes trains, toys, videos, but has more of a geek/reader for a Dad so he's certainly not inundated with sports themes. Also, I grew up in an all-girl home so I haven't raised a boy before.

So something that happened one day really, really surprised me.

When my son was exactly three, I needed to grab a pair of pants for him quickly, and picked up a pair of jeans without examining them closely. I saw my son glance down at them and then freeze up. His face turned red and he got really still. He said, "Mommy, you mixed up me". Then I saw that there was a pink flower on the lower leg. Oops! I said "sure enough, I accidentally gave you the wrong pair and I'm so sorry". I quickly found him a new pair.

It was eye-opening. I pity children who are not respected.