I owe commenter Benjamin Ethics Alarms’ gratitude for the inspiration of today’s ethics quiz.
The acronym for the grouping of the various and growing number of gender and sexual orientations that vary from the heterosexual norm was relatively recently the unwieldy LGBTQUIA. At an earlier time, I was comfortable with my understanding of what the letters designated: L was for Lesbian, G was for Gay, B was for Bi-sexual, T was for Transgender, and Q was for Queer, which seems redundant to me, but I’m sure an activist could explain its inclusion. After that, my limited ability to remember sequences of letters and numbers (I can’t remember phone numbers either, and never could) made the expanding acronym beyond my capacity to either recite or explain.
I am happy to say that I am not alone: there is even a website devoted to deciphering the sequence, which it describes (as of today, May 9, 2020) as “LGBPTTQQIIAA+Alphabet Soup.”
Well, that’s hopeless. Psychologists tell us that the typical human being can only easily recall unrelated letters, numbers, names or words up to seven; longer than that, and one either needs a lot of practice (as in learning the components of the Boy Scout Law: “Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, and Reverent,” which, I assure you, I will be able to recite without hesitation until the moment I die, and quite possibly after), or a good mnemonic.
Another commenter referred to the list facetiously as “LGBTQYZ#%#$+”. Presumably this would be taken as disrespectful by some members of the groups represented, but, you know, they do need to be reasonable. If you are going to expect people to use an acronym, make it possible to remember, and for God’s sake, don’t keep changing it. To me “LGBTQYZ#%#$+” isn’t disrespectful, it is fair criticism, and no, it is not bigoted to criticize any of those groups or all of them for just cause.
Reacting to “LGBTQYZ#%#$+”, Benjamin wrote that when the list was at the more manageable LGBTQUIA, he learned that the eight—that’s one more than seven!—initials could be rearranged into the anagram Quilt Bag, and he has been using it ever since.
That’s the only coherent anagram that can be made from the letters (the others are Gab Quilt, Alb Gut Qi, Alb Tug Qi, Lab Gut Qi, Lab Tug Qi, Tab Lug Qi, Bat Lug Qi, Gal Tub Qi, Gal But Qi, Lag Tub Qi, and the enigmatic Lag But Q), but it’s a good one. (There are no anagrams that use all the letters in LGBPTTQQIIAA, so just forget it.)
So why not use QUILT BAG? It’s not derogatory, and the “quilt” part is even descriptive.
Your Ethics Alarms Anagram Ethics Quiz of the Day is this: