This story arc has been brewing almost since the beginning of the comic, which is why it has never happened, in 107 comics, that Dragon has been referred to with a gender pronoun.. For a while it seemed like I was going to chicken out and not go with it, but it’s been on my mind for a long time. As is true for most of my comics, I have some person stuff to work out. The time is right. Everyone’s talking about gender right now. Of course, some of us have been talking about it for decades, but now your granny is talking about it.
To start, I think most open-minded human beings can admit that gender behavior occurs along a spectrum. We really meet comparatively few men who, say, don’t think puppies and kitties are adorable. We rarely find women embracing the quality of weakness. And since gender is expressed through choices and behavior, if its expression takes place on a continuum, then gender itself can’t truly be a binary either. You could describe it as a quaternity (one, the other, both, neither) but even that doesn’t get at the nuances of who we feel like inside.
Little kids are taught the binary, which leads some of us to hide the parts that don’t fit, or else to be become saddled with derogatory tags. But why does a kid’s gender matter? We don’t want kids pairing off and mating in our society, and we no longer force adults into rigid gender roles for their entire lives to reinforce a social order for which they must begin relentlessly training at a young age. So, frankly, why should we care about little kids’ gender at all? Why shouldn’t we let them be who they feel they are?