Quote from k0no »
unless of course, someone prefers a particular pronoun and doesn't find it degrading at all. In which case it's on you to respect them enough to use it.
that's the bottom line. It doesn't do anyone any harm to be polite and respect people enough to do this.
As long as its a matter of being "polite" and thats all about it its one thing.
However, its not just being polite, its downright you are forced by law to do it, and NOT doing it, is not just being unpolite, its downright a crime, which means people are forced to do it, and punished if they dont.
Its a reversal of respect.
Its not a show of respect and its not earned at all.
Its a respect you force upon, which is just like the old age of kings where you chop the heads off people that dont bow before the king.
All the people should be treated equally, special rules and especially special power to a tiny minority results simply in obedience by fear of the repercussions, and not the good kind of respect that is earned.
Your argument comes down to "Its no big deal, just do it" , while the other opinion would be its a tremendously big deal, as it crosses a line of forcing people to use a kind of speech and enforcing that by punishment, which directly brands the person that stand out by taking that special right in a negative light, as some people will not like to be forced to comply if they dont do it out of themselves.
Another major issue with the pronounce is that if it bothers people, they will simply "avoid" said person to avoid bothering with the pronounce.
So if someone does not feel comfortable using "they" to address a person, or doesnt do it by mistake, they feel bad about it too, or they will even be punished for doing so ; so they naturally avoid this issue by further pushing said person out of their environment, which makes matters far worse.
Thats why my standpoint would be to out of respect NOT use a preferred-pronounce. People get the pronounce that fits their representation, the natural way a person would address anybody. In the vast majority of cases that is not a problem at all, and if it is, people that are willing to comply in the socially close range will use the special pronounce, while others will not ; no punishment, no disrespect ; happy people that can treat each other fairly and equally.
If someone asks me to insult and single out them every time i see them, its not a sign of disrespect to not do that.