When I read my colleague Tess’s post (my title my choice) I decided to do something about it. Context: The post was a reaction to a repulsive Wall Street Journal article. That article simply is a repugnant patronizing and sexist attack on Dr. Jill Biden’s use of Dr. title. I agree with Tess when she says the Doctor title is something to be proudly shown, because there are tons of energy, and enthusiasm on it. (Even more, especially when it is achieved by someone starting in a disadvantageous situation, like being a woman)
If you have earned a doctorate, in any field, you have earned the right to use the title “Doctor” if you choose to. It’s just that simple. If you have a problem with someone else making that choice, then it’s really that: your problem.https://tessneedham.blog/2020/12/15/my-title-my-choice/
I’ll use my Dr. title in public from now on
And I’ll use my Dr. title in public from this day onwards, for instance in Linkedin. Not just because Ness convinced me, I also have a handful of good reasons.
- I’ll use my title to support thousands of courageous and brilliant women that, like Ness, are just asking to be fairly treated. They ask us to assess their merits, not their gender.
- In my opinion in Spain and probably in other countries, we praise mediocrity in the public sphere. TV so-called debates are a good example. TVs prefer to always count on people creating shows instead of topic experts or people that know what they are talking about. If someone shows their simplicity or their lack of respect, we celebrate it. If they throw radical and controversial opinions, the more radical they are, the fewer proof is demanded. They are even cheered up. But if someone tries to be reflective or have opinions with nuances, they are dispised. If someone is proud of having devoted years to research on any knowledge area to make human culture advance… this is not tolerated. Too arrogant! Who do you think you are? That’s why from now on I’ll say in public I’m a doctor, to help others that are simply too modest or afraid to show it in public.
- Because when I was born, we still had a dictator in Spain. Someone that made half the people in Spain (being generous) have fewer opportunities and an unmanageable daily life. I feel my PhD is the culmination of a personal effort. Not just my effort, but my grandparents’ who were deprived of anything but dignity. And my parents’, as they overcame that situation with decades of devoted effort. My PhD program was just another step in that path, built upon their endeavor and my wife’s who allowed me to get it by supporting me and our kids any single day. Using my doctor title is a debt I have to all of them.
So I have decided to use my Dr. Title in public because it is fair with me, my wife, my parents, and my grandparents. I’ll use it because I’m proud of them and I’m proud of myself. And because I want to support anyone that freely decide to do the same, especially when it meant an extra challenge to get it. Something happening with women. And with lots of people under other circumstances that are used to segregate and put things harder to them in an unacceptable and unbearable inhumanity exercise. I’ll use it because I earned the right to do so and, essentially because it is my option. Thanks for showing this to me, Tess.