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LANSING, Michigan (LifeSiteNews) — The Michigan Senate voted to make the state’s breastfeeding law “gender neutral” by removing the words “woman” and “she” from a 2014 measure on the books affirming a right to breastfeed in public.

The Daily Wire reported that the change came attached to SB 351, a bill to update the law to also cover pumping breast milk, in which Democrat state Sen. Jeff Irwin also replaced references to females with “individual.”

In response, Republican state Sen. Michele Hoitenga introduced an amendment that would allow the new bill’s substantive changes while preserving the existing law’s female-specific language, noting that “as far as I’m aware, women, specifically mothers, are the only people who can breastfeed or pump milk.”

But the amendment failed a party-line vote, with Irwin claiming his original bill was “not about some twisted culture war” – despite SB 351, a bill spanning less than a page, actively replacing six different uses of sex-specific language.

The Midwesterner added that six Republicans ultimately supported Irwin’s non-amended, “gender-neutral” version of the bill. One of those Republicans, state Sen. John Damoose, claimed he “oppose[s] all woke initiatives that fail to recognize the biological differences between traditional genders,” and “would not have supported” SB 351 if it did any such thing.

“Changing the word ‘woman’ to ‘individual’ is just a policy of the Legislative Services Bureau that is occurring every time any piece of legislation is opened and has zero to do with the purpose of this bill,” Damoose claimed. “Other examples of this policy include changing ‘marijuana’ to ‘cannabis’ and ‘voters’ to ‘electors.’”

Not every Republican sees it that way, however.

“Senate Democrats took a relatively non-controversial policy bill, a bill extending the right for women to breastfeed in public to also include pumping breast milk, and made it controversial by replacing the word ‘woman’ with ‘individual,’” said Jeff Wiggins, spokesman for state Senate Minority Leader Aric Nesbitt.

According to modern biology, sex is not a subjective sense of self but an objective scientific reality, established by an individual’s chromosomes from the earliest moments of existence and reflected by hundreds of genetic characteristics. For years, however, LGBT activists have worked to promote “gender fluidity,” the idea that sexual identity is separate from biology and discernible only by personal perception, across public education, libraries, health care, and cultural traditions such as beauty contests, school homecomings, and athletic competitions.

Critics say their efforts have yielded a wide array of harms, both to the physical and mental health of gender-confused individuals themselves as well as to the rights, health, and safety of those who disagree, such as girls and women forced to share intimate facilities with males, female athletes forced to compete against biological males with natural physical advantages, and individuals forced to affirm false sexual identities in violation of their consciences, their understanding of scientific fact, and/or in the case of religious Americans, their belief in Genesis 1:27, which teaches that God created both sexes in His image.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) suggests men who identify as women can “chestfeed” infants by taking pharmaceuticals to replicate a woman’s natural production of breast milk, prompting criticism from doctors who accuse the agency of elevating political ideology above sound science and babies’ health.