Before I begin this post, this is my opinion, and my opinion alone. I am posting this because as a contributing member of the Drupal community, I am not afraid to express my opinions. I welcome and encourage counter-opinions, as long as the tone remains respectful.
I will use words such as vagina, uterus, and penis. If these words offend you, please do not read this post.
There has been a lot of talk lately within the Drupal community about the need for more women to be included in the community, and about reaching out to women specifically as part of a gender-based recruitment strategy.
I find this offensive.
It's wrong for any organization to actively recruit people of a specific gender or race or sexual orientation; gender and race are irrelevant and have absolutely zero to do with improving Drupal. The implication is that because a person has a uterus, she must be valuable to the community. This is patently false; a person's value and usefulness doesn't stem from the genitalia. There are just as many women as men who contribute absolutely nothing to the community. Simply using Drupal doesn't make you a member of the community; to be a member, you must participate.
This may come as a surprise to some women, but your vagina doesn't make you special, any more than Dries' penis makes him special.
Webchick talks about making gender a non-issue, and not falling into the trap of "othering", and I agree 100% with her. There's nothing to be gained in the community by singling people out because of their gender, and that applies to proposed efforts to recruit women, simply because they are women. I believe that the existence of the Drupalchix group on groups.drupal.org is just another example of "othering", despite the claim that the group is for anyone. The name alone singles out anyone but females, and its purpose is to serve female interests within the Drupal community. Why is this needed? Why should "a woman who needs some help/guidance in order to get (more) involved with Drupal and the Drupal community" have to go to the Drupalchix group to get that help, when there are so many all-inclusive resources that will give you the same amount of help and don't care that you have a vagina?
Asians are underrepresented in the Drupal community - should there be an outreach effort to recruit more of them? How about Indians? Mexican paraplegics? One-eyed Russian Jews who enjoy traditional Celtic music? You might laugh at these examples, but they are no different in concept than the idea of recruiting women for the sake of recruiting women.
The Drupal community needs people with ideas, people who aren't afraid to share and take action. What I love best about Drupal is that anyone who has an idea can contribute something to the community - modules, themes, snippets, documentation, patches, blog posts - it doesn't matter what your gender is or what nationality you are. All that matters is that you share something with the community, contribute, and participate.
Drupal needs to actively recruit and encourage people who are willing to do this, and leave the genitals out of it.