According to the Sun, the pilots were flying over the Caribbean Sea off the coast of Cancun around 3:30 p.m. local time, trailing a banner that announced the sex of the expecting couple’s child. Party guests were watching the plane fly overhead from a boat—and can be heard cheering “it’s a girl!” in footage captured of the incident—before the plane inexplicably nosedived into the water.
The Mexican navy reportedly responded to the scene, and managed to pull the pilots from the crashed plane, but the Sun reports that one died during the rescue mission and the other died while receiving emergency medical attention on shore. The crash is currently being investigated by the Federal Civil Aviation Agency.
This is far from the first time a gender reveal party has ended in tragedy, and at this point one has to think that the risk of injury or fatality for those attending them is quite high. In the last few years alone, gender reveal parties have: taken the lives of a 26-year-old man, a 56-year-old woman, and 28-year-old man who was also the soon-to-be-father at the party; injured several bystanders; and caused two forest fires, scorching tens of thousands of acres of land. And I’m sure I’m forgetting several other similar accidents, many of which result from people attempting to construct or detonate an explosive device to announce the sex of their fetus.
At this point all of the metaphors about the gender binary being a tragedy, a biohazard, etc. etc. have become exhausted and overdetermined. And so for this and all of the other obvious reasons—such as the needless loss of human life, for one—perhaps it’s time to finally put an end to gender reveals.