please watch your language when you talk about children. they are not animals, they are not natural disasters, they are not evil little monsters, they’re just tiny people who are 100% dependent on the adults in their lives and i find it disturbing that people think it’s hilarious and cute to talk about how much they hate them
The gender neutral term for “ladies and gentleman” is “distinguished guests”. This has been around since at least the 60s, so no one is going to question your use of it.
Please, please use this along with “ladies and gentlemen” if you aren’t entirely sure of the gender of your audience.