Parents in Germany can now opt out of declaring “it’s a girl” or “it’s a boy,” and instead say nothing; letting their intersex baby decide his or her own gender identity later in life, or remain ambiguous. It all seems very enlightening, but advocates for intersexuality have criticized the new court ruling.
Starting in November, parents can choose between male and female or opt to choose neither. RT network reports that the new law applies to intersex babies, or hermaphrodites, who are born with both male and female genitalia. Many of these intersex-born babies are subject to unnecessary surgeries to fit one biological sex or the other. In many cases, the biological sex chosen is later revealed to not match the individual’s gender identity.
“A key aim of the new rule is to relieve parents of the pressure of having to decide a sex straight after the child’s birth, and thereby agreeing overly hastily to medical procedures to settle the child’s sex,” a spokesman for the German Interior Ministry told Charisma News.
The court ruling is the first of its kind in Europe, additionally stating that if a grown person “deeply feels” they belong to a certain gender, they have a right to choose their representation in the legal realm.
According to an August 19 article in the Daily Mail, one of the problems with this new proposal is that on other official documents, like passports, male and female remain the only two options. This could serve to be really annoying when trying to travel. Also, parents are still faced with the adverse position of having a child who is considered an outsider.
“This is an interesting move, but it doesn’t go far enough,” Silvan Agius, policy director at the Brussels-based rights group International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association told Charisma News. “Unnecessary surgeries will likely continue in Germany with devastating consequences,” he said. “We live in a world where having a baby classified as ‘other’ is still considered undesirable.”
A more significant problem lies in an ignorance of definition. The difference between sex and gender needs to be recognized: gender is the identity you believe to be inside your body, regardless of genitalia, while your sex is what has been bestowed upon you by the decisive powers of genetics. Gender is fluid and limitless in variation. An intersex “gender” identity is not entirely accurate if the issue has only to do with one’s sex.
The law was intended to fight discrimination, and a trend is growing. The Daily Mail also reports that, as of July 1, Australia allows all of its civilians to choose between M (male), F (female) or X (indeterminate, intersex, unspecified). The continent Down Under has this non-gender-specific classification for all types of government documents and is way ahead in terms of progressive legislation. It was the first country in the world to legally introduce a new gender. The only requirement for changing your gender status is to have a doctor or therapist make a statement to the government on your behalf.
Sweden recently introduced a new third-gender pronoun. “Hen” is the middle ground to the masculine “han” and feminine “hon.” This takes a more vernacular approach to providing a respectful inclusion of gender variants.
Progress has to start somewhere. While this new wave of gender-enlightened thinking is enormously positive in many aspects, there are some logistics that need to be worked out. Now, if we could only get our Lady Liberty to follow suit.
Another interesting read from the best writer The ...
Legalize marijuana, earn millions in tax revenue and ...
It's an opinion piece, you idiot.
Wow, Eastern. Personally, I normally applaud the Echo ...
God for bid an opinion piece be...wait...provocative...as ...