Our gratitude to the author of American Grotesque for speaking out against the treatment of intersex people. However we question the author’s intersex prevalence figure that appears to be made up or at least drawn from an extremely questionable source – 1 in 1000 or 10 000 newborn infants. The prevalence of intersex births worldwide is 4%.
We (the Western nations) with our firm belief in human rights always point our finger at Africa and condemn the crimes of female genital mutilation that are committed in the name of tradition or religion. But we are actually doing exactly the same! The human right to psychical integrity/inviolability is violated either way.
Under German law (§ 2 GG) this right means that because of the human free will – any person has the right to decide what happens with his_her* (by writing in such a manner I try to make the existence of intersex and transgendered people visible) body and that you have to prove that a person no longer can execute this free will before you can for example operate on him_her*. The law also states that if you nevertheless do it you are committing a crime (§223 and § 226 StGB) and in case of, for example children, it can be interpreted as abuse or misuse of the duty to shield children from any harm.