Re: Darwin run amok--Robert's comments

From: Harvey Newstrom (
Date: Tue Jan 04 2000 - 09:31:25 MST

<> wrote on Monday, January 03, 2000 10:15 pm,
> In a message dated 1/3/2000 6:32:34 PM Pacific Standard Time,
> writes:
> << we are taking intersex
> children and forcibly rendering them into one of two established
> gender schemas. >>
> what the heck is an intersex child? Enlighten me

Intersex babies are born with characteristics of both genders. They
comprise a surprising percent of births (over 1% I think). They are
surgically altered to appear as a single gender. Often they can be made
into either gender, and the doctors must decide which one to choose. More
horribly, males with extremely small penis size are classified as such, and
are often surgically made into females and raised as girls. Also, females
with an extremely large clitoris are classified as such and are surgically
made into females. These children often reach puberty only to have
characteristics of the other gender appear spontaneously. They often do not
agree with the sex chosen for them. When puberty manifests the other
gender, they must choose to have further surgery or hormones to keep
pretending to be the gender they always thought they were, or let nature
take its course and appear to change sexes from what their family and
friends have always known.

I studied such things in my biology minor, especially with my specialized
interest in genetics. To carry this topic further, not all XY chromosome
children are male, and not all XX chromosome children are female. Sometimes
they are born with fully functional genitalia and appearance of the other
gender. There also are XO, XXY, XYY, XXXY and other genetic combinations.
Sometimes people are born with a mix of gametes, meaning different cells
have different DNA combinations. Thus, even genetic testing does not answer
the question of sex for many individuals. The strict expectation of male or
female gender does not resolve for a small percent of the population.

Harvey Newstrom <>
Certified Consultant,  Legal Hacker, Engineer, Research Scientist, Author.

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