The German government is preparing a law according to which every person over the age of 14 will be able to define their gender at their own discretion–with a simple statement.
This is a serious bone of contention right now.
Almost all the media reported about the cancellation and then the rescheduling of a lecture themed “Sex is not bad, sex, gender and why there are two sexes in biology” by Dr. Marie-Louise Folbrecht.
It was just one of 50 lectures planned as part of the “Long Night of Science” at Berlin’s Humboldt University.
The lecture was first canceled after protests summoned by the “Working Circle of Critical Lawyers” at this university.
The Circle believes that Folbrecht’s thesis, according to which there are only two sexes in biology, is unscientific, that it insults human dignity and that it is based on hatred towards “queer and trans persons.”
Spirits were stirred up by a public letter of appeal entitled “Enough with inaccurate reporting by public services”. The letter was signed by 120 scientists and doctors, and later (until the publication of this article) another 1,600 people added their signatures.
The letter of appeal reads: “We, scientists and doctors, ask public media services to truthfully present biological facts and scientific knowledge. We demand that the ideological treatment of the topic of transsexuality be stopped and that the presentation of biological matters be based on facts and the state of research and science.”
“The claim that there are many genders, that is, stages between male and female, is false. Queer and trans lobbyists believe that biological sex can be changed by social identification with that sex,” the signatories write.
They note that TV shows, radio programs and public service profiles on social networks promote this “trans-euphoria” and describe the “journey to the supposedly real body” as a very easy process.
One of the initiators of the letter is Dr. Alexander Korte, head of the clinic for child and youth psychiatry at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich.
This expert on sexual identity issues believes that a law that allows everyone to determine their own gender would be a big mistake.
“The discussion about the definition of the plurality of sexes (in terms of social roles or genders) can be conducted outside the natural scientific discourse with some inherent logic,” Korte told the Welt daily, “but we do not need new categories of sexes to explain why people have the gender identity disorder or to help those people.”
Nor does intersexuality, in his words, refute the duality of the sexes, because the fact that there are two sexes is not in a contradiction with the existence of persons whose sex structures are not fully differentiated.
The signatories accuse the public media services in Germany of being in the service of the trans and queer lobby and of having contributed to the fact that the number of children and young people receiving treatments for sexual identity disorders has increased by 25 times in less than ten years.
They state that the media make children think that transitioning to another sexual identity is easy and painless, which is not true: “We are talking about girls who undergo a surgical removal of their breasts and uterus, and take medications that prevent the development of primary and secondary sexual characteristics. And the possible and partly irreversible physical and psychological consequences of such measures are not talked about.”
“Instead, the media coverage is focused on giving the best possible voice to queer and trans lobbyists, who argue that biological sex can be changed by social identification with that sex.” This benefits the planned reform of the law on transsexuality, according to which everyone will be able to define their gender with a simple statement, and children who have reached the age of 14 may decide to undergo hormonal treatments and surgical adjustments to the other sex, against the will of their parents.”
“As scientists, we firmly oppose the idea that women and men are only social constructions or subjectively experienced identities. We believe that the achievements of the women’s movement are under threat, because every man will be able to declare himself a woman with a simple statement and gain access to the protected female spaces. Also, measures to help women are being abused, and their protection from violence is undermined. Children are forced to make a decision before they reach puberty, although they cannot grasp the consequences of such decision,” the letter signed by scientists and doctors reads.
When the biologist Marie-Louise Folbrecht’s lecture was canceled, a discussion about freedom of thought and science arose, due to which the above letter of appeal signed by scientist came into the spotlight, although it was published before the agenda of the “Long Nights of Science” at Humboldt University was defined.
The letter encouraged many to express their views on these issues, and the president of the Association of German Universities, Bernhard Kempen, also spoke out.
He told Humboldt University: “Instead of canceling the lecture, you should have shown that you have a backbone and you should have done everything to ensure it could be held.”
The well-known German journalist and co-founder of Berlin’s PEN club, Deniz Jugel, simultaneously wrote on his Twitter account: “The cancellation of Marie-Louise Folbrecht’s lecture is an extremely cowardly gesture by Humboldt University, and limiting the freedom of science is unacceptable.”
After that, the lecture was again included in the “Long Nights of Science” agenda.