M.C. was one of many children in the custody of the South Carolina Department of Social Services (SCDSS). M.C. was also born with both male and female genitalia.
Instead of guarding the welfare of the child, SCDSS forced the 16-month-old toddler to undergo a painful and unnecessary sexual reassignment surgery.
The state of South Carolina made this decision long before the child had a chance to decide his sex for himself. Now eight years old, the child identifies as a boy but must live the rest of his life with female genitalia and permanently impaired sexual function.
Southern Poverty Law Center has filed a lawsuit against SCDSS and its doctors on behalf of M.C. and his parents and other children who "don't have a voice." M.C.'s parents say they want to "put other doctors on notice."
SCDSS mutilated this baby and violated his right to choose and be free from unnecessary medical intervention - and this should never happen to any child again.
We, the undersigned, stand with M.C.'s parents and Southern Poverty Law Center in their pursuit of justice for M.C. and their intent to restrict any future medically unnecessary sex-assignment surgeries on infants.
It is more commonly recommended now that children born with M.C.'s condition, once called hermaphroditism, be assigned a gender at birth, but be allowed to choose their sex when they are old enough, postponing any surgery until then.
Now that M.C. is eight and has chosen his sex as male, it is obvious that the State not only caused him unnecessary suffering as a toddler, but it made the wrong choice and damaged M.C. permanently.
M.C.'s adoptive parents said in a news conference that the State of South Carolina chose to disfigure the child because it couldn't "accept him for who he was ... not because he needed any surgery."
There was no excuse for the State to take on the role of choosing the sex of another human being. This action is just one more example of how state agencies have been given too much power over the lives of children - power they often abuse.
We demand that South Carolina state agencies discontinue this practice of disfiguring children and violating their rights to choose their own sex.
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