I’ve done this in two parts as part 1 was something the mind goes straight to when thinking about consent, it doesn’t tend to step toward thoughts of body modifications.
When I walk in to a tattoo shop for an appointment I sign a form I consent to the tattoo but what about when you want your tongue split… ear removed…. or nipple removed? May sound slightly odd to some, or massively appealing to others, a personal preference really, just not a legal one.
These modifications were performed by Brendan McCarthy, a tattooist known as “Dr Evil”. He’s serving a 40-month sentence after pleading guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent… but how can that be when his customers came to him, requested the modifications and by definition consented to them.
The charge came about due to one of his customers making contact with the police explaining he was not aware the procedure he had requested was illegal and if he had known he wouldn’t have wanted the procedure to go ahead… make of that what you will.
The problem is that these procedures are not legal in this nature and Mr McCarthy is not a licensed practitioner, therefore you can’t legally consent to them.
The prosecution aimed to act to deter these situations occurring in future however the hole this creates the question, why can’t you consent to these modifications, if you want them? Surely if you want them you should just be allowed them, you’re of sound mind…. maybe by a licensed practitioner, but even so currently you can’t have you ear lopped off for self-expressive reasons.
Personally, in my ideal fantasy land I’d allow the modifications but only to be done by a licensed practitioner, but that opens a can of worms, big can, big worms, worms I can’t even begin to fathom. In a time where self-expression is everywhere and more accepted than before, should this not be legalised?