Genital mutilation of young girls. But it's a religious thing!

Doctor accused of mutilating genitals of young girls defends procedure as religious practice.

Religious freedom my ass. I hope this doctor gets jailtime. As for the parents involved I don’t want to say remove the kids, I know how shitty that could be for the kids themselves, but close monitoring of the families is the least that should be done.

And yeah, if their religion tells them to do this then fuck their religion.

insert lame joke mocking typo here - I’m too tired to choose one :smiley:

This is a very old and common story. The United States does not, and has never supported universal unfettered “freedom of religious practice,” and never will, precisely for reasons such as this.

There are no, and can be no absolute freedoms.

But there WILL always be people in the media eager to goad us all into reacting emotionally to idiots like this doctor, in order to sell more commercials.

I’ve fixed the typo in the title (it previously read “genetic”).

[Not moderating]
I’m not sure what it means to “remove the genital membrane”, but there are some forms of genital mutilation which are required by some religions and are legally allowed (even for non-religious reasons). It’s possible that the court could rule that this is also allowed.

It’s hard to figure out exactly what they are doing and why. What’s telling is that if you ask them, they lie about it.

Any, non-necessary genital mutilation of either sex should be outlawed. Religious consideration should not come into it.

This. There is no anatomical difference between removal of the clitoral hood (known as Type 1a FGM) and removal of penile foreskin (known as male circumcision).

Why is the latter completely accepted in most industrialized countries because religion and hygiene (as if boys aren’t able to learn to wash themselves properly), when the former seen as an abomination?

I imagine because of the ridiculous disparity in actual practice. One is widespread and normally performed after birth in a clinical setting. The other is a dubious DIY project performed on unsuspecting second-graders.

The major fact is that one is done to deny/prevent sexuality.

I suspect if it was always just the hood, there would be less outrage about it, but yes, in principle there does seem to be a double standard.

FWIW, I’d be happy to see male circumcision banned as well.

What kind of sickos started any of this anyway?

Thanks for fixing it, Chronos, brainfart on my part.

Your point about other forms of genital mutilation is well taken. I may be confusing this practice with infibulation which is a more drastic procedure. The whole question is far more nuanced than I’d thought. I need to educate myself a little further on this and this thread is proving a good start.

Bottom line: God wants parts of everyone’s genitals surgically removed, and if you can’t understand that, you don’t know God. You can look at the issue though the feeble lens of worldly cause and effect and come to a human(e) conclusion, but what about the effect on God’s feelings when you don’t do what he wants? Ever think of that, buckaroo?

In the interest of fighting ignorance, I will point out that medical experts are by no means unanimous in their condemnation of circumcision when practiced on males. If anything, the opposite: the Center for Disease Control in the US, the World Health Organization, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the UN’s focus group on HIV all recommend that “male circumcision efforts be scaled up” or at the very least be available to families and men that want it. That’s for health reasons backed by research:

“Male circumcision reduces the risk for HIV and some STDs in heterosexual men. Three randomized, controlled trials performed in regions of sub-Saharan Africa where generalized HIV epidemics involving predominantly heterosexual transmission were occurring demonstrated that male circumcision reduced the risk for HIV acquisition among men by 50%–60% (51–53). In these trials, circumcision was also protective against other STDs, including high-risk genital HPV infection and genital herpes (54-56). Follow up studies have demonstrated sustained benefit of circumcision for HIV prevention (57) and that the effect is not mediated solely through a reduction in herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) infection or genital ulcer disease.”

Also see

I am not aware of any corresponding medical/scientific research that suggests any health benefits for female circumcision.

I know male circumcision is a complicated question and a controversial topic for reasons that go beyond questions of health, and a lot of people don’t want to buy into any research that suggests removal of the foreskin is anything but evil. But, well, the research is there, and a lot of very well-informed people do accept it, and until and unless there is scientific evidence of value to female circumcision the two are really not comparable.

From what little I know about FGM, my understanding is that it’s not so much a religious practice as it is a tribal practice.

The strangest thing about it is that most of the objection to it in Africa is from other women, because it’s women who perform it! :eek: It’s one of those “but it’s the way we’ve always done things”, well, things.

Can we for once, not turn a thread about FGM into a thread about male circumcision? Just for once? Whatever your beliefs about it, the issues surrouding it are different. Okay?


There is a pre-existing thread in MPSIMS.

The thread in MPSIMS quotes a law that seems pretty much written to flat out forbid any variant or ‘minimal’ or ‘ritualistic’ versions of FGM - probably to prevent this very occurance.

The law is short and sweet. I like this:

The Federal Law against FGM would seem to rule out the religion defense in the recent case, as **Tee **quoted – that particular passage refers to the case (“subsection (b)(1)”) where a medical professional may be faced with this situation, specifying that only medical necessity and nothing else may be taken into account.

Indeed, in the currently notorious case the indictment papers talk about scarrings and incisions in the girls’ genitals but with little detail if any on what or how much was injured or removed, because they do not have to, as the law in question outlaws ANY not medically necessary genital cutting whatsoever in a minor female. The lawmakers apparently wanted to make damn sure there would be no “slippery slope” of any kind and no court would have to sit through an argument on whether anything under X millimeters is OK and what about if it’s just a piercing vs an incision where tissue is cut into vs. an excisionwhere something’s removed, etc., etc. The legislation is “just *&^% no, no way, no how, don't even *&^% think about it, don’t bother *&^%$ explaining.”