This video was one among several links that Jen left on my first FGM post. It is a great video that I found helpful in formulating my own growing opinion on FGM which, simply, is that any form of genital mutilation is barbaric and no child should be subjected to any form of tampering whatsoever in their genital regions. That is not the most eloquent sentence I have ever uttered but I am somewhat hampered by the chilling notion of letting a trained clinician take a “nick” out of my own clitoris never mind a small baby. Hell no.
Jen, who runs the blog European Politics and Minority Integration, also left some more great links. Thank you Jen for always asking me the hard questions.
- The Seattle Compromise: Multicultural Sensitivity And Americanization – This is quite an in depth case study of challenges facing The Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, Washington who serve a large Somali community. The compromise refers to the sanctioning of a smaller, less invasive procedure whereby the clitoris is symbolically cut in order to satisfy cultural requirements and prevent girls from being sent home for more severe treatments.
- Ayaan Hirsi Ali condemns multiculturalism on Hardtalk [Video. Warning: autoplays]
- American Academy of Pediatrics: Female Genital Mutilation – In this 1998 article, the AAP stated that “Pediatricians and pediatric surgical and urologic surgeons who are contemplating performing such a procedure should consider their role in perpetuating this social practice with its cultural implications for the status of women”.
- American Academy of Pediatrics: Policy Statement—Ritual Genital Cutting of Female Minors – On 26 April 2010, the AAP issued an ill-conceived revision of the above policy whereby they seemed to support the Seattle Compromise. This did not go down well in the international medical and human rights communities.
Following on from Jen’s comments, I have done some research and am happy to say that the AAP retracted their statement: United States: AAP withdraws statement on FGM.
New York - International human rights organization Equality Now welcomes the AAP’s decision to withdraw its ill-conceived revised policy statement on female genital mutilation (FGM) issued on April 26, 2010. The new policy statement essentially promoted Type IV FGM, as categorized by the World Health Organization (WHO), and suggested that federal and state laws might be more effective if they “enabled pediatricians to reach out to families by offering a ‘ritual nick’.” In a release issued today, the AAP stated that it has “retired” its 2010 revised statement on FGM, is opposed to “all forms of female genital cutting” and “does not endorse the practice of offering a 'clitoral nick.'” - EqualityNow.org
I think it is good news that the AAP retracted their statement because as I mentioned above, I agreed with their statement that pandering to the practice only serves to perpetuate it.