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  2. #2
    What is, is. Arthur Schopenhauer's Avatar
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    Why do these people have such an overwhelming desire to dice away at their childrens genitals?

    They even go to such great lengths as doing it with glass? Wow.


    What exactly is "nicking"? I'm confused about that. They compare it to peircings of the ear but I don't see how those are even remotely comparable.

    Someone, please think of the children!
    Last edited by Arthur Schopenhauer; 05-11-2010 at 02:44 AM. Reason: Typo correction.
    INTJ | 5w4 - Sp/Sx/So | 5-4-(9/1) | RLoEI | Melancholic-Choleric | Johari & Nohari

    This will not end well...
    But it will at least be poetic, I suppose...

    Hmm... But what if it does end well?
    Then I suppose it will be a different sort of poetry, a preferable sort...
    A sort I could become accustomed to...



  3. #3
    Diabolical Kasper's Avatar
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    There's more information about it here in the policy statement, MM. The comparing it to a piercing of the ear is somewhat fair when you put it in contrast to some of the extreme forms of mutilation that could occur if they were taken back to Africa to have it done, which are severe.

    It's a tough one, if the alternate is that the parents will take their daughter back to Africa for the procedure then a nick in a sterile environment of a US doctors office may well be preferable, but how many of these parents would do that? And what's the side effect of allowing it to be partially acceptable?

    The policy statement talks about how there is evidence that medicalising the procedure could prolong the custom (citing Egypt) and that criminalising the procedure could lead to abandonment of the tradition (citing Scandinavia). It's not just about the girls of the current generation whose parents hold strongly to the traditions and wish to have the procedure done where ever they can, it's about how long it will take to stop the custom. Allowing that "small nick" may do more damage than they are attempting to stop.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Eckhart's Avatar
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    Horrible decision. You cannot make any "compromise" with such things, the position has to be clear. When you cannot prevent that people go to another country where it is allowed, well, then it is not your fault when other countries still allow such "things", and you cannot change what is going on there. But allowing now some "compromise" will only make sure such things will remain in the future instead of following the aim that it once will be gone. Also, give them an inch and they will take a yard.

  5. #5
    Oberon
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    My wife and I made a firm decision not to cut the foreskins off our baby sons. We didn't see the point.

  6. #6
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Interesting reading.

    FGC has been documented in individuals from many religions, including Christians, Muslims, and Jews.5 The relationship of FGC and Islam is complex and controversial. Some of the most conservative Islamic societies, such as Saudi Arabia, do not practice FGC, whereas in some African settings, the primary motivation seems tribal and nationalistic rather than religious.16 For many Muslim religious scholars, male circumcision is considered obligatory, whereas some form of female "circumcision" is considered optional but virtuous.17 Across nations and cultures that practice FGC, the perception that it is religiously obligated or at least encouraged is ubiquitous.5

    Kopelman18 summarized 4 additional reasons proposed to explain the custom of FGC: (1) to preserve group identity; (2) to help maintain cleanliness and health; (3) to preserve virginity and family honor and prevent immorality; and (4) to further marriage goals, including enhancement of sexual pleasure for men. Preservation of cultural identity was noted by Toubia19 to be of particular importance for groups that have previously faced colonialism and for immigrants threatened by a dominant culture. FGC is endemic in many poor societies in which marriage is essential to women's social and economic security. FGC becomes a physical sign of a woman's marriageability, with social control over her sexual pleasure by clitorectomy and over reproduction by infibulation (sewing together the labia so that the vaginal opening is about the width of a pencil).

    When parents request a ritual genital procedure for their daughter, they believe that it will promote their daughter's integration into their culture, protect her virginity, and, thereby, guarantee her desirability as a marriage partner. In some societies, failure to ensure a daughter's marriageable status can realistically be seen as failure to ensure her survival.20 It is tragic that the same procedure that made the daughter marriageable may ultimately contribute to her infertility.21 Parents are often unaware of the harmful physical consequences of the custom, because the complications of FGC are attributed to other causes and are rarely discussed outside of the family.22 Women from developing countries who are advocates for children's health have differing perspectives on how to respond to FGC. Some activists put the campaign against FGC at the center of their work, but others complain that the West's obsession with FGC masks an indifference to children's suffering caused by famine, war, and infectious disease.23
    So a big driver is that FGC is related to parents' desire to make sure their daughter survives and has a good life. It's hard to remove a custom that is aligned with some positive function socially or psychology, even if ultimately it's damaging and not positive.

    Moving on to the point of relevance:

    Some physicians, including pediatricians who work closely with immigrant populations in which FGC is the norm, have voiced concern about the adverse effects of criminalization of the practice on educational efforts.32 These physicians emphasize the significance of a ceremonial ritual in the initiation of the girl or adolescent as a community member and advocate only pricking or incising the clitoral skin as sufficient to satisfy cultural requirements. This is no more of an alteration than ear piercing. A legitimate concern is that parents who are denied the cooperation of a physician will send their girls back to their home country for a much more severe and dangerous procedure or use the services of a non–medically trained person in North America.33,34 In some countries in which FGC is common, some progress toward eradication or amelioration has been made by substituting ritual "nicks" for more severe forms.2 In contrast, there is also evidence that medicalizing FGC can prolong the custom among middle-class families (eg, in Egypt).35 Many anti-FGC activists in the West, including women from African countries, strongly oppose any compromise that would legitimize even the most minimal procedure.4 There is also some evidence (eg, in Scandinavia) that a criminalization of the practice, with the attendant risk of losing custody of one's children, is one of the factors that led to abandonment of this tradition among Somali immigrants.36 The World Health Organization and other international health organizations are silent on the pros and cons of pricking or minor incisions. The option of offering a "ritual nick" is currently precluded by US federal law, which makes criminal any nonmedical procedure performed on the genitals of a female minor.

    The American Academy of Pediatrics policy statement on newborn male circumcision expresses respect for parental decision-making and acknowledges the legitimacy of including cultural, religious, and ethnic traditions when making the choice of whether to surgically alter a male infant's genitals. Of course, parental decision-making is not without limits, and pediatricians must always resist decisions that are likely to cause harm to children. Most forms of FGC are decidedly harmful, and pediatricians should decline to perform them, even in the absence of any legal constraints. However, the ritual nick suggested by some pediatricians is not physically harmful and is much less extensive than routine newborn male genital cutting. There is reason to believe that offering such a compromise may build trust between hospitals and immigrant communities, save some girls from undergoing disfiguring and life-threatening procedures in their native countries, and play a role in the eventual eradication of FGC. It might be more effective if federal and state laws enabled pediatricians to reach out to families by offering a ritual nick as a possible compromise to avoid greater harm.
    Now there's a big issue of hypocrisy. I think it's worth discussing whether permitting this "nick procedure" does prolong the lifespan of the custom world-wide, but the moral outrage expressed seemed to make no sense to me if we routinely still legally permit male foreskins to routinely be lopped off based solely on the religious preference of the parents. While most FGC procedures are far worse than male circumcision as practiced (and I think the male circumcision arose early on in Judeo customs as a matter of cleanliness, due to the medical standards of the time), it's kind of hard to express outrage over the "nick procedure" when we do far worse to baby boys for unnecessary reasons.

    There's also a good point made here about all the focus on this particular issue, while the ongoing starvation of many of those same children is overlooked.

    .... okay, rationality aside, now I feel ill and need to go do something else... as I personally despise FGC.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  7. #7
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eckhart View Post
    Also, give them an inch and they will take a yard.
    Yes, 'nick' gives new meaning to the phrase 'salami tactics'.

  8. #8
    What is, is. Arthur Schopenhauer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trinity View Post
    There's more information about it here in the policy statement, MM. The comparing it to a piercing of the ear is somewhat fair when you put it in contrast to some of the extreme forms of mutilation that could occur if they were taken back to Africa to have it done, which are severe.
    That was an interesting read.

    As for the comparison between ear peircings and FGM, I still believe that they are, for the most part, unrelated. I think that my distinction between the two begins with consent, as bodily peircings are, quite often, permitted by the one getting peirced, whereas FGM on infants is in no way consensual. Secondly, I think that both of these subjects are somewhat opposed, in my mind anyways, as bodily peircings seem to place emphasis on accentuating femininity, sexualty, and beauty, whereas FGM seems specifically designed to take away from those certain aspects of womanhood.

    Having said that, I do see one connection between the two and that is, they are both a strange and barbaric stem of some sort of social stigma, i.e., girls feel that society will accept them more if they pierce their ears and parents feel the same way about mutilating their daughters. Personally, I feel that no one should be forced into a certain lifestyle.

    It's quite unfair, really.

    It's a tough one, if the alternate is that the parents will take their daughter back to Africa for the procedure then a nick in a sterile environment of a US doctors office may well be preferable, but how many of these parents would do that? And what's the side effect of allowing it to be partially acceptable?

    The policy statement talks about how there is evidence that medicalising the procedure could prolong the custom (citing Egypt) and that criminalising the procedure could lead to abandonment of the tradition (citing Scandinavia). It's not just about the girls of the current generation whose parents hold strongly to the traditions and wish to have the procedure done where ever they can, it's about how long it will take to stop the custom. Allowing that "small nick" may do more damage than they are attempting to stop.
    Education is the only reasonable and humane cure.
    INTJ | 5w4 - Sp/Sx/So | 5-4-(9/1) | RLoEI | Melancholic-Choleric | Johari & Nohari

    This will not end well...
    But it will at least be poetic, I suppose...

    Hmm... But what if it does end well?
    Then I suppose it will be a different sort of poetry, a preferable sort...
    A sort I could become accustomed to...



  9. #9
    What is, is. Arthur Schopenhauer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Victor View Post
    Yes, 'nick' give new meaning to the phrase 'salami tactics'.
    I feel like an autistic kid that got some of his Pokemon cards stolen... I want them back...

    My deck is no longer complete...
    INTJ | 5w4 - Sp/Sx/So | 5-4-(9/1) | RLoEI | Melancholic-Choleric | Johari & Nohari

    This will not end well...
    But it will at least be poetic, I suppose...

    Hmm... But what if it does end well?
    Then I suppose it will be a different sort of poetry, a preferable sort...
    A sort I could become accustomed to...



  10. #10
    Intriguing.... Quinlan's Avatar
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    If a "nick" is mutilation what does that make lopping off the whole foreskin on a boy?
    Act your age not your enneagram number.

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