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AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS OKAYS FEMALE CIRCUMCISION?

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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Veggie wrote May 13, 2010
    • AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS OKAYS FEMALE CIRCUMCISION?  

      Group Backs Ritual 'Nick' as Female Circumcision Option  

      [Link Removed]  

      By PAM BELLUCK  

      Published: May 6, 2010  

      In a controversial change to a longstanding policy concerning the practice of female circumcision in some African and Asian cultures, the American Academy of Pediatrics is suggesting that American doctors be given permission to perform a ceremonial pinprick or "nick" on girls from these cultures if it would keep their families from sending them overseas for the full circumcision.  

      The academy's committee on bioethics, in a policy statement last week, said some pediatricians had suggested that current federal law, which "makes criminal any nonmedical procedure performed on the genitals" of a girl in the United States, has had the unintended consequence of driving some families to take their daughters to other countries to undergo mutilation.  

      "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," the group said.  

      But some opponents of female genital mutilation, or F.G.M., denounced the statement.  

      "I am sure the academy had only good intentions, but what their recommendation has done is only create confusion about whether F.G.M. is acceptable in any form, and it is the wrong step forward on how best to protect young women and girls," said Representative Joseph Crowley, Democrat of New York, who recently introduced a bill to toughen federal law by making it a crime to take a girl overseas to be circumcised. "F.G.M. serves no medical purpose, and it is rightfully banned in the U.S."  

      Georganne Chapin, executive director of an advocacy group called Intact America, said she was "astonished that a group of intelligent people did not see the utter slippery slope that we put physicians on" with the new policy statement. "How much blood will parents be satisfied with?"  

      She added: "There are countries in the world that allow wife beating, slavery and child abuse, but we don't allow people to practice those customs in this country. We don't let people have slavery a little bit because they're going to do it anyway, or beat their wives a little bit because they're going to do it anyway."  

      A member of the academy's bioethics committee, Dr. Lainie Friedman Ross, associate director of the MacLean Center for Clinical Medical Ethics at the University of Chicago, said the panel's intent was to issue a "statement on safety in a culturally sensitive context."  

      Dr. Friedman Ross said that the committee members "oppose all types of female genital cutting that impose risks or physical or psychological harm," and consider the ritual nick "a last resort," but that the nick is "supposed to be as benign as getting a girl's ears pierced. It's taking a pin and creating a drop of blood."  

      She said the panel had heard anecdotes from worried doctors.  

      "If we just told parents, 'No, this is wrong,' our concern is they may take their daughters back to their home countries, where the procedure may be more extensive cutting and may even be done without anesthesia, with unsterilized knives or even glass," she said. "A just-say-no policy may end up alienating these families, who are going to then find an alternative that will do more harm than good."  

      Currently, more than 130 million women and girls worldwide have undergone female genital cutting, according to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. It is mostly performed on girls younger than 15 in countries including Ethiopia, Sudan and Somalia. Consequences can include severe complications with pregnancy, childbirth and sexual dysfunction.  

      The academy's statement acknowledged that opponents of the procedure, "including women from African countries, strongly oppose any compromise that would legitimize even the most minimal procedure."  

      Dr. Friedman Ross said, "If you medicalize it and say it's permissible, is there a possibility that some people will misunderstand it and go beyond a nick? Yes."  

      But she said the risk that people denied the ceremonial procedure, usually on the clitoris, would opt for the more harmful one was much more dangerous.  

      And the statement said that, "in some countries where FGC is common, some progress toward eradication or amelioration has been made by substituting ritual 'nicks' for more severe forms."  

      Your thoughts?


      Veggie, Your links have been removed, please consider upgrading to premium membership.




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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Msj wrote May 13, 2010
    • AHHHHHHHHHHH!!!




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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Mztracy wrote May 13, 2010
    • Wow, completely appalling...




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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Tuliplady wrote May 13, 2010
    • Outrageous!!!  Ritual or not, it is completely unacceptable!!!!




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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Tamra wrote May 13, 2010
    • How horrible!




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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Kathryn O'Hara wrote May 14, 2010
    • Cultural sensitivity has gone waaaay too far.  People come to America for safety and freedom and now the hyper-educated quacks say this practice is ok?  What kind of message does this give to girls?  Or for that matter the men of the future, boys?




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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Timbuktu wrote May 14, 2010
    • This happens in UK although it is illegal. Peole from other certain countries come here, and mutilate their daughters, sometimes having taken then abroad to do so. Our obstetricians find appalling injuries when these women come to give birth and doctors end up repairing what they can. So I understand that they would prefer safe versions of this brutal surgery than putting women at such risk. I don’t know what the answer is - I am sick of people coming to our country and wanting to carry on with their own ways of life and tradition when it so blatantly opposes what UK stands for.




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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      UK Girl wrote May 14, 2010
    • I'm sorry but this is a brutal attack on women  it's not necessary and is usually carried out by people who do this practise out of 100% of pure ignorance  by saying it's okay makes it okay and it's not.
      I once saw a TV programme where they showed two young girls under going this trauma and their screams will live me forever  

       plus the problems these woman have in later life is horrific
      it's just barbaric




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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Vikki Hall wrote May 14, 2010
    • I can’t believe this!




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