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View Diary: I’m Back (except this time from Africa) Photo Diary and Tale from a Libertarian Paradise (80 comments)

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  •  I agree, we all must be involved in this fight (2+ / 0-)
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    janetsal, fhcec

    Men, women, child, all of us. I was looking at the universal Declaration of Human Rights the other day and came across Article 5: "No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment."

    Well, I can't think of anything more cruel, inhumane, or degrading as cutting a girl's clitoris to make her "pure" or "clean". We can start by treating women as equals in our own country and projecting that to the world.

    We all have our own life to pursue, our own kind of dream to be weaving, and we all have the power to make wishes come true, as long as we keep believing. Louisa May Alcott

    by YoungArizonaLiberal on Tue Jan 15, 2013 at 10:04:07 AM PST

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    •  Yes, it will take the involvement of everyone, (1+ / 0-)
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      male and female. What I took from Waris Dirie's books and references is that the practice is, in part, perpetuated by a conspiracy of women: those midwives who perform the mutilations and all mothers who arrange their daughters' mutilations: all because that's been done for centuries, largely unquestioned.

      I think that the practice can be halted eventually by more and more Islamic clerics denouncing the practice as being against Islamic values; by laws that prohibit the practice and enforcement of those laws; by education about the harmful health effects to women.

      Sadly, cessation of fgm takes far too much time. I weep for all the women who have suffered fgm and all the girls who have died from it.

      The sh*t those people [republicans] say just makes me weep for humanity! - Woody Harrelson

      by SoCalSal on Tue Jan 15, 2013 at 01:36:43 PM PST

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      •  does abolishing fgm undermine economic (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        YoungArizonaLiberal, SoCalSal

        situation of the women who do it?

        I read/saw that some years ago, probably in something on TV. I thought replacing fgm as a livelihood would be relatively simple, but there were status issues involved, too.

        Unfortunately, too long ago to remember any details.

        What a sad practice, and hooray for those fathers (and mothers?) who do not demand it of their daughters.

        FGM is quite a quandary for Docs and nurses at San Francisco General at the clinic. They don't want to do it, of course, but realize if they don't, someone from the community is likely to do it on the kitchen table in a much less sterile environment. No good choices.

        My friend/colleague was volunteering in a clinic in SF where this issue came up from time to time. She was preparing for Medical School and got more experience than she was looking for. I don't know how the Docs there resolved the issue.

        "There's nothing serious about a plan that claims to reduce the deficit by spending a trillion dollars on tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires." - President Obama

        by fhcec on Tue Jan 15, 2013 at 03:07:33 PM PST

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        •  I wonder... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          YoungArizonaLiberal, melo

          if the women presenting at SF clinics and hospitals were asking for female "circumcision" (more accurately named mutilation) or if these were cases of women who had already been mutilated and were presenting at hospital for childbirth, in which case they would have to be cut, and they asked to be sewn up again after childbirth.

          In the first case, a request for circumcision of a young woman or girl, the request surely should be denied, the practice should be illegal. That said, the denial should be delivered with compassion, along with counseling from enlightened Islamic clerics and from medical professionals. That's a coalition begging to be formed, between local Muslims who want to prevent fgm and the medical profession.

          The second case, much more likely to be presented, a woman (and her husband) want her to be "sewn up" after childbirth. Some of these women have had radical circumcision, with not only the clitoris removed, but also the labia and more removed, with remaining skin drawn and sewn together. After being cut open for vaginal delivery, the woman wants to be restored to the same condition she was before entering the hospital. This makes for a more difficult decision by medical personnel, and complying with her request could be justified. IMO.

          As to your first question, about the loss of prestige and income to the women and  midwives who perform these mutilations, I think their loss is a small price to pay to keep all these many women whole and to prevent the many deaths of girls and young women who don't survive the mutilations.

          The sh*t those people [republicans] say just makes me weep for humanity! - Woody Harrelson

          by SoCalSal on Tue Jan 15, 2013 at 09:30:34 PM PST

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