What do you see as the differences between female and male genital cutting? Does intent matter? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 5 Old 05-26-2011, 06:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I do not see much difference between FGC and MGC. 

 

The objections I have seen people raise to cutting girls include

* the pain they experience during and immediately after the procedure

* the risks of surgery (bleeding, death, etc)

* the physical problems they experience later in life, including a reduction in sexual experience

* the form of FGC most people think of is extreme (infibulation) in comparison to what they think of circumcision

* the lack of consent (children can't consent)

* lack of enough medical benefit to warrant non-therapeutic amputation of a body part (i.e. that the body part that is cut off will never get infected or get cancer isn't enough to justify cutting off a body part)

* being able to remember the operation

* the risk of cutting more than intended because the parts are so small

* unsanitary conditions and non-medical professionals doing the procedure

 

and

* that the intention of cutting girls is to suppress females

 

I think that all of the above (except the last one) either apply to boys, too, or are just silly.  (Being able to remember it.  Really?  That's some people's objection?  Not the lack of consent?!)

 

But what about the last one - the intent to suppress the whole group of women by cutting the girls?  Do parents really seek out FGC for their daughter in order to suppress them?  Don't some (most) do it out of just not knowing any different, they love their child, they think it's best, so they do what they think is best?

 

Does the intent matter?  Does intent make it different from MGC?  Do you see differences between MGC and FGC?

 

Thank you in advance for your answer. 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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#2 of 5 Old 05-28-2011, 04:48 PM
 
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MGM was popularized in the US for the purpose of suppressing male sexuality, so that's not even a difference. (And some proponents of FGM, or women who chose it of their own will as adults, will argue that it enhances sexuality, same as people do with MGM.)

 

Other arguments against FGM are that it's often done in particularly bad ways, e.g. cut of by non-medical-professionals in unsanitary non-medical environments. But that's only a difference in stereotypes. MGM is also done in those circumstances, just not in the US. When FGM is done in wealthier areas, it is often done cleanly and professionally... but that doesn't make it okay.

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#3 of 5 Old 05-28-2011, 06:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Areas that do FGC in unsanitary conditions with non-medical-professionals,  also cut their boys in unsanitary conditions and with non-medical-professionals.  It's not like they can suddenly afford to take their boys in to the city to see a doctor, but can't do it for the girls.  Parents that can afford, and have access to, a clinical setting choose that for their children.  They think they are doing what is best, just like so many parents in this country that think MGC is doing what is best for their child.

 

 

 

 


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#4 of 5 Old 05-31-2011, 07:08 AM
 
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The excuses for male and female genital cutting are often the same, i.e., it's cleaner, healthier, prevents infection and promiscuity, etc. There are varying forms of female circumcision (see www.nocirc.org/publish and scroll down to pamphlet #9 about female circumcision), some are less damaging than male circumcision and some are much more damaging. Both male and female genital mutilations are human rights violations, which do not depend on the the extent of the damage but are related to any cut that is made into the body of a non-consenting minor. So, this is not an issue of competitive suffering. The screams of boys and girls undergoing amputation of a part of their genitals are genderless. Both genders die from these atrocities. Circumcision of both males and females is done out of fear and the need for control. What's being controlled? The most potent drive of all, the sex drive, because it ensures procreation and survival of the species. Circumcision was introduced into Western medicine during the mid1800s to prevent masturbation, which was believed to cause disease. Circumcision was thought to curb desire but, interestingly, when a wound is inflicted upon an infant during the primal period, that human will circle the drain of that wounding for the rest of his or her life, even if they don't realize it. Laumann, et al., at the University of Chicago, found that circumcised males masturbate more frequently and have more varied sex. In our circumcising, sexually repressed society, this was considered a good thing. What the researchers, the media, and the public didn't understand is that the majority of nerve endings in the penis are in the foreskin. CJ Fallier wrote, in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 1970, "...the fundamental biological sexual act becomes, for the circumcised male, simply the satisfaction of an urge and not the refined sensory experience it was meant to be." We know the loss of 20,000-100,000 specialized, erogenous nerve endings causes premature ejaculation in the early years and the loss of the protective foreskin causes callousing of the glans (head of the penis), desensitization, sexual dysfunction, and impotence in the later years. For the females who are cut, depending on the severity of the particular mutilation, there is loss of sensitivity, painful urination and menses, and dangerous childbirth because of the scar tissue. Thankfully, people have become aware of these harmful traditional practices, whether done to males or females, and are working to eradicate them!

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#5 of 5 Old 06-07-2011, 03:22 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you, Ms. Milos.

 

 


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