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← Stop female genital mutilation in the UK! - Avaaz.org petition

LaurieB's Avatar Jump to comment 41 by LaurieB

VrijVlinder

Why is a dentist doing that? A dentist would be highly preferable to the itinerant hack-artists that claim to be specialists in child genital mutilation procedures. A dentist would hopefully have some understanding of infectious agents and at least have some adequate manual dexterity. Mind you, in North Africa, a "dentist" will have, hopefully, 4 years of college. In the US, this is what a dental assistant should have. In the rural areas a dentist is probably the 3rd cousin of so-and-so who pulls teeth and makes necklaces out of them for fun and profit. When it became known that I have a BS in Exp. Psych, they started addressing me as Dr. ! I quickly corrected this atrocious mistake but soon realized that they couldn't fathom the difference. My in-laws got used to turning people away who knocked at the door asking me to give them injections! You see the level of ignorance that we're up against in dealing with medical problems in these places!

On previous threads dealing with this unfortunate subject we discussed the issue that you bring up of enforcement of laws dealing with crimes of this nature. When you said that, "it is imperative to get to the child in time to stop this from happening" I wonder how this could ever be possible. I'm afraid that all the excellent communication with the child would be to no avail if the adults in her family had taken the notion to violate her in this way. I believe the best strategy here is to inform, in no uncertain terms, the adults in her family who have authority over her and responsibility for her under the law. I refer you to the book, Infidel, by Ayaan Hirsi Ali who explains therein that laws of the land must be explained in detail to new immigrants on their arrival. They need to understand that there is a heavy price to pay for breaking the law and that their religious excuses are not appreciated in their new country. I want to stress that it is within the power of the matriarch of a tribe or extended family to manage this issue. She is always well within her rights of authority to stand up and issue an edict, especially about the standards of behavior under her roof and especially having anything to do with the women and girls under her supreme authority. Only her husband has a right to cross her. Not her sons or any daughter-in-law. Matriarchs wield a lot of power in their domains and I don't think we are doing enough to influence them in the right direction. They are an untapped resource.

As for the problem of taking the girls to the home country for the procedure, it was suggested on previous threads that there be routine checks done by Pediatricians on a regular basis (here in the States most health insurance plans pay for a yearly check up which includes genital exam). This is already part of a normal yearly check up for children here. Any deviation from the previous year will result in a phone call to the authorities and the responsible adult will have some explaining to do in front of the judge. Again, already normal procedure here.

Wed, 06 Jun 2012 21:01:52 UTC | #945957