, i didnt know it was so bad for the males aswell. But you say that it results in the occasional death. A few more than that in the case of females.
Do you know what they do to the females, it's not just a snip and whip it off and you're in agony for whatever time, they have to bind the females legs together for weeks.
Female circumscision refers to a number of different operations which can range from slicing off the clitoral hood (the nearest equivalent to a male circumscision) or parts of the labia to excision of much of the clitoris and labia and stitching up of the vagina until the victim's wedding night.
There are many different forms male circumscision can take as well, though the removal of the foreskin seen as a covenent with God in Jewish and Muslim tradition is the most common. As with all operations there is a chance of death through bleeding or infection, and the video I posted before describes how a number of children in New York died of Herpes as a result of unhygenic male circumscisions.
However, I think it's besides the point really. Even if it was safe and painless it would still be mutilation of part of someone's body without their consent. I still can't really gather why that doesn't strike more people as odd and unnecessary.
---------- Post added at 11:22 AM ---------- Previous post was at 11:08 AM ----------
... Of course there must be some purely cerebral impetus for you to scorn circumcision or even mutilation in general.
Primarily, it is the denial of agency over one's own body that provokes my scorn. I think people should be allowed to make up their own minds about what bits they keep, remove or alter unless
it is for sound medical reasons. I don't think this is a gut feeling because I can think to myself quite clearly why I think denial of agency over self to this degree, and for ritual reasons alone, is not something I wish to support.
So whether it's scarification, or the sharpening of teeth or Maori tattoos or whatever. I can see that it's part of the rich tapestry of human diversity, yes, but I also think it's a bigger insult to the individual to not have any say in the matter - to have other people dictate what it is to undergo a rite of passage. I don't think this is a case of "white man's burden" talking here, I wouldn't really feel moved to go out and evangelise against these practices because I do feel a certain degree of regard in the self-determination of cultures as well as individuals. Plus I can't be bothered. However, asked my opinion on the issue I must say that I'm sorry people are denied the choice to make themselves.
I mean, in extreme example I would say I am opposed to the idea of baptism of infants, as I regard it an unnecessary removal of choice. I think it's pettier than any of the other examples given and leaves no traces.
I think you're right to say that there's some cultural relativity involved in the scorn shown to female circumscision by those who defend male circumscision - as well as the fact that most female circumscisions presented in the media tend to be of the more severe cases.
So cerebral reasons for scorn might include:
[INDENT]1) The big one - Removal of the right to self determination.
2) Infliction of suffering - however trifling it may be.
3) Risk of serious injury or infection.
4) Infliction of a mark of ownership - a physical reminder that the child belongs to a certain creed or tribe which may not be restored even if the individual ceases to feel that he belongs.
5) Denial of a sensitive part of the body, a part which contains more nerves than the glans, which might prove a source of pleasure in the future.