Home > female genital mutilation, girls, health, inequality, international > Mass female genital mutilation events held in Indonesia

Mass female genital mutilation events held in Indonesia

Female circumcisers

I was just going to heap this into “Lots of news”, but when I read it, I knew I actually had to do a piece about it. The New York Times has an article about female “circumcisers” who cut off a piece of a girls genitalia, in Indonesia. It is female genital mutilation, but it just looks more sanitary and humane because it’s sponsored by the Assalaam Foundation.

The procedure takes several minutes. There is little blood involved. Afterward, the girl’s genital area is swabbed with the antiseptic Betadine. She is then helped back into her underwear and returned to a waiting area, where she’s given a small, celebratory gift — some fruit or a donated piece of clothing — and offered a cup of milk for refreshment.

Oh yay! A refreshment! That’s really going to make everything so much better. It’s like they think it’s so much better because the “area” is swabbed with some antiseptic and the girls are given a gift. Yuck. Yuck, yuck, yuck!

But the best part is, is that people actually think there are benefits to this. Benefits to cutting some girly genitalia off.

“One, it will stabilize her libido,” he said through an interpreter. “Two, it will make a woman look more beautiful in the eyes of her husband. And three, it will balance her psychology.”

First, bull shit. Alright, my libido is perfectly fine, and I have all my genitalia. Then again, I guess these people want to take away her libido, so that the man’s sexual pleasure is the main focal point. And you know, that’s totally OK, because women are just baby makers! And yet again, something else that has to do with men. She’ll be more beautiful in the eyes of her husband? Seriously, that is the most messed up thinking one could ever have. I know I’m being potentially offensive here, but FGM is very offensive to me. The second “benefit” just reinforces that men are more important than women and always will be. And the third “benefit,” I don’t really get. Balance her psychology? Yeah, I don’t think so. It may definitely make her have psychological problems, but it’s not going to balance anything.

There are absolutely no health, sexual or psychological benefits for FGM. It is a disgusting practice, and unfortunately the mothers who bring their daughters to this “mass circumcising event” believe that this is the right thing to do and that it will actually improve their daughter in some way, or are just going along with the social expectations of it all.

This article is definitely a must-read and it has several pictures from the event (none are graphic), which do show how horrifying it can be for a young girl.

  1. ahmed
    April 20, 2010 at 8:39 am

    Female Circumcision is mandatory in Islam and anyone who claims it is not must be a misguided misfit. But at the same time what is required is a mere trimming of the prepuce of the clitoris, just like male circumcision. Here’s an interesting article on the subject:

    There are many ahadith or sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him)to show the important place, circumcision,whether of males or females, occupies in Islam.

    Among these traditions is the one where the Prophet is reported to have
    declared circumcision (khitan) to be sunnat for men and ennobling for
    women (Baihaqi). He is also known to have declared that the bath
    (following sexual intercourse without which no prayer is valid) becomes
    obligatory when both the circumcised parts meet (Tirmidhi). The fact that
    the Prophet defined sexual intercourse as the meeting of the male and
    female circumcised parts (khitanul khitan or khitanain) when stressing on the need for the obligatory post-coital bath could be taken as pre-supposing or
    indicative of the obligatory nature of circumcision in the case of both
    males and females.

    Stronger still is his statement classing circumcision (khitan) as one of the
    acts characteristic of the fitra or God-given nature (Or in other words,
    Divinely-inspired natural inclinations of humans) such as the shaving of
    pubic hair, removing the hair of the armpits and the paring of nails
    (Bukhari) which again shows its strongly emphasized if not obligatory
    character in the case of both males and females. Muslim scholars are of
    the view that acts constituting fitra which the Prophet expected Muslims
    to follow are to be included in the category of wajib or obligatory.

    That the early Muslims regarded female circumcision as obligatory even
    for those Muslims who embraced Islam later in life is suggested by a
    tradition occurring in the Adab al Mufrad of Bukhari where Umm Al
    Muhajir is reported to have said: “I was captured with some girls from
    Byzantium. (Caliph) Uthman offered us Islam, but only myself and one
    other girl accepted Islam. Uthman said: ‘Go and circumcise them and
    purify them.’” More recently, we had Sheikh Jadul Haqq, the
    distinguished head of Al Azhar declaring both male and female
    circumcision to be obligatory religious duties (Khitan Al Banat in Fatawa
    Al-Islamiyyah. 1983). The fatwa by his successor Tantawi who opposed
    the practice cannot be taken seriously as we all know that he has
    pronounced a number of unislamic fatwas such as declaring bank interest
    halal and questioning the obligation of women wearing headscarves.

    At the same time, however, what is required in Islam, is the removal of
    only the prepuce of the clitoris, and not the clitoris itself as is widely
    believed. The Prophet is reported to have told Umm Atiyyah, a lady who
    circumcised girls in Medina: “When you circumcise, cut plainly and do
    not cut severely, for it is beauty for the face and desirable for the
    husband” (idha khafadti fa ashimmi wa la tanhaki fa innahu ashraq li’l
    wajh wa ahza ind al zawj) (Abu Dawud, Al Awsat of Tabarani and Tarikh
    Baghdad of Al Baghdadi).

    This hadith clearly explains the procedure to be followed in the
    circumcision of girls. The words: “Cut plainly and do not cut severely”
    (ashimmi wa la tanhaki) is to be understood in the sense of removing the
    skin covering the clitoris, and not the clitoris. The expression “It is beauty
    (more properly brightness or radiance) for the face” (ashraq li’l wajh) is
    further proof of this as it simply means the joyous countenance of a
    woman, arising out of her being sexually satisfied by her husband. The
    idea here is that it is only with the removal of the clitoral prepuce that
    real sexual satisfaction could be realized. The procedure enhances sexual
    feeling in women during the sex act since a circumcised clitoris is much
    more likely to be stimulated as a result of direct oral, penile or tactile
    contact than the uncircumcised organ whose prepuce serves as an
    obstacle to direct stimulation.

    A number of religious works by the classical scholars such as Fath Al
    Bari by Ibn Hajar Asqalani and Sharhul Muhadhdhab of Imam Nawawi
    have stressed on the necessity of removing only the prepuce of the
    clitoris and not any part of the organ itself. It is recorded in the Majmu Al
    Fatawa that when Ibn Taymiyyah was asked whether the woman is
    circumcised, he replied: “Yes we circumcise. Her circumcision is to cut
    the uppermost skin (jilda) like the cock’s comb.” More recently Sheikh
    Jadul Haqq declared that the circumcision of females consists of the
    removal of the clitoral prepuce (Khitan Al Banat in Fatawa Al Islamiyya.

    Besides being a religious duty, the procedure is believed to facilitate good
    hygiene since the removal of the prepuce of the clitoris serves to prevent
    the accumulation of smegma, a foul-smelling, germ-containing cheese-
    like substance that collects underneath the prepuces of uncircumcised
    women (See Al Hidaayah. August 1997). A recent study by Sitt Al Banat
    Khalid ‘Khitan Al-Banat Ru’ yah Sihhiyyah’ (2003) has shown that
    female circumcision, like male circumcision, offers considerable health
    benefits, such as prevention of urinary tract infections and other diseases
    such as cystitis affecting the female reproductive organs.

    For more benefits of Islamic female circumcision also known as hoodectomy see http://www.hoodectomyinformation.com

  2. Abdul GAfur
    May 8, 2010 at 2:15 am

    God made man and woman to His own devine specifications. Who are we, mere mortal humans, to say that God’s specification is not correct and that we must modify it? This is an ultimate vanity, and could be considered a sin as you are vandalizing something that God has created for a purpose. Why not cut off an ear? The nose? A finger?………….
    Circumcision actually came from the “pagans” of central Africa, and seeped north where it became a tradition, not a God given edict.
    The Female orgasm is a God given gift, and man has no right to steal a gift bestowed upon a person by God.

  3. Ahmed
    March 8, 2011 at 12:18 am

    Here’s another interesting news item that supports the need for a hoodectomy (Islamic female circumcision):

    Oral sex linked to cancer risk

    US scientists said Sunday there is strong evidence linking oral sex to cancer, and urged more study of how human papillomaviruses may be to blame for a rise in oral cancer among white men. In the United States, oral cancer due to HPV infection is now more common than oral cancer from tobacco use, which remains the leading cause of such cancers in the rest of the world.

    Researchers have found a 225-percent increase in oral cancer cases in the United States from 1974 to 2007, mainly among white men, said Maura Gillison of Ohio State University. “The rise in oral cancer in the US is predominantly among young white males and we do not know the answer as to why.”

    It is obvious that the only way men can acquire the HPV virus is through the oral stimulation of one’s partner’s clitoris which allows the virus to enter the mouth. The virus no doubt is harboured in the prepuce of the clitoris just as it has been found that HPV also resides in the foreskins of males, through the transmission of which cervical cancer occurs in females. Thus a hoodectomy could, by removing the area which harbours the virus, significantly reduce or eliminate the risk of women transmitting the virus to their male partners.

    • Anonymous
      July 14, 2013 at 5:26 am

      A hoodectomy wouldn’t stop the virus, a virus wouldn’t just be at the hood but the whole area

  4. nobody
    January 8, 2012 at 3:40 pm

    Mutilation of girls’ and boys’ genitals certainly is odd. I never understood the point of it. The only thing I understand is that it’s only because of religion. Religion sucks.

  5. Ahmed
    November 22, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    An excellent work on hoodectomy (Islamic female circumcision) is available at http://www.umatia.org/2011/Safe%20Female%20circumcision.doc

  1. April 2, 2011 at 12:27 pm

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