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22 June 2010

A Reversal of American Cowardice

By Gina Liggett

A victory for principle! A win in the war of ideas! A slap in the face to Islamic-tribal "multiculturalism!"

Why am I so jolly? The American Academy of Pediatrics has made a strong reversal of its 2010 policy on female genital "cutting," more accurately named "mutilation" (FGM).

In an earlier post I discussed the Academy's 2010 policy of recognizing the traditions of Islamic-tribal cultures in parts of Africa, the Middle East and Asia--in particular, the ritualized mutilation of young girls' genitalia. The original 2010 policy suggested that physicians might consider performing a "genital nick" if it would keep families from taking the poor female child to their home countries for the full hideous and savage procedure. Thankfully, there was a critical mass of rational people who barraged the Academy with criticism, including this writer.

The succinctly-worded revised policy statement is a bold declaration to those who practice the ages-old tribal-Islamic barbaric tradition of FGM: the civilized world and medical professionals will not quiver, grovel, or cowardly cower to their atavistic cultural inhumanity and grotesque sexual torture!

Below is the full press release. Revel in the strength of bold principle.

For Immediate Release: May 27, 2010
CHICAGO -- The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has retired its 2010 policy statement on female genital cutting (FGC). The AAP Board of Directors has approved the following as AAP policy on FGC:

"The AAP reaffirms its strong opposition to FGC and counsels its members not to perform such procedures. As typically practiced, FGC can be life-threatening. Little girls who escape death are still vulnerable to sterility, infection, and psychological trauma.

"The AAP does not endorse the practice of offering a 'clitoral nick.' This minimal pinprick is forbidden under federal law and the AAP does not recommend it to its members.

"The AAP is steadfast in its goal of protecting all young girls from the harms of FGC."

AAP President Judith S. Palfrey, MD, FAAP, said, "Our intention is not to endorse any form of female genital cutting or mutilation. We retracted the policy because it is important that the world health community understands the AAP is totally opposed to all forms of female genital cutting, both here in the U.S. and anywhere else in the world.

"The AAP's goal is to protect the health and well-being of all children," Dr. Palfrey said. "One good thing to emerge is that this discussion has shone a bright light on this issue and raised the world's awareness about this harm to young women."

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