English – Circumcision – Imperialism and physical integrity 2002

(Intervention in the symposium on Legal imperialism, 3-4 October 2002)

 

Jewish, Christian and Muslim holy books recommend taking care of orphans and widows: the two weakest groups of the society. I chose to speak about the physical integrity of children, topic which is rarely treated by jurists because it does not generate money and it creates them a lot of boredoms. The distinction that is often made between male circumcision and female circumcision is the result of Western cultural imperialism. I give you here some reflections:

 

1) Western countries and International organizations fight against female circumcision only in Africa. Why? Several answers are possible:

–        This practice does not exist outside Africa (false; it exists in other Arab and Islamic countries inAsia).

–        They want to defame Africans.

–        They are in favor of African women.

–        One always needs a smaller that himself to break him the teeth.

 

2) Western countries and International organizations fight against female circumcision but never against male circumcision. Why? Several answers are possible:

–        Male circumcision is not a mutilation (false).

–        Male circumcision is foreseen by the Bible and it is practiced by Jews and Christian fundamentalists (60% of USA boys are mutilated!).

–        Contrary to female circumcision, male circumcision is beneficial to health (false).

–        Female circumcision is more harmful than male circumcision (false: there are four forms of female circumcision and four forms of male circumcision).

 

3) The Universal Declaration of human rights, the Convention of the rights of the child, the Civil covenant of 1966 and the European convention of human rights do not have an article that guarantees the physical integrity. Why? Two answers are possible:

–           The right to the physical integrity is not a human right.

–           One does not want to hurt the Jews and the Western that circumcise.

 

4) Feminist organizations are against female circumcision but keep generally silent in front of male circumcision. Why? Two answers are possible:

–        Women are interested only on women.

–        Feminists lost their maternal instinct and therefore they do not protect their offspring anymore.

 

5) If one would prescribe circumcision for cats, dogs and horses, the societies of the protection of animals and the legislator would react violently. Why don’t they react concerning the circumcision of boys? Two answers are possible:

–        Animals have more right than boys.

–        They are afraid to be labeled anti-Semites.

 

To keep in mind:

Before preaching the morals to the poor Africans, it is necessary to start with preaching it to Americans and their friends. If interested, see my homepage: www.go.to/samipage and my books

–        Circoncision masculine – circoncision féminine: débat religieux, médical, social et juridique, L’Harmattan, Paris, 2001, 537 pages.

–        Male and female circumcision among Jews, Christians and Muslims: religious, medical, social and legal debate, Shangri-La Publications, Warren Center, PA 19951, USA, 2001, 400 pages.

–        See also the complete version of my book in Arabic in:http://www.lpj.org/Nonviolence/Sami/Circon/Index.htm

 

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