WHY KENYAN MEDICAL DOCTOR WANTS FGM LEGALIZED AGAIN..
So this one bright morning I wake up with my moods all pumped up to battle the Monday morning blues and since I’m not the type who enjoys nursing weekend hangovers in the office, the best I can do is to find an inspirational morning show to try and coerce myself into a joyful Monday, although in very rare cases is it ever joyful.
I flip through television stations and the first news bit I bump into makes me want to cover myself back to bed and just sleep the day off because I feel kinda scared of the world I’m about to face.
For weeks now, I have been trying to find the best way to express my distress about the whole issue and figuring out how to frame this post in the most logical way possible, until today when I finally put it up.
How much retrogressive have we become when a whole medical doctor can go to court to seek legalization of a barbaric act that we have fought over decades? An act that has denied thousands of our young innocent girls their rights to social justice, rights to education, rights against early marriages and above all freedom of choice?
Female Genital Mutilation is a monster! not to mention those who advocate for it!
Dr. Tatu Kamau recently made his way into Machakos High Court to challenge the Act that outlawed FGM as unconstitutional and wants the act legalized again, just 7 years after the act was banned in 2011. Apparently, Dr. Kamau claims that FGM was a way of conserving the African culture and just like circumcision of men is still on going, FGM should be legal and voluntary.
Really???? Are we doing this in 2018?
Is she cut herself??
And what benefits does she have to rip from this???
APPARENT BENEFITS OF FGM (WHAT THEY CLAIM)
And when I decided to do my curiosity research on why someone would want FGM legalized, alias, the benefits of FGM, I came across some really blunt excuses for why young, innocent, vulnerable girls should be subjected to THE CUT.
Some FGM advocates don’t really have concrete reasons why FGM should be done but are only resistant to the fact that the society is vigilantly harsh towards the act.
- Conserves the African culture.
Someone please tell me which culture we are trying to conserve here? Could it be the culture of social injustice? This is the 21st century for heaven’s sake. Some African practices are dead and the best we can do is to bury them and plant flowers on top of those graves.
2. Sexual libido – lowers the sensitivity of the clitoris to reduce excessive sexual desire.
And why would someone want to reduce someone else’s desire for sex or the ability to enjoy sex? If God put the clitoris there for sexual stimulation, won’t you just leave it where it is and let it serve its intended purpose?
Please let the girl-child control her own sexual desires. You can’t forcibly do it for her.
3. Freedom of choice – Gives women freedom to choose what makes them happy with their own bodies.
“If women can decide to drink, to smoke, women can join the army, women can do all sorts of things that might bring them harm or injury … a woman can [also] make that decision,” says Dr.Tatu during an interview with KTN News.
First, if I was to choose to do what makes me happy with my body, it would never involve shedding a drop of blood. Second, most girls who undergo FGM never do so voluntarily. They are normally forced into it by family/village elders and done in a very unfriendly manner.
Let’s just stop hiding behind the virtual “VOLUNTARY” wall to try and convince sane people that FGM is a pleasurable act that women would go running for.
4. Gender equality – Some FGM activists argue that because male circumcision still continues, FGM should also.
From my personal point of view, this is by far the most bizarre call for gender equality. If this was about gender equality then I’d want to see men’s penises completely chopped off instead of just the foreskin, because cutting my clitoris off is as well as leaving me without a sex organ! I mean, it’s just the peehole left here, right?
5. Safe When done by Medical Specialists – This is just some simple ‘cliché’ that’s used to try and give undeserved legitimacy to FGM.
Please Dr. Tatu, WE are not falling for this cheap vibe because (noting that FGM is mostly done in the rural parts of the country) there is no way you’ll go into the dark corners of the village where FGM is done and try to convince those elders to take the girls for “medical circumcision.”
Furthermore, those village girls cannot afford to be taken to decent hospitals for a ‘decent cut.’ And talking of decency, THERE IS NO DECENT CUT. A cut is a cut no matter where/by who it takes place and it still sabotages the sexual and reproductive health of that young girl.
6. MEDICAL BENEFITS – No profound medical benefits whatsoever.
Short-term Negative Effects of FGM
Harmful to both physical and mental health
- Severe pain – considering the sensitivity of the genital tissue and the fact that no proper anesthesia is ever used. The healing period is also painful.
- Hemorrhage – excessive bleeding which may lead to death
- Death at its extreme due to bleeding and other infections.
- Swelling of the genital tissue
- Wound infections e.g tetanus
Long-term Negative Effects of FGM.
- Sexual health complications e.g Reduced sexual desire, reduced lubrication during sex, pain during penetration, vaginal wounding due to friction.
- Chronic genital infections e.g Vaginal cysts, Abscesses, Genital ulcers.
- High risk of contracting HIV – done using unsterilized blades and knives on several people.
- Painful urination and Urinal tract infections
- Vaginal infections e.g Bacterial vaginosis, Swelling, Itching and Vaginal discharge.
- Menstrual complications – Painful menses
- High risk of childbirth complications e.g Caesarian birth, Post-partum hemorrhage, difficult and prolonged labor.
- Psychological disorders e.g Depression, Low self-esteem, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Anxiety
I hope no-one gets insane enough to support Dr.Tatu’s arguments in court because when that happens, there will be very little hope left for humanity and social justice to our vulnerable young girls and women.
What do you think about the bid to legalize FGM in Kenya once again? Share out your thoughts below..
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