Welcome to The Times in Plain English   Click to listen highlighted text! Welcome to The Times in Plain English

Genital Cutting Cases Rising with African Immigration

November 27, 2016
Plain English Version

Genital cuttingFemale genital cutting is an ancient tradition practiced in 29 countries in Africa and the Middle East. The condition is often called female genital mutilation or F.G.M. It is also called female circumcision.

It is on the decline in some communities. It is still the norm in others. More than 90 percent of women are cut in Somalia and Guinea.

The cutting can be as limited as a small incision. It can be as extensive as an Infibulation. An Infibulation involves removing the clitoris and repositioning the labia to form a seal with a small opening.

The practice is a respected tradition in some cultures. It is linked to purity. It has no medical benefits. It is often painful and usually done without anesthesia. Opposition to F.G.M. is growing.

It is outlawed in the United States. And it is illegal to send a girl abroad for the procedure.

More African immigrants are coming to America. About half a million women in the U.S. have arrived with the procedure. That number is three times the last estimate made in 1997.

One big issue is that American doctors have little experience or knowledge about genital cutting. This makes it difficult for African women to seek medical help without feeling ashamed.

Many women complain of painful sex. One doctor has opened fused closures. Infections are also common. Sometimes, a pregnant woman asks that the doctor reseal her labia after birth. This returns her body to its previous, traditional appearance.

African women want to get the medical care they need. The U.S. medical community is trying to educate itself. Nevertheless, genital cutting is controversial.

Source: The New York Times February 5, 2015

Send comments to: editor@newsinplainenglish.com

Print Friendly

In Brief

Selling Kids on Vegetables

How to get kids to eat vegetables? Marketing is the answer. You can call it tricks or just good ideas. Whatever works.

School lunchrooms are...

What Do You Call Yourself if Your Mother is White and Your Father is Black?

On the 2010 Census, President Barack Obama, identified himself as  “black.” But millions of Americans consider themselves “bi- or multi-racial.”  And their numbers are...

Mending Walls, By Robert Frost

Robert Frost (1874 – 1963) was a great American poet. Just before he died, he read his poetry at the inauguration of President John...

Pineapple on Pizza? The Global Debate

The President of Iceland started it. Last week he joked that pizza topped with pineapple should be outlawed. His remarks set off a debate...

Archives

test

Dictionary
  • dictionary
  • English Dictionary

Double click on any word on the page or type a word:

Powered by dictionarist.com
Click to listen highlighted text!