Fahma Mohamed, a 17-year-old British student, is determined to make female genital mutation (FGM) a thing of the past in the UK. The process is intended to prevent sex from being pleasurable for a young woman so that she remains “pure” until marriage. The most common time for FGM to happen is over summer holidays, when families in Britain travel to other countries. So Fahma is petitioning Michael Gove, the British Secretary of State for Education, to take action fast and ask that head teachers train other teachers and parents on the horrific realities of FGM. Keep reading »
Female genital mutilation (also called female circumcision) should be treated just like child abuse and considered a crime, according to a new report called “Tackling Female Genital Mutilation In The UK.”
The report, which was put together by Equality Now, the Royal Colleges of Midwifery, Nursing, Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the union Unite, stipulated any evidence of FGM should be reported to police and educators. Currently over 24,000 girls under age 18 are at risk of having their clitorises and labia removed, said the report, because they live with women who had FGM themselves. Keep reading »
A doctor, a dentist, and an alternative medicine practitioner were all secretly filmed offering to perform or arrange female genital mutilation (FGM), according to the UK Guardian. FGM involves removing all or part of the external female genitalia, and sometimes sewing the opening to the vagina shut. It’s all supposedly for the purpose of making it impossible for a woman to have sex for pleasure and therefore ensuring her “purity” upon marriage.
The so-called “female circumcisions” are performed on girls as young as 5 and is widespread across Africa; you can read more about FGM on the World Health Organization’s web site. Thankfully, human rights and women’s rights activists across the continent are condemning the horrific procedure. As such, both performing FGM and arranging for it to be performed are illegal in the UK. But that doesn’t stop FGM from occurring in the UK: the Guardian claims 100K women in the country have been mutilated. I hope those doctors know FGM carries a 14 year prison sentence and are shaking in their boots/heels. [Guardian UK; Telegraph UK]
Vaginas! Let’s talk about them. Perhaps, like me, you don’t know much about what anyone’s vagina looks like, except for your own. But it turns out the lips of the labia can be “innies” or “outies,” just like belly buttons, and “outies” … well, they look just like they sound. Surely, women with “outies” can feel discomfort down there when riding a bike or wearing tight-fitting jeans. But the truth is, the majority of the time a woman gets labioplasty surgery on her vagina, she’s letting a plastic surgeon have a go at her hooda with a scalpel for aesthetic reasons. She wants the perfect vagina, but what the heck is that?
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Officials in Uganda are finally passing a law outlawing female circumcision, which is prevalent in the eastern part of the country. Uganda’s prez, Yoweri Museveni explained, “There is no part of a human body that is useless.” Not to mention the fact that this “operation” hurts like hell and is very dangerous. Crude tools are used to make the cut and are often shared between girls. Oh yeah, and there’s no anesthesia. This mutilation increases the risk of HIV transmission and can cause excessive bleeding or even death. So, why do tribes force girls to take part in this atrocious practice? Keep reading »
An advertisement about the genital mutilating clitorectomy has just won an International Advertising Association Award for Social Responsibility. The print PSA is a photo of a naked women on her back with her legs spread. Covering her private interests is a white circle that reads, â€œWet your finger and rub to find out what millions of women feel.â€ After you stroke the spot, magic ink makes â€œNOTHINGâ€ appear. Even scarier are the statistics — about 4 girls a minute are subjected to female circumcision with an estimated total of 100 million victims worldwide. The ad, funded by The Association of Women Against Genital Mutilation, cleverly gets the clitorisâ€™ point across. Congratulations to the Contrapunto Advertising Agency in Barcelona, Spain, who knows how important it is that we speak up for those that canâ€™t speak up for themselves! [Trend Hunter] Keep reading »
America’s Next Top Model is kind of a reason for living. Which may explain why so many of the contestants have insane sob stories to tell during the audition process. Each year it seems like there’s always one girl who’s been through a really hard time — Tiffany grew up in the ‘hood; Amanda, the fair beauty who’s going blind; Brittany, who got into a car accident and suffered brain damage that affects her short term memory; the list goes on and on. But this year, for Cycle 10, Tyra and Company found some girls from the school of hard knocks that made our jaws drop. Dominique was in an abusive relationship; Marvita was raped; and Fatima, who was born in Somalia, was circumsized as a child. Umm, isn’t this supposed to be a light-hearted show about modeling and drag queens and being fierce? Tyra just loves to exploit the sad back stories of her contestants for ratings and very rarely does one of these women actually win. That said, we have a feeling gorgeous Fatima is going to go far and if her story, featured on a craptastic reality TV show, gets the issue of genital mutilation more attention, than so be it. [CW: America's Next Top Model] Keep reading »