Open Letter to the American Academy of Pediatrics: The AAP Has No Business in Circumcision
This is an open letter to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) in response to its recent position statement on female genital cutting (FGC), which condones minimal forms of FGC. The AAP position statement is available here.HERE to Go to the Original Article
We have reviewed the AAP’s latest policy statement on female genital cutting (FGC) and we are shocked to see such an ethically and medically incoherent document issue from your venerable organization. What truly is paradoxical is for the nation’s leading organization of doctors treating children to weaken its opposition to a practice proven to cause substantial, irreparable, lifelong harm to children.
Moreover, your proposed, seemingly innocent “ritual nick” almost certainly violates the Federal Prohibition of Female Genital Mutilation Act, whose criminal provisions became effective in March 1997.
We trust that lightening your opposition to female genital cutting is not being done to help set up a parallel move toward diluting your 1999 statement on male circumcision (MGC). Flawed as the latter statement was, it did acknowledge the lack of medical benefit to the procedure on males. It is imperative that both statements be maintained or strengthened.
The AAP has no business brokering cultural procedures, even those that may support future revenue streams for some of its members. In this time of reduced resources, more than ever, it is imperative that medical organizations such as the AAP focus on what matters most—promoting the safety of our children, and working to eradicate—not condone or justify—harmful, non-beneficial, unethical practices such as FGC and MGC.
J. Steven Svoboda
Attorneys for the Rights of the Child
Please pass this information along to your local politicians and medical governing bodies. They need to know that this is completely unacceptable, and that we are not fooled by their clever wording in their policy statement: " The American Academy of Pediatrics opposes all types of female genital cutting that pose risks of physical or psychological harm," we can see where they are trying to lead this policy, and we will NOT stand for it!! If you're Canadian, you need to be worried too- because we all know that Stephen Harper and many of our Medical associations live in the back pocket of the American government and that if the AAP starts to devolve.... the Canadian medical associations probably won't be too far behind.