I was just reading on Maryam Namazie’s blog that a German court decided that a child’s right to “physical integrity”, meaning the intactness of their bodies, is greater than the mommy and daddy’s right to carve their faith into the flesh of their child. I’m using over the top wording on this, but I’m doing so because people have a tendency to not think of things like male circumcision as a big deal. And no, I’m not one of those male circumcision activist guys who would DARE imply that female genital mutilation is the same thing as male circumcision.
I remember a while back reading this story of a couple who were charged with child cruelty in Georgia after tattooing black crucifixes on the hands of six of the seven children in their care. I remember having a few conversations with people about that, and all of my people-of-faith friends thought it was cruel and disgusting. Yes, they understood the parents wanting to do it, but there are lines you simply do not cross, and tattooing your children is one of them. Well, what about cutting off foreskin? What about cutting off the clitoris and labia? Why is a serious surgery which forever alters the sexuality and physicality of the recipient less invasive than a tattoo?
At any rate, the faithful in Germany (and elsewhere) are all uppity about religious freedom and the state preventing people from exercising their beliefs. Guess what, folks? As amazing as it may seem, I think they’re wrong. Weird, right?
Let’s pretend for a minute that your faith required you to place a blue dot of peace on your third cousin. That blue dot of peace would never wash off, and it didn’t matter if your third cousin wanted it or not, your faith commanded you. Is that okay? Of course not. Your right to freely practice your religion is not in question here, it’s your right to inflict your religion on someone else who may not want it that is.
If you believe your God won’t love your child until you cut their sex organs, that’s a shame. Maybe you should get a new God. What you shouldn’t do is permanently physically inflict your faith on them. If they choose to mutilate themselves when they are old enough to make that decision, then that’s fine. That’s really all there is to it.