People fall, roughly, into one of four groups:
Group 2: Genitals intact and sorry. No problem -- they can have their genitals mutilated. (This group is very small because the vast majority of people who are given the choice prefer to keep their genitals intact.)
Group 3: Genitals mutilated and glad. No problem. (How many, however, would have been glad their genitals were intact if they had been given the choice?)
Group 4: Genitals mutilated and sorry. Problem. (How many men and women with mutilated genitals would rather their genitals were intact? If only one percent of the males in the U.S. whose genitals were mutilated in infancy by circumcision would rather be intact -- surely a low estimate -- that would be about a million males.)
People still fall into the same four groups -- but with a happy difference.
Group 2: Intact and sorry. Still no problem -- they can still be mutilated. (This group is now even smaller than it was before because now almost no one has any reason to want their genitals mutilated -- or to want anyone else's genitals mutilated.)
Group 3: Mutilated and glad. Still no problem. (This group is now virtually non-existent because genital mutilation itself is now virtually non-existent.)
Group 4: Mutilated and sorry. Virtually no problem. This problem has been almost totally eliminated because its cause -- genital mutilation without consent of the mutilated -- has now been eliminated. Now almost no one is mutilated and sorry because now almost no one is mutilated. The only people in this group now are the very few who were intact and sorry, had their genitals mutilated, and are now mutilated and sorry.
Let's do everything we can, therefore, to abolish infant and child genital mutilation and all other forms of forced and coerced genital mutilation -- male and female -- once and for all, in this country and throughout the world, and honor the birthright of all human beings everywhere to keep their genitals intact, for a happier world.
John A. Erickson