Friday, March 26, 2004

Everything Must Be Required or Banned

The Georgia House of Representatives recently voted to ban female genital mutilation. Most likely, they were rightly appalled at the cultural/religious practice of clitoridectomy. (Were they motivated in part by anti-Arab sentiment? I wouldn’t be surprised, and that’s sad. But on this matter, multiculturalism loses in my book. Cutting up your daughters’ genitals doesn’t become okay because it’s a cultural or religious practice. And yes, I think that about male circumcision, too.) But in a typical example of legislative overreaching, the Georgia state legislators went ahead and banned genital piercing as well, even when voluntarily chosen by adults. Once again, government can’t seem to make that crucial distinction between “inherently wrong” and “wrong because it’s not by choice.”

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