Guardian food critic in genital mutilation rant

Guardian writer Oliver Thring conflates female genital mutilation and male circumcision

by Sue Denim on 27 November 2012 09:48

Freelance food blogger/Guardian regular Oliver Thring has this morning covered himself in disgrace in a series of tweets about female genital mutilation and male circumcision. 

Beginning his morning with the tweet, "Interesting fact re the mammalian penis. The corona evolved to scrape other males' semen from the vagina. God *wants* you to be promiscuous," Thring was then challenged on his statements vis a vis female genital mutilation.

As one of the most serious threats to females in both the developed and developing world, genital mutilation is not something to make light of or trivialise, yet Thring indulges in the unfortunate and ignorant act of conflating male circumsion and female genital mutilation.

He tweets, "I think cutting the genitals of any child is a serious matter" ignoring the fact that male circumsion can and is often done both safely and with no underlying long term effects, while FGM is often disfiguring, medically detrimental and psychologically damaging to say the very least.

He went on to tweet, "I'm simply saying that MGM and FGM are comparable acts, because in both cases the genitals of a child are permanently mutilated without the child's consent." A simplistic and uninformed way of summarising the issue. Some discussions are best left off Twitter.

Thring may wish to brush up about the differences here.

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