Thursday, 28 June 2007

There Are Limits to Multiculturalism

Female circumcision persists in Egypt

Despite slight decline in rate of procedure, most girls undergo genital mutilation before teens

Jun 25, 2007 04:30 AM
Oakland Ross
Middle East Bureau

CAIRO–Her name is Riham Sheble, she is a few weeks shy of her 30th birthday, and she is among the few women in her country who will speak publicly about something that was done to her as a child.

It's the same rite performed upon almost all young girls in Egypt.

"I was 7," says Sheble, "and I was circumcised."

These are not words you often hear in this country, where powerful taboos still surround the cutting away of women's sexual organs when they are still children. The custom is all but universal.

In 2005, 96 per cent of Egyptian women between the ages of 15 and 49 who had ever been married reported that they had been circumcised when young.

Gradually, however, the prevalence of female circumcision – now more commonly known as female genital mutilation – seems to be declining, at least in Egypt.

Read the whole article here.

Reading this in the left of centre Toronto Star gives the impression that female genital mutilation, or female circumcision is intolerable, and it is, but the article says that this is a centuries old practice. This has been going on in Egypt long before the Americas were discovered and Canada was founded. We may not agree with female circumcision yet who are we to say otherwise if we believe in multiculturalism let alone allow the equally barbaric and equally unnecessary male version of it? If cultures are to be held in equal esteem then how can Canada stop anyone from practicing it here yet we do. In fact it is now grounds for asylum in Canada. This has obviously opened up our refugee system to further abuse (i.e. lying) but that is not the point I wish to make here. It is obvious from this article that there are limits to multiculturalism. You cannot walk into a Chinese restaurant in Canada and order dog as your meal because Canadians would not hear of it but a truly multicultural society would allow it.

Canada is not truly multicultural and it never should be. In fact multiculturalism is a mistake and it should be abolished as a source of national identity. Multiculturalism is a confused and chaotic state and it fosters social disorder because cultures compete to emerge dominant and establish some sense of order. So far this is not a problem in Canada but you can see the symptoms of it already chiefly Canada's inability to forge a real sense of self. Multiculturalism is an attack on Canadian identity and it should be stopped.

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