Monday, 30 March 2009

The Guardian's Greensdale: Circumcision Photos Outrage


Roy Greensalde is Professor of Journalism at London’s City University and has been a media commentator since 1992, most notably for The Guardian newspaper.

In his column Outrage at Circumcision Pictures appearing this morning on the Guardian newspaper's website, Mr Greenslade has endorsed the position I've taken on the issue of publishing photographs of a child's (female) circumcision in the Washington Post and other publications.

My posts have appeared here, here and here.

My thanks to Benjamin Chesterton of Duckrabbit Multimedia who shared my revulsion, and who posted the absolutely brilliant post Smile for the camera please - whilst I cut off your clitoris … Not funny is it.

And thank you Mr Greensdale.

Addendum: And to all of those who've commented as having no objection to the shameful publication of this child's face and name in the photo essay, here's what you ought to reflect on: what if the child was your daughter, niece or relative? Would you still have the same opinion? Hypocritical comments are easy to spot.

Addendum II: Larry Hayden of Making Photos just added his opinion. He writes: "In this case, Andrea Bruce might have been exposing an abhorrent practice that provides that voice. But when she took images of the seven-year-old girl's face, submitted them for publishing and then took an award for the photographs, she became part of the hypocritical nature of this country in particular."

Addendum III: Kayla Keenan's riposte to a revolting comment and her opinion in the commentary section of the Guardian's columns needs to be read carefully by all concerned. Here's an excerpt:
No one involved has said that this practice is not an atrocity nor that it should not be brought to the attention of the world public. They simply have not reduced themselves to believing that the only way to do that is at the expense of a child. They refuse to shout "Show us the bloody bits." If your morality has plunged to so little as to care for that girl as an individual and human being first and foremost, you cease to be able to care for all the others to whom this will befall. And the end of your concern only "illuminates" the situation to those who already abhor it with no change to the end result (helping that child)... That alone makes this exactly the kind of hypocrisy which perpetuates the violence rather than ends it.

Addendum IV: Another voice..this time from Charukesi Ramadurai in the Bring On The Misery on CounterCurrents.org, from which this excerpt is taken::
The question here is, would the publications and the organizations have allowed an American or Western European girl to be featured in the same way, name, face and all? I googled out of curiosity and came upon a report in the Daily Mail UK that talks about the plight of young British-African women who are forced to go through the procedure. This, of a victim being interviewed - "promise you won't print my name or anything?" she implores repeatedly. And they don’t.