West Midlands Police have confirmed that they only refer the matter to the CPS “if it’s in the child’s best interests”. Quite how punishing those who slice off a clitoris isn’t in the girl’s best interests is unclear. But West Midlands Police are quite emphatic:
It’s all about child safeguarding, you see. Parental child abusers (for FGM is indeed a barbaric mutilation) aren’t prosecuted in case they might be imprisoned, and to deprive a young girl of her parents is to deny her the right to a family life, so far better to turn a blind eye and let them go on living happily ever after than to break up the loving family unit, which might affect her GCSE results, or something.
Presumably the abusive parents don’t even get issued with a caution.
But there’s something a little odd here.
If this were rape, sexual abuse, torture, incest… well, we know what would happen: the police wouldn’t hesitate to investigate, make an arrest and pass the file hastily to the CPS.
But such crimes are common (or not so common) to all racial-religious cultures.
FGM, however, tends not to be practised in the UK by Quakers and Methodists: it is peculiar to certain immigrant communities, and so West Midlands Police shuffle and skirt and pussyfoot on eggshells. God forbid they might be accused of institutional racism, or worse, Islamophobia. And so there is a conspiracy of silence, and conspiracy it is.
Good grief, parents can be prosecuted if a teacher spots a bruise these days; smacking may be deemed physical and mental abuse. How can it not be in a girl’s best interests to prosecute those who cut out her clitoris?
The Female Genital Mutilation Act was passed in 2003, but the paucity of prosecutions in the face of the c7,000 girls per annum who suffer this procedure is a national scandal. Where is the feminist outrage? Where are the demands for a wholesale review?
Are we really so squeamish about offending against minority cultural sensitivities that “the child’s best interests” must embrace tolerance of FGM? Why, if such disfigurement is a blatant breach of the FGM Act, is the law not applied equally to all, irrespective of sex, race or religion? Why do the police leap to prosecute ‘hate speech’ but not ‘clit hate’?
Or is it like sex-selective abortion, where prosecution is deemed not to be in the public interest? So with FGM the public interest trumps the child’s interests, so as not to inflame racial-religious tensions?
If those who cause little children to stumble should be thrown into the sea with a millstone tied around their necks, how much greater should the punishment be for those who worship at the altar of multiculturalism and turn a blind eye to child sacrifice?