Badmouthing the sexual capabilities of your country’s men is rarely a prescient political move. But when the cause is irreversibly mutilating women’s genitalia to control their sexuality, it seems that anything goes, at least where Egyptian MP Elhamy Agina is concerned.Hey, you've got to even the playing field.
In an exclusive statement to Mohammad Subi in Egyptian news website Parlmany, the lawmaker argued that Egypt’s men suffered from a particular “sexual weakness” – and that women needed to be circumcised to keep them at the erotically stunted level of their male counterparts. Multiple other Arabic news sites subsequently picked up the story.
Female circumcision – or genital mutilation as it’s more properly known – involves cutting away all or part of a girl’s labia and clitoris, and even artificially narrowing the vaginal opening in some cases. Its long term effects include long term urinary, vaginal and menstrual problems, pain during sex, or an absence of sexual satisfaction, and an increased the risk of severe complications in childbirth. In May, this year an Egyptian teenager, Mayer Mohammed, died after undergoing the surgery, which is illegal in the country.
For Agina, however, that’s the necessary price women must pay for living with men whose sexual performance is doomed to laughable inadequacy.
“We as men suffer from sexual weakness. The evidence for that is Egypt is among the biggest consumers of sexual stimulants that don’t treat anything except for weakness,” he is reported as telling Parlmany. Few statistics are available on stimulant use in Egypt, but viagra was legalised in 1999. “If we stopped doing female circumcisions, we would need strong men, and we don’t have men of this type in Egypt.”
“Firstly, there needs to be equality between men and women, so we do female circumcisions,” Agina continued. “This is because it reduces women’s sexual lust, and it’s assumed that it stops women going after men, and keeps the genders equal.”
The story is reminiscent of Kurt Vonnegut's short story Harrison Bergeron.
Agina was roundly criticized for his statements. But he defended them, saying, “If there’s anyone who doesn’t like what I’m saying and gets angry, he can consider that I’m speaking for myself.”
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