Lawyers in the first U.S. court involving alleged religious-based female genital mutilation are mounting a multi-pronged defence:
Defense lawyers plan to argue that religious freedom is at the core of the case in which two physicians and one of their wives are charged with subjecting young girls to genital cutting. All three are members of the Dawoodi Bohra, a small Indian-Muslim sect that has a mosque in Farmington Hills.
The defense maintains that the doctors weren’t engaged in any actual cutting — just a scraping of the genitalia — and that the three defendants are being persecuted for practicing their religion by a culture and society that doesn’t understand their beliefs and is misinterpreting what they did.
“Darling, you might feel a bit of a pinch while the doctor scrapes away your labia and clitoris.”
A lengthy report in the Detroit Free Press is here.