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Word Count: 1,220
CULTURE OR TORTURE Female circumcision better known as Female Genital Mutilation FGM is an ugly monster finally rearing its head from out of the depths of time It can attack a girl at any age with a little prompting from her society and the aid of an unsuspecting human wielding a knife Usually it is performed from a few days after birth to puberty but in some regions the torture can be put off until just before marriage or the seventh month of pregnancy Samad 52 Women that have gone beyond the primary level of education are much less likely to fall victim to the tradition Mens 34 The average victim is illiterate and living in a poverty-stricken community where people face hunger bad health over-working and unclean water Female 1714 This however is not always the case As one can see in the following story of Soraya Mire social classes create no real barriers Soraya Mire a 13-year-old from Mogadishu Somolia never knew what would happen to her the day her mother called her out of her room to go buy her some gifts When asked why her mother replied I just want to show you how much I love you As Soraya got into the car she wondered where the armed guards were Being the daughter of a Somolian general she was always escorted by guards Despite her mothers promise of gifts they did not stop at a store but at a doctors home This is your special day Sorayas mother said Now you are to become a woman an important woman She was ushered into the house and strapped down to an operating table A local anesthetic was given but it barely blunted the pain as the doctor performed the circumcision Soraya was sent home an hour later Soraya broke from her cultures confining bonds at the age of 18 by running away from an abusive arranged marriage -2-
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