Oops, it seems I did it again. Sorry! But now I will write about the thing I hinted about in the other post: circumcision. Let me first state this once again: I live in Finland. So things are different here.
In this country circumcision is illegal for any other than a medical reason. So it is not routinely performed. Lately there has been some discussion on changing the law so that it would be legal to perform it for religious reasons, too. The reasoning being that now it is done illegally anyway by people that are not medical professionals and this can lead to infections and even worse things. I know there are cases being prosecuted where unsanitary circumcisions have led the family to go to a Finnish doctor. So the parents now have to face criminal charges.
What is wrong with this picture? Let’s see. Yes, I know that we have freedom of religion. And I think it is a good thing. Then again we have laws. They may not be the same as in every other country, but they are our laws. Not that they can not be changed if it is clear that the law no longer is valid. But in my mind the reason for changing the law can not be that it is being done anyway. That reasoning leads to shaky grounds so fast that I do not want to see it.
Let’s legalize female circumcision at the same time! That is also being done here no matter how illegal it is. And those doing it are no medical professionals. Let’s make all the drugs legal, as people are using them anyway. Imagine, you could just walk into a drugstore and get whatever you want! Mmm, I would not mind getting all those good drugs they give you at retrieval. Now there just is this stupid law that keeps me getting them whenever I want.
But they circumcise because their religion tells you that you have to do it! You are saying that they can not practice their chosen path and yet there is freedom of religion here! Umm, yeah, this then just comes to the point that where do you draw the line. Which is more important for this country: letting everyone practice their religion no matter what it means or obeying the laws? Personally I have to say the laws are more important. In my mind freedom to choose what you believe in can not mean you can do illegal things on that ground. I really could not care less if you worshipped fallen tree leaves or whatever as long as it does not make you break the laws in this country.
But we have to be welcoming to all these people moving into our country! It is unfair to them that they have to get used to our laws! Eh???? As far as I understand nobody is forced into moving into this country. Those people have come here voluntarily. As much as we have freedom of religion, we do have freedom of movement. If you do not like the place you are living in now, nobody is going to keep you from moving somewhere else. Many Finns are using this right, too. Just go and see all those small towns where there are lots of empty houses because people have moved elsewhere.
I’ve got nothing against people moving here. I really don’t. I just came back from lunch in the local Chinese restaurant. I could not be happier about those Chinese people moving here, as I love the food. In my workplace there are people from (at least, I might be forgetting someone) Ireland, India, Netherlands, Poland and Russia. I’ve heard that later this fall there will be someone coming from South Korea. And I think it is just great! You can learn so much from these people and the differences in cultures.
But still I’m expecting one thing of them: obeying the laws in this country. I do think this is a reasonable demand. And I expect them to respect the local customs. You do not have to like them, you do not have to participate if you do not like, but please do not try to change them. If you dislike the way things are done around here, try to learn to accept it or move elsewhere. As I’ve said, that is your right. It is not possible to make this country exactly like the one you decided to leave. If I go abroad I’m certainly not expecting things to be the same. If I know that in a country there are things I do not like I can choose not to go there.
I really do think that understanding the people moving into this country goes too far if we start to change our laws because of that. Mutilating newborn children certainly is not a right everyone should have. I can not understand a religion that makes you do that.