Statement by NOW President Toni Van Pelt:
WASHINGTON — The National Organization for Women regrets the unfortunate ruling of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan in the first case of female genital mutilation brought under the federal law banning this horrific practice. We believe this ruling to be erroneous for a number of reasons. The cutting of the genitals of girls in Michigan is not just “a local criminal activity,” as the judge described it. Rather it involves interstate commerce in that girls are brought to Michigan from other states by parents who tell them they are going on vacation. This brutal attack on girls has become a matter of cutting tourism and certainly falls under the right of Congress to ban it under the interstate commerce clause.
We at NOW hope the U.S. Attorney from Michigan, who brought this case, will appeal this erroneous ruling.
NOW Press, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202-628-8669