Thursday, June 30, 2011

Circumcisions. Just a little off the top please

The Jewish and Muslim people have teamed up to fight an evil enemy. An enemy they call racists. An enemy they call anti-Semitic to both the Muslims and Jews. However, this fight is not taking place in the Middle East, but in the city of San Francisco, and over a little piece of skin.

A group has successfully collected enough signatures for a measure to be added to the November elections. So if passed it would make San Francisco the first city in the US to ban male circumcisions.

Maybe it's a health issue, as studies have suggested and that circumcisions prevent future health problems like STDs, HIV and UTIs. On the other hand, maybe it is only a personal choice or a religious preference.Are we infringing on the rights of parents?

The ancient Egyptians performed circumcisions, and if done in infancy is it really traumatizing? Personally, I do not remember having it done and I have never talked to a guy who remembers it happening. I am sure by now some lawyer would have used a traumatized circumcision defense if possible. The only problem is, if it was removed as a baby no guy remembers it happening.

I guess we will let the people decide in November.


Zazzy Episodes said...

Goodness, what next huh?

Solitary Diner said...

Most of the arguments against circumcision don't focus on the act of circumcision itself (because of course a baby who is a few days old won't remember that) but rather on the long-term effects. There are some men who feel that circumcision interferes with we say enjoyment of adult activities? As well, some men feel mutilated by the procedure. And then there's the whole question as to whether parents have the right to perform a medically unnecessary procedure on their kids without consent. It's an interesting debate.

Thatgirl said...

Not to be controversial, but could you could ask the same question about female circumcision (ie: if done in infancy is it really traumatizing?).

It is a weirdly polarizing issue for some people. My parents were frankly mad at me because we decided not to circumsize, while my Swedish mother-in-law thought the idea of doing it was barbaric.

Thatgirl said...

I just realized I should clarify! I bring up female circumcision not to say that I would support it if done in infancy, but rather that the argument that male curcumcision is okay just because the person doesn't remember it happening to them is flawed.

NP Odyssey said...

Zazzy, indeed with all the problems in this country with health care.

Solitary Diner, look at all the things we do to kids without their consent, some are necessary some not. It is an interesting debate for thousands of years and won't be going away anytime soon.

Thatgirl, when I was in Minneapolis female circumcision was a hot topic in the large Somali community. It was illegal, but they were doing it behind closed doors.
Not saying if it is right or wrong but parents do many things to kids that they do not remember. Polydactyl is more common than most think and parents remove the extra finger, toe or flap of skin. I think it is also wrong all the little kids I see with their ears piercings.

Cartoon Characters said...

I have been a no-circ advocate for years. I worked with a Jewish Pediatrician in the East Bay who stated that circs were unnecessary.

North America and Jewish/Muslims are the only ones doing it wholesale. In Europe and elsewhere in the world it is not done wholesale.

Years ago MDs from the USA went over there and tried to convince them but the Europeans saw the light and sent them packing.

The HIV argument doesn't hold water here in North America where we have other options for disease prevention.

It definitely is a hotly debated topic.