I think one of the things that we far too often overlook in this country is that fact that genital mutilation of newborn boys is common practice, if not standard. Why isn't there more of a cry against this? Do the benefits of circumcision (if any, and I don't see any valid argument that there are any) outweigh the cost and mutilation of a boy?

Of course circumcision isn't the only genital mutilation in the world, but it's the only type in practice in the United States. Female genital mutilation is just as barbaric, if not more so. Americans, and Europeans in general, ban female genital mutilation of babies, but why the hypocrisy in not doing the same for males?

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I think you're crossing the line here. You're accusing - I'm not sure exactly sure who of being "fanatical" and "out of touch", but the best example of these seems to be yourself.

No one here is claiming that there aren't worse things that happen, but that doesn't mean we can't talk about it. Physical abuse isn't as bad as full-fledged murder, but that doesn't we should just ignore physical abuse until all the murders have stopped. We can't stop every bad thing from happening - all that we can do is address wrongs of all kinds whenever we come across them. You yourself said that routine infant circumcision is wrong, but we're not going to be able to make any progress on that front without talking about it.

Secondly, FGM isn't practiced as a punishment just for being female, and worldwide, most male circumcisions are for religious reasons, not hygienic.

I don't know if anyone is necessarily "missing out" - but the crucial difference is that if I'm intact, and think I'm missing out, I can get a circumcision. Whether or not circumcisions reduce or increase pleasure may not be hard science at this point, but we can still say that victims of RIC are missing out on their right to make a choice.

Finally, if it's really your intent to raise the discussion, not lower it, the best thing you can do is not immediately resort to blaming your opponents of making the discussion moronic by fanatically dichotomizing the issue.
^^ worldwide, most male circumcisions are for religious reasons ^^

While 2/3 to 3/4 of male circumcisions globally are done to Muslims, and they may THINK they have a religious reason, in fact the Qur'an says nothing of genital cutting for either gender. 3% of Jews and higher percentage (from 5% to 20% depending on source) of Muslims do not circumcise.
They do have a religious reason, Yahweh told abraham that circumcision would be a sign of the covenant between them and that he was to have a son and carry this on.
Sarah, his wife, was too old to bear him a son, so Hagar, their slave had a son for him.
Sarah in her jealousy, thought it was only fair to cut something off Hagar, she did not like the idea of cutting her nose or ear, so she thought, i will cut off her clitoris! DANG! lol
It is well known that mohummad thought he was a decendant of abraham.
Most of the Quran is plagurised from the old and the new testament.
in fact the Qur'an says nothing of genital cutting for either gender

Wait, are we accusing religious people of logical and textual consistency? :P

But, to be a bit more technical (which is probably a bad idea for me considering how little I know of Islam), isn't the hadith and pronouncements by various mullahs more important, in terms of prescriptions and proscriptions, than the Qur'an? I don't suppose anyone with more knowledge could comment on this..?
That's what the Mullah tells you, anyway.

But no, there are Islamic originalists who say if it ain't in the Qur'an it's not authentic. If you look at the politcs surrounding the few generations after Muhammad, you can see why people might be suspicious that stuff attributed to the prophet (hadith), or supposedly akin to what he would have done (sunnah) tends to sound conveniently exactly like the thing that would do the most to keep the ruling cabal in power.
There is a hadith where mohummad says about female circumcision,that you can cut a little bit or alot and he leaves it up to the his followers to judge.
They also say there is nothing in the Quran that says women have to wear a hijab or burka, but in fact in the hadiths, mohummad says that it is better to wear it and better still to wear the niqab, which also covers one eye.
It may not be in the Quran, but it is in the hadiths.
One imam said recently, that even animals need two eyes to navigate. I hope that imam is still alive! ;)
I'm impressed with your knowledge. I didn't even know what a hadith is.

Female circumcision and male circumcision can most definitely be compared as there are different types of both. FGM can involve different degrees and kinds of mutilation from socalled hoodectomies and clitoridectomies to labiaplasties and hysterectomies. It can also involve infibulation. The point is that all of these procedures are looked at with revulsion and are even illegal to perform on infants and girls in some countries, including the USA. It is illegal to prick the genitals of a girl with a pin but it is legal to cut off a boy's foreskin. Many types of female circumcision remove less tissue and less nerve-endings than male circumcisions. The foreskin contains around 20000 nerve-endings, the clitoris only 8000.


I don't think that female circumcisions are performed to punish females so much as to try to control and moderate them. Secular male and female circumcision originated in the USA during the 1800s, however, for the explicit purpose of punishing masturbation. The perceived hygeine reasons for circumcision also began around this time, the thinking being that masturbation, "nervous irritation" (sexual lust) and smegma caused disease. As the medical paradigm changed, the justifications evolved to infections and cancers.


I don't quite understand how an intact guy could be "missing out" on being circumcised. If you miss out on a loss of pleasure and function then I would think that to be a good thing. Also, just because millions of men have not spoken out about circumcision does not mean it has not affected them. First of all there are thousands of men that are speaking out against it now because of the internet. Second of all, many circumcised men probably don't know they could be missing out on anything because they know nothing else and most of them have grown up in circumcising societies. And third of all, speaking out about penile problems is not exactly an easy thing for a guy to do.


I think that genital mutilation is up there with the great atrocities perpetrated by religion. The foreskin is not a small piece of skin. In an infant it is of course relatively small, but it grows to a size of about fifteen square inches of densely nerve-laden erogenous tissue in an adult male.


I think that most intactivists believe any alteration to the genitals of males or females should be a personal choice made by a consenting and informed adult about their own bodies. Otherwise circumcision should be like any other surgery: performed out of medical necessity (given a thorough understanding of human anatomy and physiology and the available treatments and cures known by doctors).

If it's mutilation when a doctor in Egypt anesthetizes a baby girl and amputates her clitoral hood (aka prepuce) under sterile conditions, then it is mutilation when a doctor in the US amputates the foreskin (aka prepuce) from baby boy. Whatever word you want to use, it must be the SAME word for both.

The male and female genitals are identical in the womb until three months gestation. Google Prader scale to see how the homologous parts develop.

If you don't have a weak stomach, just Google "circumcision damage" to see common horrid cosmetic and functional adult outcomes of infant circumcision which you apparently were lucky enough to avoid; things like jagged irregular scars, painful bulgy truncated veins, skin bridges, pits and gouges to the glans, stitch tunnels, meatal stenosis scars, buried penis, coarse hair growing all the way to the scar line, horrific malopposition of the shaft and glans, curved erection due to tight skin, early-onset anorgasmia, etc.

Even if you can't claim any of those losses you DID lose about 20,000 specialized pleasure-receptive nerve endings and 15 square inches of adult sexual interface surface. You also lost the protective sheath to keep the glans the adjacent mucosa supple like the inside of the eyelid, and the exquisite frictionless rolling/gliding feeling.


There are many atrocities in this world, but the genital mutilation of children is definitely one of them. Having your foreskin forcibly amputated is just as bad as having a hand forcibly amputated. Being threatened or killed because of sexual orientation is up there with having your genitals mutilated for the fact of being merely sexual!


You are downplaying the destructiveness of circumcision because you yourself are circumcised and it must be very hard for you to acknowledge that your anatomy and sexuality were irreparably altered without your consent. The permanent damaging of infant genitalia, whether they be male or female, is a heinous crime perpetrated by a sick society which has negative effects that no one can fully appreciate. Quite apart from the physical and sexual damage there is psychological damage that men carry with them throughout life. This affects society as a whole.


Your minimisation and trivilisation of this issue is an insult to all the babies that have died as a result of this disgusting practice. It is an insult to all the men who have had their sex lives destroyed and even their entire lives destroyed. You speak as someone who has obviously done no real research on the issue, for if you had then you would find that there are many men who didn't come out of the procedure as well as you; men who have suffered the side-effects of botched jobs (which are actually quite common). Side-effects such as total loss of sensation or function, terrible scarring, chunks missing, skin bridges, skin tags, painful erections, meatal stenosis, and the list goes on. These boys and men have had to live with the consequences of a badly performed operation that was totally unnecessary to begin with. This is a very serious issue and the quicker we as a species can come to a more healthy attitude towards sex, sexuality, and our own bodies, the sooner we shall see a much happier and more peaceful world. Don't underestimate the roll that sexual repression has in creating the kind of society where the other crimes and abuses you speak of are commonplace.

"Having your foreskin forcibly amputated is just as bad as having a hand forcibly amputated." "being ... killed is up there with having your genitals mutilated"

Let's not go overboard. We use our hands all the time, our foreskins only occasionally. The case against circumcision is quite strong enough without overstating it. The rest of what you say is pretty good, but our opponents will take overstatements like that one out of context and use them against us.

(I prefer to use understatement, myself. It makes my case more watertight.)




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