Edward Lai Harner, Edward Harner
Andrea Harner
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March 30, 2007

Live circumcision!

Uummmm...mass circumcision, come one, come all! I'm doing them for free!! To help stop AIDS!! JK Rowling.

I hadn't really given much thought to the question "to circumcise or not to circumcise?" except that I found myself saying, "isn't it done because it's cleaner to circumcise?" but then I'd think of all the ways we currently do things for "cleaner" reasons that are pretty whack - women, when was the last time you had all your pubic hair ripped off because it's cleaner that way?! The other weekend we started talking about circumcision at the end of a dinner party and with the help of Wikipedia we studied just the very superficial differences in the photos provided. We also talked about whether we would have our sons (assuming we give birth at some point to a son or two) circumcised. Yesterday the discussion continued at the BuzzFeed office and I had already started to sour on the idea when I found this. I started sending it around with the caption - "hey, check out this fun vid!" but it is of course not that fun of a vid. See for yourself.



Comments

That's the most horrid thing I've seen in ages!!

I'm happily uncircumcised and better off for it.

Proven: men who are not cut have a ton more sexual pleasure, did I mention I'm jewish?

Posted by: Michael at March 30, 2007 12:23 PM

Circumcision is genital mutilation. I am a health care professional and have participated in some circumcisions and it is always disturbing and seems barbaric. It is important for people to know that this is an unnecessary practice. A dirty penis is a dirty penis, circumcised or uncircumcised. I have three boys and in the religion that my husband and I practice it is customary to circumcise our baby boys. We chose not to because it is ONLY cultural and we believe that God gives two whole farts about what a penis looks like. That said, this is what the experts say.... http://aappolicy.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/pediatrics%3b103/3/686

Posted by: Jenn at March 30, 2007 2:11 PM

Without a doubt, circumcision is genital mutilation. Would you do this to your daughter? No. Don't do this to your son. (from a mother that decided along with her circumcised husband NOT to do this to their son.)

Posted by: Jayne at March 30, 2007 6:04 PM

Whether you agree or not the Jewish religion will continue to practice circumcision as it is an inherent part of our culture. But that is not what bothers me- what bothers me is the narrator's assertion that circumcision leaves deep psychological scars associated with their organ. If you ask any of the circumcised men in my family if they have any bad associations the answer is no. Circumcision takes place on the eighth day of life and many studies have shown that babies have no capacity for memory at that age. However, I am sure an adult male would have deep psychological issues with circumcision if he decided to have the procedure done in his adult life.

Posted by: Reader at March 31, 2007 9:07 PM

I caught some flak, not surprisingly, for opposing the WHO push to circumcise everyone. There were about an equal number of supporters though.
http://www.abandonedstuff.com/2007/03/30/penis-cut-to-hiv/
if you'd like to read it.

Posted by: Saskboy at April 1, 2007 12:24 AM

The WHO is quite desperate for some solution to the AIDS crisis. Unfortunately, large abstinence-only US influence is causing the WHO to look past the solution they already have: condoms, at 3 cents apiece.

The cut men in the 3 Africa trials contracted HIV at 6 times the US rate; and they call that a success?

The US has 3 times the AIDS problem Europe has, even though the US is mostly cut and Europe is mostly intact. Most of the half million dead American male victims of AIDS were cut at birth.

In non-cutting Japan AIDS is as rare as it is 95%-cut Israel. In the African nations of Cameroon, Ghana, Lesotho, Malawi, Rwanda, and Tanzania, HIV is markedly more prevalent among the circumcised.

Circumcision does not prevent AIDS.

Posted by: Ron Low at April 1, 2007 1:49 PM

Circumcision is genital mutilation, just like removing the clitoris of a woman is genital mutilation. (Not as extreme of course, but mutilation nonetheless.)

The head of the penis is a mucus membrane and can be covered by the foreskin for a reason. Would you cut your eyelids off?

Being uncircumcised makes sex for a man much more pleasurable. The head slides within the smooth foreskin, reducing friction for both the man AND the woman.

Circumcision does not make the penis cleaner. Taking a shower with soap makes it cleaner.

Circumcision does not prevent HIV/AIDS. Using a condom prevents HIV/AIDS.

As an circumcised male, I would ferociously argue against circumcision with anyone I know. It is mutilation, it is barbaric, and it is unnecessary.

Posted by: Zosima at April 8, 2007 11:33 PM

Andrea,

First, I want to thank you for being open-minded and looking at the evidence of the, to me, obvious trauma of cutting on the genitals of a baby.

Second, thank you for sharing the YouTube version of the film by my friend, Elena Vladmirova, so that others can share it. It takes tremendous courage to talk about uncomfortable aspects of one's own culture.

I have been educating medical students about the penis for nearly 20 years now. Medical students and faculty are very thin-skinned about discussing possible abuse of children by doctors. Everyone who attempts to bring this topic to a conversation must find a way to make even the discussion palatable.

Cheers to you for doing this.

Forest
Health educator and intactivist

Posted by: Forest Harlan at April 18, 2007 4:57 PM

I have an intact little boy who is 12 and has never had any problems with health or hygeine. I'm so glad people are now educating themselves on circumcision. Some people gave me grief for not circumcising my son when he was born but I know of more and more people who aren't doing it nowdays. I even have a coworker whose son almost died after getting a circumcision at the hosptial. Thankfully she left her second baby boy intact and both boys are now doing fine, ages 3 yrs and 5 months.

Posted by: Holly Stanton at April 24, 2007 12:25 AM
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