There is a reason the rate of circumcision is continuing to fall in the United States – parents are finally becoming informed on the reality and health consequences of this archaic and painful mutilation of our baby boys. We’re seemingly on a decline of newborns having this unnecessary cosmetic surgery performed. The rates from the CDC very year-by-year, and region by region. Overall it does seem to be declining, but nowhere close enough to where it needs to be – ZERO.
Why do we do this?
Currently NO medical association recommends circumcision. Not the American Medical Association nor the American Academy of Pediatrics. While the AAP has strong opinions about FGM (female genital mutilation) and advises its member pediatricians to “decline to perform any medically unnecessary procedure that alters the genitalia of female infants, girls, and adolescents.” Where is the strong statement about medically unnecessary procedures that alters the genitalia of boys? Not to be found. In fact recent support, but not quite an endorsement, for male circumcision by the AAP was by its own admission – “biased based on cultural normality” and claims of health benefits are “questionably weak.” Oh and by the way, the report was done to “assert(s) that the benefits of the procedure are sufficient to warrant third-party payment.” Meaning they published biased evidence to get the government (Medicaid specifically) and insurance companies to PAY hospitals to have this procedure done! Seriously. That is directly from their own retraction of their previous pro-circumcision “findings.” Circumcision had been dropping in low-income areas where Medicaid would not cover the procedure. Something simply had to be done, money was being lost and foreskins were running rampant. Hence, the trumped up paper by the AAP “scientists.”
The “cleanliness” argument has been debunked years ago, even before the aforementioned AAP retraction paper. Look at Europe where most males are intact – no problem there. The reports cited that it may lower rates of HIV and STD’s infection are addressed in the above linked AAP article. At every turn the theory that circumcision is a healthy preventative measure fails to meet statistical criteria. And that is according to their peer reviewers. Studies done on small populations in Sub-Saharan Africa are made to infer probable behavior and outcome in America males. However, even these studies are contradicted by every other study worldwide showing no relationship between circumcision and lower rates of HIV/STD infection. The biased American scientists (probably missing the tip themselves) wanted the American medical establishment to continue to be pro-cutting, so they made a study to support that bias.
Does it matter if “daddy” had it done? Compassionately think about your son and his little precious body. If something hurtful was forced upon you as a child would you therefore pay it forward to your little one? No, of course not. This carries over to the locker room embarrassment at being the only uncut boy in the room concern we have all heard before. Thankfully that “concern” is out the window since by the time your son can potentially whip it out in that hypothetical high school scenario – half of the boys will look like him anyway, with a normal intact penis. Should conformity be one of your top reasons, no, should conformity be ANY of your reasons for circumcising your boy think very carefully about how you’re going to explain that to a grown-up, educated young man questioning why you requested an unneeded surgery to cut off an important and necessary part of his body?
Shorter, but Holier than though
If you are a Christian and believe the scriptures command it, do your homework. Quite the opposite in fact (Galatians Chapter 5, 6:12-16, Colossians 2:8-14, etc). Historically ancient circumcision was literally just a very small clip of the tip, nothing like the massive tissue and nerve removal of today. Not that an interpretation of the scripture should or should not lead someone to do this to a child, but anecdotally I know when I was young I was taught Christians were “supposed” to do it because God said that separates us as his children. Turns out – not so much.
We must be be passionate about protecting children, ALL children in ALL ways. That includes their delicate little bodies. We all have a visceral reaction to hearing about little girls having their genitals mutilated, but most don’t even have a second thought about a similar (though slightly less gruesome) procedure done to little boys. Why is that? Normality, familiarity, commonplace, and complacency. SImply when something is done for so long without question it becomes the status quo and detractors are radicals. But stop and really ponder what has been normalized in America – cutting off what would’ve become 15 square inches of tissue, 240 feet of nerves, and up to 20,000 nerve endings. The natural protection God designed for a male’s most delicate member. Think of your eyelids, same function as a foreskin. Call it a forelid if it makes you able to step out of the moral fatigue that has put most of us in a haze about our nation’s baby boys. Most likely all our father’s, uncles, and majority of our brothers had no choice and are circumcised. Not much can be done (save a painful restoration process) about the past that I’ve yet discovered. But do sins of the past need to be normalized and repeated?
Here is a link to a great article on what is denied by electing to have this unnecessary procedure done:
“Babies are born perfect. Every part of your baby’s body is there for a purpose. Every part of your baby’s body helps him grow, develop, learn, and experience our wondrous world. The foreskin is one of these special body parts. In fact, the foreskin is an important body part throughout the entire life of the male.”