Infant Circumcision

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Izawwlgood
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Dec 19, 2011 6:30 pm UTC

P3t3r wrote:These HIV studies are very debatable. The benenfits of circumcision don't manifest into the real world : the US has the highest rate of circumcision among industrialized countries and has also the highest rate of HIV.
http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcision. ... ement.html

In which you demonstrate your inability to read facts.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Globa ... _Level.png
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_co ... lence_rate

Also, if you link that website again, I'm going to have to not give you a legitimate response; using that website to post facts on your arguments is like linking the Vatican as proof abortion and premarital sex lead to problems.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Dec 19, 2011 6:34 pm UTC

Maybe they were thinking of Africa; as I recall, most of the highest incidents of HIV/AIDs come from Africa, and Africa also has a very high incidence of circumcision (as confirmed by your first link). Still, that's really not strong evidence that the study is wrong--just evidence that widespread circumcision doesn't stop AIDs.

I also, again, don't think the question of whether or not circumcision reduces the risk of AIDs is all that relevant. We aren't performing circumcisions as part of our ongoing battle against AIDs; we're doing it for cultural reasons.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Mon Dec 19, 2011 6:39 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote: 'Because I fucking felt like it and it didn't hurt them'. Parental discretion: it belongs to the parents so long as they aren't harming their children.


It's not because you feel like it's not hurting them that it's not hurting. Ignorance isn't an excuse. Common sense should tell you that amputating a part of your body is harmful. Especially at birth when the foreskin is fused to the glans. the foreskin needs to be ripped to break that fusion before cutting it. This sounds quite painful.
But maybe that's just my imagination ?
http://ww1.prweb.com/prfiles/2004/11/18/180294/screamingbaby.jpg

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Mon Dec 19, 2011 6:42 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
P3t3r wrote:These HIV studies are very debatable. The benenfits of circumcision don't manifest into the real world : the US has the highest rate of circumcision among industrialized countries and has also the highest rate of HIV.
http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcision. ... ement.html

In which you demonstrate your inability to read facts.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Globa ... _Level.png
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_co ... lence_rate

Also, if you link that website again, I'm going to have to not give you a legitimate response; using that website to post facts on your arguments is like linking the Vatican as proof abortion and premarital sex lead to problems.



I was talking about INDUSTRIALIZED countries. And among industrialized countries the US has both the highest rates of circumcision and HIV. Your links didn't show the opposite.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Dec 19, 2011 6:46 pm UTC

Then you have a strange definition of industrialized nations. Take a look at that list and see whose above the US. But also, don't forget that the US probably has the highest life expectancy for people with HIV, and because the metric isn't 'Annual new cases of HIV', you probably have inflated numbers in the US because people aren't dying in 6-10 years, like they are in places with poorer medical resources.
P3t3r wrote:But maybe that's just my imagination ?

I've never heard anything about this claim of glans-foreskin fusion. Also, linking photos of babies crying during the procedure doesn't mean anything. Le gasp, babies cry. No one is claiming that this procedure feels good.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Dec 19, 2011 6:59 pm UTC

P3t3r wrote:I was talking about INDUSTRIALIZED countries. And among industrialized countries the US has both the highest rates of circumcision and HIV. Your links didn't show the opposite.
No, South Africa beats the US, and it's considered (by most) to be a first world, developed, industrialized country.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:00 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:Then you have a strange definition of industrialized nations. Take a look at that list and see whose above the US. But also, don't forget that the US probably has the highest life expectancy for people with HIV, and because the metric isn't 'Annual new cases of HIV', you probably have inflated numbers in the US because people aren't dying in 6-10 years, like they are in places with poorer medical resources.
P3t3r wrote:But maybe that's just my imagination ?

I've never heard anything about this claim of glans-foreskin fusion. Also, linking photos of babies crying during the procedure doesn't mean anything. Le gasp, babies cry. No one is claiming that this procedure feels good.


If you have never heared about the glans-foreskin fusion, maybe it's time to educate yourself :
"Initially, squamous epithelium has no separation between the glans and the foreskin. Separation of epithelial layers that may be only partially complete at birth progress with the development of desquamated tissue in pockets until the complete separation of tissue layers forms the preputial space. As a result of this incomplete separation, the prepuce or foreskin may not be fully retractable until several years after birth. " (from the AAP)

A video of infant circumcision :
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xk8q2v_plastibell-infant-circumcision_news
I must confess : I couldn't watch this the whole way through.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:09 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:
P3t3r wrote:I was talking about INDUSTRIALIZED countries. And among industrialized countries the US has both the highest rates of circumcision and HIV. Your links didn't show the opposite.
No, South Africa beats the US, and it's considered (by most) to be a first world, developed, industrialized country.


So the only example you were able to find was South Africa ? And among african countries, SA can be considered as rich, but it's not really an industrialized country : About a quarter of the population is unemployed and lives on less than US $1.25 a day. Anyway that doesn't matter that much. Industrialzed countries (Europe and Japan) have lower rates of HIV than the US and none of these countries pratice circumcision. Anyway babies don't have sex, so there's need to cut them at birth and they can make this decision for themselves when they're old enough to do so.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:14 pm UTC

There's an edit button: you should stop double posting.
P3t3r wrote:If you have never heared about the glans-foreskin fusion, maybe it's time to educate yourself :

Huh, I was unaware of such a thing. Thankfully, it doesn't appear to be very serious:
Wikipedia wrote:Forcible retraction may lead to bleeding, scarring, pathological phimosis or paraphimosis, and often pain.[1]

Unsurprisingly, those are all effects of circumcision.

Also, I'm asking you again, stop linking such overtly biased websites in an effort to prove your point. It doesn't prove your point. It proves that you are unable to formulate opinions from reading critical information, and that you aren't able to tactfully engage in a debate. If you want, I can start linking images of laughing babies and articles from the World Wide Conspiracy of Mohels and Pediatric Urologists Circumcision Club, but personally, I'd find the exercise stupid.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:17 pm UTC

P3t3r wrote:So the only example you were able to find was South Africa ?
That was the first clear example that sprang to mind. I imagine that f if I pawed through the list that Izawwlgood supplied, I'd be able to find a few more. I'm also not sure why 'industrialized' is an important qualifier; isn't your point (flawed though it may be) that circumcision doesn't prevent AIDs, therefore countries with high rates of circumcision will also still have high rates of AIDs?
P3t3r wrote:And among african countries, SA can be considered as rich, but it's not really an industrialized country : About a quarter of the population is unemployed and lives on less than US $1.25 a day.
That doesn't mean the country isn't industrialized. Do you know what industrialized means?
P3t3r wrote:Anyway that doesn't matter that much. Industrialzed countries (Europe and Japan) have lower rates of HIV than the US and none of these countries pratice circumcision.
See my other post for why this entire line of reasoning is irrelevant.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:30 pm UTC

Actually, as I pointed out, for industrialized nations, the metric of 'People living with HIV' is a flawed metric for assessing it's prevalence, given the stark difference in survival rates between an HIV patient in America vs one in, say, Congo. So, his point, despite being incorrect by the actual data, is even more incorrect. The transmission rate of HIV in the US has plummeted (I think it was on the rise not to long ago actually, but it's still strikingly low compared to, say, the Congo). This is almost certainly not due to circumcision, but education.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Mon Dec 19, 2011 7:50 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:There's an edit button: you should stop double posting.
P3t3r wrote:If you have never heared about the glans-foreskin fusion, maybe it's time to educate yourself :

Huh, I was unaware of such a thing. Thankfully, it doesn't appear to be very serious:
Wikipedia wrote:Forcible retraction may lead to bleeding, scarring, pathological phimosis or paraphimosis, and often pain.[1]

Unsurprisingly, those are all effects of circumcision.

Also, I'm asking you again, stop linking such overtly biased websites in an effort to prove your point. It doesn't prove your point. It proves that you are unable to formulate opinions from reading critical information, and that you aren't able to tactfully engage in a debate. If you want, I can start linking images of laughing babies and articles from the World Wide Conspiracy of Mohels and Pediatric Urologists Circumcision Club, but personally, I'd find the exercise stupid.



Are you joking ?
The information I was giving comes from the American Academy of Pediatrics, the most respectful medical organization in the US when it comes to children health.

What do you mean by "it doesn't appear to be very serious:" ?
It's the opposite :
"Forcible retraction may lead to bleeding, scarring, pathological phimosis or paraphimosis, and often pain"
Wikipedia says forcible retraction. Forcible because the foreskin isn't supposed to be retracted during infancy. It's exactly what I was meaning about the foreskin-glans fusion.
I don't need to prove my point, you're just doing it perfectly.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Dec 19, 2011 8:09 pm UTC

P3t3r wrote:The information I was giving comes from the American Academy of Pediatrics, the most respectful medical organization in the US when it comes to children health.
P3t3r wrote:A video of infant circumcision :
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xk8q2v ... ision_news
I must confess : I couldn't watch this the whole way through.
P3t3r wrote:http://ww1.prweb.com/prfiles/2004/11/18/180294/screamingbaby.jpg
P3t3r wrote:http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcision. ... ement.html

Nope. Show me where you linked actual unbiased data though, I may have missed it.

Oh, did you mean your quote on the effects of forcible retraction? Yeah, that's on the wikipedia entry. I'm not contesting that those are effects of forcible retraction. But if you want to focus on this point, carry on; the rest of us will be over here, moving past your poorly supported erroneous points.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby NoodleIncident » Mon Dec 19, 2011 9:10 pm UTC

Wait, what?

P3t3r is making the point that forcible retraction of the foreskin--which is absolutely required to circumcise an infant--causes demonstrable harm. This harm is avoided by waiting until the child is older, and if the argument is about HIV/AIDS being prevented, you don't get any benefit from doing it at birth. In fact, cuts/scars/etc sound likely to increase STD risk to me. You really aren't allowed to ignore him just because he links to biased sources, you know. Get off of your high horse and address his arguments.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Dec 19, 2011 9:16 pm UTC

NoodleIncident wrote:You really aren't allowed to ignore him just because he links to biased sources, you know. Get off of your high horse and address his arguments.

I have addressed every one of his 'arguments', including the one you are getting worked up over.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Mon Dec 19, 2011 9:58 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
P3t3r wrote:The information I was giving comes from the American Academy of Pediatrics, the most respectful medical organization in the US when it comes to children health.
P3t3r wrote:A video of infant circumcision :
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xk8q2v ... ision_news
I must confess : I couldn't watch this the whole way through.
P3t3r wrote:http://ww1.prweb.com/prfiles/2004/11/18/180294/screamingbaby.jpg
P3t3r wrote:http://www.doctorsopposingcircumcision. ... ement.html

Nope. Show me where you linked actual unbiased data though, I may have missed it.

Oh, did you mean your quote on the effects of forcible retraction? Yeah, that's on the wikipedia entry. I'm not contesting that those are effects of forcible retraction. But if you want to focus on this point, carry on; the rest of us will be over here, moving past your poorly supported erroneous points.


why your sources supporting neonatal circumcision would be more reliable than mines ?

My sources come from mainly doctors reviews and medical organizations. The only organization supporting circumcision is CDC when it comes to adult circumcision in poor countries with a very high prevalence of HIV. This topic is about infant circumcision.

My points are :

1. The foreskin is an integral part of the penis. It's not a birth defect. All mammals evolve with a foreskin. These are facts and not opinions.
Period. If you think my point is erroneous, give me a proof to the contrary.

2. CIrcumcision was introduced in the US during the XIXth to stop masturbation. It had nothing to do with hygiene etc.
Despite your claim saying circumcision causes no harm, it was introduced in the US to hurt children, circumcision was initially a form of punishment to punish boys for masturbating
Source :
"The operation should be performed by a surgeon without administering an anesthetic, as the brief pain attending the operation will have a salutary effect upon the mind, especially if it be connected with the idea of punishment"
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of ... rcumcision
Once again give me a proof to the contrary if I'm saying BS

3. His body his choice. Period.
Babies are born healthy, they don't need surgery. Circumcision is surgery and like any other surgery a diagnosis should be required. If the baby was born with a defective foreskin, in that case, circumcision should be considered only if all other less invasive procedures have failed or are impossible. Only doctors should make diagnosis, it's their jobs. Not the parents.

4. The rest of the world : most other countries don't perform circumcision. It never crosses people's mind whether or not the foreskin should be removed, most don't even know what the word circumcision means and it just seems so natural to leave it alone (like any other body part). These countries are just doing fine. They don't have a higher rate of HIV etc. Your intellectual masturbation about South Africa's economic position leads to nowhere and has nothing to do with the topic. Statistically speaking and among rich countries, the so-called health benefits of circumcision don't manifest into the real world.


My conclusion about circumcision :
The only people supporting circumcision are mainly circumcised males. They vehemently defend their right to mutilate their potential kids because they were themselves circumcised without their consent. They are keenly aware that they have been surgically altered in a very private way. There are several ways for a man to deal with this issue but the safest way, psychologically speaking, is to believe at all cost that the surgery performed on them was an enhancement. Denial is the only way for them to avoid painful feelings : they refuse to read any study showing the benefits of a natural penis. They have no inherent knowledge of what being intact is like but at the same time they claim the foreskin is useless. For them to acknowledge that the practice is unnecessary and harmful means that they must acknowledge a painful personal reality.
Last edited by P3t3r on Mon Dec 19, 2011 10:26 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Hedonic Treader » Mon Dec 19, 2011 10:25 pm UTC

sourmìlk wrote:The complications of circumcision at age 17 might be different. Assuming they are the same as they are in an infant, then I don't think it would be unreasonable to suggest that your parents require you get circumcised. I know that they can require you to get other operations.

Oh wow. Is this really true? This should be highly illegal.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Dec 19, 2011 10:29 pm UTC

Because I'm getting really annoyed of having to continually repeat myself, P3t3r, I'm spoilering this so others don't have to bother scrolling past the space filler. (Incidentally, are you a sockpuppet for another Peter?)
Spoiler:
P3t3r wrote:why your sources supporting neonatal circumcision would be more reliable than mines ?

Because I've linked sources that are verified by peer review. You linked 'www.circumcisionisbad.com' as a source. That source, at best, cherry picks findings that support it's position. As mentioned NUMEROUS times in this thread, there are ample sources contesting these finds/claims. You are not paying attention to the discussion being had.
P3t3r wrote:My sources come from mainly doctors reviews and medical organizations. The only organization supporting circumcision is CDC when it comes to adult circumcision in poor countries with a very high prevalence of HIV. This topic is about infant circumcision.

The CDC supports circumcision OF INFANTS, purportedly because of the health benefits that persist throughout life.
P3t3r wrote:1. The foreskin is an integral part of the penis like any other body part. It's not a birth defect. All mammals evolve with a foreskin. These are facts and not opinions.
Period. If you think my point is erroneous, give me a proof to the contrary.

I'm actually not sure about all mammals having foreskin. Point me to this evidence.
But anyway: no one is suggesting that it is a defect, we are suggesting that the above bolded is not a given. If anything, that it is found in all mammals suggests that, as mentioned previously in this thread, it is a vestigial product of something in our evolutionary history. That penises work just fine without it is my evidence for this statement.
P3t3r wrote:2. CIrcumcision was introduced in the US during the XIXth to stop masturbation. It had nothing to do with hygiene etc.
Despite your claim saying circumcision causes no harm, it was introduced in the US to hurt children, circumcision was initially a form of punishment to punish boys for masturbating

Curious, but irrelevant. I assure you, Jews aren't circumcising to prevent masturbation, and their reasons are no more or less legitimate than someone circumcising out of aesthetic purposes.
Also, as someone who is circumcised, I can assure you, that it doesn't interfere with masturbation. But by all means, find a study to indicate that it does!
P3t3r wrote:3. His body his choice. Period.

Yeah, you really don't like reading the thread. We've discussed this. Do you have anything new to add to this discussion, or are you going to just keep restating your opinions, ignoring the previous points made? Here, I'll play this game too!
Parents sons, their choice. So long as they aren't harming their sons, period.
Man, wasn't that useful.
P3t3r wrote:4. The rest of the world : most other countries don't perform circumcision.

Dude, I JUST linked a map of circumcision prevalence, how on EARTH are you capable of making this statement?
P3t3r wrote:My conclusion about circumcision :

Is an opinion based on ignoring the last 8 pages of discussion, every single point levied against your arguments, and continually stating arbitrary notions as fact.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Dec 19, 2011 10:41 pm UTC

Slightly off-topic, but seriously?
P3t3r wrote:
My conclusion about circumcision :
The only people supporting circumcision are mainly circumcised males. They vehemently defend their right to mutilate their potential kids because they were themselves circumcised without their consent. They are keenly aware that they have been surgically altered in a very private way. There are several ways for a man to deal with this issue but the safest way, psychologically speaking, is to believe at all cost that the surgery performed on them was an enhancement. Denial is the only way for them to avoid painful feelings : they refuse to read any study showing the benefits of a natural penis. They have no inherent knowledge of what being intact is like but at the same time they claim the foreskin is useless. For them to acknowledge that the practice is unnecessary and harmful means that they must acknowledge a painful personal reality.
Spoiler:
Dear P3t3r:

Thank you for your diagnosis of my mental condition based on things you read on the internet. I value your keen insight into the inner workings of my mind. I would be remiss if I did not point out, however, that this is Serious Business, a forum where we discuss things in a rational and straightforward manner; if you'd rather continue to throw out random and unbacked claims, operate based on flimsy definitions you just made up, malign anyone who disagrees with you as suffering from mental illness, and otherwise engage in emotionally manipulative douchebaggery, you should check out the Kiddie-Time-Happy-Nap forums over at Schmookie-Coo-Schnookums.Net. They're probably more up to your speed.

Sincerely,
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Mon Dec 19, 2011 10:52 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:Because I'm getting really annoyed of having to continually repeat myself, P3t3r, I'm spoilering this so others don't have to bother scrolling past the space filler. (Incidentally, are you a sockpuppet for another Peter?)
Spoiler:
P3t3r wrote:why your sources supporting neonatal circumcision would be more reliable than mines ?

Because I've linked sources that are verified by peer review. You linked 'www.circumcisionisbad.com' as a source. That source, at best, cherry picks findings that support it's position. As mentioned NUMEROUS times in this thread, there are ample sources contesting these finds/claims. You are not paying attention to the discussion being had.
P3t3r wrote:My sources come from mainly doctors reviews and medical organizations. The only organization supporting circumcision is CDC when it comes to adult circumcision in poor countries with a very high prevalence of HIV. This topic is about infant circumcision.

The CDC supports circumcision OF INFANTS, purportedly because of the health benefits that persist throughout life.
P3t3r wrote:1. The foreskin is an integral part of the penis like any other body part. It's not a birth defect. All mammals evolve with a foreskin. These are facts and not opinions.
Period. If you think my point is erroneous, give me a proof to the contrary.

I'm actually not sure about all mammals having foreskin. Point me to this evidence.
But anyway: no one is suggesting that it is a defect, we are suggesting that the above bolded is not a given. If anything, that it is found in all mammals suggests that, as mentioned previously in this thread, it is a vestigial product of something in our evolutionary history. That penises work just fine without it is my evidence for this statement.
P3t3r wrote:2. CIrcumcision was introduced in the US during the XIXth to stop masturbation. It had nothing to do with hygiene etc.
Despite your claim saying circumcision causes no harm, it was introduced in the US to hurt children, circumcision was initially a form of punishment to punish boys for masturbating

Curious, but irrelevant. I assure you, Jews aren't circumcising to prevent masturbation, and their reasons are no more or less legitimate than someone circumcising out of aesthetic purposes.
Also, as someone who is circumcised, I can assure you, that it doesn't interfere with masturbation. But by all means, find a study to indicate that it does!
P3t3r wrote:3. His body his choice. Period.

Yeah, you really don't like reading the thread. We've discussed this. Do you have anything new to add to this discussion, or are you going to just keep restating your opinions, ignoring the previous points made? Here, I'll play this game too!
Parents sons, their choice. So long as they aren't harming their sons, period.
Man, wasn't that useful.
P3t3r wrote:4. The rest of the world : most other countries don't perform circumcision.

Dude, I JUST linked a map of circumcision prevalence, how on EARTH are you capable of making this statement?
P3t3r wrote:My conclusion about circumcision :

Is an opinion based on ignoring the last 8 pages of discussion, every single point levied against your arguments, and continually stating arbitrary notions as fact.


You're a hard nut to crack : my souce come from medical organizations. No medical organization in the world recommands neonatal circumcision :


Canadian Paediatric Society
http://www.cps.ca/english/statements/fn/fn96-01.htm
“Recommendation: Circumcision of newborns should not be routinely performed.”

http://www.caringforkids.cps.ca/pregnancy&babies/circumcision.htm
“Circumcision is a ‘non-therapeutic’ procedure, which means it is not medically necessary.”
“After reviewing the scientific evidence for and against circumcision, the CPS does not recommend routine circumcision for newborn boys. Many paediatricians no longer perform circumcisions.”

The Royal Dutch Medical Association

http://knmg.artsennet.nl/Diensten/knmgpublicaties/KNMGpublicatie/Nontherapeutic-circumcision-of-male-minors-2010.htm
“The official viewpoint of KNMG and other related medical/scientific organisations is that non-therapeutic circumcision of male minors is a violation of children’s rights to autonomy and physical integrity. Contrary to popular belief, circumcision can cause complications – bleeding, infection, urethral stricture and panic attacks are particularly common. KNMG is therefore urging a strong policy of deterrence. KNMG is calling upon doctors to actively and insistently inform parents who are considering the procedure of the absence of medical benefits and the danger of complications.”

British Medical Association

http://www.bma.org.uk/ethics/consent_and_capacity/malecircumcision2006.jsp#Circumcisionformedicalpurposes
“to circumcise for therapeutic reasons where medical research has shown other techniques to be at least as effective and less invasive would be unethical and inappropriate.”

etc.



"it is a vestigial product of something in our evolutionary history."
This is riduclous and you can't prove it, can you ? This statement doesn't come from any study, it's just a foolish hypothesis with no sicence behind that claim. It's bizarre you are taking your foolish hypothesis as facts whereas the differents studies I've posted so far come from medical studies.

Another respectful study : Evaluation study by Sorrells et al. published in the British Journal of Urology International.
'The glans of the circumcised penis is less sensitive to fine touch than the glans of the uncircumcised penis. The transitional region from the external to the internal prepuce is the most sensitive region of the uncircumcised penis and more sensitive than the most sensitive region of the circumcised penis. Circumcision ablates the most sensitive parts of the penis.'
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1464-410X.2006.06685.x/full

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Mon Dec 19, 2011 11:05 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:
P3t3r wrote:3. His body his choice. Period.

Yeah, you really don't like reading the thread. We've discussed this. Do you have anything new to add to this discussion, or are you going to just keep restating your opinions, ignoring the previous points made? Here, I'll play this game too!
Parents sons, their choice. So long as they aren't harming their sons, period.



First you take your opinions as facts : "they aren't harming their sons"
Is there a real study behind this opinion ? No. Howver there are studies showing the exact opposite :
""Male Circumcision: Pain, Trauma and Psychosexual Sequelae"
Source : Journal of Health Psychology (2002): 329-343.

Secondly it doesn't even matter whether or not it hurt the child. The fact it may hurt him just makes things worse.

You haven't been able so far to explain why it should a parental decision ? Why ? Your child is just going to be a child for some years. Later he will become a man for many decades and it seems more logic that it should be his choice considering it is his body. Can parents also choose your future wife, job etc. Where do you draw the line ?
Contrary to what you claim no point has been made so far to explain this compulsive need to cut a baby.



Izawwlgood wrote:
P3t3r wrote:4. The rest of the world : most other countries don't perform circumcision.

Dude, I JUST linked a map of circumcision prevalence, how on EARTH are you capable of making this statement?


Sorry I meant circumcision for non religious reasons. If you remove arab nations and Israel from your previous map, it's obvious that most countries don't perform circumcisions except maybe a few ones. And if you just consider developped countries, there is almost only the USA.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Copper Bezel » Tue Dec 20, 2011 12:29 am UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:the inability for anyone against circumcision to justify why certain types of mutilation are okay but this one isn't,


Of the three or so threads of discussion, this is the one I find interesting. I do think that there are reasons to single out circumcision. Again, that doesn't mean that I'm arguing for banning it (as female circumcision* often is, which means the state can't monitor it and keep it safe) or that the parents are bad people, which they're not. They're reacting to cultural pressures. In the ancient Jewish culture where this thing started, it would unethical not to circumcise a child.

So "parental" discretion doesn't come into it, because I don't have any intention to override said discretion. I'd just argue that they might want to consider using some, you know, discretion.

I understand--but keep in mind, there's no such thing as a 'true' malformation. A birthmark is just a birthmark. A cleft palate is just a cleft palate. Webbed toes are just webbed toes. The only reason we consider these things malformations is because society tells us they are; I'm sure someone with webbed toes is quite capable of living a full, happy, healthy life just as much as someone without them--just as much as I'm convinced that the uncircumcised are just as capable as the circumcised.

My real problem here is that people just ignore all the times we violate a child's bodily autonomy except for the case of circumcision--couldn't someone who underwent surgery to have their webbed toes corrected as an infant claim the same sort of 'life-shattering experience' as the circumcised? Of course. But we don't care about the guy who lost his webbed toes--we don't get indignant about it, we don't rage against it, we don't make mind-bogglingly offensive comparisons about it--because webbed toes aren't genitalia.

I really don't think so. If you could have a cleft penis, or a webbed penis, we would fix that too, and think nothing of it.

Preferring one condition or the other on the basis of naturalness is the naturalistic fallacy. Defining ordinary function is not. Aberrations can be identified statistically and historically. If melanin deficiency (white skin) happened once in 500 children, it would be an aberration, and parents would be well within reason to correct it. This would be true whether or not some percentage of the population was bleaching their skin at the same time for some aesthetic or cultural reason. Natural function is independent of cultural norms.

There have been an exchange or two on the last couple of pages regarding the naturalistic fallacy and the possibility of identifying what features count as natural. Again, I don't consider this to be an argument for one or another thing being better. It does, however, show that just identifying aberrations has more logical consistency than you're giving it. We can identify aberrations, a group that does include extra fingers and doesn't include foreskins (but would, in fact, include those rare cases of reduced or absent foreskins at birth.) Whether we call any one of those a "malformation" is a separate, cultural question. Again, we could decide that earlobes were.

I don't think ordinary function is off-limits as a consideration in the way that you're treating it.

The Great Hippo wrote:Then I assume it's also your contention that we should ban correcting webbed feet or birthmarks until children are old enough to consent--even assuming that the longer we wait, the higher risk we are at for complications.

I still think this is important, yes. Since the success of the operation varies depending on when it's performed, the preference for performing it at birth varies on how strong that variation is. The necessity also varies on the basis of how small the variation in the population. Polydactyly is the textbook example of a case where the procedure is simple at birth, highly complex and insufficiently effective at maturity, and rare enough to be considered a correction for a "normal" function.

Izawwlgood wrote:Yes, but arguably so is straightening of teeth, removal of birthmarks, and correction of polydactyly. These are three forms of child modification we have decided are perfectly acceptable, and while you can fuzzily hand wave some 'improvement of function' behind these modifications, the fact is they are still practiced on children for whom the change is purely cosmetic. This to me, again, argues that in lieu of any concrete data of negative physical impact, just let the parents decide.


Braces and birthmark removal can be done at any age with equal efficacy. I have a friend of thirty who's had both done in the last five years. Polydactyly reduces practical function (the extra fingers are generally non-functional and inconveniently positioned) and it's far more extreme a variation from "normal" biological function.

This is also clutch: the sentiment of 'I want my child to look like me' or 'I want to incorporate my child into these ancient traditions' is not a malicious decision.

I don't know what clutch means in this context. Urban Dictionary says it means awesome, and I'm assuming you're being sarcastic. My point was simply that while I think the practice is abominable, it's not a personal judgment on anyone's individual character on the basis of making the decision. I think that's important to state in a context where there are rape comparisons going around.

P3t3r wrote:The foreskin isn't vestigal, the only ones claiming the foreskin is useless are those who lost it at birth. They don't have a foreskin, know nothing about it but at the same think it serves no purpose. How do they know ?


It's hilarious going both ways, man. Everyone but yurell is just defending the logical consistency of his dick. (Myself included.)

* There are many forms of female genital mutilation and only one commonly performed on males. By "female circumcision" I'm referring to the less extreme versions, which can vary all the way down to a ceremonial nick.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Dec 20, 2011 12:36 am UTC

Firefox just crashed on me, eliminating my lengthy and irritated response to P3t3r, so, I just wanted to give you all this.

How not to argue about circumcision.

P3t3r, in leui of me retyping that whole thing to you, I'll just summarize:
AMPITT (As mentioned previously in this thread), you should read this thread some more, and maybe even the previous thread, or the one before that. You are making incredibly foolish mistakes in your argumentation, all these topics have been hashed and rehashed, and there is more than ample evidence countering each and every single one of your claims.

@Copper B: polydactyly comes in a range of severity; it can also refer to webbing between digits (I believe it's called syndactyly). At the lower end of the spectrum, you end up with zero loss of function (they may be slightly less able to play piano), yet still wholly appropriate for parents to decide to remove it.

On the topic of braces, they are obviously performed with adult teeth, so can't be done until 10-13 at the earliest. That doesn't mean kids have a 'choice'; indeed, the decision to force your child to wear awkward metal orthodontia conveniently when they are probably noticing the opposite sex is (was for me!) strikingly more traumatic than circumcision, and I was GLAD for braces.

But what about birthmarks? Why is it reasonable to force your child to undergo modification surgery to remove cosmetic skin blemishes? What if they later decide they really liked that particular blemish, and want it back? What if they have a scar, and find the scar worse than the blemish? PROTIP: as Hippo pointed out, it's rather similar to circumcision.

And what of cleft palates; you're again, looking at a largely cosmetic surgery. What if a child would have gone onto decide having a cleft palate was an integral part of their identity? Do you blame a parent for modifying it, and forcing them, without their consent, to undergo the surgery in their infancy?
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Malice » Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:29 am UTC

P3t3r wrote:You haven't been able so far to explain why it should a parental decision ? Why ? Your child is just going to be a child for some years. Later he will become a man for many decades and it seems more logic that it should be his choice considering it is his body. Can parents also choose your future wife, job etc. Where do you draw the line ?
Contrary to what you claim no point has been made so far to explain this compulsive need to cut a baby.


All decisions that parents make for their children are irreparable, because time only moves in one direction. Say I practice playing baseball with my son every day of his life from the age of 3 to 18. Whether he becomes a baseball player or not, I have fundamentally altered him, because like everyone else my hypothetical son is a product of his past. He can get plastic surgery, change his name, invent a fake life story, and live the rest of his life as a goat herder in Outer Mongolia, but he will always and forever be the guy who spent the formative years of his life tossing a ball around. Circumcision is no different, not because his penis will be the same 18 years later, but because his childhood will be the same 18 years later.

Shaping the childhood is a parent's right (and duty), one which we only take away in the case of gross harm (not even gross deviation). You can legally (and most people would argue morally) force your child to take up an instrument, move them halfway across the country, put them in a different school every year of their lives, and teach them whatever made-up crap about God you want. All of which are changes more deeply affecting than the shape of one's penis.

Moreover, circumcision is a binary choice; you can't avoid it by not choosing. You are either choosing that your child will get to his 18th birthday with a circumcised penis or you're choosing that your child will get to his 18th birthday with an uncircumcised penis. Defaulting to the latter based on the naturalistic fallacy is not a solution. Banning one or the other would require stronger evidence of greater harm than we currently have. So it's best, in my view, to give parents the option, as we do with virtually everything else. If you can't trust parents to act roughly in their child's best interest, your whole society's fucked anyway.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:45 am UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:Firefox just crashed on me, eliminating my lengthy and irritated response to P3t3r, so, I just wanted to give you all this.

How not to argue about circumcision.

P3t3r, in leui of me retyping that whole thing to you, I'll just summarize:
AMPITT (As mentioned previously in this thread), you should read this thread some more, and maybe even the previous thread, or the one before that. You are making incredibly foolish mistakes in your argumentation, all these topics have been hashed and rehashed, and there is more than ample evidence countering each and every single one of your claims.


Sorry but this site isn't neutral at all,I give you credit for trying to appear balanced, but like most pro-circumcision types, this website make circumcision sound like the way to go. Why should I give it any sort of credit when you refuse to do so for the links I've posted earlier ?
You blamed me for choosing studies from "circumcisionisbad.com" But the link you provided comes from "circumcisionisgood.com".

Anyway I still decided to take a look at your source and obviously when it comes to intellectual masturbation, this website is king : long and boring with no proof behind their claims. They blame anti circumcision for their anecdotes, equivocations, question-begging, and many more such errors abound in their replies. But it is exactly what they are doing. Let's take a few examples from their arguments :

"the foreskin may rather constitute a modest threat "
"the benefit of circumcision to an individual may be greater than the benefit of immunization is to that individual where herd immunity obtains."
"that parents may, subject to certain constraints, make decisions on behalf of their incompetent offspring."
"it is reasonable to assume that it can be adequately controlled after circumcision."
"This is because more than enough erogenous tissue may remain to facilitate the same degree of sexual pleasure."
"there may be more than one acceptable decision. We have suggested that circumcision falls into the latter category. "
etc.

These aren't solid scientific arguments but an endless list of hypothesis/assumptions supporting circumcision with no real evidence behind it : It may be, we suggest that, we assume, it can be, it might or might not , it is possible that etc. And at the end of the article they dare say : "What is needed when engaging this [] is a cool and impartial examination of the evidence and a careful analysis"

Not to mention many mistakes and very strange positions they defend. A few examples

As regards mutilation :
"Consent is irrelevant to that (limited) point "
Wooaa...I can't believe they think mutilation has nothing to do with consent. It's obvious for me that if a woman is choosing labiaplasty it's cosmetic surgery. But if another woman is forced to undergo labia minora amputation against her will, this is genital mutilation. Consent does matter especially when it comes to genital surgery.

"There is considerable controversy over the sexual effects of circumcision. Anti-circumcision groups claim significant detrimental effects, though offer only anecdotal evidence."
This isn't true, I've posted a study from the British Journal of Urology International. This isn't an anti circumcision group but a respectful organization. And there's scientifc evidence explaining the impact of circumcison from a sexual point of view.

"We defended the view that parents have the right to authorize some medical interventions for their children even in the absence of clear and immediate medical necessity "
Not true, it's rare when a medical intervention is proposed without evidence of medical necessity.
And we're talking about genital surgery, it's not a random medical intervention. What other surgeries parents are allowed to perform without clear and immediate medical necessity (except corrective surgeries) ?


"Decisions sometimes have to be made on behalf of such patients."
I agree with that but they need to explain precisely why circumcision fits into that category. Even if the benefits of circumcision were true, this is a procedure that can be delayed later.


"the beneficial nature of circumcision suggests that the benefit is greatest when circumcision is performed in infancy."
Another suggestion zzzzzzz ...There is no scientific evidence that circumcision is safer for babies.

"Transforming from the uncircumcised to the circumcised state will have psychological and other costs for an adult that are absent for a child"
No, there's no evidence that these psychological costs are absent for children. In fact there are studies claiming it does have impact and many anecdotal evidence on mothering forum.

"An infants suffer no embarrassment from circumcision"
No or at least they need solid evidence if they want to support that claim and not their endless list of hypothesis : it is possible that it might be etc...

"Second, it is far from clear that non-circumcision leaves open a future person's options in every regard"
Yes it is clear. If an uncircumcised doesn't like his foreskin (which is rare by the way) he can choose the proceudre for himself later in life the exact same way a woman can opt for a labiaplasty. Period. I agree there is an uncomfortable healing process for a couple of weeks afterward but that's not the end off the world. However if a man doesn't like his circumcised penis, there's not a lo he can do about that.

"Moreover, he ignores our argument that a cost-benefit calculus is not simply a matter of weighing medical evidence. Personal values affect the equation."
I agree with this especially the personal value. Personal means the person himself and the owner of the penis is the more appropriate person to solve this equation.

"male circumcision has sometimes been employed in an attempt to curb male sexuality, while it has also been thought to enhance sexual pleasure."
There's no evidence that circumcision has been employed in an attempt to enhance sexual pleasure.

etc.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:55 am UTC

P3t3r, we've gone over all this. We've explained why the evidence is inconclusive, we've explained why the burden of proof is not on the parents to show circumcision isn't harmful, and we've explained why circumcision is not unique among cosmetic procedures performed on children. Read this thread and, until you properly respond to the arguments for these points, you cannot keep repeating points that have been refuted.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby BattleMoose » Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:24 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:P3t3r, we've gone over all this. We've explained why the evidence is inconclusive, we've explained why the burden of proof is not on the parents to show circumcision isn't harmful Disputed, and we've explained why circumcision is not unique among cosmetic procedures performed on children Disputed. Read this thread and, until you properly respond to the arguments for these points, you cannot keep repeating points that have been refuted.


You have a habit of summarizing a thread and concluding that you have some how victoried in your position, often this is not the case. I don't feel like going over these issues again, because the arguments have been made and I have nothing new to add to them on these issues we are at an impasse it would seem. Also, italics, mine.

On what Malice has contributed:

Actually raised a few interesting points and did get me thinking, especially that we do allow parents a great deal of latitude in raising their kids, oftentimes doing things which are harmful even if it is opinion. Perhaps the biggest issue I have is with parents raising their kids into a specific religion, I have a huge issue with this, I think its incredibly harmful both to the child and to society as a whole but apparently up till now I haven't really challenged a parents right or discretion to do this. Perhaps I should? But certainly I consider raising a kid into an organized religion much more harmful than circumcision and hey, now I have cognitive dissonance, which demands resolving. Clearly banning all the bad things that parents do to their kids would just be absurd and we cannot go there and would now consider infant circumcision in that list.

For medical reasons I hope that doctors would refuse the procedure, as their medical ethics should demand? And parents who want to do it for medical reasons are ignorant and essentially bad parents.

Doing it for cultural reasons, or tradition, or just to fit in goes against nearly all the morals and principles I hold dear. An action should be taken because it yields good results not because it is expected by society and there is no more stupid a reason to do anything than, tradition. But those are my personal values. As far as the issue of quality of life goes, circumcising to fit in, could arguably be best for the child, but then prisoners dilemma, clearly it would be better if everyone stopped circumcising and there goes the need to fit in.

Also this complete denial that it might actually be physically harmful or sexually limiting is frustrating. I appreciate the evidence can be inconclusive on a very light analysis, and to be fair non of us have performed an in depth analysis. The only appropriate position to hold is that it might be physically harmful or sexually limiting. But this insistence that it is NOT any of these things is one that I simply cannot engage with.

It is a completely unnecessary procedure that heralds from the past and something we have just continued with. I yield finally that parents can force this onto their children (up till the point that it can be conclusively shown to be harmful, even though its plainly obvious to me that it is) but only because I also recognize that its societal acceptable for parents to harm their children. I still think its a gross and unnecessary violation and forcing it onto your children is just mean and horrible.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:29 am UTC

BattleMoose wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:P3t3r, we've gone over all this. We've explained why the evidence is inconclusive, we've explained why the burden of proof is not on the parents to show circumcision isn't harmful Disputed, and we've explained why circumcision is not unique among cosmetic procedures performed on children Disputed. Read this thread and, until you properly respond to the arguments for these points, you cannot keep repeating points that have been refuted.


You have a habit of summarizing a thread and concluding that you have some how victoried in your position, often this is not the case. I don't feel like going over these issues again, because the arguments have been made and I have nothing new to add to them on these issues we are at an impasse it would seem. Also, italics, mine.

We're only at an impasse because people keep disagreeing with those decisions without stating their reasons for disagreement. I didn't say our explanations were incontrovertibly true, but as of yet no argument has been made against them except "I disagree."

For medical reasons I hope that doctors would refuse the procedure, as their medical ethics should demand? And parents who want to do it for medical reasons are ignorant and essentially bad parents.

Yeah, I don't think anybody's arguing that it makes much medical sense in the first West.

Clearly banning all the bad things that parents do to their kids would just be absurd and we cannot go there and would now consider infant circumcision in that list.

Basically this. What with the problems with overriding potential discretion, a substantial amount of harm needs to be demonstrated.

I still think its a gross and unnecessary violation and forcing it onto your children is just mean and horrible.

That's a pretty harsh judgment to make about so many people, and I don't think it's warranted.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:34 am UTC

Malice wrote:All decisions that parents make for their children are irreparable


No they aren't irrepable. Some of them and only some of them may have major impact, but that still doesn't make them irreparable. Unless for circumcision.

Malice wrote:because time only moves in one direction. Say I practice playing baseball with my son every day of his life from the age of 3 to 18. Whether he becomes a baseball player or not, I have fundamentally altered him, because like everyone else my hypothetical son is a product of his past.

There's nothing wrong with playing baseball with your son and if at some point your son no longer enjoys baseball you can stop it and do something else. I played baseball between 6 and 12 and at 13 I decided to play basketball. People are changing with time. And even if you force your son to play baseball despite the fact he hates it you can be sure at 18 he'll give up.

Malice wrote:Shaping the childhood is a parent's right (and duty), one which we only take away in the case of gross harm (not even gross deviation). You can legally (and most people would argue morally) force your child to take up an instrument, move them halfway across the country, put them in a different school every year of their lives, and teach them whatever made-up crap about God you want. All of which are changes more deeply affecting than the shape of one's penis.

Shaping the childhood is a parent's right but parents can't do whatever they want. There exist laws restricting or regulating parent's influence. A few years ago some parents were prosecuted because they made the choice to tattoo their kids. I agree circumcision is still legal but it doesn't mean it is okay. FGM was legal until 1996. If circumcision is still legal it's only because of two major religions.


Malice wrote:Moreover, circumcision is a binary choice; you can't avoid it by not choosing.

Yes you can avoid it by not choosing it, simply because there's no choice to make. Parents don't need to make such decisions. The idea that circumcision is a decision parents need to make is just intellectual penury. Circumcision is no more of a decision than considering whether to hack the kid's toes off or any other part of his body. Assuming all parts of the body are functioning normally then there are no "decisions" for anyone to make.


Malice wrote: You are either choosing that your child will get to his 18th birthday with a circumcised penis or you're choosing that your child will get to his 18th birthday with an uncircumcised penis. Defaulting to the latter based on the naturalistic fallacy is not a solution.

Or you're choosing the fact that it's not your decision to make because it's not your body. Choosing not to circumcise isn't just a question of supporting nature but also the right to bodily integrity. Some parents prefer a circumcised penis but they still decide not to circumcise their sons. Why ? Because they understand that their son may think different. I do love tattoo but I will never tattoo my child even if it were legal. I'm personnally, as you can easily imagine :D , against circumcision and I will not circumcise my child. However if my child decide at 18 that he want to be circumcised, I'll pay for it. He has the right to his own opinion and by choosing not to circumcise I'm not imposing my view on him, I just accept the fact that it's not my decision to make. I've nothing against adult circumcision.



Malice wrote:So it's best, in my view, to give parents the option, as we do with virtually everything else. If you can't trust parents to act roughly in their child's best interest, your whole society's fucked anyway.

What do you mean by virtually everything else ? This isn't just true. Can a parent choose your future wife ? your future job ?
So why should he be able to choose the look of your penis for the rest of your life when the decision can be delayed ?
Parents make decisions for their children because they HAVE to make these decisions. CIrcumcision isn't one of them. The procedure can be delayed later.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:37 am UTC

P3t3r, the counterargument to your argument is somewhere on page 2 or 3. It was been explained why parental discretion cannot be trivially overridden.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Copper Bezel » Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:42 am UTC

Battlemoose: Yeah, that's more or less where I'm at with it. I wrote most of this reply before seeing yours, and I don't really object to any of that, although I still don't see any need to villify the (poor, dear, misguided) parents or accuse them of any "violation."

Izawwlgood: Let me say that I thank you for the entirely classy reply and that you're motivating me to think about my hidden premises in the matter more rather than less, which is what I should hope we're all going for. I also thank you for framing the birthmark example in the way that you did (particularly "is it reasonable" rather than "should it be legal," which is another question entirely) and I do think that it's a near-perfect comparison. Cleft palates are not, for reasons I'll get into presently.

I acknowledge, of course, that this is a many-layered issue where most of the layers are more important than the issue itself. Ultimately, my argument is that circumcision is "barbaric", not "harmful," so I'm not concerned with any actual effects on the child. If actual effects were pronounced in either direction - functional, aesthetic, social - then they'd override whatever preference was presented by the other argument. To my mind, it's just a nasty habit I would like to see society kick. It's no different in my mind from the perfectly harmless forms of female circumcision that we don't practice. I would see it as a net detriment to society if we were to pick them up, and I see a net benefit to society if we're to drop the male form. But I'm not arguing that it's harmful in the way that extreme forms of female genital mutilation are, because it's not an extreme form of genital mutilation.

So I'm not buying into the argument that anyone regrets losing his foreskin. That's absurd to me. If there were widespread effects, we would not be having a conversation in which everyone in opposition (however slight) of circumcision was himself uncut and everyone in support was cut. The birthmark thought experiment you're proposing is equivalent to circumcision, and I agree with you, I consider the adult missing his or her birthmark an absurd proposition. I don't care about anyone's self-proposed identity. There are far more extreme cases of people whose bodies do not match their identities at maturity, and this is entirely impossible to predict or account for.

In general, however, I'd prefer to see no action taken unless something else necessitates action, and of course the cost of the action has to be weighed against the necessity as a value judgement. On the basis of my last post, I'm also pretending I have cover to commit the naturalistic fallacy with impunity. We know what we mean when we say "ordinary function" in what Richard Dawkins would call a designoid object, even if there's no literal design or intent involved. On that basis, we can identify defects from that system. So in that sense, no surgery and "corrective" surgery are both reasonable "default" positions that I think a person could argue for, and arbitrary cosmetic surgery isn't.

I would argue, then, that removing a birthmark (common enough that no one could consider them aberrations of any kind) is an arbitrary cosmetic choice, that it's not a default position in any sense, and that it ought not be done to children. (Which is, again, not a proposal to ban it, largely because legislation is also never a default position.)

I would acknowledge that cleft palates and extreme polydactyly are exceptional cases where action is warranted. I've already explained my argument for action in cases of extreme polydactyly, and I think it's a straightforward one. In less extreme cases, like minor syndactyly, again, I'd rather see no action taken. Of course, complex syndactyly, or even simple syndactyly past the first phalange, is functionally damaging and should be corrected on entirely functional grounds even before you get into considering aesthetics. This is a matter of degree and a value judgement.

But on the basis of "aberration," I would see less problem with universal corrective surgeries of all of these alleged birth "defects" than with universal or widespread arbitrary cosmetic surgery, based on a purely social construct. Social detriments could literally develop from anything; they're an arbitrary category that has at times included both circumcision and a lack thereof in particular cultural cases.

So at first glance, I don't trust social desirability, and yet, the "real" reason we do cleft palate surgeries is, nonetheless, social. They create a speech impediment that's considered socially undesirable. In a world in which most palates were cleft, that would be the norm. If children were born with fused ones, we would see fit to cleave them. But to me, that's an argument for the the idea that there is a biological norm that is less arbitrary than a social one. The social values are built up around the biological ones - the same way that identity is built up around one's own bodily experience. (So we're back to wondering if the society as a whole would "miss" a biological change or consider it important to identity.)

So that's the one premise we really disagree on, and here's one more counter-example in which I desperately try to cling to my misguided sense of a biological "normal." Consider a world that looks exactly like ours, except that all children are born with attached earlobes, and every person you meet who has unattached earlobes had them cut as a part of a religious tradition in childhood. I happen to have unattached earlobes, and I consider them aesthetically superior. I could imagine myself making absurd arguments about the vestigial nature of the attachment of the earlobe, or commenting on how our social imposition of piercing and earrings makes unattached earlobes far better for display. In bed, I would claim, they're far more satisfying to nibble or be nibbled upon, and this could, I might claim, have unexpectedly significant effects on mate selection.

However, the world I've just described is absurd. Or rather, if the world I've just described is absurd, then there's no basis for circumcision at birth; if it's not absurd, then (as Battlemoose suggests) a whole exciting world of harmless cosmetic surgeries at childhood are fair game.

Edited for clarity, believe it or not.
Last edited by Copper Bezel on Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:55 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:53 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:P3t3r, the counterargument to your argument is somewhere on page 2 or 3. It was been explained why parental discretion cannot be trivially overridden.


What specific argument are you talking about ?
If it is about body integrity, I did not find your counter arguments conclusive in any way. Can you cite me the counterargument you were thinking about ?
"cannot "means it's not possible. Why parental dicretion [b]cannot[/b] be trivially overriden ? Of course it can be, I'm one example. I made the choice not to circumcise my child because I understand it's not my decision to make. And I'm okay if my child make the choice to be cut later. It's trivial

And why is it a parental deicison in the first place ? Because there are some studies showing circumcision MAY have potential benefits for a couple of diseases than ca be cured or avoided easily (hygiene, condoms etc) ? Come on...

When you support a medical procedure, especially surgery on a minor who cannot consent and may have side effects (decrease sexual pleasure etc) and real risks (like any surgery), you are the one who need to bring very solid argument to make your point, not the other way round.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby yurell » Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:58 am UTC

The thing is, Sourmilk seems to think parental authority over their children is sacrosanct and requires a strong reason to be violated, in comparison to my belief that a right to a healthy and whole body is sacrosanct and requires strong reason to be violated.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby LaserGuy » Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:01 am UTC

P3t3r wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:P3t3r, the counterargument to your argument is somewhere on page 2 or 3. It was been explained why parental discretion cannot be trivially overridden.


What specific argument are you talking about ?
If it is about body integrity, I did not find your counter arguments conclusive in any way. Can you cite me the counterargument you were thinking about ?
"cannot "means it's not possible. Why parental dicretion cannot be trivially overriden ? Of course it can be, I'm one example. I made the choice not to circumcise my child because I understand it's not my decision to make. And I'm okay if my child make the choice to be cut later. It's trivial


I think I understand what you intend to say, but what you've written isn't saying what you think it is. If you made the choice not to circumcise your child, that is still an exercise in discretion on your part. You are just choosing not to. It is much like how, in the abortion debate, being pro-choice does not mean that you must abort your child, it means, literally, that you believe that the mother should be able to choose whether to have an abortion or not. Either choice is consistent with being pro-choice, as long as the option is available. To remove discretion, you would need to change the law in such a way where you could not circumcise your child even if you wanted them to be, or if your child was circumcised even if you didn't want them to be.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:07 am UTC

yurell wrote:The thing is, Sourmilk seems to think parental authority over their children is sacrosanct and requires a strong reason to be violated


A strong reason to be violated ?

The human right of bodily integrity. But admitting circumcision violates this right requires to recognise that you were yourself violated in the first place.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Copper Bezel » Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:10 am UTC

yurell wrote:The thing is, Sourmilk seems to think parental authority over their children is sacrosanct and requires a strong reason to be violated, in comparison to my belief that a right to a healthy and whole body is sacrosanct and requires strong reason to be violated.

Agreed - and if more than one thing can be sacrosanct, then we need to accept a sliding range of sacrosanctity. See here for an extraordinarily unrelated example.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby P3t3r » Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:13 am UTC

LaserGuy wrote:
P3t3r wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:P3t3r, the counterargument to your argument is somewhere on page 2 or 3. It was been explained why parental discretion cannot be trivially overridden.


What specific argument are you talking about ?
If it is about body integrity, I did not find your counter arguments conclusive in any way. Can you cite me the counterargument you were thinking about ?
"cannot "means it's not possible. Why parental dicretion cannot be trivially overriden ? Of course it can be, I'm one example. I made the choice not to circumcise my child because I understand it's not my decision to make. And I'm okay if my child make the choice to be cut later. It's trivial


I think I understand what you intend to say, but what you've written isn't saying what you think it is. If you made the choice not to circumcise your child, that is still an exercise in discretion on your part. You are just choosing not to.


This is incorrect and I've already explained why. The fact you think you have a choice to make is intellectual penury. There's no choice to make. The foreskin isn't a birth defect. Circumcision is no more of a decision than considering whether to hack the kid's toes off or any other part of his body. Assuming all parts of the body are functioning normally then there are no "decisions" for anyone to make. Did I also make a decision when I decided not to remove his earlobe ? Is not removing my child's earlobe an exercise in discretion on my part ? Do you get my point ?
Last edited by P3t3r on Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:19 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby Malice » Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:19 am UTC

P3t3r wrote:
Malice wrote:All decisions that parents make for their children are irreparable


No they aren't irrepable. Some of them and only some of them may have major impact, but that still doesn't make them irreparable. Unless for circumcision.


Time: it moves forward, not back. I would welcome a citation if you beg to differ.

Malice wrote:Moreover, circumcision is a binary choice; you can't avoid it by not choosing.

Yes you can avoid it by not choosing it, simply because there's no choice to make. Parents don't need to make such decisions. The idea that circumcision is a decision parents need to make is just intellectual penury. Circumcision is no more of a decision than considering whether to hack the kid's toes off or any other part of his body. Assuming all parts of the body are functioning normally then there are no "decisions" for anyone to make.


You can no more avoid the decision than you can avoid deciding whether God exists or not. Even if the concept of "God" is a total invention, it has enough cultural weight that you have to stop and consider your position. "Cut or uncut?" is the infant surgery equivalent of "Would you like fries with that?" "No" is a choice, even if you were never intending to get fries. There is no default, once the possibility has been raised.

Malice wrote: You are either choosing that your child will get to his 18th birthday with a circumcised penis or you're choosing that your child will get to his 18th birthday with an uncircumcised penis. Defaulting to the latter based on the naturalistic fallacy is not a solution.

Or you're choosing the fact that it's not your decision to make because it's not your body. Choosing not to circumcise isn't just a question of supporting nature but also the right to bodily integrity. Some parents prefer a circumcised penis but they still decide not to circumcise their sons. Why ? Because they understand that their son may think different. I do love tattoo but I will never tattoo my child even if it were legal. I'm personnally, as you can easily imagine :D , against circumcision and I will not circumcise my child. However if my child decide at 18 that he want to be circumcised, I'll pay for it. He has the right to his own opinion and by choosing not to circumcise I'm not imposing my view on him, I just accept the fact that it's not my decision to make. I've nothing against adult circumcision.


In leaving off the surgery, you are absolutely imposing your view on your child: your view is he should be uncircumcised until he's old enough to elect for his own surgery. There's just as much chance that he'll go through adolescence wishing he'd been cut as an infant so he'd fit in as there is in the alternative scenario.
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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby LaserGuy » Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:26 am UTC

P3t3r wrote:
LaserGuy wrote:
P3t3r wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:P3t3r, the counterargument to your argument is somewhere on page 2 or 3. It was been explained why parental discretion cannot be trivially overridden.


What specific argument are you talking about ?
If it is about body integrity, I did not find your counter arguments conclusive in any way. Can you cite me the counterargument you were thinking about ?
"cannot "means it's not possible. Why parental dicretion cannot be trivially overriden ? Of course it can be, I'm one example. I made the choice not to circumcise my child because I understand it's not my decision to make. And I'm okay if my child make the choice to be cut later. It's trivial


I think I understand what you intend to say, but what you've written isn't saying what you think it is. If you made the choice not to circumcise your child, that is still an exercise in discretion on your part. You are just choosing not to.


This is incorrect and I've already explained why. The fact you think you have a choice to make is intellectual penury. There's no choice to make. The foreskin isn't a birth defect. Circumcision is no more of a decision than considering whether to hack the kid's toes off or any other part of his body. Assuming all parts of the body are functioning normally then there are no "decisions" for anyone to make. Did I also make a decision when I decided not to remove his earlobe ? Is not removing mychild's earlobe an exercise in discretion on my part ? Do you get my point ?


I would assume that you haven't made a decision regarding whether or not to remove your child's earlobe because the question was never posed to you. If it were posed, presumably you would be able to come up with an answer. Discretion is the freedom to choose what you would do in a particular situation. That does not necessarily mean that all choices are equally good, or equally moral, but it means that all choices are available. Frankly, the concepts of goodness or morality are not terribly meaningful in the absence of choice.

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Re: Male Infant Circumcision

Postby morriswalters » Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:29 am UTC

Don't circumcise your male children. Mind your business and leave me mind mine. If circumcisions are useless than they will fade, and if not they won't. Millions of men are alive and well and circumcised. The CDC doesn't seem to have a position, and I see no compelling evidence that says the nanny state need involve its self in the decision to remove a child's foreskin. If you have to have one as an adult you may well wish that your parents had done the dirty deed while it was still a simple procedure.


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