Princess Marzipan wrote:But you agree that "both are unnecessary cutting up of gentials." Since that statement, with which you agree, is a very important part of why many object to imposed circumcision, it's worth mentioning.
Right, which is why I said I think the real discussion to be had is 'should parents be allowed to modify their children in non-detrimental ways?'. I don't think it's worth discussing how awful circumcision is, or whether or not we should end this traumatic, life shattering procedure, because it's more or less demonstrably not awful.
Princess Marzipan wrote:For whatever reason some people have less fun after. How is that not worth taking into account?
It's certainly worth taking into account, I just don't think the numbers are high enough to warrant, in and of themselves, a strong argument against circumcision. Again, in the range of things that parents can do that negatively impact a child, I feel that circumcision is very low on the list of 'things to worry about'. Some disagree, and that's fine, I hope they don't feel any pressure to circumcise their child. For whatever it's worth, as a religion hating self-identified 'cultural only Jew', I'm on the fence about whether or not I would circumcise my hypothetical children.
Basically, I see people stating "Circumcision carries a very low risk of complication, and some people, but not a statistically significant group of people, have some vaguely described minor reduction of sensitivity. Ergo, circumcision is barbaric" and I don't feel the argument follows.
Princess Marzipan wrote:And resistance to infection and improvement to hygiene would seem to be rather easily explained by a circumcised penis simply being easier to wash.
Actually, and I'm having trouble finding the article on this, foreskin fibroblasts are commonly used in tissue culture because they are incredibly easy to transfect, more so than other tissue lines. I recall reading, and I'll try and dig this up, that foreskin fibroblasts are very susceptible to viral infection, perhaps explaining the success of certain sexually transmitted infections. It stands to reason, perhaps, that removal of excess foreskin could diminish the likelihood of those infections.
Which has nothing to do with other types of infection, especially in terms of infant care.
tetris wrote:I felt tremendous betrayal that my parents would choose to modify my genitalia in such a way.
I can understand that, more so for, people who feel a disconnect or disagreement with the shape of their body in the first place.
To stay with the anecdotes, I knew a guy whose parents were non-practicing Jews, and didn't circumcise him. He found himself drawn to the religion and felt betrayed, 'feeling like he should have been included in the traditions'. He chose to to get circumcised at the age of 14 or 15, and said it was one of the most painful things of his life. So, I dunno, his choice, certainly, but it caused quite a schism in his family for some time.
tetris wrote:I think in debates like these there's a tendency for some people to rely overly much on (conflicting) scientific studies, ignoring the evidence of real human pain and unhappiness.
I think when trying to formulate an opinion on the matter one should rely on the data to base an opinion, and contextualize that opinion with anecdotes. Anecdotes are the face of a problem, but they don't provide a very objective perspective on the problem, obfuscating the issue with people's bias. There's a reason huge amounts of money have been allocated to help Panda's breed, but no one gives a fuck about preserving ocean krill.
... with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandalled feet.