Infant Circumcision

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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Torchship » Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:13 am UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:We're clearly getting off topic, but I have to ask: How is this any different than assigning negative moral value to writing about a house-wife? Both reinforce things you've defined as 'bad'. Under your view, they strike me as equivalent.


My apologies, I was using 'immoral' and the like as shorthand for 'bad' or 'damaging' in that particular post. I clarified on that usage a couple of posts ago, but I've been using it ambiguously since then. An individual writing about a housewife is undeniably damaging to non-housewives, but I don't believe it's morally condemnable in any significant way.

The Great Hippo wrote:That's... the opposite of what I was saying? I think the people in a society are blameworthy, but society itself is just a singular shorthand for a group of people. Maybe this is just a semantic issue, but I don't think it's useful to blame society or hold it responsible. If circumcision of infants is evil, then the people who are engaging in it are engaged in an evil act, and they can be blamed for it.


Indeed, that's what I thought you believed. I was stating that I believed that while individuals are not blameworthy, the structure that they form is. You, on the other hand, believe that people are morally blameworthy, but the structures they form are not (nor are they particularly meaningful to discuss). Using the neuron analogy, I concluded that the structure is morally blameworthy even though it was constructed of non-blameworthy components.


Izawwlgood wrote:It sounds like you're suggesting that you have this totalitarian idea of what is socially optimal for society, and everyone must abide by this paradigm or risk being morally abhorrent for perpetuating the oppressive status quo.

I would suggest that that is simply the opposite of what you seem to be working to eliminate; removing all choice from the individual (so they cannot circumcise, say) is no different from placing all individuals in a society that expects everyone circumcise. Thankfully, neither is, nor should be, a reality.


I'm not sure why you felt the need to slippery-slope fallacy what I said, but your bizarre conclusions are absolutely not logical extrapolations of my arguments. Stating that society-wide biases generally imply discrimination against a minority is support for your absurd dystopia in no way, shape or form.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:17 am UTC

Torchship wrote:An individual writing about a housewife is undeniably damaging to non-housewives.

How?

Indeed, that's what I thought you believed. I was stating that I believed that while individuals are not blameworthy, the structure that they form is. You, on the other hand, believe that people are morally blameworthy, but the structures they form are not (nor are they particularly meaningful to discuss). Using the neuron analogy, I concluded that the structure is morally blameworthy even though it was constructed of non-blameworthy components.

And he explained why the neuron analogy is false. To say that a society doing something is bad is to say that the individuals doing something is bad. How is it possible that society can do something bad and the individuals are acting good?
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Torchship » Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:48 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:How?


Enforces and supports the stereotypy of women as housewives, mostly. Society reacts to this stereotype by assigning negative traits to non-housewife women, which is to their disadvantage. This effect is less prominent these days (what with the rise of feminism), but it does outline the central idea. Many people have spent a great deal of time in this thread outlining the social advantages to circumcision, and hence the social disadvantages to non-circumcision.

sourmìlk wrote:And he explained why the neuron analogy is false. To say that a society doing something is bad is to say that the individuals doing something is bad. How is it possible that society can do something bad and the individuals are acting good?


I wasn't actually contending that the actions of individuals in such a situation were necessarily 'good', merely not-evil (or, more precisely, not-blameworthy).
That said, I don't understand how ze 'explained why the neuron analogy was false'. Certainly ze was correct in pointing out that neurons are non-sentient, but this is not particularly relevant to the analogy. My analogy did not depend at all on the sentience of the components, merely their non-blameworthy-ness, which ze agreed with me on.

In any event, I don't think that any of this discussion is particularly relevant at all to the topic of this thread...
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:50 am UTC

Two things. First, the former is only true if the person writes in such a way that that stereotype is enforced or viewed as acceptable. A story in which a housewife, say, learns to do other things does not enforce that stereotype.

Second, the blameworthiness of something is dependent on its sapience. Non-sapient things cannot be assigned moral blame.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Torchship » Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:53 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:Two things. First, the former is only true if the person writes in such a way that that stereotype is enforced or viewed as acceptable. A story in which a housewife, say, learns to do other things does not enforce that stereotype.


Back when I first introduced the analogy, I specified that the housewives were being presented neutrally; positively or negatively presented housewives just cloud the issue.

sourmìlk wrote:Second, the blameworthiness of something is dependent on its sapience. Non-sapient things cannot be assigned moral blame.


Indeed. Doesn't change the fact that non-blameworthy components formed a blameworthy structure, though.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Mon Jan 09, 2012 5:38 am UTC

Torchship wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:Two things. First, the former is only true if the person writes in such a way that that stereotype is enforced or viewed as acceptable. A story in which a housewife, say, learns to do other things does not enforce that stereotype.


Back when I first introduced the analogy, I specified that the housewives were being presented neutrally; positively or negatively presented housewives just cloud the issue.


Okay, got it.

sourmìlk wrote:Second, the blameworthiness of something is dependent on its sapience. Non-sapient things cannot be assigned moral blame.


Indeed. Doesn't change the fact that non-blameworthy components formed a blameworthy structure, though.

Right, but that's not relevant. We didn't ask how non-blameworthy components can form a blameworth structure, we specifically asked how non-blameworthy humans can create a blameworthy society. And you haven't given an example.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Torchship » Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:00 am UTC

Objects forming a structure is the general case of the more specific case of people forming a society; if it holds for the general, it must hold for the specific. I have seen no compelling reason why the sentience of the components significantly affects this analysis (assuming that non-blameworthy-ness is already guaranteed for the components).
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:48 am UTC

Nonsentient things cannot be blameless. But it doesn't hold for the general. It is not necessarily the case that components in a structure do not have the same characteristics of that structure, it's just possible. And something that's possible for the general case isn't necessarily for the specific case. So stop dodging my question and give me an example please.

For example: some animals can fly. Humans are animals. Humans cannot fly.
Some blameworthy structures have blameless components. Societies are a structure. The components of a society aren't blameless if the society is.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Alder » Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:03 am UTC

I've been reading this thread with some curiosity, since it's not a subject I know much/have strong view about. However, this statement (bold/underline added):
Torchship wrote:Western society treats circumcision (or white people, or Christians, or straight people, etc) as highly preferential to non-circumcision, leading to a wide variety of social advantages to the circumcised and hence a wide variety of social disadvantages to the uncircumcised, which is a state of affairs which I take offence to.

...gave me pause, so I went hunting for a bit more information. I realise it's only Wikipedia, but this article has some interesting numbers - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prevalence ... an_20.25_2.

Short version, US society, with 50%+ of the male population circumcised, may treat circumcision as 'highly preferential'. In the rest of the West, its numbers are falling and have been for some time, with many countries having figures below 20%. For example, only 3.8% of male children were circumcised by the age 15 in Britain (figures from 2000), Spain, 1.8%, and Finland zero.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Jan 09, 2012 2:27 pm UTC

The claim that circumcised penises are at an advantage over non-circumcised penises calls for a massive Citation Needed.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:04 pm UTC

Alder wrote:Short version, US society, with 50%+ of the male population circumcised, may treat circumcision as 'highly preferential'. In the rest of the West, its numbers are falling and have been for some time, with many countries having figures below 20%. For example, only 3.8% of male children were circumcised by the age 15 in Britain (figures from 2000), Spain, 1.8%, and Finland zero.
That's pretty interesting, and impacts my opinion. If large portions of the West are no longer adopting it--and it's continuing to fall out of favor--I see less and less reason to support it in any meaningful way.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Mon Jan 09, 2012 9:28 pm UTC

Define "supporting" it. If you mean that it would be preferable, then yeah. If you mean that people should be able to do it, well then no. If you mean that there's not much a reason to bother with the argument if nobody's doing it, okay.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:03 pm UTC

sourmìlk wrote:Define "supporting" it. If you mean that it would be preferable, then yeah. If you mean that people should be able to do it, well then no. If you mean that there's not much a reason to bother with the argument if nobody's doing it, okay.
I have no idea what you just said. But by 'supporting it' I mean that as it becomes more likely that infants will grow up to regret their circumcisions, I become less comfortable with the process. And if less people are getting circumcised...
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:10 pm UTC

I don't follow your logic; are you assuming that more people will regret being circumcised as the number of circumcised people in a given society goes down? What are you basing this assumption on?
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:21 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:I don't follow your logic; are you assuming that more people will regret being circumcised as the number of circumcised people in a given society goes down? What are you basing this assumption on?
Why would less people get circumcised? Obviously, because more people are starting to regret their own circumcisions (or, at least, thinking it would be best to let their kids make that choice). That's enough to give me pause.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:31 pm UTC

Because some non-zero portion of individuals are circumcising for reasons outside of societies whims. The wiki linked also mentions that the majority of men who are circumcised are followers of Islam.

That isn't reason in and of itself, but it points to the idea that many people aren't circumcising to cow tail to societies pressures. As always, this decision is about choice; I have no problem with the %'age of circumcised men being 5 or 95, what I have a problem with is drawing support for allowing the choice based upon the prevalence of circumcision in a given society.

Also, to point out, I didn't see on the wiki where it talked about changes to circumcision rates, only reporting different rates in various countries.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Azrael » Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:57 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:... but it points to the idea that many people aren't circumcising to cow tail to societies pressures.

Kowtow? Perhaps just stick with bow, bend or cave.

Anyhow, the salient point is that if the practice in Western countries (which is what the currently topical statistics were referencing) is decreasing*, then you can make some generalizations; The practice may be falling out of favor because people are re-examining the reasons, and finding last generations' answers to be lacking merit. If the practice does fall out of favor, those who would circumcise their children out of 'societal habit' would stop -- hypothetically creating a negative feedback loop.

As for a moral stance, it is fairly easy to see how a position supporting an incredibly common, neutral although somewhat invasive procedure could change if it instead became an outlier. Is it a perfect moral position? No, but it's also an incredibly common moral dynamic. When it runs in the opposite direction people typically call it liberal or progressive.



* Rates are decreasing, at least in the US from 91% in 1970 to 56% in 2005. Perhaps even further plunged to 32% by 2009? But there is conflicting data that puts the decline at a much slower rate. Interestingly, if you scroll to the bottom of that link, you'll find that rates were in the 30% range 80 years ago and grew steadily until a peak in late 60's. That sort of growth-decline cycle is certainly an indicator of societal pressure, even it if were fed by now-outdated medical advice.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:41 am UTC

I'm not okay with circumcision because it's socially accepted, I'm okay with it because it's not harmful. Even if one parent wanted to circumcise their child in a world where every single other man was uncircumcised, I would not find that objectionable. Odd, for certain, but not objectionable. Well okay, objectionable if there were social stigma around circumcision, but otherwise...

It is also not necessarily the case that societies that circumcise less have a problem with circumcision, but just that they aren't in favour of it and so default to not doing anything.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:59 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:I'm not okay with circumcision because it's socially accepted, I'm okay with it because it's not harmful. Even if one parent wanted to circumcise their child in a world where every single other man was uncircumcised, I would not find that objectionable. Odd, for certain, but not objectionable. Well okay, objectionable if there were social stigma around circumcision, but otherwise...
Would you object to it if I knew that my child would grow up to regret being circumcised--and would later wish that I had left the choice to them?
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Azrael » Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:24 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:I'm not okay with circumcision because it's socially accepted, I'm okay with it because it's not harmful.

I'm conflicted whether it's intellectually dishonest of you not to mention the possibility of a religious tie-in here.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:58 am UTC

That's what I get for typing out a response on my phone. (Cow tailing. I like cows. And horses.)

Azrael wrote:If the practice does fall out of favor, those who would circumcise their children out of 'societal habit' would stop -- hypothetically creating a negative feedback loop.

What would be interesting to see is how infrequent the habit could become. My guess is Jewish and Islam followers will always maintain 'higher than average' rates of circumcision. Personally, I don't see why it matters one way or the other. If people decide to not circumcise once you remove the religious aspect of the decision, then all power to them. If the religious want to continue circumcising, then kudos to them too.

It does set an interesting possibility for developing negative implications of circumcision though. If society frowns upon those who are circumcised, then maybe you'll put pressure on people to reevaluate what they perceive to be the pros and cons. I suppose in an ideal world, no one would give a fuck, and circumcision would be by medical need only, just like in an ideal world, people wouldn't give a fuck about any sort of appearances, at all.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby sourmìlk » Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:27 am UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:
sourmìlk wrote:I'm not okay with circumcision because it's socially accepted, I'm okay with it because it's not harmful. Even if one parent wanted to circumcise their child in a world where every single other man was uncircumcised, I would not find that objectionable. Odd, for certain, but not objectionable. Well okay, objectionable if there were social stigma around circumcision, but otherwise...
Would you object to it if I knew that my child would grow up to regret being circumcised--and would later wish that I had left the choice to them?

Yes, obviously. But a decline in the popularity of circumcision doesn't necessarily indicate an increase in the likelihood that a person will regret it. Obviously, if it is the case that people are substantially more likely to regret having been circumcised, then my support for the ability to circumcise one's children would fall.

Azrael wrote:I'm conflicted whether it's intellectually dishonest of you not to mention the possibility of a religious tie-in here.

Religion is entirely irrelevant to my argument. I consider the morality of an action entirely separate from whether a person believes they're religiously obligated to do it.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Deep_Thought » Tue Jan 10, 2012 9:59 am UTC

sourmìlk wrote:
Azrael wrote:I'm conflicted whether it's intellectually dishonest of you not to mention the possibility of a religious tie-in here.

Religion is entirely irrelevant to my argument. I consider the morality of an action entirely separate from whether a person believes they're religiously obligated to do it.

I have a slightly hard time believing that the religious obligation is "entirely separate". Forgive me for dropping out of this thread for a few pages, but I still haven't seen you give a convincing argument for actually circumcising a child. Your argument seems to stop at the point "It causes no harm so it's not immoral to do it". Well, that's great*, but it still doesn't present a credible reason for actually carrying out the operation. Leaving a foreskin intact doesn't cause any harm, so by your logic that's not immoral either. So how should a parent choose which course of action to take?

*even if several of us dispute the "no harm" part.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Torchship » Tue Jan 10, 2012 12:18 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:The claim that circumcised penises are at an advantage over non-circumcised penises calls for a massive Citation Needed.


Socially advantaged, certainly. I suspect you should probably re-read the thread, because the advantages of circumcision are mentioned several times both directly and indirectly by yourself and others. I find it a bit puzzling that you fully accepted the social benefits of circumcision as legitimate when they were to the advantage of your argument, but as soon as they were not you demand citations.

Alder wrote:...gave me pause, so I went hunting for a bit more information. I realise it's only Wikipedia, but this article has some interesting numbers - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prevalence ... an_20.25_2.


Yes, you're absolutely right. I was thinking of the US when I wrote that, but still managed to write 'western world' through force of habit. My apologies.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:22 pm UTC

Torchship wrote:Socially advantaged, certainly. I suspect you should probably re-read the thread, because the advantages of circumcision are mentioned several times both directly and indirectly by yourself and others. I find it a bit puzzling that you fully accepted the social benefits of circumcision as legitimate when they were to the advantage of your argument, but as soon as they were not you demand citations.

I'm pretty sure I've been quite careful to mention repeatedly that circumcision has no net benefit or detriment. The social VALUE is that it has worth to those who choose to circumcise their children. Your claim was that in America, circumcised penises are at an advantage of non-circumcised penises. I call Citation Needed for that.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Jan 10, 2012 3:31 pm UTC

Deep_Thought wrote:I have a slightly hard time believing that the religious obligation is "entirely separate". Forgive me for dropping out of this thread for a few pages, but I still haven't seen you give a convincing argument for actually circumcising a child. Your argument seems to stop at the point "It causes no harm so it's not immoral to do it". Well, that's great*, but it still doesn't present a credible reason for actually carrying out the operation. Leaving a foreskin intact doesn't cause any harm, so by your logic that's not immoral either. So how should a parent choose which course of action to take?
Yeah, this is a problem for me. I can argue why you should be allowed to circumcise a child, but I can't find many good arguments for why you should circumcise a child. All I've got is a a willingness to respect religions and cultural trends and a desire to resist limits we put on parents outside of clear cases of abuse. Those aren't reasons to circumcise babies; those are just reasons we shouldn't stop other people from circumcising babies.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:14 pm UTC

Unless I'm misreading something, somewhere, I don't think anyone, at any time, has suggested we should circumcise ALL the cocks. Merely that the choice to do so should always remain up to the parents.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:17 pm UTC

That isn't the point; rather, the point is that while it's nice and good to argue why we should have a right to do something, eventually someone has to ask "Okay, but why the hell would we exercise that right?" For example: If we have the right to circumcise babies, we probably have the right to burn lit cigarettes on them. But why the fuck would we do that? If a parent did that, I'd assume they're not a good parent, and I'd be comfortable taking steps to have the baby removed from their care. The only consideration in circumcision is that there are some bizarre cultural and religious reasons present. Remove those reasons, and I'd feel the same way about circumcision as I feel about cigarette burns.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:29 pm UTC

This comes back to the vegan thing; I would never tell a parent they CANNOT put a kid on a vegan diet, but what has value to one parent may not have value to another. Circumcision has value to some people, and because it does no harm, I see no reason to tell anyone they cannot do it. Because it does not have value to all people (and carries a non-zero, although near to it, risk, as well as causing permanent cosmetic change), I would never tell ALL parents to circumcise.

As for cigarette burns, we touched on this with the 'pointing a gun at a kid and pulling the trigger with a 1 in 500,000 chance of firing' hypothetical. There's a matter of intent to consider. The idea of burning a kid, or pointing a gun at a kid and pulling the trigger, simply for shits and giggles is upsetting to me, because there's no intent to do something for the child that you feel has value. If you decided that marking your child with a small ritualistic scar in a non-permanently harmful manner in a way that minimized pain and suffering to the child, because it was part of your tradition or custom or had value to YOU, then I would have less issue with it.

Most importantly to underline this point, I think, is the idea that what is strange to one group may not be strange to another. I find ear stretching to look odd, but some find it beautiful. Since earlobe stretching has approximately a zero net gain or detriment to a human being, I'd say stretch all the earlobes you want.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Jan 10, 2012 4:31 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:This comes back to the vegan thing; I would never tell a parent they CANNOT put a kid on a vegan diet, but what has value to one parent may not have value to another. Circumcision has value to some people, and because it does no harm, I see no reason to tell anyone they cannot do it. Because it does not have value to all people (and carries a non-zero, although near to it, risk, as well as causing permanent cosmetic change), I would never tell ALL parents to circumcise.

As for cigarette burns, we touched on this with the 'pointing a gun at a kid and pulling the trigger with a 1 in 500,000 chance of firing' hypothetical. There's a matter of intent to consider. The idea of burning a kid, or pointing a gun at a kid and pulling the trigger, simply for shits and giggles is upsetting to me, because there's no intent to do something for the child that you feel has value. If you decided that marking your child with a small ritualistic scar in a non-permanently harmful manner in a way that minimized pain and suffering to the child, because it was part of your tradition or custom or had value to YOU, then I would have less issue with it.
That's what I just said; the reason I don't oppose circumcision is because I can feasibly imagine it being done in a household that's healthy for a child to exist in. I can't imagine cigarette burns being done in such a household, however.

But for me, there are no good reasons to circumcise children--and a lot of the reasons that other people have strike me as flimsy.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Deep_Thought » Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:06 pm UTC

I suppose my earlier post boils down to "Would you circumcise your own child? Why, or why not?".

The Great Hippo wrote:But for me, there are no good reasons to circumcise children--and a lot of the reasons that other people have strike me as flimsy.

I think I stated this as my point of view about page 5 :)
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:22 pm UTC

I'm still on the fence about it. My parents place huge value on it, and my girlfriend has stated her family does too. I bounce between giving zero fucks on the matter, to remembering that I soundly dislike religion and doing things because sky wizards told me to, but then remember that families are more than just my take on things. I think I would defer to my significant other on the matter, and certainly circumcise in a hospital, not by a mohel.

But as for whether or not fulfilling a commandment or 'I think it looks nicer' is a legitimate reason, I cannot say. I find it rather invasive to tell someone their reasons are legitimate in your book, and think it's rather curious that the line is drawn at 'things I am comfortable with are cool, everything else, hold the fucking horse'.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Deep_Thought » Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:32 pm UTC

It is possible to be tolerant and disapproving at the same time. Difficult, but possible.

EDIT: I try to, as much as possible, live and let live. I spent too much time at school being singled out for being different to worry much about how others choose to live their life. The trouble with that is at some point, if you find something really objectionable, then you have to at least say so or nothing will ever change.
Last edited by Deep_Thought on Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:37 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:36 pm UTC

I'd use the word 'understanding' rather than 'tolerant'; I understand circumcision is important to some people, but I don't really approve of the practice myself. But I'm kind of a word-scrooge.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Deep_Thought » Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:39 pm UTC

That's cool. There's a reason we have lots of similar but subtly different words.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:46 pm UTC

Then I would suggest that's what these conversations are for. Hopefully you have come away from it with a bit more understanding either for why someone would circumcise, or why your interference with someone choosing to is unnecessary and Bad Thing, and someone on my side of the fence has come away with a better understanding of my own motivations for supporting it, particularly, whether or not I would subject my own sons to it.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Bharrata » Tue Jan 10, 2012 5:54 pm UTC

As someone who was humiliated and emotionally abused to no end when I was younger and my friends found out I was uncircumcized, to the point where I believed for awhile I was the only one in the world who hadn't gotten it done and no woman would want me....these threads are always pretty funny. The pro-circumcision crowd always seems to be coming from a place of insecurity and fear of the Other, rather than inclusion and free choice.

I realize I'm probably setting the discussion back 15 pages, but that's my 2 cents as a dude with a baloney penis.


edit: and religious groups/reasons calling for moral relativism on the issue seems strange to me


Next time, how about we read the thread rather than start right out with the peanut gallery nonsense?

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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Jan 10, 2012 7:10 pm UTC

Bharrata wrote:As someone who was humiliated and emotionally abused to no end when I was younger and my friends found out I was uncircumcized, to the point where I believed for awhile I was the only one in the world who hadn't gotten it done and no woman would want me....these threads are always pretty funny.
I'm sorry that that happened to you; I want to ask, out of curiosity--do you think your quality of life would have been improved had you gotten circumcised? And are you glad now that you aren't circumcised? Obviously, you should feel no obligation to answer if talking about it makes you uncomfortable!
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby Bharrata » Tue Jan 10, 2012 10:17 pm UTC

The Great Hippo wrote:I want to ask, out of curiosity--do you think your quality of life would have been improved had you gotten circumcised?


It certainly would have made middle school and high school easier; maturing socially and sexually easier; kept me from doing things I really regret that I'll always have to live with; but then again I wouldn't be the person I am today without going through all the events associated with being ostracized for something I truly couldn't change. (Though that's a debate for a nature v. nurture thread, it changed the nurture I experienced growing up for sure :lol: )

I think my life would have been improved if I didn't take weeks telling my first serious girlfriend that I wasn't because I was scared she'd leave me, and having feelings of insecurity like that in the back of my head around all romantic interests ever since.

There's nothing inherently wrong with circumcision the way I see it. (I do wonder if it really does make sex worse for all involved) However, people tend to make more of the aesthetic qualities of their genitals than is truly warranted...so sure, you can still decide to circumcise your children based on aesthetics or religion, but it's going to set up 'in' and 'out' groups, over a thing most guys -and some women- get very touchy and irrational about.

And are you glad now that you aren't circumcised?


I've reconciled with it, it still bugs me that I make a big deal of it in my head where pursuing a love interest is involved, and I suppose I have a certain sense of pride for going through all that I did because of it...but I wouldn't say I'm glad.
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Re: Infant Circumcision

Postby The Great Hippo » Tue Jan 10, 2012 10:27 pm UTC

I realize this is an intrusive question, but I wanted to ask one more thing, because I think it stabs to the heart of my own views on this subject: After everything you just said now, if given the opportunity, would you choose to circumcise your own child?

Also, I appreciate you describing your personal experiences re: circumcision here; it adds a significant dimension to hear input from the people these decisions most clearly affect.
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