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-   -   Routine infant male circumcision (http://www.raptorsforum.com/f/f23/routine-infant-male-circumcision-13294.html)

Bill Haverchuck 02-05-2010 10:34 AM

Routine infant male circumcision
 
Over the past few months, the issue of routine infant male circumcision has been brought up in conversations I've had with people in real life and on the internet. A couple of people I know have had kids recently, so, for obvious reasons, this is something that was talked about. To be honest, until recently, I never gave circumcision any thought. I just took for granted that it is something parents decide for their children. However, during the process of participating in a couple of conversations about this procedure, I've started to question whether a parent really should have the right to decide if a healthy baby boy's weiner gets mutilated. Yeah, I know somebody might take issue with me calling it mutilation.

There is some important additional statistical information that I could post, but, before I do that, I'm curious as to how people feel off the top of their head. What are people's general thoughts about the legality of this procedure? Should it be legal? Or should steps be taken to change the laws in Canada?

I've heard about half a dozen reasons for why particular people think routine infant male circumcision should continue, but rather than address them all now, I'm going to wait and see what people's general thoughts are. Maybe people on this board don't even care about this issue. Personally, I think it's quite important.

'trane 02-05-2010 10:42 AM

illegal, no, although it's a close call for me since it is the parents deciding on behalf of someone incapable of making a decision.

but i think it's barbaric and ridiculous, and totally unneccessary in a country with abundant running water and good hygeine.

Ligeia 02-05-2010 10:42 AM

Well, you've given it an interesting context to start off on: infant male circumcision. Do I support such barbary? Absolutely not.

More generally, people can get circumcised if they want when they are of an adult age.

Having had this argument many times before, I am always countered by pro-circumcision folks with the following: circumcision reduces the risk of contracting STI x, therefore it is right to do it to a child. My response is that if, as a sexually active adult, they wish to modify their foreskin to achieve this effect, then they're free to; at least let them make the decision for themselves. A child has no need for their foreskin to be removed as they're not yet sexually active.

This, of course, says nothing of the correlations drawn in contradicting studies, the simple fact that regularly cleaning smegma beneath the foreskin works just as well, and that using condoms is still the safest non-abstinent method of reducing STI's.

This is an argument I have held regularly because I am completely against the mutilation of genitals for religious or pseudoscientific purposes, whether it be done to a male or a female.

DVS 02-05-2010 10:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 'trane (Post 326186)
illegal, no, although it's a close call for me since it is the parents deciding on behalf of someone incapable of making a decision.

but i think it's barbaric and ridiculous, and totally unneccessary in a country with abundant running water and good hygeine.

That I totally agree with. All you need is a little soap and water and scrub. I think it should be the parents choice esp since 1. It could be due to religious practises and

2. It doesn't hurt nearly as much as appose to getting it when your older.

'trane 02-05-2010 10:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DVS (Post 326189)

That I totally agree with. All you need is a little soap and water and scrub. I think it should be the parents choice esp since 1. It could be due to religious practises and

2. It doesn't hurt nearly as much as appose to getting it when your older.

it hurts just as much dude, it's just that babies are too young to form lasting memories.

jeffb 02-05-2010 10:47 AM

I'm thankful to be circumcised. ;)

Ligeia 02-05-2010 10:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jeffb (Post 326192)
I'm thankful to be circumcised. ;)

Why is that?

DVS 02-05-2010 10:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 'trane (Post 326191)
it hurts just as much dude, it's just that babies are too young to form lasting memories.

Well I guess I'll thank my parents for making a great decision

XiaominWu 02-05-2010 10:49 AM

I find religious indoctrination of children to be more barbaric than circumcision. That's just me, though.

Bill Haverchuck 02-05-2010 10:52 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 'trane (Post 326186)
illegal, no, although it's a close call for me since it is the parents deciding on behalf of someone incapable of making a decision.

but i think it's barbaric and ridiculous, and totally unneccessary in a country with abundant running water and good hygeine.

You think it is barbaric, yet it should not be illegal? As Ligeia pointed out, the boy could make the decision at 18, couldn't he?

Ligeia 02-05-2010 10:54 AM

A complex issue is already rising to the top here, and is very tightly interwoven with the question of infant circumcision: what rights should parents have over their children? That is to say, why are some of the opinion that a child is a blank piece of paper on which you can write anything you choose? What are the limits of a parent's right to make decisions for their child?

When we're talking about things like ideology, there is at least the advantage that the child can undo what they've been taught as they grow older.

But that's not the case with circumcision.

Bill Haverchuck 02-05-2010 10:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DVS (Post 326189)

That I totally agree with. All you need is a little soap and water and scrub. I think it should be the parents choice esp since 1. It could be due to religious practises and
2. It doesn't hurt nearly as much as appose to getting it when your older.

Individuals' rights to practice their religion deserve to be respected. However, where does religion cross the line? For example, quite a few people who are born into Jewish families eventually leave the religion, or call themselves Jewish but don't really follow the practices of the religion. So, basically, what I'm saying it that a baby is not religious. As an adult you choose to follow that path or abandone it, yet even if a person chooses to abondone Judaism, their weiner has been chopped off already....and they had no choice.

XiaominWu 02-05-2010 10:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ligeia (Post 326199)
When we're talking about things like ideology, there is at least the advantage that the child can undo what they've been taught as they grow older.

But that's not the case with circumcision.

I dunno how easily a "child" can undo what has been drilled into his head since birth.

and FWIW...

Foreskin restoration for circumcised males

Bill Haverchuck 02-05-2010 10:59 AM

I'd also like to point out that most of the people in North America who get circumcised are NOT Jewish. I've discovered that this procedure is tangled up with a host of historical, social and cultural issues....most of which relate to North American prudishness far more than religion. Of course, that culture that developed does ultimately lead back to certain religious ideas. But not necessarily contemporary ones.

Bill Haverchuck 02-05-2010 11:01 AM

I just want to remind people that the poll question is asking whether it should be "legal." That is, should it continue to be allowed?

Ligeia 02-05-2010 11:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by XiaominWu (Post 326205)
I dunno how easily a "child" can undo what has been drilled into his head since birth.

and FWIW...

Foreskin restoration for circumcised males

Foreskin restoration does not restore the foreskin; it restores the appearance of foreskin. There are hundreds of nerve endings in your foreskin that are being lopped off. It has been suggested that part of the reason that circumcision initially came about was that it was believed to reduce sexual pleasure (which is, as it turns out, true); it's another form of control.

I agree with you that it is very tough to unlearn things (we spend our whole lives trying to get away from basic ways of thinking that got us through our first 2 years), but there is at least the possibility.

DVS 02-05-2010 11:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ArmChairGM (Post 326202)
Individuals' rights to practice their religion deserve to be respected. However, where does religion cross the line? For example, quite a few people who are born into Jewish families eventually leave the religion, or call themselves Jewish but don't really follow the practices of the religion. So, basically, what I'm saying it that a baby is not religious. As an adult you choose to follow that path or abandone it, yet even if a person chooses to abondone Judaism, their weiner has been chopped off already....and they had no choice.

I agree with you but if you announce that you want a Briss for example to stop being in practise because of freedom of choice. You would have a National Problem on your hands.

Something I wouldn't even care to getting involved in.

jeffb 02-05-2010 11:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ligeia (Post 326194)
Why is that?

I've always found uncircumcised looked disgusting, And every woman i've talked to has said they find an uncircumcised penis looks odd.

Plus, like Elaine said on Seinfeld: "it has no face, no personality" heehe

Ligeia 02-05-2010 11:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jeffb (Post 326216)
I've always found uncircumcised looked disgusting, And every woman i've talked to has said they find an uncircumcised penis looks odd.

Plus, like Elaine said on Seinfeld: "it has no face, no personality" heehe

Well certainly we shouldn't be modifying a person's body without their consent based on such superficiality. I think the penis looks pretty odd regardless, and my own anecdotal experience suggests that women find the smegma aspect of the foreskin the least appealing part (something that can be resolved without removing the foreskin).

I know that I personally would not want to sacrifice pleasure for superficial appearance.

Bill Haverchuck 02-05-2010 11:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jeffb (Post 326216)
I've always found uncircumcised looked disgusting, And every woman i've talked to has said they find an uncircumcised penis looks odd.

Plus, like Elaine said on Seinfeld: "it has no face, no personality" heehe

Jeff, I've actually heard that from women, too, so I get where you are coming from. In fact, the first girl who saw me naked made an awkward comment...something like...."oh, good, you don't have an ant eater." At the time it was hillarious and I was happy I was circumcised.

However, you and I have lost a lot of sexual pleasure from losing our foreskins. Think about this. The most senstive part of our dicks is the part right below the underside of the head. That's the same type of tissue that was removed. We lost thousands of nerve endings....all because of bullshit cultrual practices.

And the future generations shouldn't have to through that. The circumcision rates in Canada used to be close to %50. It might have been even higher when you were born. But now it's closer to %20, so girls aren't goint to see cut dicks as often. I hope that this bullshit expectation that guys should be cut dies out. And I hope parents stop getting their kids cut for bullshit reasons.


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