Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view 
Author Message
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view


Quote:

>>-*----

>>> I am puzzled at the heat this debate always seems to generate
>>> here.  Those in favour seem to be excessively enthusiastic. ...

>>Donald Mackie's memory is mistaken.  The last time circumcision
>>was debated here, no one enthusiastically supported it.  The
>>debate was between those who were vociferous in their opposition
>>and their view of the great importance of this issue, and those
>>of us who viewed the issue more moderately.  

>Curious, whenever I read something on this subject it always seems
>to me that the most vociferous are those who support it.  Just shows
>the difference in the way people view things.

Indeed.  I agree with Russell's assessment, and I can hardly be said
to favor the practice.  At one time several months ago, I gave my view
that parents should have the right of choice regarding cirumcision.
For expressing this opinion, I got several pieces of hysterical
mail from men, one of whom said that he wished that I should undergo
a{*filter*}oridectomy.  

Mind you, I have never had a child circumcised, nor will I ever.  I don't
personally believe it is necessary, and none of the men in my immediate family
have had this done. Nor do I remember any enthusiastic cheerleading for the
practice by anyone else here.  They all seemed to feel more or less the
same way - not for or against, but interested in allowing parental control
over the matter.



Sat, 26 Aug 1995 06:34:04 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view
OK, I was hoping that I would see some discussion of the pro's and con's of
circumsision. I understand that it is safe dogma to say that what nature has
produced is the correct and best form. I also understand that it is a painful
and risky elective procedure with at most marginal benefits. So, why do people
(besides Jews) elect to have it done to their sons?  (I'm not talking about
people who don't think about it.) There must be perceived benefits. What are
they? The last I read on the subject I remember perceiving two or three
benefits to curcumsision. I am not advocating circumsision. The benefits
(from memory) supposedly were:

1) Hygiene - A child's circumcised {*filter*} is supposedly easier to keep clean,
        especially for those who have no experience with uncircumsised {*filter*}es.

2) Health - The normal mucuos membrane of the uncircumsised {*filter*} is more
        vunerable to invasion by viruses and bacteria. This maybe born out by
        studies which show that the rate of penile cancer is higher for
        uncircumsised males. (Unfortunately I do not remember the specifics
        of these studies)

3) Psychological - male identity is linked in an intimate way to the {*filter*}.
        It's shape, form, and appearence cause inevitable comparison. A male
        child who's {*filter*}'s state of circumsision is the opposite of his
        father's may not be satisfied with his father's explanations of their
        {*filter*}es very apparent differences. This could lead to a perceived
        undesirable fragility in the sons male identity.

                Note: I am not advocating circumsision.

As I see it, number one is an issue of convienience and education. Number
two may have some merit, but it is weak. Number three is too deep for me.
I can see that it might be an issue, but I think there are many other much
more important things in the healthy psychological development of male identity,
but that's my own opinion.  

chris
-----
G. Chris Boynton                        Tel (011) + (31) + [0]30-535203
Sterrekundig Instituut RU Utrecht            ^Intr   ^Cntry  ^City
Postbus 80000                           Fax (011) + (31) + [0]30-535201



Sat, 26 Aug 1995 19:01:11 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view


Fri, 19 Jun 1992 00:00:00 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view


Quote:
> Here-here, and here-here again. It's high time something was done
> about this barbaric practice which usually seems to me to be at the
> whim of the parents without any regard as to whether it is absolutely
> neccessary.

What about smegma?  Cheesy, awful smelling, unclean stuff from what I
hear.

And barbaric?  Hardly.  What use did a barbar have for something like
circumcision?  They weren't Jewish.  And other than what you may think,
it is scarcely traumatic for the newborn.



Sun, 27 Aug 1995 08:25:18 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view


Fri, 19 Jun 1992 00:00:00 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view

Quote:

>OK, I was hoping that I would see some discussion of the pro's and
>con's of circumsision. I understand that it is safe dogma to say that
>what nature has produced is the correct and best form. I also
>understand that it is a painful and risky elective procedure with at
>most marginal benefits.

Note that it's painful and perhaps risky if done using a clamp.  The
traditional Jewish method involves a few seconds of skilled cutting.
If done properly, there is simply no apparent pain.
--



Mon, 28 Aug 1995 02:36:45 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view


Fri, 19 Jun 1992 00:00:00 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view

Quote:


>> Here-here, and here-here again. It's high time something was done
>> about this barbaric practice which usually seems to me to be at the
>> whim of the parents without any regard as to whether it is absolutely
>> neccessary.

>What about smegma?  Cheesy, awful smelling, unclean stuff from what I
>hear.

You pull back the foreskin and splash some nice clean water on it whenever
you bathe.  No more smelly smegma.  Besides, it is no worse than the stuff
that gets in my bellybutton.

Quote:

>And barbaric?  Hardly.  What use did a barbar have for something like
>circumcision?  They weren't Jewish.  And other than what you may think,
>it is scarcely traumatic for the newborn.

I believe he used the term "barbaric" to mean "uncivilized" rather than
referring to a specific clan of heathens.  

As for trauma to the newborn, I seem to recall some studies indicating that
certain "flight or fight" responses were recognized in the newborn after
the circumcision.  My recollection of this study was from an article
advocating the use of anesthesia before circumcising to minimize this
reaction.  But it's been years since we made this decision so my memory is
fuzzy.  

I don't mind which side of the argument people choose to take (I am anti
circ myself), but at least give reasonable arguments!
--
 Judy Leedom Tyrer
        "A Christian is one who is on the way, though not necessarily very
          very far along it, and who has at least some dim and half baked idea
          of whom to thank"                                Frederick Buechner



Mon, 28 Aug 1995 07:03:10 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view


Fri, 19 Jun 1992 00:00:00 GMT
 Uncircumcision - new JAMA review of two books - my view

Quote:

>Curious, whenever I read something on this subject it always seems
>to me that the most vociferous are those who support it.  Just shows
>the difference in the way people view things.

I really haven't seen any postings supporting it.  There were some
supporting the rights of Jews, Muslims, and those parents who for
other reasons wanted to have it done being protected from people
who should mind their own business.
--
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Gordon Banks  N3JXP      | "Skepticism is the chastity of the intellect, and

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Sun, 03 Sep 1995 01:59:58 GMT
 
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