The Worlds View:
- Routine infant circumcision [RIC] for nonreligious reasons is not practiced in first-world countries except the United States.
- 82% of the world’s living men are intact.
- Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and Britain once circumcised their boys, but have ceased the practice.
Circumcision in America:
- It is sad that the practice of cutting little boys and girls took hold in the US a hundred years ago, when doctors thought that it would stop masturbation (it doesn’t).
- Many doctors of that era believed that a normal foreskin could cause disease and lead to increased incidence of “self-abuse.”.
- John Harvey Kellogg, of cereal fame, was a proponent of genital cutting as a cure for this “horrible practice.”.
- He recommended performing circumcision “without administering an anesthetic, as the pain attending the operation will have a salutary [health-giving] effect upon the mind, especially if connected with the idea of punishment.”.
- As more women spoke out against the practice, the circumcision of girls ended ( the last girl-circumcisions in the US paid for by Blue Cross health insurance was sometime in the 1980s, and girl-circumcision was outlawed in the U.S. in 1997), and now that men are increasingly speaking out against this harmful surgery, boy-circumcision is disappearing in the U.S. as well.
- It is a difficult thing for someone who was circumcised to then turn around and protect their child from this harm.
- I know you have the power to keep your son safe and whole, and to help him be part of the first wholly intact generation in the US in a hundred years.
- Non-ritual circumcision evolved from a misunderstanding of bodily function by physicians of the late-19th century.
"I suggest that all male children should be circumcised. This is 'against nature', but that is exactly the reason why it should be done. Nature intends that the adolescent male shall copulate as often and as promiscuously as possible, and to that end covers the sensitive glans so that it shall be ever ready to receive stimuli. Civilization, on the contrary, requires chastity, and the glans of the circumcised rapidly assumes a leathery texture less sensitive than skin. Thus the adolescent has his attention drawn to his penis much less often. I am convinced that masturbation is much less common in the circumcised. With these considerations in view it does not seem apt to argue that 'God knows best how to make little boys.'" R. W. Cockshut, Circumcision, British Medical Journal, vol. 2 (1935): 764.