Voters in San Francisco are set to vote on a ballot measure that would make circumcision illegal in the city. This is not by way of being a good idea.

First of all, in theory all one has to do is go outside the city limits and find a doctor in some place like Oakland. If, however, you’re poor, it’s isn’t likely you can afford to do this. Of course it can be argued that not many people who are poor live in San Francisco, but so what? Those who do deserve access to medical services like anyone else, right?

Second, this is going to cause an instant mess with Jewish and Muslim people in the city. It’s an extremely popular procedure with both religions and a major part of their faith. Saying that people can’t do it, or have to go outside the city to do it, is going to cause much unhappiness with the courts.

Last, and on a personal level, I have yet to see a single good reason why people should be banned from having their boys circumcised. Yes, it’s a procedure the child cannot consent to, but parents make that kind of choice all the time. That’s part of being a parent. There’s also a good deal of medical evidence that points to it having a great health benefit, and decreasing the likelihood of penile cancer and the like.Plus on a personal level, I think it’s far more aesthetically pleasing. I have yet to look at a circumcised penis and think, “Man, that would look better uncut”. It’s one of the few things for me that’s an almost complete mood-killer when it comes to sex (tattoos and excessive piercings are the others).

Regardless of what happens here, I do have one request for those who are against the practice: please, please, please stop calling it “male genital mutilation”. Using the same language people use to describe some of the really horrific things done to women (things which definitely aren’t equivalent), is very insulting and obnoxious. You can be against the practice, sure, but find a different way to talk about it, because while there’s legitimate debate to be had, nothing will make me ignore your viewpoint on the issue faster than you calling it “male genital mutilation”.

Oh, and on a side note… you people have no idea how close you came to seeing a big old penis pic up here. It would have been Sammy Case’s, probably. You didn’t dodge a bullet, but you did block a… oh, never mind.


One Response to “Snicker-Snack”

  1. Intactivist Jew Says:

    . . . It would be nice if some of the reporting on this subject focused on the many Jews who are opposed to circumcision.

    Some Jews feel the time has come for a symbolic bris without surgery.

    Jewish Groups for Genital Integrity

    * Jews Against Circumcision

    * Jews for the Rights of the Child

    * Brit Shalom Celebrants by Mark D. Reiss, M.D.

    * Questioning Circumcision: A Jewish Perspective by Ron Goldman, Ph.D.

    * Beyond the Bris: Jewish Parenting Blog

    * A Case for Bris without Milah. . . .

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