Monday, June 25, 2012

America needs to have a serious discussion about newborn circumcision and why we are so complacent in this tradition of parents having a piece of their son sliced off before he has any say in the matter. The foreskin contains a large quantity of erogenous nerve endings, and deciding for someone whether or not he gets to experience the potential sensations offered by those nerve endings is a violation of his bodily autonomy.

He may be your child, but his body does not belong to you. Your traditions do not matter to him yet. He should be allowed the chance to make the decision for himself.

[Visit this post from the lovely Athena of My Life as a Grown-Up for more discussion on the issue]


  1. I support circumcision, but not for religious reasons. I believe that circumcision makes personal care and body maintenance much easier...and (trying to say this as delicately as possible) the majority of American men don't seem to have a problem with their erogenous nerve endings.

    I can understand the counter-point as well. Parents are making someone's decision about their bodies at a time when they cannot do so themselves. Ethically, it's easy to draw parallels between circumcision and gender assignment for children born with ambiguous reproductive organs. But I just don't think that foreskin has the same implications.

    1. I suppose that this is something about which we simply disagree. When making any sort of arbitrary decision about someone's body in a situation in which the person is unable to contribute to the discussion, serious arguments and beneficial reasons must be given to show that the decision will have a significant benefit to their well-being. I just don't think that the reasons that people give for circumcising their children at birth are sound enough to warrant the procedure.

      Also...American men probably don't have a problem with our nerve endings because we don't know what we're missing. As goofy as it sounds, I never had a chance to experience my foreskin, so I can't say either way whether it is better or worse. What I can say, however, is that I wish that I had been given the opportunity to make the call on my own.

  2. good point.
    (and what's this bs about personal hygiene? pff)