Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Circumcision: Just say no

^ Click the pic for animation ^
I've always been firmly against what I consider to be a barbaric practice: male circumcision. (Female circumcision is arguably worse, but that's a separate topic.)

Did you know, for example, that the male foreskin, when laid flat, measures about 3x5 inches - the size of an index card? And that this is where most of the nerve endings are? While most men don't take a strong stand against circumcision, it's mainly because they don't know what they are missing - typically, guys are cut at birth.

It seems the standard reason for fathers to cut their son is because they are afraid their son will worry that his penis "doesn't look the same as dad's" - how ridiculous is that? I mean, think about it - if the kid is old enough to notice the difference, then he is certainly old enough to have the ins and outs (as it were!) explained to him.

There are a number of websites devoted to the topic of circumcision and the harm that it causes. I urge all expectant parents to check them out before allowing the doctors to whack off a significant part of their little boy's anatomy. (I'm proud to say that I have persuaded at least three expectant fathers to avoid having it done at birth and instead let their sons make the decision when they are older.) An excellent place to start is nocirc.org - they have a number of links to other good sites. They also have a link to this scientific study (PDF) which shows, totally objectively, the damage this practice causes. I urge you to research this.

Many cut men nowadays are either thinking seriously about, or actually doing, foreskin restoration - non-surgically. While the process takes time, it seems that the results are worthwhile. Here is an excellent video about this topic. It is heartening to see a major news corporation (Canada) dealing with the topic in an honest, forthright way, without any squeamishness about showing penises. Or is that peni? Penii? Who knows...

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