Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Rationalizing harm doesn't make it less harmful: Why circumcision shouldn't be a parent's choice.

(Trigger alert:  If you've been a victim of sexual or physical abuse, you may want to skip this one)

I generally consider myself open-minded, but there will always be a few things that I won't ever view as acceptable.

Circumcision is one of those things.  I hear all these arguments like "It's my child, and I'm just doing what I believe is best for them".  That sounds fine and dandy to some people, but I'm calling bullshit on this one.  Just because it is your child, does not mean you can do whatever you want to them.

Let's look at child molestation for example.  What?!  Oh, hell yes, I went there.  Stay with me on this.  While some child molesters get off on doing harm, others truly do feel that children are sexual beings and that they enjoy the things that are done to them.  They rationalize it.  They feel that the rest of us are just closed-minded and are depriving our children of pleasurable experiences.  Gross, I know.  Now, just because Mr. Pervert-Pants believes with all his widdle heart that what he is doing is okay, should he still be allowed to do it?  Duh, of course not. 

What about the parents that believe in beating their children to a pulp?  Maybe they think their religion entitles them to it.  Maybe its a "family thing".  Maybe they think it is the only way to raise a "well-behaved" child.  They may believe really and truly that they are doing their child a favor in the long run, but once again, does that make it okay?

There are times where a child's rights and well-being need to over-ride parental beliefs. 

Amputating a healthy and vital part of any child's body is unethical.  It is mutilation.  It is stupid.  It is mean.  Your child could even grow up to deeply resent you for it (what, that sounds crazy?  Stay tuned, I'll prove that to you in a future post).  I FULLY realize that parents who circumcise their child aren't doing so with the *intention* of harm, but just because there isn't intention to harm, doesn't mean there is no harm! 

I don't believe that lack of intention to harm or all the rationalizations in the world can make molestation or abuse acceptable, and I don't believe that it makes routine circumcision okay either.  There ARE some things we should be close-minded about.  I'm not condemning circumcisers to hell or anything, and I don't believe that it means they suck as parents in general, but I do hope that people will stop blindly accepting stupid reasons for having their child cut apart. 

There's a reason the circumcision rates are plummeting.  Time to catch on, oh Slow-Ones!


Danielle said...

The circumcision thing really REALLY gets my blood boiling. I get so angry that mothers just aren't made aware of what really goes on during circumcision and why it is so completely barbaric. The more I read and learn, the more I want to scream to anyone that will listen the real facts. Thank you for posting this. The more we get this info out, the more we can save male babies from the knife.

Anonymous said...

i think i love you. great great post.

Ólöf said...

You are brilliant. Couldn´t have said it better myself.

TD said...

Spot on, once again. Fortunately both of my parents apologized for following the medical advice of the time, which makes healing a bit easier - they admitted what they did was wrong and would not make the same mistake if they had that magical RESET button.

As many mistakes as we parents make in the raising of a child, circumcision is one which is completely avoidable. 15 years ago there was enough data available for us to avoid making that mistake with my son. And there is far more data available now. There really is no excuse to be ignorant of the harms and risks of circumcision anymore.

Beth said...

Part of helping others see the issue is to see things from their point of view. Your comments on this issue are so off-putting that any parent who circumcised their older children and are questioning to circumcise subsequent children will immediately shut down when they read your comparison to sexual abuse.

The difficult part of this decision is all of the conflicting research. Anti circ's spout their research, pro-circ's have their own.

Sigh, what are loving parents to do?

Woman Uncensored said...

Loving parents are to use their brains to question things that would be obviously illogical if not for being brainwashed.

Let's see, if my doctor said "Hey, your daughter has boobs. Those *might* get cancer, lets go ahead and cut those off.", I'd instantly see how stupid that is, but people wear blinders when it comes to circumcision.

There are LOTS of moms who circ'd their first son(s) but not their later one(s).

Jill said...

@ TD...I hope that my apologies to my son are enough to allow him to heal as he ages as well.

I was a misinformed parent at the time of is circumcision and I regret it with all of my being.

Hellena Post said...

It may be simplistic, but for those people who circumcise their son's because they're religious, it doesn't quite make sense to me....if God is omnipotent, and perfect, and made us in his image, then why did he stuff up on the design of penis's so much that surgical intervention is needed to make them 'perfect'?? Doesn't that mean he stuffed up?? Doesn't that question the very perfection of God? And who gave him the snip so that he realised his mistake and ordered people to do it?? Is there some doctor in heaven who performed it?? Maybe it was the Holy Ghost?? I dunno, I just thought it was worth pointing out.....

Michelle said...

Just found your blog. I really like this post and the others I have read.

Latinalonestar said...

standing-O! Bottom line, you can cut any other parts of your kids off so why should you be able to cut male, foreskins off? Every square inch of a child's body is protected by law, except the prepuce. It not matter why you do something or how you do something, that doesn't change the scientific fact of WHAT you do. It is fact that circumcision removes healthy functional tissue from a non-consenting minor and it is also fact that circumcision harms the sex organ. I don't care what your intentions are, those facts don't change.

TD said...

@Jill - The first step toward healing is the ability to admit the mistake and learn from it. When you know better, you do better.

I'm sure your son will forgive, especially if you support any restoration efforts he may want to attempt.

Be well!

ChildProtector said...

Beth said...
Sigh, what are loving parents to do?
January 6, 2010 2:47 PM

NOTHING! First, do NO harm. There is NOTHING ANYONE has EVER CLAIMED - not to mention proved - for circumcising your children that is worth killing them for. And circumcising kills children. Click my name above and read some of their names and stories.

DON'T MUTILATE CHILDREN. It violates their most sacred human rights. If you do nothing and your son thinks it's a mistake, he can easily get it corrected. If you do it, and he survives and thinks it's a mistake, he can't correct it, you can't correct it, and no one on Earth can correct it. Don't be an idiot. Leave him as he was given to the world by God/evolution/Mother Nature. If it's a mistake, let it be somebody else's. Not yours. Hint: It is never a mistake to respect other people's human rights, especially your own children's.

Lauren F said...

I feel exactly the same way girl. Thanks for putting my feelings into words! :)

Sentiments said...

I fully agree with, to me, your underlining message here: CHILDREN ARE NOT POSSESSIONS!

Brittney said...

I could not agree more!!! I will be posting this on my blog for people to find. Love your blog!

Nicole D said...

Hellena -

Unfortunately, this is one of the perceptions/excuses that irks me the most. God told the Israelites (Jewish/Hebrew people) to circumcise their males as a sign of commitment/a pact. To set them apart from the other people.

If you are not an Israelite, if you are not Jewish, there is no reason to do this.

Many theorize that the reason He asked this of His ppl, and not a piercing or a tattoo is that it is such a painful thing, such a humbling act, that any other man would not dare to do it without complete commitment. Thus, other tribes wouldn't complete this act to infiltrate the Israelites and thus, take them down from the inside.

Just a bit of Old Testament history. :)

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