You know what absolutely gets on my nerves? When some idiot parents find it gracious to post their child's circumcision on the web for the whole world to see. Some parents actually think it's "cute" or "funny" to post their son's circumcision "story" on a blog, or they actually have the nerve to record it and put it on YouTube of all places. It's the one time on the net where it's perfectly kosher to be pimping your child's dick online and not have it be called kiddy porn.
But you know what pisses me off even more? When said parents actually have the NERVE to tell people leaving comments to "MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS! WE'RE THE PARENTS, WE DECIDE. DON'T YOU DARE JUDGE ME."
You actually post your son's naked body, figuratively or literally online for the whole world to see, and then you're surprised to read that some people actually find your cute little "story" offensive and/or disgusting?
I've got news for you.
Once you post shit online, it's fair game.
People are going to give you a piece of their mind, whether you want it or not.
If you don't want to hear it from others, or be "judged" for the so-called "decisions" that you take, then at least have the decency to make posts about your PERSONAL, "PRIVATE" LIFE visible ONLY TO THOSE IN YOUR PERSONAL, PRIVATE CIRCLE.
Or better yet, keep your sick, disgusting "life" OFFLINE. NOBODY WANTS TO SEE YOUR SON'S GENITALS BEING MUTILATED, much less KNOW about them. They're not even YOUR privates, how in the HELL do you feel entitled to have them mutilated to suit YOUR tastes and preferences, much less POST THEM ON THE FUCKING INTERNET FOR THE WHOLE WORLD TO SEE???
Such parents should get thrown in JAIL for pimping their children's PERSONAL PRIVATE PARTS ONLINE. This is tantamount to S&M KIDDY PORN.
I DO NOT WANT TO SEE, NOR KNOW ABOUT YOUR CHILD'S GENITAL MUTILATION.
WAKE UP PEOPLE.
The world is waking up to the fact that yes, like female infant circumcision, male infant circumcision IS TOO GENITAL MUTILATION.
If you don't want to hear it from others, if you do not want to hear other people's "opinions," then do the world a favor and DON'T POST ON THE INTERNET.
This fucking PISSES ME OFF.
If you don't want people talking about your unmentionables,
DON'T AIR THEM OUT IN PUBLIC.
So What Prompted this Rant?
So some Norine Dworkin-McDaniel woman dares to write on her blog, the "funny" story of how she convinced her push-over husband to go through with a circumcision for their son.
The story is actually quite tasteless. And what was the alibi that finally convinced Dworkin-McDaniel's husband to acquiescence to his son's genital flaying?
The prospect of future hypothetical women refusing to give the boy a blowjob.
They thought about it, erm, long and hard.
Hardy har har...
That was so funny I nearly died!
No but wait. It would have been nice if the story ended there. Oh, no, no, no.
Some OTHER idiot blogger had to give this story a "prize."
A prize for WHAT?
"Best excuse to mutilate a child's genitals?"
No. The words used to "award" this woman are "fearless and funny."
I'll say, "fearless?" In this world where male infant genital mutilation is losing favor in the civilized world fast?
There is nothing EVER funny about "choosing" to violate the most basic of human rights of a healthy, non-consenting individual.
You can read about the "winning" blog post, and the "prize" given here.
Mr. Dworkin-McDaniel Retaliates
It seems MISTER Dworkin-McDaniel was not happy with the negative response his wife's blog post earned, and so he felt the need to fire back at those who expressed disgust at his wife's "funny little story." He posted a long response on a pro-intact group on Facebook, and I'm going to tear it apart on this blog.
"Stewart Dworkin-McDaniel here, Norine’s “emasculated” husband, just wanting to weigh in on some of the less than charitable (and profoundly stupid, judgmental, and uninformed) comments regarding my wife’s brilliantly funny essay."
Well golly-geepers, gee-whiz! It appears we may have struck a nerve. By now he must know that not everybody found his wife's essay as "brilliantly funny" as he did.
As a central character in what was intended to be a light witty distillation of our discussions regarding our decision to have our son circumcised, I feel the need to respond to the vitriolic comments attacking my wife and me that stemmed from our mutual decision.
The road to hell is paved with good intent. "Light and witty" for WHOM? For WHOM was this blog post written? For others, or for yourselves? Sorry, not very many people agreed with you, did they.
Let's talk about the "big decision" trope.
What other parts of your child's body could you "decide" to remove at your whim?
The question that will always be asked on this blog is, without medical or clinical indication, how is it a doctor can even be performing surgery on a healthy, non-consenting child, much less be stoking a parent's sense of entitlement?
Usually, with any other surgery, there must be a medical necessity before a doctor can even consider performing it, let alone consult the parents for any kind of "decision."
So, what was wrong with your son?
"First, Norine and I are both staunch atheists so our decision was not in any way driven by religious duty or dogma."
This just means that you were looking for non-religious ex-posto-facto reasons to go through with a pre-determined "decision" to keep a controversial tradition.
"I actually find the concept of a traditional Jewish Bris to be in very poor taste. Throwing a party to celebrate an invasive medical procedure to cement some mythical pact with an old testament deity is not my idea of making an informed medically sound decision."
Translation: We wanted to circumcise our son, but we wanted to find smart-sounding "scientific" reasons to do it because using "religion" as an excuse is falling out of favor, as evidenced by other "traditions" that would never fly with the same excuse. (IE, female circumcision, slashing your child's head on the day of Ashura, ritual scarring, tattoos, etc...)
"Also, I find comments comparing male circumcision to clitioridectomy to be especially distasteful and profoundly uninformed."
You know what I find distasteful?
Attacking and destroying a straw man to make your argument look good.
Talk about profoundly uninformed; did you know that not all female genital cutting involves the removal of the clitoris? Did you know that a couple of years ago the AAP briefly approved of a so-called "ritual nick" before they were forced to back-pedal by human rights groups?
You know what I find to be "distasteful?"
Comparing the lesser of two evils.
You can't get away with rape "because murder is worse." You can't get away with shop lifting because "Hey! You could be robbing a bank."
Cutting off part of a child's genitals with no medical or clinical indication is wrong, male or female.
"Female circumcision is a detestable, horrific act performed in misogynistic cultures to control women, deprive them of pleasure, and make them servile. It should be prosecuted at every opportunity in a civilized world. Male circumcision on the other hand, has been shown to have real benefits for the recipient in a non-religious context, both medically and psychologically and is in no way comparable to the disgusting violation of the female genitalia (which is without exception, performed on “religious grounds”)."
But WE'RE the "uninformed" ones.
Here, let me enlighten you Mr. Dworkin-McDaniel. Female circumcision is performed on women BY women, because it is believed to make them more "pure," more "hygienic" and more desirable in the eyes of a male suitor. Does that sound familiar, Mr. "I want my son to get blowjobs?"
Women performing "sunat" operations on girls.
Did you know that, according to Rabbi Maimonides, to deprive men of pleasure and make them "servile" to "g-d" was supposed to be the whole point of male circumcision?
"...one of the reasons for it is... the wish to bring about a decrease in sexual intercourse and a weakening of the organ in question, so that this activity be diminished and the organ be in as quiet a state as possible."
You are "just fine" and your organs work to your satisfaction. But you know, millions of circumcised women will testify as you do; they are just as sexually satisfied as you are, thank you very much. You would be interested to know that, contrary to popular belief, female circumcision is not always as "damaging" as you would like to lead others on to believe.
Did you know that contrary to popular belief, no, circumcision DOESN'T destroy a woman's ability to orgasm? Studies show that even when a woman has undergone the worst kind of female genital mutilation (there are many types, did you know that?), that women are still quite able to orgasm? You can read them for yourself here, here, and here.
Closer inspection reveals that nobody actually cares about whether or not female circumcision reduces sexuality or not; what's more important is that male infant circumcision is justified.
But let's continue on a bit with the so-called "benefits."
Neither you nor your wife were interested in these. If I am to believe your wife's blog, this was about whether or not your son would get "blow jobs" as an adult. The "benefits" seem to be secondary.
This point needs to be made clear; neither you nor your wife ever cared about "benefits." Nobody ever does. Those are ex-posto-facto alibis that come AFTER the fact.
Or let me ask, would you have changed your mind had you not found enough "benefits?"
Tell me, is there any number of "benefits" that would make you change your mind and consider female circumcision for your daughters? Some research shows that female circumcision might actually prevent HIV transmission. Read about this here, here, and here.
What if it guaranteed her getting eaten out as a woman? Would that change your mind?
No. It wouldn't.
The point is, "research" and "science" don't actually matter.
Your "decision" to go ahead with your son's genital mutilation runs deeper than that, and you know it.
"But I digress; back to my son’s foreskin. I am a scientist. A degreed biologist and chemist (with a minor in philosophy by the way)."
You know who was also a scientist?
"Therefore when I look at an argument; as a scientist, I apply the rigorous, critical weighing of evidence and data that the scientific method demands and I do not deviate from those axioms and precepts. Philosophically, the arguments range far and wide from Bentham and Mill’s utilitarianism with respect to human suffering to Norine’s comment about the blowjob which was (and most importantly, was supposed to be) a humorous way to drive the point home to me that the foreskin can be an intimidating (and by some accounts) a distasteful distraction to fellatio (ever heard of smegma????)"
Like the so-called "benefits" of circumcision, you do not care about the "science" either, for if you did, you would find that it is all rather flimsy.
Did you know that no medical organization in the world recommends the circumcision of infants? I challenge you to go through the position statements of all the major medical organizations in the industrialized world. They will all tell you that all the "scientific evidence" is dubious and speculative at best, and that there is not enough of it to recommend circumcision. One has to wonder how ever did you come to a different conclusion than the most respected medical organizations in the world.
Yes, we've heard of smegma. Tell us, how much of it collects around Ms. Dworkin-McDaniel's vulva?
Oh, she cleans well enough?
Did it ever occur to you that the rest of the men in the world also have the good sense to keep their organs clean?
Do you dare posit that men outside of the United States have a hard time getting a blow job from their partners?
I'm sorry, but as I will keep repeating, your wife's post was anything but "humorous."
"If Norine’s detractors really think that I consented to the procedure solely on the basis of my son having better, future (a long way in the future I trust!!) sexual experiences, then I marvel at their stupidity and narrow-mindedness. My decision to acquiesce was based on the enumerable studies Norine presented to me regarding the benefits of circumcision that have nothing to do with Yahweh but are based on good solid science."
Then she should have written that.
Not humorous, AND out-of-touch.
THIS got a "prize?"
No, you and your wife's decision had absolutely NOTHING to do with "science," as I am about to point out.
"Lower incidence of certain cancers, lower incidence of genital and urinary infections, and decreased chances of contracting or spreading STD’s including AIDS."
If you were a true "scientist," you would find that all of the "evidence" is rather lacking. You would find that when you compare cancer rates between countries that do and do not circumcise, there is no difference; circumcised men can and do succumb to penile cancer. You would find that the "reduction" that circumcision is supposed to offer is actually quite exaggerated.
You would find that the incidence of UTIs in males is already quite rare; UTIs are more prevalent in females, and are easily treatable with anti-biotics, in boys as they are in girls. The "difference," if any, between UTIs is actually infinitesimally minute, and that circumcision may actually INCREASE them. You would find that a lot of the "research" has been discarded as hopelessly flawed. You would find that the STD's that circumcision are supposed to prevent, including HIV, are more prevalent in the US, where 80% of males are already circumcised from birth, than in other countries in Europe, and the rest of the world, where circumcision is rare.
You would find that, the "research" in Africa is hopelessly flawed. You would find that even if the "research" and the "science" were correct, circumcision would still fail. It would be so ineffective at preventing anything that "experts" that "recommend" circumcision cannot stress the use of condoms. Did you know that condoms don't require a penis be circumcised to function properly?
But this isn't about "science," or "research," now is it.
No. This is about fulfilling cultural expectations, while sounding intelligent at the same time.
Think about this:
Is there any number of "scientific studies?" Any amount of "research" that would EVER cause you to change your mind about female circumcision?
What if the "science" was "solid" and it was proven "beyond reasonable doubt" that female circumcision could "reduce the risk" of some STD that your daughter will most likely not even be at risk for?
The answer is no, you wouldn't.
You and your wife's "decision" to circumcise your son was pre-determined, and this "blog essay" was supposed to be your self-serving justification.
Genital mutilation, whither it be wrapped in culture, religion or “research” is still genital mutilation.
It is mistaken, the belief that the right amount of “science” can be used to legitimize the deliberate violation of basic human rights.
"I’d love to know how many negative comments came from people who have had tummy tucks, face lifts, liposuction, cosmetic dentistry, or other medical procedures that were strictly vanity motivated. In my mind, that’s self-inflicted mutilation with no regard for weighing medical evidence as to the safety or necessity of the procedure. In short, don’t lecture us about our family medical decisions while you admire your silicon breasts in the bathroom mirror."
A straw-man demolition, and non-sequitur arguments.
The assumption is that there were indeed dissenters in Dworkins-McDaniel's readership who had cosmetic surgery such as tummy tucks, face lifts, liposuction etc. Problem is, his argument fails even if his assumption were correct.
Mr. Dworkins-McDaniel conflates elective surgery that adults may choose for themselves, and infant circumcision, which is being imposed by parents and a doctor on a healthy, non-consenting child. If there is no medical indication for surgery, then there is no "family medical decision" to make.
The problem isn't adults choosing cosmetic surgery; the problem is adults imposing cosmetic surgery on a healthy, non-consenting child.
As long as otherwise intelligent people are forcing cosmetic surgery on their children for their own sexual justifications, and as long as they're posting their stories on the NET WHERE EVERYONE CAN SEE, yes we WILL lecture you.
So listen to what we have to say, or stop posting your "family decisions" online.
"There are also psychological implications with respect to an un-circumcised child being ridiculed, ostracized, or worse by their peers but those issues need not concern us here since the mental health and welfare of the child doesn’t seem to factor into any of the more negative comments posted."
Scraping the bottom of the barrel I see.
And what are you teaching your child by mutilating him so that he is not "ridiculed" or "ostracised" by his hypothetical peers?
"It is more important that you fit in and give in to societal pressures than to be yourself, and have others accept you for who you are, as you are."
So are you going to send him to straight school if he turns out to be gay?
Are you going to give him a rhinoplasty if his nose gets too big? Are you going to trim his ears if they start getting too wide? Are you going to bleach his skin if it starts getting too dark? Where does it stop?
Conformity may actually, quite possibly be the WORST reason to perform circumcision on a child.
"Finally, the referencing of websites and studies that bolster your position is absurd, touting them as if they are gospel truth. I can find many expert and scholarly opinions in the opposing camp. It is a hollow position akin to “whoever yells the loudest is right” and it carries no weight with me."
You were supposed to RESEARCH the material given to you, and confirm the SOURCES. Don't tell me you actually just READ what is written on webpages, and believe the bits and pieces that suit you at face value??? You would have found that there is actually very little evidence to support your "decision." Yeah, some "scientist" YOU are...
"I can find websites that profess that the world is flat, JFK was murdered by the phone company, and we never landed men on the moon (Neil Armstrong was cut by the way)."
More straw-men demolition. Unlike these websites, our sources can actually be confirmed. There is no "controversy," even among the scientific elite. With a little research you would find that the trend of opinion on routine male circumcision is overwhelmingly negative in industrialized nations.
No respected medical board in the world recommends circumcision for infants, not even in the name of HIV prevention. They must all point to the risks, and they must all state that there is no convincing evidence that the benefits outweigh these risks. World medical authorities that agree include the Royal Australasian College of Physicians, American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the Canadian Paediatric Society, the British Medical Association, and the Royal Dutch Medical Association.
It ought to baffle readers how a "man of science" like you could have ever arrived at the conclusion you have.
"The bottom line (voiced by the more enlightened and informed respondents on the comment board whether they agree with us or not), is that we made a personal, private decision based on sound medical evidence and ultimately, and that decision was NOBODY’S BUSINESS BUT OURS (and apparently better than half of the US populous currently shares our opinion/decision).
Ah yes, strength in numbers.
Unfortunately for you, it is quite possible for large populations to be wrong. Take female circumcision, for example.
No, the bottom line is, if it's a "personal, private decision," and it's "nobody else's business but ours" you should have NOT POSTED IT ON THE NET.
Once it's on the NET, then it stops being "personal and private."
Do you get it?
"Perhaps in the future there will be a definitive verdict on the circumcision decision but that day is not today."
Or so you would like to believe.
I encourage you to read the position statements of the best medical authorities in the world. They all state that there isn't enough evidence to endorse infant circumcision. It should strike you as odd that parents are expected to make a "decision" based on evidence that major medical organizations in the world could not use to come to a reasonable conclusion.
"I’m sure when I let my son read this many years from now, he will not only forgive us for getting him cut, (we have his foreskin in cryonic suspension in case he wants it back; oh, by the way, that’s funny) but he will be glad that his mother and I spent so much time weighing the decision based on the prevailing knowledge from the medical establishment available to us at the time."
"Here you are son... a part of your penis that you will never get to experience thanks to us."
Actually, no that's not very funny at all.
How do you know he won't be pissed as all fuck, not only that you mutilated him, but also that you publicized his mutilation online and felt the need to respond apprehensively to those who didn't think it was "funny?"
How do you know he won't feel anger and hatred towards you for using bullshit excuses to carry out a cultural ritual to permanently mutilate his organs for life?
How do you know he would have cared less about any "medical benefits" that are already easily achieved with less invasive means?
Just how do you know he's not going to grow up to hate your guts?
Let's hope he doesn't and, as you say, he grows up to "thank" you.
But be aware that that other possibility exists.
"As a footnote, what I find so sad and pathetic is that I needed to write this at all."
And yet, you chose to go ahead and write it...
"I find the negative comments directed at us (Norine) to be just as offensive and unenlightened as those who deem gay marriage or abortion to be wrong in black and white terms with no room or desire for discussion. IF YOU DON’T AGREE WITH GAY MARRIAGE, DON’T MARRY SOMEONE OF THE SAME SEX, IF YOU DON’T AGREE WITH ABORTION, DON’T HAVE ONE, IF YOU DON’T WANT TO GET YOUR SON CIRCUMSISED, THEN DON’T. Just don’t tell the rest of us we’re immoral and barbaric if we decide to do otherwise."
Again, false comparisons, and yet another straw man demolition.
Marriage is something that two consenting adults decide to do.
Abortion is a decision taken by a woman deciding to exercise her freedom of choice to do whatever she wants with her body.
(Actually, the abortion debate is a red-herring; neither side of the abortion debate can successfully argue in favor of child genital mutilation. If you are "pro-choice," then you must believe the maxim "my body, my choice" applies to BOTH sexes. And if you are "pro-life," then you must certainly advocate for a child's right to his own body, as you do his "right to life.")
Infant circumcision involves the genital mutilation of healthy, non-consenting minors.
It violates the most basic of human rights, that of the right to one's own body. For this reason male and female circumcision, though not always comparable, are exactly the same in principle.
"If you don't want to get your son circumcised, then don't" doesn't work if you change the word "son" with "daughter," does it.
No, as long as you or your wife, or anybody else is willing to post their pitiful self-justification stories online for the whole world to see, you had better be ready to hear it. If this is "nobody's business but yours," then keep it to yourselves and don't post it publicly on the net.
By the way, I am the satisfied owner of a well groomed (and well-attended) penis.
I'm not sure what purpose this last bit was supposed to serve. Self-reassurance for having a mutilated member maybe?
The True Purpose of That Blog Post
I'm not buying it. From your reply I can already tell that there was no actual convincing your wife actually had to do. The "decision" was already made. The true purpose of your wife's blog post was to fill a void in her psyche that would otherwise be filled with the joke-telling and whistling in the dark that happens at a bris. She may call herself "atheist," but as someone of Jewish heritage she felt the need to circumcise her son out of conviction. It must have freaked her out to think of raising an intact boy; she probably couldn't handle the daily visual reminder that she's renounced her connection with her Jewish heritage, and so she dug up every scientific sounding article she could that would support her view and make her "decision" sound "intelligent." She wanted to come off as being the "intelligent one," and you the more "sex-oriented male" type, which I find rather sexist and insulting, and can't see for the life of me why you let her write shit like that about you.
The true purpose of your wife's blog post was not so much to tell about how you guys arrived at your "decision," but more to tell about how the both of you mulled over something that was already decided. It was about providing comic relief for the both of you, and she was hoping her readers were just going to laugh along with you.
Well, she was wrong.
Her article was NOT "fearless and funny," but rather, utterly failed to conceal her fear and anxiety. It was a pitiful attempt to secure corroboration and approval. I'm sorry, but there is no virtue in mulling over doing something you KNOW is wrong.
The Bottom Line:
The foreskin is not a birth defect. Neither is it a congenital deformity or genetic anomaly akin to a 6th finger or a cleft. Neither is it a medical condition like a ruptured appendix or diseased gall bladder. Neither is it a dead part of the body, like the umbilical cord, hair, or fingernails. The foreskin is normal, natural, healthy, FUNCTIONING tissue, with which all boys are born.
Unless there is a medical or clinical indication, the circumcision of healthy, non-consenting individuals is a deliberate wound; it is the destruction of normal, healthy tissue, the permanent disfigurement of normal, healthy organs, and by very definition, infant genital mutilation, and a violation of the most basic of human rights.
Without medical or clinical indication, doctors have absolutely no business performing surgery in healthy, non-consenting individual, much less be eliciting any kind of "decision" from parents.
SHAME on "Two Kinds of People" for enabling Norine Dworkin-McDaniel. SHAME on "Two Kinds of People" for perpetuating the illusion of "the great circumcision decision." SHAME on them for awarding the trivialization of child male genital mutilation. SHAME on them for thinking this disgusting article was "funny and humorous."
"Genital mutilation is no joke."DISCLAIMER:
What I've expressed in this blog is my own individual opinion, and it does not necessarily reflect the view of all intactivists. ~Joseph4GI