Well, it's been nearly a decade since I started this blog.
I've tried to faithfully publish my thoughts by making at least one post monthly for nearly 10 years and now I wonder what the future of this blog will be.
The fight to end the forced genital cutting of healthy, non-consenting minors is far from over, in my home country of the United States, let alone the rest of the world.
However, I do feel that the intactivist movement has made strides.
It had been nearly 15 years since I first started questioning circumcision when I decided to start this blog in 2011, and now in 2020 it has been about 24 years since, and a lot has changed.
When I first started researching the topic of circumcision on the internet in say, 1996, there were few resources on the topic, most of which were, in my view, very pro-circumcision.
Indeed, the first website that ever came up in AltaVista (Do you remember that?) was circlist.
There were, of course, also, a few organizations that opposed male infant circumcision, but I found those much later in my journey.
The topic of male infant circumcision was a lot more taboo.
In parenting forums, the bias was always mostly in favor of circumcision.
If anyone ever questioned it, they were usually shouted down by all the other pro-circ parents.
Nowadays, it's not the same.
Where I would see a parent questioning circumcision be overwhelmed by pro-circ parents, now I see more and more parents speaking out in defense leaving baby boys intact.
I used to be one of those activists who always felt the need to counter pro-circ comments on parenting forums, Facebook and other mediums, and I always felt so alone to be practically the only one speaking out.
Now, when I see nasty comments on the internet mocking anatomically correct male organs, I scroll down and I don't even have to comment; there are now enough aware parents out there speaking out.
Sadly, an increase in the intactivist voice among parents also means that a lot of parenting forums and groups have also taken it upon themselves to silence this conversation.
This is a disservice to parents and their children, because this means that parents aren't making fully informed decisions; you can't make a fully informed decision if factual information is deemed "offensive."
Since I started this blog, new organizations opposing the forced genital cutting of healthy, non-consenting minors have arisen.
IntactAmerica, Intaction, and Genital Autonomy just to name a few.
The information database intactiwiki.org has been established.
The award-winning film American Circumcision was published and was even available on Netflix.
Activist Eric Clopper spoke out in a performance he gave at Harvard University; the university has effectively cancelled him and he is now involved in a defamation lawsuit against them.
Male infant circumcision is now being talked about in the mainstream, and it simply is not the taboo subject it once was.
But while more than ever, there is awareness of what's going on in American hospitals, the practice of male infant genital mutilation continues.
The practice continues because it's a moneymaker and doctors have no real reason to stop, even though, reaping profit from performing non-medical surgery on healthy, non-consenting individuals already constitutes medical fraud.
There is still a need to bang the intactivist pot.
For this reason, I plan on continuing to publish on this blog, although I'm sad to announce that from now on, it won't be as often as I'd like.
The sad truth is that your blogger is becoming more and more busy with life.
He is a father of three wonderful children and he works a job whose hours are increasing to support his family.
All is not lost, however; in a way, the goals of my blog are already being achieved.
As I've stated already, more and more circumcision is less of a taboo subject; there is more awareness and the topic is being discussed more openly.
Though I project my presence on this blog is going to decrease in the coming years, there are already other voices speaking out to replace me.
I'm just too busy with my job and family to keep up with any of the latest developments.
And others are already articulating my thoughts and sentiments more tactfully and eloquently than I ever could.
So with this post, I announce that I'll be stepping down, albeit not completely.
I'll still be around to post from time to time, but not as frequently as I'd like.
Up until now, I had been trying to post at least once a month, but I think that more and more, this is becoming less possible.
I'd like to thank all my readership that has followed me this far.
Do check back here from time to time, as I'll still be posting.
Who knows! Maybe I'll find something to post about every month.
I just can't make any promises.
May male infant genital mutilation disappear from American hospitals, truly, every hospital, and soon.
I pray for intactivism for one day to be obsolete, and relegated to the past, where it belongs.
Is there a reason for pessimism among people in America who work against genital surgery on male infants?ReplyDelete
Quite resently I listnened to a conversation between Intact America´s Georgeanne Chapin and Brendon Marotta. They were dicussing a new surwey how doctors and medical personel are selling circumcision to new parents. The belief that circumcision has become less popolar in recent years is not supportet by that survey, newborn circumcision seems more common than ever before, leaving only 20 % (as an average) of newborn American boys with intact genitalia. Also Terryfing to know that 40% of parents were undecided and talked into cutting their sons by doctors and nurses.
As a result of this survey Intact America is going to focus on changing hospital policy on circumcision.
Sorry to say but I am also pessimistic , male doctors are generally circumcised, female doctors have circumcised partners and brothers. Little reason why they by a sudden should change their mind and discourage parents from cutting their sons.
Are American hospitals overstaffed? I find it hard to believe that in any other country, busy OB-doctors could find time to perform unnessecary surgery on precious babies they have helped into the world.
Well, the forced genital cutting of minors is never really optimistic, really, is it... :-/Delete
Well, surveys say one thing, but real numbers don't lie, and, if the CDC is to be believed, male infant circumcision has fallen to 56.9% or so, from where it used to be at 90%. There is a picture of a slide taken at a conference where a CDC spokesman gave a presentation, I forget his name... Berschaoui or something like that, where the number he gave was like 37%. Of course, from his perspective the situation is "dire," and he was actually trying to make the case that the CDC and other medical organizations needed to increase their efforts to sell circumcision to more parents.
I don't think the numbers are at 80%. I'd say 60% is probably a happy medium. But we need to be clear on that there is a difference between the rate of male infant circumcision and the percentage of circumcised men in the US. Pro-circumcision advocates like to point to this as an "ah-hah" moment where intactivists are "inconsistent." If male infant circumcision were to completely cease right now, 80% of US males would still be circumcised; they don't simply disappear.
Yes, male doctors are circumcised, and female doctors have circumcised husband and/or are mothers are circumcised children, but if more parents say "no," then what are they going to do?
The thing with OB/GYNs and other practitioners is that oftentimes they're not the ones who perform the mutilation; it's staff they hire, and staff are told to "do their jobs or find employment elsewhere." It's not doctors pushing pseudo-medicine on parents, its staff they hire. And, of course, staff want to keep their jobs, so they do as they're told. And if parents tell employers that someone tried to give them factual information, nurses or other employees could face being reprimanded or worse, termination.
As I've written elsewhere, doctors and nurses have financial incentive to push circumcision on everybody. Hospitals can charge up to $3,000 in fees. For "a simple 10 minute procedure." It's no wonder doctors and nurses push it.
The CDC run by Thomas Frieden was pushing to increase male infant circumcision in Africa, and presumably in the US as well. With a name like Walensky, I somehow doubt this is changing any time soon. (See my latest post, immediately after this one.)
A medical establishment that profits from male infant circumcision, being headed in large part by people with the conflict of interest of being adherents of a religion that commands the forced genital mutilation of minors is what intactivists are up against, and it's a pessimistic prospect indeed.
On the positive side, numbers are falling, which is why the pro-circumcision crowd is frantic. That only means that intactivists do have an uphill battle.
But as I've said on this post, more parents ARE becoming informed and refusing this for their children, and there's nothing doctors can do, unless they actually go ahead and make it policy to circumcise all boys without their parent's permission.
Doctors and nurses etc. are not going to stop pushing this until it's a liability rather than an asset. Parents need to speak out, and so do men who aren't happy their rights were violated. Light needs to be shine on the fact that this whole thing is based on deliberate misinformation and lying by omission.
So yes, in away, there are a lot of aspects of this fight for which to feel pessimistic, but intactivists have made strides. I invite you to look at parenting forums where the topic is brought up. More people are speaking out. More parents are deciding to stand up to pushy doctors and nurses. And thank goodness. Look for "Your Whole Baby" on Facebook. Tons of parents on there seeing the light.
Search for "the circumcision blame game" article on my blog for a related post.
Thanks for your reply Joseph. My impression is that RIC was slowly declining in America until 2012 when AAP came out endorsing newborn circumcision for its potential Medical benefits. After that OB-gyns and Pediatricians felt encouraged to sell the procedure even more vigorously. Wich they did. Circumcision is also promoted in various online publikations like WebMD, Baby Gaga and others, all telling parents that genital surgery on their newborns is a legit choice to make. Of course those online publicatiins are strongly biased in favour of circumcision. However, they all mention, (with småll letters) that all potential benefits of circumcision also can be obtained without surgery. Wonder if Doctors inform patients about that.ReplyDelete
Thing is, the AAP *tried* to come out “endorsing” newborn circumcision in 2012, but it fell short. Perhaps maybe OB-GYNs and Pediatricians saw it as a green light to push the procedure, but anyone who actually read the 2012 policy statement would know that it was a non-recommendation at best, conflicted at worst.ReplyDelete
While the AAP did try to say that “the benefits of circumcision outweigh the risks” in 2012, their conclusion was that “the benefits aren't great enough to recommend" infant circumcision.
And, as if that weren’t enough, it was also been written that “the true incidence of complications after newborn circumcision is unknown,” further confounding their own “benefits outweigh the risks” mantra.
Still, a lot of physicians, and yes, web publications and parenting forums up and ran with it.
Never mentioned are implications of reaping profit from non-medical surgery on healthy, non-consenting minors. It conflicts with the “parental choice” narrative. Without medical or clinical indication, doctors have no business performing surgery on healthy, non-consenting minors, let alone be giving parents any kind of “choice.”
I am confident that sooner or later this is going to come back and bite physicians who perform male infant genital mutilation in healthy, non-consenting minors in the rear.