((I think a disclaimer is probably needed here, because it’s a touchy subject. But this post is going to be about weighing evidence against speculation, and not judging anyone’s body or appearance. Ladies, gents, your personal aesthetic preference for a certain type of wang-shlong has about less than zero to do with the argument for or against circumcision. Cut and Uncut guys alike are still complete men, they’re still sexy, and there are ladies and gents all over the place that want to polish your unique and I’m sure very gorgeous knob regardless of it’s turtleneck status. Now, onwards.))
If ever a giant flashing CITATIONS NEEDED was due to appear, this would be it.
This article is claiming, based on a recent article in a medical journal called Pediatrics, that pediatricians have come to some sort of agreement that circumcision is the clear and correct choice for newborn baby boys. **insert loud record scratch here**
This conclusion was reached by a group of 14, hear again, FOURTEEN pediatricians on an assembled task force and has yet to receive the necessary due criticisms or peer review to be considered the official stance of the medical community. Not by a long shot.
The rate of circumcision in it’s most popular 1st world nation- the US - is rapidly declining (down to about 56% of newborn males) and so obviously the debate is going to hit a spike. And despite what people on BOTH sides of this debate (and this article) will attempt to say, both sides do have arguments in their favor. But the medical community is NOT agreed in this matter, and many US hospitals are even advising against circumcision, something very new in this country.
So what benefits does the article claim exist in favor of male circumcision. Well, first there is the very popular reduction of STI and HIV transmission. The article cites that the risk of transmission drop by 60%! WOWZAH. At first glance, that is an amazing statistic, but it’s incomplete. That 60% is skewed, as it’s based on studies in Africa, where HIV is rampant and sex education and hygiene options are rarely available.
From a personal standpoint, if a guy ever got into bed with me and said, “No condoms tonight baby, my extra skin has a slightly higher chance of protecting you from my super-herpes,” You could bet your life there would be a Diana-shaped hole in the door.
On top of the inherent problems with that statistic, this is also a procedure being down to reduce the risks of something that the baby won’t experience until (hopefully) sexual maturity and is not an immediate threat to the child’s health. To compare, we don’t go around performing double mastectomies on women who MIGHT get breast cancer sometime down the line (without their consent - some at-risk women do choose to do this).
Another popular reasoning for circumcision parroted in this article are the risk of infant infection. Again, when you look at areas in which clean water and soap are hard to come by, protection from infection is much more dire a need. But in the US, the infections feared by parents is at a measly 5% (which, coincidentally is the same risk of obtaining an infection from the circumcision procedure itself). It’s hardly substantial enough to justify a medical consensus.
The article does not mention what I believe to be both the largest and the creepiest argument for circumcision. That it looks better.
Ugh, creepy. Fathers and fathers to be, I’m sure your cut dick got you some hella pussy in your frat days. But the idea of you looking at your infant sons tiny pee-stick and thinking, “I really want him to get laid as much as possible, so let me give him cosmetic surgery to make his dick pretty” is incredibly irresponsible.
And mothers and mothers to be, what is your thought process here? Because thinking, “you know, I sure do love to deep throat some smooth shaft, I should make sure my son will get the same enthusiastic treatment that I gave to his dad!” …is just. plain. horrifying.
So where do the actual benefits, sans gross Oedipal themes aside, of male circumcision lie? Well, there are several conditions that a male may develop during infancy that can cause severe infections, pain, frequent urinary tract infections and other complications and they can all be cured by the circumcision procedure. ((Among these is the condition of a non-retractable foreskin. However, only 1 in 20 babies are born with an already retractable foreskin. The foreskin takes time after birth to develop, and the vast majority will do so correctly.)) Many of these conditions might happen even in adulthood, which is where the other major argument comes from: not being able to remember the experience of the procedure.
Circumcision, hopefully obviously, is not a fun time. It’s surgery on a very sensitive and delicate part of the body and requires lots of recuperation and healing time. As a conscious adult, this procedure can be horrible, and can pull you away from school or work and could put a giant HOLD button on your sex life. It can also put you through a few weeks of painful unintentional erections and you will remember all of it. As an infant, by the time you leave the hospital for the first time, the deed is done and you will have no recollection of the sordid event. As far as you’re aware, your penis has always been this way and no life-changing event occurred.
Personally, I can definitely see how this argument is appealing, but I only see the appeal when we’re talking about infants who have a complication or condition…NOT infants who’s parents want their penis to be popular, or who don’t want to be responsible for their infants hygiene.
One last bit of information, not really an argument but more of a reassurance, a study among men who were circumcised in adulthood found that about 44% noticed no change in sensitivity or pleasure, while 38% reported an increase in positive sensitivity, and only 18% reporting less pleasure (but many admitted it was a small amount). So, cut men, you are not mutilated freaks devoid of some untapped pleasure treasure.
i love how they pick and choose their facts for studies like this. talking about american insurance companies should pay for genital mutilation when all the testing backing their decision was done in africa? um, wtf?!
i mean, not having sex would decrease my risk of getting HIV. maybe they should sew my vagina shut at birth like they do in some african tribes, too. since we’re already saying it’s okay to fuck with a baby’s genitals based on diseases they may or may not get later in life due to sexual activity.