I have posted in the pro-circumcision section as I want to get the views of those on that 'side' of the debate, or at least those who are willing to engage with this point of view. As some of you who follow the debates in this part of the forum may know, I am interested in the accessibility of circumcisions for baby boys and how lack of access, rather than a really strongly-felt opposition to circumcising, may play into parents decisions (or non-decisions) regarding their baby boy's foreskin.
I have been thinking lately about the distinction between cultural circumcision of baby boys (e.g. Jewish baby boys, some Muslim and African baby boys etc.), versus circumcision without specific cultural meaning (e.g. hygiene, aesthetics, family presences etc.). My understanding is that circumcisions performed for a cultural/religious reason are not generally performed by medical practitioners but rather by ritual circumcisers (e.g. Jewish Mohels, tribal elders, and the like). As such, they would not come under the same regulations as circumcisions performed for non-cultural reasons, and would therefore would never be refused to parents. In fact, it may even be arguable as a 'right' under freedom of religion/anti-discrimination laws. Parents seeking circumcisions for non-cultural reasons, however, may not have the same freedom to choose circumcision for their son(s), in that doctors, depending on their personal view, can refuse to perform the procedure, or to assist in referring to those who would be willing to perform it. Indeed, parents personal beliefs/preferences regarding circumcision may be entirely disregarded in non-cultural contexts, whereas they would be seen as paramount if the circumcision was culturally-motivated.
Now, my point here is, should circumcising baby boys be more or less regulated, and therefore more or less available to parents, depending on whether it is culturally-based or not? My personal feeling is that accessibility and freedom to circumcise baby boys should not be divided along cultural and religious lines; if circumcision is readily available and open to Jewish parents, let's say, I don't see why it should be difficult to access (or even impossible to access in some cases) for other parents who happen to be, let's say, Atheists, just because they don't have that cultural backing, as it were.
Ultimately, I have difficulty understanding why circumcising a baby boy can bring such seemingly divergent outcomes along cultural lines, from completely open, unquestioned availability in some cases, to strict regulation and even outright refusal in others. If different standards are applied purely on the basis of religious or cultural background in terms of the options available to parents regarding circumcision, couldn't that be viewed as discriminatory?
Does anybody have any thoughts on this?
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23-07-2015 21:10 #1Junior Member
- Join Date
- Jul 2013
Is Circumcising Baby Boys Divided Along Cultural Lines?
18-10-2015 12:34 #2Member
- Join Date
- Aug 2011
All I can say is that I had my little boy done for health (hygiene) reasons, family reasons (everyone else is done), and medical reasons. The operation should be able to be done at the hospital, just as it was in the old days instead of having to search the internet for someone to provide the services. Luckily I found the Russell Medical Centre at Mt Gravatt (Queensland) which is only 30 minutes away from my home. It should be the family's choice too. It'd be nice if people kept their nose on their own face when it comes to commenting on other peoples' choices.
18-10-2015 12:52 #3
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01-06-2016 20:20 #4
Just adding my 2c - Muslim circumcision can be performed by anyone. It is part of the Islamic cleanliness requirements but the act itself is not a religious rite or ritual. As such most happen through conventional main****** doctors and is regulated and monitored. It is normal for parents to be denied circumcision as a result. I found it difficult to find a doctor who would support the circ of my baby in Australia but that was before I found out I was having a girl. In the UK my son was born and it was far more straightforward to get him circed however the NHS refuse to support cultural/religious circ before 6 months and even then there are extensive questions and checks. A fair compromise I guess?
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