Whose Body, Whose Rights?
Examining the Ethics and the Human Rights Issue of Infant Male Circumcision
PBS (Public Broadcasting System) U.S.A. Documentary 1995
From the U.S. website at http://www.circumcisionvideos.com
"In a new era of children's rights, this independently produced two-part social issue documentary compassionately explores genital mutilation of unconsenting children, euphemistically termed "circumcision." It boldly and responsibly addresses these vital issues long overdue for inner reflection and cultural self-examination:
- history and medical ethics
- consequences of circumcision
- evolving religious attitudes
- legal and constitutional issues
- foreskin functions
- men's awareness and uncircumcision
- medical conscientious objection
- children's rights
Recipient of the Creative Excellence award at the 1996 U.S. International Film and Video Festival, Honorable Mention at the 1996 Philadelphia Film Festival, and Best of Festival at the First Annual Stark Video & Film Festival (1997)."
"Whose Body, Whose Rights? will compel every health care professional, especially doctors and nurses, in taking to heart their oath - Do No Harm."
- Norma Wilcox, RN, University of California at San Francisco Medical School
"I had presumed that men upset by their circumcision had a mental disorder. That impression was dispelled by this video's wealth of factual data about truly natural male sexual functioning and its rational look at some of the very adverse outcomes caused by circumcision."
- Louanne Cole, PhD, Sex therapist and San Francisco Examiner "Sex Matters" columnist
"I know that stopping genital mutilation is the single most important thing we can do to insure the physical and psychological health of men."
- Jed Diamond, LCSW, author, The Warrior's Journey Home: Healing Men, Healing the Planet
"Teachers of male health and sexuality courses will find this to be a valuable tool that raises important questions concerning the right of males to make informed decisions about their own bodies."
- Jan Zlotnick, RN, Health Educator, City College of San Francisco
"Whose Body, Whose Rights? reveals the painful human rights realization that reproductive integrity and sexual health are repeatedly violated through destructive sexual surgeries attacking the most vulnerable members of society."
- Professor Anastasios Zavales, Reporting Officer to the UN Working Group of International Experts on Violations of Genital Mutilation
"This film focuses squarely and necessarily on the question: Does a child's body belong to his parents or to him?"
- Jim Senter, Executive Director, National Child Rights Alliance
"A unique, eye-opening film that reveals an issue too often ignored - infant pain. It should be seen by all practitioners and students in the fields of psychology and psychiatry."
- David Chamberlain, PhD, President, Association for Pre- & Perinatal Psychology and Health
A video excerpt of Whose Body, Whose Rights? is provided on their website.
Male Circumcision, the unkindest cut
By Dr. Gifford Jones
Special to C-Health
ABC News, U.S.A., by Susan Donaldson James, March 12, 2012
New York City is investigating the death last September of a baby who contracted herpes after a "ritual circumcision with oral suction," in an ultra-Orthodox Jewish ceremony known in Hebrew as metzitzah b'peh.
The district attorney's office in Kings County Brooklyn is investigating the death of the 2-week-old baby at Maimonides Hospital, but would not disclose the name of the mohel or whether there would be a prosecution.
The 5,000-year-old religious practice is seen primarily in ultra-Orthodox and some orthodox communities and has caused an alarm among city health officials. In 2003 and 2004, three babies, including a set of twins, were infected with Type 1 herpes; the cases were linked to circumcision, and one boy died.
The mohel who performed the procedures, Yitzchok Fischer, was later banned from doing circumcisions, according to The New York Times. It is not known if he was involved in this recent death.
"It's certainly not something any of us recommend in the modern infection-control era," said Dr. William Schaffner, chair of preventive medicine at Vanderbilt University.
"This is a ritual of historic Abraham that's come down through the ages, and now it has met modern science," he said. "It was never a good idea, and there is a better way to do this." (The modern Jewish community uses a sterile aspiration device to clean the wound in a circumcision.)
In the 2004 death and the more recent one, a mohel infected the penile wounds with Type 1 herpes I (HSV-1), which affects the mouth and throat. It is different from Type 2 or genital herpes (HSV-2), which is a sexually transmitted disease and can cause deadly infections when a newborn passes through an infected birth canal.
Neonatal herpes is "almost always" a fatal infection, according to Schaffner. "It's a bad virus. [Infants] have no immunity and so it's a very serious illness. Now we have another death -- an unnecessary, incredibly tragic death."
The Canadian Press
Dec. 22, 2011
VANCOUVER - A B.C. man who performed a botched circumcision on his four-year-old son on the kitchen floor of his home has lost an appeal of his conviction and been found guilty of a more serious charge.
The B.C. Court of Appeal has stayed the man's conviction for criminal negligence causing bodily harm and convicted him of aggravated assault.
Court heard the boy was born premature at only 2.5 pounds and could not be circumcised at the time, nor did his parents request it.
South Korean Doctors
Peak age of circumcision of males in Korea is 12 years old! Read More ..
UTIs are rare
"Of every 1,000 boys who are circumcised 2 will be admitted to hospital for a urinary tract infection (UTI) before they are one year old."
"Of every 1,000 boys who are not circumcised 7 will be admitted to hospital for a UTI before they are one year old. "
Sur 1 000 garÃ§ons circoncis 2 seront hospitalisÃ©s en raison d'une infection urinaire avant l'Ã¢ge d'un an.
Sur 1 000 garÃ§ons non circoncis 7 seront hospitalisÃ©s par suite d'une infection urinaire avant l'Ã¢ge d'un an.
Anyone who states that urinary tract infections are common among newborn baby boys, and therefore advocates that the genital mutilation of boys ( male circumcision) will stop urinary tract infections, is a liar or misinformed.
Besides, urinary tract infections are entirely treatable.
Men's News Daily Online
Commentary on the David Reimer botched circumcision / gender changed case
CanadianCRC editor's Note: Reminder about our policy: Many sides of an issue are expressed in articles on this website. Many articles contain points of view which should be heard but are not the position of the Canadian Children's Rights Council.
Read what the medical profession associations have to say on this issue
The BMA does not believe that parental preference alone constitutes sufficient grounds for performing a surgical procedure on a child unable to express his own view. . . . Parental preference must be weighed in terms of the child's interests. . . . The BMA considers that the evidence concerning health benefit from non-therapeutic circumcision is insufficient for this alone to be a justification for doing it. . . . Some doctors may wish to not perform circumcisions for reasons of conscience. Doctors are under no obligation to comply with a request to circumcise a child. Read More ..