Women and circumcision: Leave me out of it

|
(172)

Here’s the thing about the circumcision debate: Like everything else between men and their foreskins, women want nothing to do with it.

A while back, I was at a blues club when a tall, slim, blond fellow asked me for a dance. I’d seen him out on the floor and he seemed like a smooth mover (blues dancers, unlike your average oonst-oonsters, tend to trade partners), so I said yes.

Turns out, I was right. He was a good lead: firm but gentle, playful yet clear. The only problem was, about a minute into the song, he started urgently not-quite-whispering about circumcision. Like, did I know it was mutilation? Had I ever slept with a natural guy? Wasn’t it better?

When I told him I wasn’t accustomed to discussing my sex life on the dance floor, he assumed I didn’t and I hadn’t so I couldn’t possibly say – and, in a show of great evangelical fervor, handed me a card directing me to a website of one, Ms. Kristen O’Hara, who’d authored a book called “Sex as Nature Intended It.”

I dismissed him for the sheer absurdity of his timing as much as anything else. But that was before his cause was set to appear on November’s ballot, thanks to the efforts of Lloyd Schofield and the intactivists (band name, anyone?) who’ve collected more than 7,000 signatures from preservation-friendly petitioners.

As an indisputably happy transplant to the land where cheeseburgers come toy-less and cats have their claws, I was perplexed to find myself perplexed by the proposal.

Was it a latent shred of Judaism somehow stirred up? A knee-jerk reaction to state intervention into this most private of matters? The inevitable result of growing up in a society that gets giggly over the merest suggestion of sexuality – Weiner’s wiener being only the latest example?

Or was it because we’re just so culturally inured to the custom that we treat those who oppose it as freaks? (Anyone else remember Alan Tudyk’s caricature of a gay German drug addict lamenting his lost foreskin in 28 Days?)

I wasn’t – and still am not – prepared to say. It’s complex issue, muddled by the phenomenon in which inhibition and hilarity combine to derail honest conversation. Add religion, equal protection, and a loaded term like “nanny state,” and it’s no surprise the matter has billowed into overwrought emotion on all sides.

But let’s forget – for a moment – vicious Monster Mohels who thirst over infant blood, fathers protecting their sons’ locker-room status, and doctors citing STI-prevention studies that were neither conducted in, nor aimed at, populations in this country. Let’s focus on one group that definitely doesn’t belong in the debate: women.

If my erstwhile blues partner was seriously trying to recruit supporters to his way of thinking, he should have known that an unsuspecting woman on the dance floor would not an ideal target make.

Nonetheless, I admit that a mix of consternation and bemused curiosity got the better of me. I ran reconnaissance on the website – a dreadful 90’s flashback minus only the midi – and was horrified to find that, as an unsuspecting women, I was precisely this Mr. Blues’ target. Indeed, I was the crucial component of his argument.

“The surgically altered circumcised penis makes it difficult – in some cases impossible – for most American women to achieve orgasm from intercourse,” the website proclaimed boldly.

Amid jerky, continuous-loop videos that looked like low-def pornos, and first-person testimonials that sounded like amateur online erotica, nary a word could be found about the person behind (or not, as the case may be) the prepuce. The entire site purported to tell me what I, as a woman, would want from my lover. And all signs pointed to extra skin.

Among O’Hara’s various assertions are that cut members miss out on the retracted foreskin bunching up to seal in vaginal moisture; that decreased sensitivity forces circumcised men have rough “adrenalized” sex; that circumcised men must take longer strokes which deny women ideal clitoral contact; and that the coronal “hook” of a circumcised penis rides along the rippled skin of the vagina, creating uncomfortable friction (the accompanying illustrations put me in mind of the Ruffles have R-R-R-Ridges commercials. Of course, Trojans have r-r-r-ridges, too – on the “Her Pleasure” condoms designed for the very purpose of creating friction.)

The website claims that the head of an uncircumcised penis is “soft, like velvet,” but that circumcised sex is like “being poked with a hard broomstick.” All of this to the following conclusion: men who are bad lovers, who pound like jackhammers, who leave their partners sore, simply can’t help it.

I’m sorry. I’m not denying that there may be physical differences, but my book, the unpracticed and unskilled just don’t get off that easy – pun totally intended.

Now, as it turns out – Mom and Dad, if you’re reading this, I sincerely apologize – I’ve had it both ways. And I’m going to go out on a limb here and assume that I speak for a large number of women when I say that I don’t find there to be categorical difference between men who are intact, and those who aren’t.

I’m sure O’Hara and her passionate band of male followers would tell me I’m either vastly lucky, vastly unlucky, or too tuned-out to tell the difference. But I have another analysis: sex is a highly variable, highly personal act.

Take the following unattributed account from O’Hara’s book: a woman describes sex – her first time – with a cut boy on the beach who “literally jumped [her] bones,” pummeled her, and left her feeling “almost dead.” A year later, she had her first natural sex with a boy she’d spent an idyllic summer skinny-dipping and milking cows alongside. Unlike the beach bum, he began the event by kissing her.

Well, no shit she felt differently.

If O’Hara were really a maven of sexuality – or if she paid any attention to the decades of medical literature that precede her – she’d know that sex has as much to do with a person’s head as his or her loins. And if she really had a drum to beat for female satisfaction, she’d be saying anything but “I’m sorry folks, it’s all out of your control. You’re at the mercy of what a masked doctor did 20 or 30 or 40 years ago.”

Women who are in bed with men – indeed, people who are in bed with people –should be encouraged to discuss their needs, say what they want, and help their partners become the best lovers possible. To suggest that a certain kind of sex is the inevitable result of circumcision is not only disempowering, but downright demeaning – for all parties involved.
While O’Hara’s website is clearly over the top, speculation as to women’s preferences pepper online information sharing forums, anti-circumcision websites, and even the literature listed in the resource section of MGMbill.org, which sponsored the San Francisco ballot measure.

To be certain, intact penises have some nifty tricks up their sleeves – thank you, I’m here all night – that circumcised penises just can’t pull off. Or course, if you’re wearing a condom, a lot of them won’t matter. And the – erm – polls can be twisted either way: many say women prefer circumcised penises. Since we’ve put the size debate (for the most part) to rest, it seems fair to reiterate that what you’ve got is less important than how you use it.

I am not trying to say that men shouldn’t get a say in their own anatomy. Even if you call circumcision a personal choice, no matter how you slice it – ok, ok, enough – it’s never really been down to the person who actually matters.

This is about a man’s relationship to his own body, which is why “what women want” shouldn’t play a role.

After all, we’re universally appalled when men’s preferences drive women to seek labiaplasty. (An analogy carefully chosen: it seems greatly unfair to draw a comparison to the vastly more invasive, vastly more dangerous practice of female genital cutting – which, unlike circumcision, has nearly always served to make sex difficult to completely impossible for women .)
There’s a more sinister side to the tendency to make male circumcision into a female issue. It overrides the question of bodily autonomy, and implies that men can only experience their body by acting out their sexual identity through women.

The issue becomes a man’s ability to please women – the equally problematic flip side, of course, being that if a man does a fine job of pleasing his partner, no harm has been done.

Framing the debate in this way cements women’s role as a passive fixture in the relationship, while also diffusing the man’s power (and responsibility) by focusing attention on an external, uncontrollable element.

Making that uncontrollable element controllable sounds great. The problem is, your infant son didn’t choose to be circumcised, but he also didn’t choose not to be. While a neonatal circumcision is irreversible, it’s not like waiting “until he can decide” is wholly without consequences, either.

“I’m glad I’m circumcised,” a friend told me recently, “and I’m sure glad I don’t remember it.”

It’s impossible to say how my friend would have felt about his circumcision had he grown up in a different cultural atmosphere, and mores may well be changing to the point where he would be just as happy whole.

According to the MGM bill’s own website, 90% of male babies already leave Bay Area hospitals intact. It would be foolish to pass a ban based on the assumption that masses of infants are senselessly whisked away to be docked while their mothers, drugged-up and dopey, lay unawares.

And, regardless of your views on the matter, it is likewise foolish to assume that damage between men and women can be introduced or repaired by a foreskin.

Take, for example, Mr. Blues. Now I didn’t ask, but both his fervor on the subject and statistics – as intactivists are fond of pointing out – would indicate that he was altered. side from his attempt bordering-on-low-grade-sexual-harassment to brainwash me, he seemed like a nice guy. And, despite all, we had chemistry. At least on the dance floor.
He was sensitive, attentive, spontaneous – and though I’d never want to be in bed with him, I daresay someone would. Because in the end, all those things matter – at least to women – a lot more than a few inches of skin, nerve-rich though they be.

 

 

Comments

Then there are those of us who think an uncircumcised penis looks like a Shar-Pei.

Posted by Radical Chick on Jun. 21, 2011 @ 2:29 pm

In researching this issue, I was fascinated to learn that there is a growing Jewish movement against circumcision. (disclosure: I am not Jewish) I also discovered that there is an alternative to the circumcision ceremony (Brit Milah) called Bris Shalom or Covenant of Peace. This is a welcoming/ naming ceremony in which prayers are recited and the circumcision is omitted. Here are a couple articles I found interesting because they come from a Jewish perspective~

New mom Sarah Rockwell describes how she arrived at the decision not to circumsize her baby boy~

http://www.beyondthebris.com/2011/04/lucking-into-bris-shalom.html

A Jewish youth speaks out~

http://www.beyondthebris.com/2011/06/on-circumcision-authority-and.html

Posted by Lisa on Jun. 21, 2011 @ 6:14 pm

However most Jews continue to participate in a traditional bris.

Everyone is missing the point here. People are opposed to this measure because by 8-1 they don't believe this is an issue in which the government should impose itself. This goes for those opposed to and in favor of circumcision. So arguing about whether circumcision is good or bad or religiously required or not isn't going to change anyone's mind on how they vote on this. People don't want the government involved. Period.

If the organizers of this measure were actually serious about getting it passed they would have laid the ground for a public education campaign 2-4 years BEFORE they got it on the ballot. Instead they jumped right to the most draconian solution - a government ban, which they've supported by mocking religion and making Jews out to be monsters. In the process they've turned off most voters and hardened people's opinions. They couldn't have run a more inept or offensive campaign had they tried.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 21, 2011 @ 7:52 pm

The reason that so many people don't feel that they should involve themselves in the decision is that circumcision has been falsely portrayed to the public as a harmless procedure which causes no suffering or side effects, and is therefore only a cultural choice.

As we have established well in this discussion, that rosy portrayal of circumcision is totally at odds with reality, and if most voters knew what circumcision is really like (and that it has resulted in the deaths and maimings of hundreds of children) they certainly -would- consider it a civic matter that should be decided by the entire community, in its capacity as the backstop guardian of children's lives and freedom.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 21, 2011 @ 8:41 pm

A long way indeed, before you're going to convince people of that Eric. But I think you should devote your life to trying and focus EXCLUSIVELY on this issue. The Children deserve no less.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 21, 2011 @ 9:03 pm

I have given this issue a lot of thought, and I must confess that I'm starting to question whether a ban is really the right tactic to pursue at this time. I certainly want to see an end to this practice. However, I am beginning to wonder if a concerted campaign to educate the public might be the better, more effective approach.

To have any real prospect of success, we need to do more work to change hearts and minds. First, we must recognize that for many parents, this is a difficult and agonizing decision. Generally, it doesn't help to berate people. It just causes people to become more entrenched in their beliefs. We have to recognize that most parents believe that they are acting in the best interests of their child. They genuinely want to do the right thing. This is why a respectful campaign might be a more effective approach -- because people are more willing to listen when they are treated with respect.

Fortunately, many parents already have conflicts about circumcision and they only need better information to come to the right decision. But unfortunately, this campaign got off to a disastrous start with the introduction of that anti-semitic comic strip. We should not tolerate anti-semitism or bigotry of any kind ever. It has no place in this campaign. So, we need to stand up and clearly state that it is unacceptable. This is a real turn-off to potential allies and supporters and we should recognize this.

Right now, religious and parent groups are forging alliances and gearing up to defeat the measure. So we have a very polarizing situation. We need to recognize this and start over. And we must begin the difficult process of educating people and winning them over to our side.

I think we would do well to take a lesson from the women who have attempted to change the cultural practice of female genital mutilation. The more successful challengers have worked to change the hearts and minds of the various tribes rather. As Suntou Touray of the Mandingo tribe explained,

"Winning the hearts and minds of people is relevant with regards to the ways and manners of communicating with various tribes on such a sensitive issue. Choice of words becomes a crucial asset in addressing the impact it has on society...undervaluing their intelligence, level of ignorance and blunt statements only increase the resolve of the communities practicing it. They will continue to do it out of defiance even when the government outlawed it, for that's how deep rooted it is in them."

While I agree with Eric that the government has a right to step in in order to protect the rights and welfare of children, for once I agree with Lucretia that we also need to educate people before we attempt to institute a ban. Otherwise, the measure is likely to go down to defeat and the ban could be so polarizing that it leads to unintended consequences (adverse court challenges, etc.). And this would not serve the interests of the children we wish to protect. Just saying.

Posted by Lisa on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 4:40 pm

First, it must be repeated - the measure is not a ban. It only seeks to leave the decision to men once they are adults.

Second, the practice of doing it to children would indeed almost completely stop if were made illegal.

Circumcision is dangerous and has to be carried out very carefully in very well controlled circumstances. There's no way that parents on any large scale could get away with doing it illegally.

Third, the U.S. is a complex industrial society, not a set of little tribes. Getting the conversation started here requires something like a ballot measure to get people take it seriously, pay attention, and debate the matter.

Clearly the ballot measure has created extensive very educational debates on this and many other blogs.

I call that a successful campaign at this stage, whether the measure wins or loses.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 5:12 pm

How about instead of *banning* it, we just pass a law mandating that the choice be *postponed* until the *person* who's getting cut can decide for himself?

Oh... oops, that's exactly what this initiative is trying to do!!!

All snarkiness aside, you make some good points. The comic is totally counterproductive. An education campaign is very valuable and that groundwork should (and is) being done.

I hope that we soon get to the place that Australia and New Zealand are in, where it had become so rare that it's hard to find a doctor to do it. At that point, the medical associations got together and recommended that it not be done except on religious/medical grounds. After that each successive Australian state, one by one, passed laws banning the procedure from being performed in public hospitals, again with a religious or medical exception. And at this point, you're eventually going to get a situation where almost no one is circumcised except a few diehard religionists. And at *that* point, society is going to be ready to ask the question, "If we ban baby torture without consent in general, then why do we let people do it on religious grounds? Do we let people have human sacrifices on religious grounds? Or does the state have a role in protecting children, and people's autonomy over their bodies, that supercedes religion?"

That said, there is a "right and wrong" about this. And cutting people up without their consent is just plain wrong! You can argue that it's counterproductive to the larger strategy to put it on the ballot before society is ready for it, and maybe you have a point, but once it's on the ballot there is really only one moral way to vote on this.

And furthermore, I would actually argue that there's a point to putting it on the ballot, even if it doesn't win. It gets the issue on the radar. Would we even be having these conversations if it weren't on the ballot? I don't think so. I barely gave this issue a moment's thought before it got put on the ballot. And yes, some of the publicity has been exceptionally bad because of that comic, but without the initiative being on the ballot, this issue wouldn't have any publicity at all. Having it there has made the education campaign a lot more visible now, even if it has also given more visibility to some idiocy.

You know how it goes with any form of activism: first they ignore you; then they laugh at you; then they fight you vigorously; then you win.

Posted by Greg on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 5:12 pm

I'm just thinking in terms of tactics. However, I'm not confused on the moral issue. I think it's completely unjustifiable to cut a baby, whether a boy or a girl. I agree that it's a form of torture, sexual abuse, etc. But, from all indications, the measure appears to be doomed. So I was just trying to think of a more effective approach. That said, you've both made good points. And you're right, it did get the conversation going. I guess that's a good a thing. Anyway, it's already on the ballot, so I intend to vote for it.

Posted by Lisa on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 5:29 pm

solve this problem.

Like anti abortion complainers, don't have one. Don't have children, if you do have children, don't circumcise them. Easy, problem solved.

It is so odd that supposed progressives are so interested in what other people are doing all the time, and are constantly trying to dream up ways to legislate them.

But it drives you all so crazy when its done to you.

Also the equating male circumcision with female circumcision and then blabbering about morals and values?

Posted by matlock on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 12:50 pm

Except that I was circumcised against my will and there is nothing I can do to change that. My personal rights were taken away, permanently, without my permission. How do you suggest I solve that problem smart ass? Invent a time machine?

Other children should simply not be subjected to the same violation.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 4:16 pm

don't breed and you won't have to worry about it.

Posted by matlock on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 11:32 pm

Someone's worried?

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/22/sf-circumcision-ban-lawsuit_n_8...

SF Circumcision Ban: Lawsuit Seeks To Block Ballot Measure

SAN FRANCISCO -- A lawsuit has been filed on behalf of Jewish and Muslim families in an effort to block a San Francisco ballot measure that would ban the circumcision of male children.

The suit filed Wednesday asks a San Francisco judge to remove the initiative from the November ballot. The plaintiffs argue that California law bars local governments from restricting medical procedures....

Posted by Guest on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 1:40 pm

And people are just lining up to support a campaign which has based it's entire reasoning on mocking religion and making monsters out of Jews. Sounds like the perfect campaign which people want to be involved in!

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 6:17 pm

Is the big split between the reality and the polling data on that one question. I even found data to back up the Chron citation. Thus far, you haven't found any data to back up your assertion that it's not true.

Overall, I agree that it's not going to win this time, though I do question the margin, given that odd gaping chasm between the poll, and reality on the one question that can actually be measured.

But that's not what these groups are worried about. They're worried about the conversation itself. They don't even want this to be an issue for discussion, because if you put this on the table as a political issue, the political winds may eventually change.

Unfortunately for them, they can't turn back the tide of history. This is already being challenged as a human rights issue throughout the civilized world. Those challenges are only going to continue and grow stronger.

Posted by Greg on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 9:01 pm

That's right Greg. Keep telling yourself that.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 9:23 pm

The reason you have to do it to babies is because adults don't want to. That is simply freakish.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 9:38 pm

It seems like girls care more about it than guys do. A have heard from a few girls that will talk about boys penises around other girls. Girls can get very picky about it. When a girl gives birth to boy a lot of her friends will ask did you get him circumcised or when are you going to get him circumcised?

Posted by Tyler on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 3:05 pm

When the US was framing our federal law to protect girls from even a pin-poke to draw one ceremonial drop of blood, with no religious exemption, my male friends and I were jumping up and down and applauding the US step toward enlightenment and respect for human rights. No doubt that measure couldn't have passed if only women supported it.

Likewise you certainly do have a right and duty to stand up for human rights even when it involves a gender that you are not. I had a basic human right to keep my whole pleasure-receptive body and our society - blinded by tradition - FAILED to protect me. YOU have a chance to make this right.

To use this issue as comedic fodder while babies are being harmed is despicable. Get bent.

Posted by Ron Low, Chicago on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 5:31 pm

This is starting to not be funny anymore....

"Frenulum. The prepuce is usually tethered at the bottom by the frenulum. The frenulum's function is to provide pleasure by stretching during sexual intercourse. In fact, the frenulum is coloquially known as the "sex nerve" in France and perhaps throughout Europe. By destroying this stretching action, circumcision completely destroys this fundamental means of sexual pleasure in the human male. Taylor hypothesizes that stretching of the frenulum during coitus is provides a stimulus for ejaculation.47"

http://www.cirp.org/library/anatomy/

Posted by Guest on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 9:31 pm

Seriously....

http://www.cirp.org/pages/anat/

"The foreskin has an inner and outer layer. The outer foreskin layer contains nerve endings which respond to gentle touching during the early stages of sexual arousal. This helps to trigger an erection. The nerves of the inner and outer foreskin contribute to the experience of penile stimulation, up to and including orgasm. These receptors are stimulated by stretching, or when the foreskin rolls over the surface of the glans during intercourse or masturbation. (see `the gliding mechanism,' below).
The foreskin contains sensory receptors called Meissner corpuscles. We believe that these nerves, similar to nerve endings in the fingertips, are there to provide pleasure, as well as fine sensory perception. This seems to help a man to enjoy sex longer without ejaculating prematurely, because he can more easily tell when he is approaching the threshold of orgasm.
Stimulation of the frenulum and ridged band results in intense pleasurable feelings during arousal."

Posted by Guest on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 9:44 pm

You're the same "Guest" who posts again and again, moving from mocking religious texts to posting propaganda from anti-circumcision sites. No one cares about your dick, or what you feel is your lack of it. Go attend a support group for circumcised men and give us all a break.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 9:10 am

Circumcision is gross.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 12:09 pm

There must be people who were circumcised as adults who could fill us in. Which way is better? Is there really much of a difference?

I'm really curious now. Am I missing out on something or not?

Posted by Guest on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 10:18 pm

Who because of a medical condition had to be circumcised when he was 35 (he was born in Greece). He said the procedure itself was painful and he never would want to undergo it again, but that there was absolutely NO difference in sexual pleasure before and after. He said he couldn't feel any difference whatsoever.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 9:08 am

"I tell people on a scale of 1 to 10 that intact my sex life was a 10. Circumcised it was a 3, and restored it is a 7. Ill never have a 10 again (only God can design the perfect penis!), but a 7 is a heck of a lot better than a 3! (P.S. I have 2 intact young adult sons who are both grateful they were kept that way.)" - From: "Circumcised as an Adult"A guy who was intact, got cut, and restored his foreskin: http://notjustskin.org/node/47"

Source: The Bay Citizen (http://s.tt/12IdU)

Posted by Guest on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 9:37 am

"My foreskin was used in all kinds of ways during sexual activity, and its inner surface was the most sensitive part of my penis (more sensitive than even the glans)."

http://www.notjustskin.org/node/47

Posted by Guest on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 9:39 am

Interesting 'Lucretia'.

Previously you stated "I've had friends who had to be circumcised as adults and they said there was absolutely no difference in sensation before and after."

Friends.. They.. plural.

Now you are saying you have -one- friend about whom you are making this claim.

The fact that you can't get your lies straight, shows clearly that you are outright bullshitting to try to defend a practice that is indefensible; simply because you are a culturally conservative dinosaur who can't handle joining the 21st century when it comes to moving forward human rights which challenge your archaic beliefs.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 3:00 pm

I was giving a singular example Eric. If you wanted plural I can give those too.

The fact is you are the epitome of the nanny stater who wants to control every single decision an individual makes. And it drives you crazy that the vast majority of San Franciscans agree with me on this issue and that every single elected official and major organization in the bay area has come out strongly against this measure. You just can't stand it. You can't get through your skull why people won't just shut up and allow Eric Brooks and his Keystone cops make their decisions for them without a fight.

But we won't Eric. And after this we're going to change the requirements to get measures on the ballot so city voters won't have to be subject to the vagaries of intactivists and their crazy minions - people like you. We have the numbers and the money to do it - and we're going to.

Just watch.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 3:15 pm

Lame answer. Desperate backpedaling. I'm not buying it. Unfortunately for you, I have a good enough memory that I knew you had changed your story.

And since your believability seems to be slipping. How about furnishing the link to an article which verifies what you just claimed about the Board of Supervisors and other legislators.

Prove it.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 3:39 pm

When the ban fails to pass, I'm going to think of how angry it will make you and just laugh.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 7:42 am

Actually, I'm not expecting it to pass this round. I'm simply making clear that the right wing cultural zealot 'Lucretia' is lying her ass off. Note that she didn't respond to my challenge to prove what she is claiming.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 10:03 am

ha.

No liberal has ever circumcised an offspring? so comical.

Some on the left complain that they can't legislate other peoples opinions as fact.

Posted by matlock on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 11:57 pm

Lucretia you are SO wrong.

Posted by Guest on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 4:18 pm

What if all this time the reason women didn't enjoy sex with me was because I was circumcised?!

Posted by Guest on Jun. 22, 2011 @ 10:41 pm

"Conventional wisdom at the time (which is still around today, unfortunately) said that there was no difference between being intact and being circumcised. Common sense should have told me otherwise, but I was young. Following circumcision, the constantly exposed glans dried out and its surface became ordinary skin rather than moist mucous membrane. The surface became calloused rather than delicate, and although the nerves were still there below the surface, the calloused, dry, and thicker skin of the glans definitely decreased sensation. In addition, the lack of moveable skin on the penis made sexual activity more difficult and usually required the use of lubricant (saliva or artificial) to avoid too much friction.

I married, and sexual intercourse was difficult for my wife and me. We had to make sure that there was enough lubrication (natural or artificial) to avoid the discomfort of friction for her, but not too much lubrication or I could not have enough glans sensation to reach orgasm easily."

http://www.notjustskin.org/node/47

Posted by Guest on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 9:41 am

Don't watch this video of a baby getting circumcised if you don't want to get angry.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bRIT5IdTpgY

Posted by Guest on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 9:51 am

The number one reason I'm not going to watch it is because of all the born again types who complain about the mess that is abortion.

Anything that involves blood and guts such as heart surgery or removal of cancerous areas should be banned too.

Posted by matlock on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 1:00 pm

Every. Single. One.

You really have to wonder about the intelligence of the sponsors of this initiative when the end result is that every single member of the Board is opposed to it. Not only that - every SF Assembly member and Senator, the ACLU and the Muslim Lawyers Association, the NAACP, all members of the DCCC, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the SF Medical Society... I've never seen as united of a front on a political measure before in my life.

Major FAIL.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 12:52 pm

Of course politicians are saying in public that they are against this. This is simply because they don't want to risk putting their political heads on the chopping block of the conservative Jewish lobby, which almost universally manages to cow elected officials into a dark corner whenever they dare to challenge anything to to with Israel, or conservative Jewish ideology.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 23, 2011 @ 3:09 pm

This issue has nothing to do with Israel, nothing to do with conservatism and nothing to do with Judaism - although both Jews and Muslims would be disproportionately impacted by its implementation.

Oh - and weren't you just babbling about how you weren't provided a link to the website of the coalition against this measure? I don't know if you've heard of a new-fangled thing called "Google" but it exists and you can use it! It's here: http://www.stopcircban.com/coalition.htm

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 1:02 pm

This is a first! You actually backed up a claim... I'm truly impressed.

The fact remains however, as I stated, that the only possible reason every single one of those politicians are voicing opposition to such a sensible human rights based ballot measure, is the fact that they don't want to be attacked by the conservative Jewish lobby.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 4:10 pm

Just below is the list of 'likes' on the FaceBook page of the organization you just cited 'Lucretia'. (It's pretty clear that opposition to the ballot measure has -everything- to do with Judaism.)

Tom Ammiano, Rev. Cecil Williams, The Foundation For Ethnic Understanding-FFEU, Jewish War Veterans of the U.S.A., Rabbinical Assembly, Orthodox Union, Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Hadassah, The Women's Zionist Organization of America, Inc., Yaseen Foundation, Imam Zaid Shakir, Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), Jewish Labor Committee, Progressive Jewish Alliance -- Bay Area, Scott Wiener, Ross Mirkarimi, Mark Farrell, Carmen Chu, Malia Cohen, David Chiu, Bevan Dufty, Fiona Ma, Phil Ting, Leland Yee, Mark Leno, University of San Francisco, Union for Reform Judaism, Sean Elsbernd, San Francisco Interfaith Council, Rabbinical Council of America, National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), Muslim Nurses Association, Muslim American Society: Bay Area Chapter, Marin Interfaith Council, Jewish Study Network, Jewish Reconstructionist Federation, Jewish Federations of North America, Jewish Council for Public Affairs, Jewish Community Relations Council, San Francisco based Jewish Community Federation, Central Conference of American Rabbis, Council on American-Islamic Relations, Mark Leno, B'nai B'rith International, AJC - American Jewish Committee, Anti-Defamation League

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 4:29 pm

Then that's fine with me. The vast majority of people in SF don't share your views on that topic, or your extremist positions on most issues either. So by all means be my guest. Make this about Jews and run wild. If there were any possible way you could marginalize yourself even more than you already have - that would be it.

You could also start throwing in a little Muslim-bashing too, because the Islamic community in San Francisco is strongly against this initiative as well. As is the Sikh community.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 6:14 pm

Of course now that we are in territory that reveals your conservative religious bias, you are playing the tired old card of calling your opponent an antisemite. Predictable.

As stated months ago on another thread, here are six of my top ten personal heroes:

Albert Einstein, Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Woody Allen, Carl Sagan, and Jesus of Nazareth. All Jews.

I am criticizing a religious practice, not a people.

In fact, you deeply denigrate the fight against antisemitism, when you so easily and falsely accuse others of antisemitism, just to win points in a debate by demonizing others.

It is dangerously like crying wolf.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 8:05 pm

I'm not the one claiming this is about The Jews. I specifically said this isn't a Jewish issue or a Muslim issue - it's an issue of religious freedom and the right of physicians to practice medicine without the interference of voters.

Your response was to talk about Israel & "the conservative Jewish lobby" and then list the "likes" of the coalition's Facebook page to prove your point that this is all about The Jews. I don't have to say anything Eric - your own words speak loud and clear.

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 9:18 pm

Well.. While it is very true that this issue reaches beyond Judaism, the groups on that web site seem to be trying very hard to make this very much about their faith.

And let's be real. That the brutality of circumcision is so important to so many practitioners of Judaism is a pretty disturbing and unavoidable truth.

So, the shoe indeed fits, that this issue has a lot to do with that troubling reality.

Especially when so many Jewish groups are clearly bottom lining the attack on the ballot measure. They are -leading- the charge.

There's simply no getting around this.

Pretending something isn't there, won't make it go away.

People need to swallow their shame and do what's right...

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 9:51 pm

Put away the anti-semitism card. It just makes you sound rabid.

Posted by Greg on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 10:03 pm

What is the "conservative Jewish lobby" Eric? Are you sure you don't have AIPAC on the brain? You're seeing nefarious Jews lurking behind everything these days...

Posted by Lucretia "Secretia" Snapples on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 4:33 pm

You apparently sent your post before you looked at my further note just above.

Posted by Eric Brooks on Jun. 25, 2011 @ 4:43 pm

Also from this author

  • Heated debate

    Bikram hot yoga's campaign for copyright has implication for the Bay Area scene

  • Down Dog break down

    We rate the yogis -- which famous Bay Area yoga teacher is right for you?

  • Live Shots: The old-timey escapades of the Edwardian Ball