I can do relate with this post! My youngest has colored on the walls, bed and sofa and had an adventure throughout the house painting walls, toys and the big tv screen with gray shiny nail polish….
I had this whole post planned about how Kieran has begun to engage in illegal arts and crafts activities. In the past couple of weeks, he’s glued tissue paper to my walls, scribbled on several things with crayons (including a door, several plastic containers, the inside of the van, and his car seat – twice), cut a bedspread with his scissors, puddled glue on the carpet and emptied another container of glue on the patio, painted the side of the house . . . the list grows longer each day.
After each incident, the sentence that runs through my head (and sometimes comes out of my mouth) is “what was he thinking?!”
A Reddit user going by the handle “european_douchebag” posted a surreptitious photo of a Sikh woman with the caption “i’m not sure what to conclude from this.” The user’s apparent confusion stems from the fact that the woman—bound by her religion not to cut her hair or alter her body—has an abundance of dark, untrimmed facial hair. The mind of european_douchebag was SO INCREDIBLY BLOWN by the fact that women have hair on their bodies—and, yes, faces—and that some women are bold, self-assured, and pious enough not to cave to western beauty standards (and gender expectations), there was nothing for him to do but post her photo online and wait for the abuse to flood in.
But then something totally lovely and unexpected happened. The woman in the photo responded:
Hey, guys. This is Balpreet Kaur, the girl from the picture. I actually didn’t know about this until one of my friends told on facebook. If the OP wanted a picture, they could have just asked and I could have smiled 🙂 However, I’m not embarrased or even humiliated by the attention [negative and positve] that this picture is getting because, it’s who I am. Yes, I’m a baptized Sikh woman with facial hair. Yes, I realize that my gender is often confused and I look different than most women. However, baptized Sikhs believe in the sacredness of this body – it is a gift that has been given to us by the Divine Being [which is genderless, actually] and, must keep it intact as a submission to the divine will. Just as a child doesn’t reject the gift of his/her parents, Sikhs do not reject the body that has been given to us. By crying ‘mine, mine’ and changing this body-tool, we are essentially living in ego and creating a seperateness between ourselves and the divinity within us. By transcending societal views of beauty, I believe that I can focus more on my actions. My attitude and thoughts and actions have more value in them than my body because I recognize that this body is just going to become ash in the end, so why fuss about it? When I die, no one is going to remember what I looked like, heck, my kids will forget my voice, and slowly, all physical memory will fade away. However, my impact and legacy will remain: and, by not focusing on the physical beauty, I have time to cultivate those inner virtues and hopefully, focus my life on creating change and progress for this world in any way I can. So, to me, my face isn’t important but the smile and the happiness that lie behind the face are. 🙂 So, if anyone sees me at OSU, please come up and say hello. I appreciate all of the comments here, both positive and less positive because I’ve gotten a better understanding of myself and others from this. Also, the yoga pants are quite comfortable and the Better Together tshirt is actually from Interfaith Youth Core, an organization that focuses on storytelling and engagement between different faiths. 🙂 I hope this explains everything a bit more, and I apologize for causing such confusion and uttering anything that hurt anyone.
And then, THEN, something even more miraculous happened—the original poster apologized:
I know that this post ISN’T a funny post but I felt the need to apologize to the Sikhs, Balpreet, and anyone else I offended when I posted that picture. Put simply it was stupid. Making fun of people is funny to some but incredibly degrading to the people you’re making fun of. It was an incredibly rude, judgmental, and ignorant thing to post.
/r/Funny wasn’t the proper place to post this. Maybe /r/racism or /r/douchebagsofreddit or /r/intolerance would have been more appropriate. Reddit shouldn’t be about putting people down, but a group of people sending cool, interesting, or funny things. Reddit’s been in the news alot lately about a lot of cool things we’ve done, like a freaking AMA by the president. I’m sorry for being the part of reddit that is intolerant and douchebaggy. This isn’t 4chan, or 9gag, or some other stupid website where people post things like I did. It’s fucking reddit. Where some pretty amazing stuff has happened.
I’ve read more about the Sikh faith and it was actually really interesting. It makes a whole lot of sense to work on having a legacy and not worrying about what you look like. I made that post for stupid internet points and I was ignorant.
So reddit I’m sorry for being an asshole and for giving you negative publicity.
Balpreet, I’m sorry for being a closed minded individual. You are a much better person than I am
Sikhs, I’m sorry for insulting your culture and way of life.
Balpreet’s faith in what she believes is astounding.
Holy shit, internet, I don’t even know you anymore! I never thought something would come out of the seeping necrotic abscess that is Reddit that would actually make my day better, but wow. MY HEART GREW THREE SIZES THIS DAY.
I’m not a health nut but this is insane!!!!
how can this possibly be good for the cow and ultimately good nutrition for us???
KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Reuters) – Mike Yoder’s herd of dairy cattle are living the sweet life. With corn feed scarcer and costlier than ever, Yoder increasingly is looking for cheaper alternatives — and this summer he found a good deal on ice cream sprinkles.
As the worst drought in half a century has ravaged this year’s U.S. corn crop and driven corn prices sky high, the market for alternative feed rations for beef and dairy cows has also skyrocketed. Brokers are gathering up discarded food products and putting them out for the highest bid to feed lot operators and dairy producers, who are scrambling to keep their animals fed.
In the mix are cookies, gummy worms, marshmallows, fruit loops, orange peels, even dried cranberries. Cattlemen are feeding virtually anything they can get their hands on that will replace the starchy sugar content traditionally delivered to the animals through corn.
“Everybody is looking for alternatives,” said Ki Fanning, a nutritionist with Great Plains Livestock Consulting in Eagle, Nebraska. “It’s kind of funny the first time you see it but it works well. The big advantage to that is you can turn something you normally throw away into something that can be consumed. The amazing thing about a ruminant, a cow, you can take those type of ingredients and turn them into food.”
The candy and cookies are only a small part of a broad mix of alternative feed offerings for cattle. Many operators use distillers grains, a byproduct that comes from the manufacture of ethanol. Other common non-corn alternatives include cottonseed hulls, rice products, potato products, peanut pellet.
Wheat “middlings,” a byproduct of milling wheat for flour that contain particles of flour, bran, and wheat germ, also are fed.
And every now and then, there is a little chocolate for the hungry cows.
Hansen Mueller Grain out of Omaha, Nebraska, which markets chocolate bars alongside oats and peanut pellets, said it all comes down to fat, sugar and energy.
Soooo I moved most of my “potted garden” inside because the nights were getting colder and tonight it’s a warm night…. Go figure! I need to start checking the weather predictions….
Comfort in the Morning
by Misty Krasawski
April 30, 2012 – by Misty Krasawski –
Nicholas stirred on the bed. I found myself silently pleading, “Please, stay asleep! I need a few more minutes . . . “ He looked so innocent there, sleeping away, dreaming baby dreams.
And so I was weary. Weary of always answering the call; of stealthily (I thought) escaping into the bathroom only to hear the inevitable crying right outside the door, of missing church when he doesn’t feel like going, of the thick layer of dust settling in places I don’t have time to reach anymore, of being the one who has to answer the cry when no one else will do. I wondered how much longer I could hold up, and asked the Lord for strength.
I opened my Bible, where strength can be found.
“. . . you will be nursed, you will be carried on the hip and fondled on the knees. As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you . . .” – Isaiah 66:12-13
I almost couldn’t breathe.
Emotions flooded my heart. Me? Really? Me, the one to be comforted?
Recently, Lea wrote an amazing post on female genital mutilation. For years, I read about the issue among tribes in Africa and felt shocked. But at the same time, in the back of my mind, I wondered: if it’s unacceptable to us for tribes elsewhere to cut off perfectly good body parts from women as a cultural rite of passage, then why is it acceptable to us, in America, to do the same thing to men?
Unfortunately, we’re all taught to believe that male circumcision is OK — it’s completely ingrained as culturally normal and acceptable. In fact, even suggesting that male circumcision should be questioned causes people to question whether you are anti-Semitic. In a sociology class, I asked if anyone saw that male and female circumcision were basically the same thing and my professor asked me if I really just wanted to repress Judaism. Um, what?
When you really think about the details, male circumcision just as horrific and terrible as female genital mutilation… and as we’ve said about African tribes, it doesn’t have be a part of a culture or religion. It’s nothing I want to subject my future son to. It’s a socially accepted double standard to have your son circumcised, but to be repulsed by female circumcision in other cultures. Really, when you think about it, bias aside, is there any difference?
I suppose my main issue is that, if I want other cultures to stop a practice that bothers me as a woman, then shouldn’t I ask my own culture to stop a practice that I think is just as harmful to men’s sexuality?
My comment in response to the comments on this linked blog post (I couldn’t sign in to comment. Glitch or something)
FYI: there are several types of female circumcision from removal of all external genitalia, to the removal of only the inner labia and clitoral hood, or to just a pin prick in the clitoris.There are also various types of male circumcision. From splitting the penis length wise , to cutting off the entire foreskin or to just a small cut in the foreskin.In many places girls are circumcised in hospitals or dr offices just like boys are… And in many places boys are circumcised in homes, huts and unhygienic places just as girls are.Neither is right. Both are mutilation. Many women and men are happy with their circumcised genitalia but that doesn’t mean we should be allowed to cut children.
Pic of penile subincision: this is mutilation just like female Infibulation.
Splitting the urethra only to the base of the glans is called meatotomy.
Some people split the top of the penis as well, to achieve genital bisection.
Splitting the glans, but not the shaft, is known as headsplitting.
Splitting of the top of the penis only is known as superincision.
Female genital mutilation link
A photo gallery… No actual circumcision shown
I have not looked at these particular links yet but I know they are pro-female circ. I have only placed these here to show that cultures who minimally circumcise girls use the same reasoning as American insistence on cutting boys.
I’ve found a few good blog posts by mothers from that region talking about their daughter’s circs. It’s eerily similar to boy circ posts, except that the actual procedure seems to be far less severe (at least as it’s done by these particular cultures). Here’s some samples.
a photo comparison of male and female circumcision of the shock it bestows on its victims.
although male penile sub incision and female genital mutilation are NOT practiced in the USA…. I just wanted to draw attention to the fact that men can be genitally mutilated as well. I just want to bring awareness that just as some forms of circumcision only remove the female clitoral hood or the male foreskin, although not as damaging or horrific as the total removal of the labia and/or clitoris or male penile sub incision both are still a human rights violation when performed on infants, children and other unconsenting minors and unconsenting individuals. People who choose to be circumcised (from a pin prick to amputation) should be well informed of all possible complications.
Over and over again, I hear other debaters remark that the estimated 100-200 deaths resulting from amputation of the prepuce on newborn baby boys in America are a “small number” and not something of concern. Here are examples of the comments people have posted to me:
”Even if we doubled that number, it’s still minute.”
”That’s only like 100 people.”
”Oh, that’s actually really safe.”
”Well, more people die in car crashes.”
”You can’t save everyone.”
Babies die every day. We all die, actually. That’s just a fact of life. What is the inherent issue with circumcision deaths? Why should a baby dying from circumcision concern us and anger us?
The current routine procedure performed on baby boys in America is recognized as medically unnecessary surgery. Even the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) acknowledges that any “potential benefits” are not enough to recommend routine circumcision. We’ll look at that link in a minute.
Routine circumcision is the act of taking a healthy, living, functioning baby and performing surgery without medical indication: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bXVFFI76ff0
The baby is not sick. The baby does not have a congenital defect. But a part of the body is removed through surgery. And some of these babies die.
In other words, all of those 100-200 deaths were 100% preventable. Every single one of those babies should be alive today. As I’ve quipped before:
“Nothing in life is 100% safe, but medically unnecessary circumcision is 100% preventable.”
Clicking the link below will show you pictures of male genitalia both flaccid and erect. You will be able to see the differences and the similarity between the two. You will also see how much a man loses due to circumcision.
warning real life photographs
FUNCTIONS OF THE FORESKIN
Dr Peter Ball MB,B Chir
Last updated on 22nd June 2003
The foreskin has protective, sensory and sexual functions
Catholics have NO religious requirement for circumcision, NO medical association in the world recommends it, and most Catholics worldwide do NOT circumcise their children
click the link for the full article. It is full of excerpts and declarations
for the non-catholic Christian
This link is more open minded. I’m only including it for another view
Way too many curse words but makes very valid points! I’m not going to post excerpts… You’ll just have to click the link.
just thought this was Interesting
DIET AND GROWTH IN INFANTILE
By Alfred F. Hess, M. D.,
Doctor Hess had noted a gradual falling off in growth at about the seventh or eighth month in babies that had been fed on pasteurized milk, and had made an experimental study to find whether this might not be due to a lack of the elements essential for growth in this diet. Many of these infants did not show typical symptoms of scurvy, the disease being in an obscure or subacute form, which he considered the most common and the least frequently recognized. Tachycardia was, however, an early and typical symptom.
He found that growth in both length and weight was greatly affected in infants fed exclusively upon pasteurized milk, both finally ceasing. When orange juice, orange peel juice, or potato water was added to the diet, there was often a supergrowth, which continued until the normal weight and length for the infant’s age was reached, when the growth became normal. Aftei^discontinuance of this antiscorbutic food, although the infants sometimes continued to gain for’a month or two, there was a gradual flattening of the curve of growth. As soon as orange juice was again given, however, a sharp gain was manifested, showing that the babies were receiving some essential constituent of the diet that had been lacking.
Doctor Hess also found that putting these children on unpasteurized milk had the same effect as giving fruit juice with the pasteurized milk. He then investigated the effect of boiling on both milk and antiscorbutic foods, and found that orange juice and orange peel juice did not lose their antiscorbutic elements by being boiled, although milk did. He concluded that while pasteurized milk should be recommended, on account of the security that it afforded against infection, it should be considered as an incomplete food, lacking the elements essential to proper nutrition and growth. He thought it probable that this was why so many infants failed to gain at about the seventh or eighth month of life, and began to grow better as soon as fruits and vegetables were added to their dietary. He thought that during the early months of life the infant was protected by the antiscorbutic elements inherited from its mother, and recommended orange juice at the age of one month, so as to prevent the development of the scorbutic state.
The doctor admitted that there might exist a number of causes for lack of growth; insufficient food, lack of proper elements in the food, etc. He thought, however, that other elements than lack of growth were concerned in the production of infantile scurvy, and did not consider stunting and scurvy as the same; as the diet might possess growth-promoting qualities, and yet be unable to prevent the development of scurvy or afford a means of curing it.
Doctor Holt thought that Doctor Hess had
•Abstract of a paper read at the Twenty-Eighth Annual Meeting of the American Pediatric Society. Washington, D. C.? May 8-10, 1916.
proved the point that had been under discussion from time to time, whether pasteurized milk could be held responsible for scurvy. It had been his observation for several years that such was the case, and a number of instances had come under his observation during the last year to confirm his earlier position. While they all admitted the great advance which had been brought about by the introduction of pasteurized milk in securing safety in cases in which doubt existed as to the way in which the milk was produced and handled, the disadvantages of pasteurization had sometimes been denied and sometimes ignored—and, on the part of the dealers supplying pasteurized milk, disputed. Unless they who were interested in the production of good milk and certified milk made strong their disapproval of the general pasteurization of all milk, it would not be many years before they should be face to face with the fact that it was impossible to secure any but pasteurized milk. In one city in New England, the health department was about to issue an order that no milk but pasteurized should be sold in that city, regardless of the conditions of production or certification. In a number of instances, certification had been done by irresponsible persons, and was later shown to have been a fake. Physicians had been in part responsible for this; and even they, perhaps, had been negligent. He believed, however, that in the matter of pasteurized milk, they must admit that scurvy, every now and then, followed its use—and many other conditions. In some persons there was a predisposition to scurvy which they could not ignore; and while comparatively few children on pasteurized milk got scurvy, some did. When they saw groups of dealers banding themselves together to get legislation through State legislatures or health departments forbidding the sale of any but pasteurized milk, they should show that there were dangers in the use of the latter. They saw bad results from its use less frequently among the babies of poorer people, because this class gave food other than milk to their infants much earlier than had been customary among the better class of people. It had been his observation, that, while nearly all the cases of scurvy used to come from the use of proprietary foods, they now came from employing heated milk, either pasteurized or boiled. It was also his observation that the number of cases of scurvy in the community was increasing, and it was a good thing that the matter had been brought before the society ; because the number of cases was large. They had four instances in the hospital last year, cases that had been under medical treatment until there was epiphyseal separation at both knees, both shoulders, and both ankles. A vast number of the profession had not had their eyes opened to the dangers lurking in pasteurized milk, and the antiscorbutic treatment to counteract this must be begun early and continued.
The amount of orange juice necessary in these cases was a point of interest. It had been his fortune to see a case develop in the wards in a baby who was taking a good many meals a day and getting a pretty large quantity of carbohydrate food. Nevertheless, scurvy developed.
If Doctor Adams were to select an epitaph to be placed on his tombstone, it would be, “He opposed the commercial pasteurization of milk.” He had fought this, and was going to continue to fight it as long as he had breath in his body. What Doctor Holt had said, he hoped the society would back Up; i. e., that commercial pasteurization was dangerous and detrimental to the health of children. No institution should be advised to use pasteurized milk, just because some sentimental and erratic persons in the community had banded themselves together and decided that all children would be killed with tuberculosis unless their milk was pasteurized. With Doctor Hess and Doctor Holt, he had, within the last ten days, had cases in children that had been fed on the best pasteurized milk delivered in Washington city. That dairy was constantly furnishing him with work on antiscorbutic lines, yet it passed as one of the best dairies in the entire country. He could not understand why Doctor Herrman had asked if the essential antiscorbutic elements were destroyed in the cooking, they were restored by orange juice. To put the children on raw milk and let the orange juice go would settle the question. He hoped that the matter would be thoroughly discussed, and would tell them of an instance in his own experience. He was attending a patient in a certain house, and the father asked the dairyman why he had not sent raw milk, as Doctor Adams had ordered. The dairyman said he had not done so because the milk was not fit to deliver raw. That was the whole secret. It was rotten milk cooked that was being foisted on the community. He hoped that the members would come come out strongly against the commercial pasteurization of milk. He was not opposed to home pasteurization under proper supervision, but was opposed to commercial pasteurization.
Doctor Blackader wished to say one thing to emphasize the importance of this subacute phase of infantile scurvy. This winter he had two cases in which children were brought to his office at the request of the attending physician for obscure symptoms, partly nervous, and associated with defective growth. There was no sign that he could find of infantile scurvy—none of the classical signs; but he felt convinced, from the history, that these children were suffering from defective nourishment in some form. He was remarkably pleased with the rapid disappearance of all the symptoms under the use of orange juice and unpasteurized milk, at the time. It was something new to him, and he intended to bring it before the profession. He thought that it was an original observation, but he must give Doctor Hess credit for first describing this subacute form with defective vitality owing to insufficient nourishment.
Doctor Hessj in summing up, did not feel that the conclusion to be drawn from this paper was that pasteurized milk was not of any advantage. In fact, in his conclusions he prefaced his remarks by saying that it was of advantage. The conclusion to be drawn was rather that pasteurized milk was an incomplete food—that it was inadequate. If this fact was realized, and acted on, it would be a boon to pasteurized milk producers; because there would be fewer cases of scurvy after its use and better results would be obtained with this heated
milk. All that was necessary was to give with it, either orange juice or potato water. They could make potato water instead of barley water by using one spoonful of mashed potato to a pint of water. The commercial potato flour had no effect.
Everyone realized that there was a predisposition to scurvy, whether infantile or adult, in certain persons. That was realized a few years ago, when they had so much scurvy aboard ships. It was known now, also, that this was true in connection with beriberi. Some persons got beriberi and some did not, although they had been on the same food and had been to the same places. As regards infantile scurvy, the susceptibility depended partly on the amount of essential substances that the mother had and the food that she took during her pregnancy, as well as upon how long the infants were nursed. Doctor Herrman had asked how it was that boiling the orange juice did not destroy its essential substances, whereas boiling the milk did so. That was well known of various substances. A great deal depended on the medium. Certain substances would stand boiling in a watery solution (for instance, orange juice), where they would not stand boiling in a medium rich in fats and proteids, such as milk. The brain substance made from the hypophysis lost its coagulability after boiling, if undiluted; but if diluted, it would stand boiling. So it had to do with the medium in which the essential substance was.
The symptoms of scurvy were hemorrhages of the periosteum, petechial hemorrhages, hemorrhages of the gums, subperiosteal hemorrhages, hemorrhages into the muscles, enlargement of the heart, tachycardia, and the other various symptoms that he had detailed in two previous papers. The control cases, of which there were as many as those that had pasteurized milk, obtained no orange juice; yet in no instance did any of them have scurvy. When either orange juice or raw milk was given in the cases with scurvy, there was a sharp reaction in weight and in the clearing up of the symptoms. As to what was a vitamine, that was difficult to answer. Funk, who devised the term, thought that he had it isolated; but he found that it was not pure. It was a nitrogenous substance; and this was a good name, because it helped to designate the substance essential in scurvy, beriberi, pellagra, etc. He wished that Doctor Coit would come over to their institution and satisfy himself in regard to the vitality of the children there. They were institution children; but they looked as well as those in their homes. It was a model institution, and had plenty of fresh air. The weight of the children had been taken every day for six months previous to the beginning of the test. It was not as if they came to the institution just as they would to a hospital. Doctor Freeman had asked whether the speaker had tried the effect of orange juice in cases other than those on pasteurized milk. No, not especially. He could look up the charts and see what happened, but he had not made that particular test.
[Initial cleanliness and early uninterrupted refrigeration are the essentials to be insisted upon in any milk supply. Rotten milk is never made harmless by pasteurization.—Editors.]
Food and Feeding in Childhood.—Dr. J. Epstein, of New York, in the Medical Times for October, 1916, states that, beginning with the second year, the period of infancy ends, suckling or bottle feeding is over, and the active life of childhood asserts itself. The gastrointestinal tract which during infancy is in an immature state with its physiological functions of digestion not yet fully developed, is now able to digest and absorb a variety of semisolid and solid food. At this age the child usually has a number of teeth already cut through and is able to masticate the food, preparing it for the action of the digestive enzyme. As the child grows older, the articles of food suitable for its digestion multiply, and the simple, uniform, monotonous diet of infancy which consists of milk only, is now changed to a mixed diet.
I am in no way saying anything against pasteurized milk and against raw milk. I just thought this was cool. To me it also explains why we push solids on babies so soon.
I’ve posted about this film before.
“I cannot support circumcision with any conviction, just because it has always been held in high regard. It remains a barbaric, bloody act, which fills the father with anxiety and subjects the mother to morbid stress. The idea of sacrifice, which once consecrated the procedure, has certainly vanished among us, as it should. It is a brutal act that does not deserve continuation. No matter how much religious sentiment may have clung to it in the past, today it is perpetuated only by custom and fear, to which surely we do not want to erect temples.” – Rabbi Abraham Geiger, an influential Rabbi in the early Reform movement of Judaism.
“We do not engage in circumcision, so that we celebrate all babies being born, girls and boys and the ceremonies are the same for welcoming both girls and boys into a poetic kind of covenantal ideal of love and support. We’re all born into the world vulnerable and in need of people who love us and take care of us… we depend upon each other for love and protection and that extends in this case I would say also to creating a covenant without circumcision…. There’s no official place in our movement’s philosophy for circumcision… the welcoming ceremony has no place for it… it’s really unimportant actually… most Jewish people who have any of covenant actually focus primarily on how we treat each other… we’re all in this together folks… we all have to live some kind of ideas… not sacrifices of children’s bits – I think that’s completely absurd at this time in history. I will say that I would not circumcise a child. … I think many Rabbis actually if they were going to be honest would say that circumcision is an unimportant part of Jewish life.”
– Rabbi Binyamin Biber, President of the Association of Humanistic Rabbis
Georgetown University, Q&A with Ryan McAllister & Rabbi Binyamin Biber, September 22, 2011
“More and more Jews are choosing to not circumcise their boys.. (Thank God!) And just as we accept Jews who do not keep kosher or observe as we do, we recognize the amazing diversity of practice and belief that is part and parcel of our astounding heritage.
Genital cutting does not create a ‘mensch’ (a conscious-caring individual). Indeed it is more of an obstacle to our natural development and [a] source of anger and confusion. Coming from an Orthodox background and having lived in Jerusalem, i am very aware that the problems of domestic violence and sexual pathology are just as prevalent in the observant communities as in the secular. Deuteronomy 10:16 says: “Circumcise the foreskin of your heart…” In Hebrew, the word foreskin is ‘orlah’… there is an ‘orlah’ covering the ear and the heart… What is preventing us from ‘hearing the word of God and opening our hearts in love and compassion.. This is the real circumcision that needs to occur. and it is a life-time learning ceremony…. ‘Brit Milah’ is the Hebrew for the covenant of ‘circumcision’. ‘Mila’ also means ‘word’.. We can welcome the child with songs and praises and holy words, gentle tones, and soft touches and smiles.”
– Rabbi Nathan Segal, Rabbi of Shabbos Shul, One Rabbis’ Thoughts on Circumcision
To cut or not to cut? For some soon-to-be parents of boys, no question is more agonizing than this one. If they look to the medical literature for guidance, they find conflicting opinions and “dueling studies” that reach conflicting conclusions. Frequently disputed points include the incidence of urinary tract infections in circumcised and uncircumcised babies, the rate of complications of circumcision, and the incidence of sexually transmitted diseases in circumcised and uncircumcised men.
And yet, despite all this point-counterpoint in the learned journals, there are some aspects of circumcision that desperately need the light of plain common sense shined upon them. Advocate and foe alike overlook some issues that are matters of common sense, and debate others without making some commonsense observations that would provide clear guidance. This article discusses four such aspects: circumcision’s effect on the experience of sex, the question of whether there is a right to circumcise, keeping clean, and circumcision’s potential effect on the parent-child relationship.
© 2003 by Charles Phelps
Click link above for full article! Very articulate and well written.
A panoramic article on the religious and cultural aspects of circumcision just appeared in Haaretz, Israel’s oldest and most influential daily newspaper. “Even in Israel, more and more parents choose not to circumcise their sons,” the headline glows. The article’s author, Netta Ahituv, covers the territory of conformity, medicine, marital and family discord, and religious identity.
You must read this epic piece. I cannot possibly do it justice, but here are some takeaways: Even in Israel, having an intact penis is at worst no big deal. The dissenting parent gets over it, the grandparents love the kid anyway, and there are no associated medical or “hygiene” problems. Cutting off the foreskin, on the other hand, is painful for the baby and decreases sexual sensitivity for the man. And, perhaps the bottom line of concern to Haaretz’s readership, a boy who is born Jewish, i.e., to a Jewish mother, is still a Jew – whether he is circumcised or intact.