scalpel in surgeon's hand

U.N. calls for circumcision ban — for females only.

The United Nations General Assembly unanimously approved a resolution on December 20, 2012, calling for a global ban on female genital mutilation, or as others such as myself call it, female circumcision.

It’s a centuries-old practice which stems from religious and cultural beliefs that circumcising girls controls women’s sexuality and enhances fertility when they are of child bearing age. It’s along the same line of nonsensical reasoning that is used for justifying male circumcision when people say it is necessary in order to keep the penis clean, that it helps prevent the spread of STD’s, and that it’s more appealing or enhances sexual performance.

These are just ridiculous, unproven claims used to justify mutilating someone’s genitals. The difference is, mutilating a females genitals is seen as barbaric and needs to be abolished globally. Mutilating a males genitalia? Well the UN has not said a peep about it except in 2011 when the UN launched a plan to accelerate male circumcision for AIDS prevention in Africa.

That’s right, the UN encouraged a plan to promote, speed up, and perform more circumcisions on men because

Voluntary medical male circumcision has been found to reduce the risk of sexual transmission of HIV from women to men by about 60% when carried out by well-trained health professionals. Since 2007, WHO and UNAIDS have urged countries with high HIV prevalence and low levels of male circumcision to expand access to safe VMMC services.

Oddly enough, finding any scientific, peer-reviewed, and empirical study that would explain how these results were obtained is no where to be found. I’ll leave you to draw your own conclusions as to why.

Although the UN’s current resolution on female circumcision is not legally binding, the General Assembly resolutions do reflect international concerns and carry a lot of moral and political weight.

The U.N. said in 2010 that about 70 million girls and women had undergone the procedure, and the World Health Organization said about 6,000 girls were circumcised every day.

However, they neglected the fact that the global prevalence of circumcision in males, estimated using current published data, is roughly a total of 1,306,411,547 men and boys who are circumcised — a global circumcision rate of 37.4%.

The resolution, which was cosponsored by over 100 countries, and adopted by consensus, calls the practice of female circumcision “harmful and a serious threat to the psychological, sexual and reproductive health of women and girls”.

Nowhere was it mentioned that the same could be said for circumcision within the male population, or that male circumcision is much more widespread and affects men in much higher numbers than female circumcision. In comparison, female circumcision is much less prevalent or practiced than male circumcision is.

The resolution calls upon the U.N.’s 193 member states to outwardly condemn the practice of female circumcision and to launch education campaigns to systematically eliminate it. The resolution also urges all countries to enact and enforce legislation which would prohibit the practice and to hold any and all violators of the resolution accountable.

According to Amnesty International, female circumcision is quite common in approximately 28 countries in Africa as well as in Yemen, Iraq, Malaysia, Indonesia, and among certain ethnic groups in South America. They say it is also a worldwide concern because it can be practiced by immigrants in diaspora communities.

What they failed to acknowledge was that male circumcision is practiced in almost every country worldwide, and not just in certain countries or communities. Male circumcision is globally practiced and accepted, yet it is just as harmful, both psychologically and physically to men as it is to women. Many infant boys suffer permanent damage, and many have even died from botched circumcisions. These facts just don’t seem to matter to the UN or AI.

The most telling thing about circumcision is the way in which society phrases it in regards to females and males. For females it is considered to be ‘female genital mutilation’, whereas for men it is simply considered circumcision. You do not hear people saying men are genitally mutilated, even though this is exactly what is happening to them.

Amnesty International’s U.N. representative Jose Luis Diaz called the UN’s resolution “a first” for the General Assembly and “an important moment” for campaigners against “this grotesque practice.” He did not utter a word about male circumcision or how grotesque a practice it is.

I find it quite telling and disgusting that, as a man, your genitals being mutilated is of no concern to the world. It’s only circumcision, after all. Females, on the other hand, are genitally mutilated and that needs to be condemned.

  • http://www.judgybitch.com JudgyBitch

    Voluntary medical male circumcision has been found to reduce the risk of sexual transmission of HIV from women to men by about 60% when carried out by well-trained health professionals.

    Let’s assume this is true. Which part of VOLUNTARY is confusing?

    If you have a strong stomach, then google “infant male circumcision” and watch a video. It literally makes me hysterical to watch a baby being hurt. I can’t do it.

    I have trouble being friends with people who have done this to their sons. The same people will ususally react with complete horror when I suggest they cut the hood off their daughter’s clitoris without anaesthetic.

    To me, this is a capstone issue. When we as a culture, refuse to allow anyone to mulilate their infant son’s genitals for any reason, then we have reached some kind of progressive apex in terms of valuing men and women equally.

    • JinnBottle

      Re having the stomach to see or even read about male infant circumcision: Can’t. Been there. Had that done to me. Unceremoniously, even.

    • http://none universe

      The Wooly
      However, they neglected the fact that the global prevalence of circumcision in males, estimated using current published data, is roughly a total of 1,306,411,547 men and boys who are circumcised — a global circumcision rate of 37.4%.
      – Thanks BumbleBee.

      JudgyBitch
      If you have a strong stomach, then google “infant male circumcision” and watch a video. It literally makes me hysterical to watch a baby being hurt. I can’t do it.
      – Yes, JB, and thanks for lending weight to this issue.
      And just so the non-commenting audience and the curious lurkers should hear/read again, many, or most for all we know, newly arrived innocent harmless infant boys have a piece of skin sliced off without a localized anaesthetic. A chemical numbing that most adults wouldn’t dare do without should they have a similar procedure performed on them or even other surgeries including dental work.
      Watching that live video demonstration of un-aneasthetized circumcision on an infant boy available 2-3 months ago on this site was quite enough for me.

      Who are these people within the U.N.?

  • Bombay

    For people who would like to read other AVFM articles on circumcision.

    http://www.avoiceformen.com/men/mens-issues/german-court-says-nein-to-circumcision/

    http://www.avoiceformen.com/featured/politics-money-and-ideology-whos-circumcision-plan/

    http://www.avoiceformen.com/featured/28000000-african-men-to-be-coerced-by-u-n-to-make-the-cut/

    http://www.avoiceformen.com/a-voice-for-men/clinton-determined-to-push-28-million-circumcisions/

    Thank you Wooly Bumblebee for writing on this.

    When the doctors asked me if I wanted my son circumcised, I responded that circumcision is mutilation and I will not mutilate my son. And that was 18 years ago.

    • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

      It was unreal how many times my ex and I had to say no to the hospital staff with our sons. The nurses were particularly bullying about it.

      • http://gloriusbastard.com/ JJ

        Yeah, now imagine that on an international scale with international governments sanctioning things.

        I don’t care what the UN passes, as long as the US and others are steadfastly against it! Even if the UN signed a ban on male circumcision as well; I would be against it because I do not trust a body, an body for that matter, of government that has 6 of the worst human rights violator nations on its security council.

        Anything from them we accept, gets us closer toa one world government rule. Considering that most of the UN types are extreme socialists in my opinion; I trust nothing from them. Even if I thought it would help.

        They desire to get everyone under their banner; and I don’t trust their general motivations; so all their more specific motivations (legislation they pass) is highly suspect in my eyes.

    • Andres

      Sadly, that decision by the court has since then sparked a long debate about Male Genital Mutilation, and peaked in a law that explicitly allows it.
      A poll has shown that the overwhelming majority of Germans are against that law (and in favour of basic human rights for small boys), though, and we can still hope that our highest court (concerned with questions about if laws are in compliance with our constitution) finally overrules that law as, well, unconstitutional.

      I desperately hope it will.

    • http://patricestanton.com/ Patrice Stanton

      This was my response to the African-circumcision campaign (aka just one more dollar-driven Power-trip by the ruling elites who always know best):(http://patricestanton.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/stantonp31.jpg). Unfortunately it failed to get accepted into the show I entered it in.

  • Andres

    I agree completely with JB: As long as we do not condemn genital mutilation of children equally, regardless of it being done to boys OR girls, we, as a society need to understand that we have a problem: We do not value men and women equally.

    Just recently my country -Germany- has passed a law that explicitly allows Genital Mutilation on newborn… as long as they are MALE.

    Now, there was an alternative law that would have allowed the boys to chose for themselves (regarding religious circumcision) at the age of 14 – that was shot down without an argument.

    Our politicians claimed that this was a great day for democracy (or some such drivel). I am of the opinion that this really showcased that boys have much less value than girls in our society.

    And honestly, I am beginning to despair. Everywhere I look I see how men are regarded less than women, regardless of what they do or accomplish. To paraphrase a feminist on this issue: Man up! It’s just a small snip, and besides, it looks good!

    I can’t eat as much as I want to throw up in the face of such bigotry.

    • JinnBottle

      Andres – I’d heard about the update on male genital mutilation, but thank you for the confirmation. Feminist one-way podiums are bad everywhere, but it sounds like legislative bodies in Germany have not listened to the people since 1933.

  • Kimski

    Lets not forget that female genital mutilation is perpetrated against young women by other women exclusively, which everyone conveniently forgets to mention, every time this subject is brought up.

    Don’t let anyone fool you into believing otherwise.

  • GE

    Here is my canned response on the topic. Old timers may have seen it before but I repost for the newbies….

    The foreskin of the penis and the hood of the clitoris are both called the prepuce and are the anatomically equivalent body parts that exist in most primates, and hence exist in humans.

    Because they are anatomically equivalent, I (naively) expect relative comparisons between the 2 genders in discussions around hygiene concerns, increased likelihood of disease and social attitudes to its removal. However this is not the case.

    Hygiene Concerns
    Many byproducts build up under both the male and female prepuce to produce smegma. This is a continuous process, regardless of the frequency of prepuce retraction and cleaning and it affects both male and female prepuces.

    Disease
    From my readings I see there are 2 main reasons for the increase in disease. The first is that the folds of skin hold the disease carrying substance closer, allowing more opportunity for the disease to enter the body. The other is that prepuce is rich in nerve cells (for sexual stimulation) and these nerve cells are pathways for the disease to enter the body. Neither reason is gender specific.

    Social Attitudes
    The World Health Organization (WHO) has, as one of the definitions of Type 1 (the most serious form of ) Female Genital Mutilation/ Cutting (FGM/C) as – Excision of the prepuce.

    UNICEF states in their publication on this topic http://www.unicef.org/publications/files/FGM-C_final_10_October.pdf that -

    1. FGM/C is a fundamental violation of human rights.
    2. FGM/C is, further, an extreme example of discrimination based on sex
    3. As stated in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, all actions concerning children should be undertaken in the best interests of the child (article 3.1)……. While ‘the best interests of the child’ may be subject to cultural interpretation, FGM/C is an irreparable, irreversible abuse and therefore violates girls’ right to protection.

    The publication then goes on to state –

    1. In the majority of countries that have included questions regarding type of FGM/C, excision of the prepuce (Type 1) is found to be the most common.

    Substituting the collective term for the procedures which are deemed to be FGM/C with the most common procedure (as stated in the report) gives:-
    1. Removal of the prepuce is a fundamental violation of human rights.
    2. Removal of the prepuce is, further, an extreme example of discrimination based on sex
    3. As stated in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, all actions concerning children should be undertaken in the best interests of the child (article 3.1)……. While ‘the best interests of the child’ may be subject to cultural interpretation, Removal of the prepuce is an irreparable, irreversible abuse and therefore violates girls’ right to protection.

    So the WHO and UNICEF consider the removal of the female prepuce a violation of human rights, children’s rights and ‘an extreme example of discrimination based on sex’ . The discussion stops at these foundation principles. There is no further comparison about the relative merits (disease prevention, hygiene, sexual performance – all of which seem to be gender independent) of having the female prepuce removed versus having it intact.

    Working under the presumption that males are also human beings and using the precedence set for the female prepuce I conclude that all the same violations of human and children’s rights also applies to the procedure of removing the male prepuce, commonly known as male circumcision.

  • Jay

    Male circumcision is also male genital mutilation. As usual, nobody cares much about men and boys.

  • Bombay

    Who will cry for the little boy?
    By Antwone Fisher

    who will cry for the little boy?
    Lost and all alone.
    Who will cry for the little boy?
    Abandoned without his own?

    Who will cry for the little boy?
    He cried himself to sleep.
    Who will cry for the little boy?
    He never had for keeps.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
    He walked the burning sand
    Who will cry for the little boy?
    The boy inside the man.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
    Who knows well hurt and pain
    Who will cry for the little boy?
    He died again and again.

    Who will cry for the little boy?
    A good boy he tried to be
    Who will cry for the little boy?
    Who cries inside of me

    by Antwone Fisher from Who Will Cry for the Little Boy?

    • 4thtroika

      Beautiful.

  • TheBiboSez

    Would you tattoo something on your baby’s forehead?

    Of course not – that would be incredibly abusive, and would likely cause you to lose custody AND receive a jail sentence.

    And yet, tattoos can be medically reversed with laser treatments or whatever. Genital mutilation is permanent – the removed tissue is gone forever.

  • Skeptic

    Thank you Wooly BB for your wonderful compassion. I wish the world was filled with many more women like you.
    Ah yes, The United Nations Development Program with one of it’s Millenium goals – Combat AIDS/HIV.
    The UN Development Programme (UNDP) Administrator and openly feminist Helen Clark is the former Labor Prime Minister of New Zealand.
    To know some more about her and her style of politics go here –

    http://briefingroom.typepad.com/files/absolutepowerpreview.pdf

  • http://vilo13.blogspot.com/ Lucian Vâlsan

    Saying that male genital mutilation helps preventing transmitting HIV (or any other STD) is not an ‘unsubstantiated’ claim or a statement that there is no peer-reviewed studies to back it up. No!
    Saying that male genital mutilation helps preventing HIV is just BULLSHIT. Simple as that! It’s like saying the Earth is flat. It’s ludicrous to even consider such a claim other than to call bullshit on it – considering that the ways of HIV transmission are extremely clear even to 12 year old kids.

    I don’t know how many of you guys know, but in 2011, hundreds of pre-teen boys (roughly 1500) have been rounded up in a STADIUM in Manila (Philippine) and circumcised by mostly WOMEN in a attempt to make a WORLD RECORD for the number of people attending to mass circumcision.
    If there were 1500 girls rounded up in a Stadium and circumcised by mostly men in a attempt to make a similar world record – the entire media would have started a shit-storm. But since there were hundreds of innocent boys (mostly age 9) – nobody gives a damn. ( http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/feedarticle/9635969 )

    So… we have women that perform en-masse circumcision on boys. And we have women that perform circumcision on girls. So… it is safe to say that this is a matter of ‘women’s issues’, right?
    Any person in the world can check around him or her and will notice that it’s mostly WOMEN that agree with male circumcision, whilst men are more likely to disagree with both of them.

    I will not try to make assumptions about why is this happening – but it is a fact that women tend to support mutilating males’ genitals.

    • SJR64

      @ Lucian, “Saying that male genital mutilation circumcision helps preventing HIV is just BULLSHIT. Simple as that! It’s like saying the Earth is flat. It’s ludicrous to even consider such a claim other than to call bullshit on it – considering that the ways of HIV transmission are extremely clear even to 12 year old kids”.
      BullShitskie Lucian, 3-quickie links
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091029161728.htm reducing the foreskin area via circumcision equates to less surface areas2 populated by dendritic cells/mucosa for viruses to adhere to. Um means how a male is infected with HIV-HPV-Herpes virus via vaginal intercourse.
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091123212540.htm
      http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090415074940.htm
      Mature dendritic cells are responsible for activating an immune response by CD4 T lymphocytes, but when they carry viruses, their contact with T lymphocytes causes the virus to be passed on, thus increasing viral spread. Mature dendritic cells are shed continuously, e.g. rubbing friction/abraded off of the surface of the male inner foreskin; whilst engaged in vaginal intercourse the penis frontal structure glands/exposed foreskin can be shedding HIV-HPV-Herpes virally infected dendritic cells INTO the vaginal canal that is also lined with dendritic cells and mucosa membranes/cells (vaginal receptor areas2)…transmitting disease!

      • http://vilo13.blogspot.com/ Lucian Vâlsan

        Those studies have been refuted a number of times.
        Here is the refutation for the studies in Uganda: http://allafrica.com/stories/201203210706.html

        Basically, those studies were flawed because standard scientific method has not been respected.
        South Africa Medical Journal also criticized the findings: http://www.samj.org.za/index.php/samj/article/view/1811
        Heck, even prominent doctors in Uganda who assisted the studies criticized them: http://www.monitor.co.ug/OpEd/Letters/-/806314/1363166/-/11eublw/-/index.html

        In fact, the numbers indicate an INCREASE of HIV infections in Uganda after mass circumcisions: http://allafrica.com/stories/201105050159.html

        But regardless of that, it’s still mutilation and it still should not be performed on minors.
        Heck, removing one of your testicles drops your chances of getting testicular cancer by 50%. Would you be ok with that too?

        Here’s a complete analysis on male genital mutilation:
        http://ncfm.org/2011/04/issues/genital-integrety-circumcision/

        • SJR64

          Lucian THANK YOU for the additional-educational links!
          Nope; hadn’t taken personal position pro/con, my twin sons are German citizens, reside in Germany and NOT CUT!
          After posting @Avfm found PLOSone article Ethical Issues related to the Orange Farm Study
          http://www.plosmedicine.org/annotation/listThread.action;jsessionid=6E19A7BBE0C75EC65CCDC59A996C091B?root=1779
          3rd paragraph ‘The ethical issues that will be discussed in this paper revolve around the inclusion of HIV-positive men in the trial and the associated non-disclosure of HIV status to trial participants by investigators. The blinding of investigators to the HIV status of trial participants also raises a number of ethical concerns. The role of the Research Ethics Committees (RECs) that approved this study will be explored. Finally, the controversy related to publication of this article will be examined’.

          Latest APP position September 2012, Bottom line: benefits outweigh risk; medical insurance should CONTINUE TO PAY
          http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/130/3/e756.full.html
          Refs used including refuted African studies that will be used by this association to advice parents to continue to neonatal circumcise infant males. Atypical financial grain, business as usual mentality! Unfortunately IMO naïve expectant parents will buy into a Dr’s recommendation and choose MGM…

  • bowspearer

    Chalk up another anti-male sharia law victory for feminist scumbags globally.

  • MrBBQ

    Hi. I am an anti-circumcision activist. I’m unhappy with the tone and some of the content of your article.
    Firstly, why do you insist on calling it female circumcision? Circumcision means “to cut around”. There are many kinds of female genital mutilation–calling “it” female circumcision doesn’t make sense. It sounds like you are trying to trivialize FGM, and this in turn seems to betray some entirely unnecessary hostility to women on this issue. As an intactivist, I cares about *all* children’s rights to an intact body, male, female and intersex, so I find this repulsive. The intactivism movement does not need to be associated with hostility towards women. Please stop it.
    If you want to close the terminology gap between the sexes, then simply refer to FGM as “female genital cutting”, which is now accepted as a more neutral term. You can then refer to circumcision as male genital cutting in turn. You can also call them both FGM & MGM. But don’t trivialize genital mutilation. It’s really the wrong approach and a disturbing attitude. There’a a real risk that female circumcision (i.e. cutting of a woman’s foreskin, i.e. her clitoral hood) will become accepted in the West as “not too damaging” and therefore acceptable. In fact in 2010 the American Academy od Pediatrics tried to forwars this, referring to it as a “ritual nick” to sell it. No one needs more genital cutting, so please no more focus on how FGC/M is not so bad.
    All forms of cutting children’s genitals are damaging, disfiguring and a violation of their rights. Enough said.
    Am I right in thinking you somehow blame feminists for this, based on the URL above? Our societies may be hypocritical on genital mutilation, but don’t blame feminism. This has everything to do with us finding other cultures’ barbaric practices abhorrent while being blind to our own. This is not a ‘feminist’ thing.

    (I am male and circumcised, in case that matters to you.)

    • http://vilo13.blogspot.com/ Lucian Vâlsan

      „I’m unhappy with the tone and some of the content of your article.” – Tough! This is amongst the articles with a mild tone. You will not find politically correct crap here.
      „Firstly, why do you insist on calling it female circumcision?” – Because that is what it is. You cannot have two terms for the same action. You either call them „male/female genital mutilation” or „infant genital mutilation” – or call them „male/female circumcision”. You cannot call female circumcision „mutilation” whilst keeping the term „circumcision” for the males.
      „It sounds like you are trying to trivialize FGM, and this in turn seems to betray some entirely unnecessary hostility to women on this issue.” – Well, I have news for you. None of us, from the editorial staff, could care less how it „sounds” or it „feels” for sensitive politically correct individuals. We stand for what is right. And having a UN-sponsored double standard on brutal mutilation of infants is wrong. Pure and simple.
      „As an intactivist, I cares about *all* children’s rights to an intact body, male, female and intersex, so I find this repulsive.” – Is there any line in this article that suggests that we do NOT care about all children’s rights to an intact body? Because if there is – none of us is seeing it. Kinda weird don’t you think?
      „The intactivism movement does not need to be associated with hostility towards women.” – I understand. What is that got to do with this article?
      „Please stop it.” – Stop what? Standing for what is right and calling bullshit on double standard because your politically correct sensitivity cannot face reality? Well, you are in no position to give orders.
      Besides, if you think that saying „In the eyes of the UN – males are less worthy of protection and lesser than a human being” – is hostile towards women, then I do not think there is anything common between any of us and you.
      „If you want to close the terminology gap between the sexes, then simply refer to FGM as “female genital cutting”, which is now accepted as a more neutral term. You can then refer to circumcision as male genital cutting in turn. You can also call them both FGM & MGM.” – Great, now we are getting orders and calls for backing up the institutionalized double standard from anonymous politically correct sensitive individuals from the Internet. Aww… ain’t that cute?
      „But don’t trivialize genital mutilation.” – Again: Nobody is trivializing. You are making stuff up! The only one trivializing genital mutilation is the United Nations who cares ONLY about the female circumcision whilst the male circumcision remains legal and even encouraged throughout the world.
      „It’s really the wrong approach and a disturbing attitude.” – Why? Because you say so? I thing you have the wrong approach and I could not care less of what you consider to be disturbing or not.
      „There’a a real risk that female circumcision (i.e. cutting of a woman’s foreskin, i.e. her clitoral hood) will become accepted in the West as “not too damaging” and therefore acceptable.” – Well, this is not an unsubstantiated claim. This is BULLSHIT! In every single European and North American country/state, female circumcision is illegal and caries jail sentences – whilst the reverse is true for male circumcision. Therefore, with regards to the West, female circumcision is no longer a story.
      „In fact in 2010 the American Academy od Pediatrics tried to forwars this, referring to it as a “ritual nick” to sell it.” – I would like to see some evidence for that. Moreover, even if it were true – this still does not change that female circumcision is illegal in the US.
      „No one needs more genital cutting, so please no more focus on how FGC/M is not so bad.” – Again, you are in no positions to give orders!
      „All forms of cutting children’s genitals are damaging, disfiguring and a violation of their rights. Enough said.” – That is correct. Did any of us say otherwise?
      „Am I right in thinking you somehow blame feminists for this, based on the URL above?” – Nobody is blaming feminists for the existence of male or female circumcision. But yes, I am blaming feminists for the fact that male circumcision is legal worldwide.
      Hillary Clinton (a feminist) is responsible for tens of millions of men being circumcised in Africa. ( http://www.avoiceformen.com/a-voice-for-men/clinton-determined-to-push-28-million-circumcisions/ )
      So pardon me for not caring how my tone „feels” or „sounds” to the sensitive individuals!
      „Our societies may be hypocritical on genital mutilation, but don’t blame feminism.” – Oh yes we are. Because feminism takes care to outlaw female circumcision everywhere whilst continuing to say that male circumcision is no problem because „it is just a piece of skin”.
      „This has everything to do with us finding other cultures’ barbaric practices abhorrent while being blind to our own.” – Oh no. Trust me, it does not. If this were true, Germany (and arguably every European country) would have outlawed male circumcision long time ago since it has not been a widespread tradition amongst the natives of most countries.
      „This is not a ‘feminist’ thing.” – Feminists did not create this problem. Granted. But feminists are responsible for amplifying it.

      With all due respect, spare us on sensitive speech.

    • Skeptic

      Your claiming the genital mutilation / circumcision of men isn’t a feminist thing. Bullshit. That’s very ignorant.
      If you’d bothered to be more informed about the issue you’d know that the UNDP headed by feminist Helen Clarke of New Zealand and openly supported by feminist Hillary Clinton is pushing for 17 million sub Saharan men having their cocks sliced based upon their preferred ‘scientific’ methods to stop the spread of AIDS/HIV.
      Yes, I said 17 million, not 17 hundred, or 17 thousand, or even 170 thousand. Seventeen million.
      Methods roundly criticized by scientists within the AIDS/HIV prevention community.
      That’s one hell of a lot of feminist promoted genital mutilation you’ve missed out on.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bk8bfpCADcA

      If you’re going to be an activist on the issue as you claim for goodness sakes get informed, instead of coming here looking like an ignorant apologist for misandry.

      • JinnBottle

        Skeptic – I believe I last read that Hillary’s knife-weilding program is slated for not 17 million, but 26 million men and boys. In subSaharan Africa alone.

        • Skeptic

          Thanks for the correction.

    • Turbo

      “There is a a real risk that female circumcision (i.e. cutting of a woman’s foreskin, i.e. her clitoral hood) will become accepted in the West as “not too damaging””

      Bullshit, Bullshit, absolute bullshit. Are you serious? I mean really serious? I will fly to the moon without a spacesuit before that happens, and you know it. There is not a chance in hell that this would happen.

      If you are seriously are an activist in this area you would not have made this post.

      You would realize that in the western world female FMG is unacceptable under any situation. MGM is however, a topic of coffee table chats, and a women’s choice on whether to mutilate their son.

      “This is not a ‘feminist’ thing.”

      You are blind, stupid, feminist or uninformed, one of these. I would like to believe that you are the last, uninformed. But I do not care really.

      If you believe that the whole circumcise Africa push by the united nations is not driven by feminist ideology, then what is it driven by?

      That is a question for you MrBBQ. We await your reply.

    • cvar

      http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/07/health/policy/07cuts.html?_r=0

      For an “intactivist”, you’re remarkably uneducated about your own agenda. The AAP suggested that as a possible option that would help stop girls from being sent to their home country to be circumcised. It would have been a “nick”, not a full circumcision and I doubt it would have even left a scar. It was even pointed out to be a last ditch option that is less traumatic than male circumcision simply to prevent families from that cultural background shipping their children away to be cut up in possibly unsanitary conditions. It wouldn’t have involved the removal of any skin. Only a small cut that would have healed in days and certainly wouldn’t have left a disfiguring scar on their genitalia!

      They retracted the statement 20 days later after much ado was made. Now we have the UN backing a plan to circumcise 17 million men in Africa and you’re complaining that our language might upset somebody? I think you need to start worrying about all the men who are about to get chopped up (not just a “ritual nick” mind you) on the whims of feminists.

      I guess they’re running out of wrinkle cream at the UN.

  • dhanu

    UN is the most disgusting feminist organization to date. I don ‘t often want to use the word hate but UN has forced me to. I hate UN to the core.

  • bowspearer

    On the contrary Mr BBQ, the tone was spot on. Here’s the thing. These discussions always wind up being FGM vs “male circumcision”. Why not mix these terms up to shake people out of their dogmatic trance?

    Why not shock people out of their collective apathy by doing a gender reversal of social attitudes to MGM and in doing so, expose their own hypocrisy?

    Articles like this aren’t just for people who are informed, they’re also for people who are asleep on the issue?

    “Because it’ll wake people up who are asleep on this issue” is a perfectly acceptable and accurate answer to the underlying question your entire comment was asking: “Why would you describe this issue using such language?”

  • James Williams

    Some of the arguments I have come across from those who “aren’t bothered” about male circumcision are that “it’s not as bad for a boy as it is for a girl”. I ask them the question: If it were the cultural norm to cut the tip of a baby’s little finger off, would that be acceptable? The usual answer is “no”. Why then is it not acceptable to cut any part of a boy’s body except for his penis? Surely cutting any part of a baby is no less than child abuse? The child has no say in what is done to his body. Does not the feminist maxim “My body; my choice” apply?

    • http://patricestanton.com/ Patrice Stanton

      That (“His Body, His Choice”) is the absolute PERFECT response, perhaps most accurately with graphics of a male newborn, boy, then man (a la the evolution-graphic showing ape-to-man). I should throw that together myself now that I think on it…Thanks!

      • http://patricestanton.com/ Patrice Stanton

        “His Body, Whose Choice?” http://wp.me/p21mzp-3C

        As I was making this I realized that even the “male” symbol is circumcised! Think about that.

        • cvar

          I always thought that symbol was spear and shield though.

          I’m not gonna image search this one, but I was also under the impression that the foreskin pulls back when an uncut guy is erect, so that cut/uncut look similar.

          Regardless, awesome poster!

  • The Equalizer

    The WHO / UN ‘scientific’ document justifying this initiative, titled “Male circumcision: global trends and determinants of prevalence, safety and acceptability” ( I post a link to this document below) also includes the following note:

    “For the purposes of this document, the term ‘Female Genital Mutilation’ is used. The word ‘mutilation’ reinforces that this practice is a violation of girls’ and women’s human rights, and thereby helps to promote national and international advocacy towards abandonment.”

    So: for highly debatable health reasons, male genitial mutilation is framed as desirable, with no mention of the accompanying violation of male human rights. Such hypocrisy in official attitudes to the protection of females vs males will come as no surprise to AVFM regulars.

    Here is a link to the document: http://whqlibdoc.who.int/publications/2007/9789241596169_eng.pdf

    I am circumcised myself and am only now beginning to feel, because of my increasing awareness of men’s issues, justifiable anger at such disregard for my bodily integrity, such mutilation.

    This is my first ever posting on AVFM (or any MRM site). I only heard the terms MRM and MRA for the first time half way through last year but I’m learning fast. I have nothing but gratitude and respect for those who created the movement.

    Joining the movement is all at once exciting, challenging and daunting in terms of how much we need to achieve and the forces rallied against us. But we have justice behind us, as did those seeking to abolish slavery, for example. And justice, finally, must count for a hell of a lot.

    • https://www.facebook.com/pages/A-Voice-for-Men/102001393188684 Paul Elam

      Welcome! Most pleased to have you here!

      • The Equalizer

        Thank you Paul. Respect to you, sir!

    • Skeptic

      Great to have another Red Piller amongst us.
      Welcome Equalizer.
      I’m curious. What was your tipping point to joining?

      • The Equalizer

        Thanks for the welcome Skeptic. I’m not sure about any one particular tipping point. I first got involved in The Mankind Project last year, which is not part of the MRM but which woke me up to the widespread suffering of men and the huge benefits of men supporting and understanding each other.

        I had been curious about men’s groups for years, before I’d ever heard of a men’s movement. My first attempt to join one was years ago at a Mind Body Spirit conference and on discovering one advertised there, I entered a room with several men in it, including the leader, and awaited the proceedings keenly. Much to my surprise two women asked if they could come in, and much to my disgust the ‘leader’ said they could!

        I objected ‘but I thought this was a men’s group?’ and he said ‘well I am sure they can contribute’. I walked out. Nowadays I recognise that the support of women in the MRM is integral (I am a great fan of girlwriteswhat), but at that time I was just looking forward to a men-only discussion!

        I can trace the roots back to my mother’s feminism, prejudice against boys at school and my mother’s programming of me to take her side against my father in almost all things. I could go on, But this is all a bit off the topic of this thread. The circumcision initiative made me angry, but really it was a case of having read and viewed quite a lot of MRM material over the last few months and finally deciding to dive right in!

    • The Equalizer

      Note that (male, wage-) slavery has been abolished, of course!

  • The Equalizer

    PS, on an entirely more trivial note, I don’t see where to put a photo with my profile!

    • Kimski

      Click on the picture frame right next to the name, and it will take you to the gravatar installation page.

      And welcome. :)

      • scatmaster

        Mr Kimski do you ever sleep?
        Seems like you have been on guard duty for weeks.
        Well done.

        • Kimski

          Nope, Scatters.
          One of the benefits of getting older. I rather enjoy it, as a matter of fact. :D

    • scatmaster

      the Equalizer go to http://en.gravatar.com/ and register.

  • The Equalizer

    Thank you Kimski and Scatmaster for the welcome and the pic-tips. I look forward to the image I uploaded appearing next to my name shortly, not *quite* as much as I look forward to true sexual equality under the law.

    • Turbo

      Welcome mate, and the Avatar is nice

      • The Equalizer

        Thanks Turbo. I must say I never had such an instant friendly welcome from a web community before. I think it might be time we were rebranded the fairer sex (assuming my welcomers are all guys, I could be wrong!) Shame I can’t see me pic, but I trust that’ll sort itself out soonish. For equality, we may have to wait a bit longer….I wonder how long people think?

        • Turbo

          Yeah, all welcomers are guys so far, but this site has amazing women. The author of this article is one.

          • The Equalizer

            And I look forward to interacting with them. Naturally I’m not saying men are better….just doing a bit of Equalizing ;-)

        • Kimski

          Oh, go ahead anyway.
          I’m pretty hot by any standard.

          :D

          • The Equalizer

            Lol :-)

  • MrBBQ

    Honestly, circumcision was around long before feminists. No, feminists are not interested in cutting your dicks. I’m also not asking anyone to nit hurt my feelings, or trying to cut anyone’s balls off with political correctness. But I am asking for sensible, sane and non-hateful argumentation. Intactivists work hard every day at communicating, and you guys are just paranoid with your overarching conspiracy theories. You actually aren’t helping anything by talking like buffoons. Thank god none if you are real activists, you’d probably convince parents that intactivists are nutters. And to the genius who thinks I support this institutionalized discrimination, you really haven’t got a clue about me or anything. Do the world a favor and try listening to a new idea for once.

    Before Clinton announced what bureaucrats had already decided behind the scenes, Bill Gates donated $25 million for circumcision in Africa. Does that make him a feminist too? It’s not feminism cutting your dicks, it’s the fact that our culture (and mostly men historically) has been practicing this bizarre pseudo-medicine for 150 years. Actually, all the anti-FGM activists I’ve ever met were also very against male circumcision. Honestly, guys…

    There are actually specific influential people promoting circumcision, and various scientists cooking up bad studies. Feel free to go look them up at circleaks.org. You’ll notice most of them are men. These are the most prominent/active proponents who have dedicated their life to advocating circumcision. Actually a high percentage of them happen to be Jews… I guess this means you should start hating on them too, while you bitch about the women who want to cut your dicks.

    • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

      You’re going to get a hell of a lot further here, “MrBBQ,” if you stop calling people names and making ludicrous allegations. For example, we do actual activism here I’m sorry to tell you, including massive efforts to reach out to public officials and the media and to raise money and promote causes. It’s what we fucking do. We aren’t “inactivists,” we’re actual ACTIVE activists, doing, you know, REAL WORK.

      So take your own advice: Do the world a favor and try listening to a new idea for once.

      You don’t like someone criticizing feminists? Well as it happens I agree with you that “feminism” isn’t responsible for circumcision, although, there are prominent self-proclaimed feminists who do support it and support government policies to expand it. They should answer for that like anyone else. But as it happens, we probably agree that they alone are far from the problem, and that this is a culture-wide problem.

      But do yourself a favor and learn something about men’s activism before you start calling people you don’t know names, and making dumb assumptions about them, m’kay?

  • David

    I went to occupy London, dressed up as a houseless man, with signs saying “UNinvolved in your boyfriend.” and “Your silent approval makes dicks cry”. Interestingly I was maced by a wile woman in her 20′s that yelled I support violence against women, after I replied “I support equality”.

    My question is; do you guys wanna leave the UN? What do you think?

  • John Dalton

    Sadly there is peer-reviewed evidence to support the claims about HIV, viz:-

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16231970
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17321310
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17321311

    What this evidence does not support, despite vociferous claims to the contrary, is a massive campaign of circumcision. And it certainly doesn’t justifiy circumcision of children.

  • MrBBQ

    Dean: wasn’t making assumptions about anything. Just commenting on the foolishnes of those who posted above you. You may agree that feminism is not responsible for circumcision, but people above you said exactly that. In fact, one said feminism was the only reason it went on. Serious lack of grasp of reality on some of them. When ideology > knowledge, we’re all in trouble.p
    If you could name those feminists you mention (besides Clinton) who are promoting circumcision, it would be much appreciated.

    Also, if you read carefully, it’s “intact”-ivists not “inactive”. I haven’t seen MRA contingent in any intactivist demonstrations, and I hope it stays that way. Thanks for bringing attention to the issue, though. Hopefully future articles are heavier on facts and lighter on hate and ideology.

    Once again, http://circleaks.org to see who’s really behind promoting circumcision.

    • http://www.deanesmay.com Dean Esmay

      Actually Hugo Schwyzer, Hannah Rosen, and a number of feminists have spoken favorably of circumcision, and a number of feminists are parts of international programs to force circumcisions of men in Africa, and a number have stated that men are “selfish” if they don’t get circumcised because it supposedly protects their partner from disease. Although I don’t believe they alone are responsible for this by any means, feminists in actual political power in any number of areas do have some complicity.

      That said I would agree with you that we cannot lay everything on this issue at their feet. In fact, quite a few issues that they have a hand in they only have partial complicity in.

  • Shrek6

    This is such an unhappy chapter in the lives of many men/fathers and boys. Me included. It was done to me and I ignorantly followed on with this tradition.

    When the day came that I had my eyes opened to the evil that besets this world, I started looking into this practice, especially back through my Faith.

    It seems that there was a need for Circumcision in the early Biblical years. I have looked, but cannot provide any links to back up my claims.

    But apparently nomadic men who were unclean, aided in the spread of Chlamydia, which I think they called ‘Sandy Blight’ as well. Laws were changed within their religion to force the circumcision of men and boys, because they believed it would help ease the transmission of STDs, by making it easier to keep the penis clean.

    The same thing happened to eating Pork and drinking blood,but for different reasons. Trichinosis, is a pretty horrible parasitic infection: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trichinosis. This is a reasonable overview of the condition/disease. There are a host of websites if you wish to Google them.
    This parasite has been around for many thousands of years, along with many other diseases that still plague this world today.

    Contracting this condition, along with the ill effects of drinking blood, brought about yet another religious change, to force people to abstain from consuming these things, because pigs were not treated correctly and kept clean, and drinking blood was always a recipe for disaster in any age of Mankind.

    Come now to the beginning of the modern era, which was approx 2,000 years ago.
    Christ told St. Peter to kill and eat, after showing him a picture of all animals including pigs.

    St. Paul introduced the concept of the uncircumcised to be included and accepted as people of the Faith, WITHOUT them having to be circumcised.

    Now, I know those of you who are Atheists are not interested in the previous few paragraphs, but I wrote them deliberately to prove one point that I believe has been the driving force behind the reason for Circumcision of the days of Old.
    And that reason has been mostly because of Religion.

    Two thousand years ago, it was seen as totally and absolutely unnecessary to circumcise boys, because at around that time the main reason to do it was for religious purposes, not that of hygiene, because men had by that time learnt enough of the problems of STDs and the benefits of keeping themselves clean.

    But there has been a 2,000 year absence of reason to mutilate boys, yet it has continued to this day. Why?
    The only reason I can come up with, is aesthetics!

    There has been absolutely no earthly reason why any religion, be it Christian or otherwise, to insist on the circumcision of boys (or girls), yet this practice still occurs. It is time that this is seen as nothing but mutilating torture and it needs to stop.

    After looking into this, I felt cheated that I have suffered this mutilation and I feel guilt for having followed through this particular cycle of abuse.

    This conversation I will most definitely be having with my children, both male and female, to try to break this cycle.

  • jheimlich

    Thank you for pointing out this hypocricy on the part of the U.N. For some twisted reason, cultures have always insisted on genitally cutting boys and girls, although the justifications change enough over time so that followers of the practice remain committed to continuing it. Regardless of how authority figures legitimize genital cutting, even the most educated and intelligent individuals — depending on their level of religious and cultural indoctrination — believe they are routinely required to remove healthy tissue from infants and children, a procedure that no credible physician or medical organization has deemed to be medically necessary. Untold numbers of children around the globe pay a big price for this lack of critical thinking.
    Janet Heimlich, author of Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment

  • http://slmedic.wordpress.com slmedic

    Exactly in Philippines 93% boys who are in their early teenage are subjected to the circumcision as I found and those who hesitate to undergo to the circumcision are subjected to the teasing,bullying in rest of their life by the friends, women, family, society everyone tends to discriminate intact men.