Circumcision debate with Intaction

Circumcision prevalence with intaction.org : 1947: Dr. Eugene Hand of the American Medical Association, said in Newsweek, ”where the promiscuous and uncircumcised Negro had an incidence of venereal infection of “almost 100%,… for the widely educated Jew, circumcised at birth, the venereal disease rate has remained the same or decreased.” 1870: The renowned Dr. Lewis A. Sayre of NYC’s Bellevue Hospital claimed to cure a boy’s paralyzed legs with circumcision. He also claimed to cure epilepsy, mental disorders, hip-joint pain, & hernias with circumcision. “Genital irritations” & masturbation were deemed to be the cause of these issues. Sayre was a leading figure in the popularization of circumcision in America. He was later elected to president of the American Medical Association.

That’s right. This fact is extensively documented in the historical literature. The idea started in the 1890’s that masturbation was a dirty vile habit that needed to be stopped. Medical experts from across America began promoting circumcision to parents as a way to prevent masturbation. The “experts” led parents to believe that masturbation would cause mental insanity and was also the root cause of many diseases. Notable people of the day like John Harvey Kellogg wrote in his book, “Plain Facts for Young and Old,” about curing masturbation, “A remedy which is almost always successful in small boys is circumcision, the operation should be performed by a surgeon without administering an anesthetic, as the brief pain attending the operation will have a salutary effect upon the mind, especially if it be connected with the idea of punishment.”

Circumcision Overview: Circumcision is a surgical removal of the natural foreskin from the penis. The foreskin covers the head of the glans penis. This removal of the foreskin is one of the most common surgeries done to baby boys – in America. This hospital operation is typically done within one or two days after birth. Left undisturbed, that foreskin will grow into 15 square inches in the adult male. Therefore the decision to circumcise a baby is a serious consideration for parents to make. The procedure rates have been dropping in America. Most medical groups have stated there is no clear cut benefit, and the surgery is very painful to a baby. For many of the Jewish or Muslim faith, cutting and removal of the foreskin is an ancient religious act of faith, sacrifice, or covenant. Read even more information about circumcision.

The most comprehensive study available that assesses the psychological impact of circumcision on children after infancy was conducted by Ramos and Boyle (2000) and involved 1072 pre-adolescent and adolescent boys who were circumcised in a hospital setting. Using an adapted version of a clinically established PTSD interview rating scale, the study’s authors determined that 51 percent of these boys met the full diagnostic criteria for PTSD and noted that other variables such as age at circumcision (pre-adolescence versus adolescence) and time elapsed since the procedure (months versus years) were not predictive of a PTSD diagnosis (Ramos & Boyle, 2000). As a point of comparison, the rate of PTSD among veterans of the Iraq war is approximately 20 percent (NIH, 2009).

Intaction is the only intactivist organization with a large full time mobile education truck which not only displays our intact body positive campaign, but transports our exhibits and materials for the many events we host. Our past events have included disruptive protests, parade contingents, demonstrations, parental education events, and our celebratory event IMAGINE. We hold constant outdoor events with our mobile education unit to engage our fellow Americans. These exchanges provide a unique opportunity for us to keep a finger on the pulse of public opinion. We also use print media, social media, and online platforms to engage people with our ideas. We seek to give those that feel they have been harmed by circumcision the ability to contribute to the cessation of this abhorrent practice. Together we can forge a path to a better world for future intact generations. All are welcome to join with us. Discover more info on this website.