[extropy-chat] circumcision

Acy Stapp acy.stapp at gmail.com
Thu Jan 12 22:51:36 UTC 2006

I can't believe that otherwise well-informed adults are seriously
considering circumcision as a valid option for a child. Clearly
children are unable to give informed consent for a medical procedure
due to limitations of their understanding, but children should have
sovereignty over their own bodies unless medically necessary. In the
case of circumcision the potential benefits occur when the boy becomes
sexually active and is arguably fit to make that decision for
themselves. I can guess what 99.9% of teenage boys would choose.

As a side note, in cases of adult circumcision if the stitches pull
out during an involuntary erection (apart from the mitigating extreme
pain which would tend to reduce such an occurance) then the
circumcision has removed an excessive amount of skin. The skin on the
penis should not be so tight that it rips out stitches.



On 1/12/06, Damien Broderick <thespike at satx.rr.com> wrote:
> At 12:12 PM 1/12/2006 -0500, Rafal wrote:
> >### One may wonder, what is the reason why humans evolved to have a
> >foreskin? For fun? To increase risk of infection and cancer?
> >
> >If we knew why we have it the first place, we'd know whether it's
> >smart to cut if off.
> Of course, the following is not the same, but a similar retort might be
> made to those crazy people who cut their hair, shave their beards, depilate
> their pubic hair, trim their toenails, wash themselves with soap, wear
> condoms during anal sex, clean their teeth with toothpaste...
> As far as I can see, though, male circumcision isn't really like any of the
> above, and derives from a surprisingly recurrent practice of
> self-mutilation in many cultures, similar to the votive practices of, say,
> knocking out one healthy tooth, cicatizing face, breast, arms, etc, as a
> kind of tribulation and admission to the tribe as well as an obeisance to
> supposed Higher Powers. Silly, and rather nasty. That it turns out to have
> some unexpected medical side benefits for people living in highly urban
> communities and engaging in sexual practices unavailable to our ancestors
> who were stuck in the same small region with the same small number of
> people for their whole lives, provides no warrant of adaptation.
> On the other hand, given the elaborate and cross infecting world we now
> live in, and that circumcision does have this unexpected side benefit, and
> is best inflicted in infancy if at all, it's worth considering for baby boys.

"Given the high likelyhood that a child will use tobacco, and that lip
removal does have the benefit of reducing oral cancer, and lip removal
is best inflicted in infancy if at all, it's worth considering for all
your babies."

> Damien Broderick

Acy Stapp

"When I'm working on a problem, I never think about beauty. I think
only how to solve the problem. But when I have finished, if the
solution is not beautiful, I know it is wrong." -- R. Buckminster
Fuller (1895 - 1983)

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